Author Topic: Love matches in Victoria's family  (Read 59620 times)

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Offline Keith

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #210 on: May 12, 2007, 12:54:41 PM »
Perhaps the discussion on Helena can be moved into another thread as we're not talking about her in regards to a love match. But I find the discussion interesting.

I'm not sure how you mean Duke of NJ, that Helena would have would have turned out like Alix had she married Fritz. In the very little I've read about her, I don't get the impression that she ever shirked her royal duties. She didn't seem to have a problem about dealing with society like Alix. Not sure how shy she may have been, but I don't think she ever let that get in the way of what needed to be done.

I think she probably would have been a better Empress than Vicky, as she would have been able to have left the Englishwoman at home, as Vicky was never able to do. Not being as well learned as Vicky, she would have been more acceptable. Most men of that time didn't like woman having more knowledge than them, let alone shouting it from the rooftops. It seems to be an even more pronounced trait among the royal/aristocratic men of Germany. These seemed to be two of the reasons for Bismarck's persecution of Vicky. He wouldn't have been able to do that with Helena. I don't think Helena would have meddled in political affairs. She would have done her duty and not caused waves.

Helena not having made a great dynastic match, or been the mother of a future King/Queen she seems to get lost in the shuffle among QV's daughters. If it hadn't been for Louise's artistic skills what would we probably know about her, except the trouble making she seemed to cause. I've always felt Helena was the perfect royal for that time. She did her duty without fuss and just got on with it.

Offline basilforever

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #211 on: May 12, 2007, 01:05:52 PM »
Yes, excellent points. Perhaps Helena could have made a more suitable Empress of Germany. It is interesting to think about.
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Offline Eric_Lowe

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #212 on: May 13, 2007, 08:18:54 PM »
Yes...By Bismark's standards !

I wouldn't say that she was the perfect royal. grace & charm is also needed (things that "ugly" (by QV's standards) Helena did not pocess). The successes of Queen Alexandra, Empress Marie Feodorovna  and Queen Marie of Romania are more examples of the perfect royal.  ;)

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #213 on: May 14, 2007, 01:06:15 AM »
They were all consorts and judged (and remembered) differently. I think by the standards of a 'regular' royal, she came pretty close. She smiled in public, attended multiple events, was the active patron (not just a figurehead) of many charities (especially in education and nursing), provided her husband with children (and sent one off to war to fight, and die, for his country), presented a regal, royal presence and was well-liked in her time. Charm and grace didn't matter as much in her capacity. I would also include Queen Mary in your list of consorts.
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Offline Grace

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #214 on: May 14, 2007, 01:19:20 AM »
Yes...By Bismark's standards !

I wouldn't say that she was the perfect royal. grace & charm is also needed (things that "ugly" (by QV's standards) Helena did not pocess). The successes of Queen Alexandra, Empress Marie Feodorovna  and Queen Marie of Romania are more examples of the perfect royal.  ;)

Is there any such thing as a "perfect royal"?  All of them have been criticized in these threads, some fairly, some unfairly perhaps.  I think you may be in a minority in your criticism of Helena, Eric, as most seem to respect her for the reasons already posted here and don't dismiss her because she wasn't a so-called "beauty" or dynamic personality.   

Offline Eric_Lowe

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #215 on: May 14, 2007, 04:52:39 AM »
No...I think Helena was perfect as a minor royal. She did not need to be judged by her clothes, jewels, smile (very few of her smiled) and conversational skills. Even Dona was harshy judged by the clothes. Willy had to ask Louise Coburg to instuct Dona in the art of dressing. Actually Helena must be glad in not getting the "top job".  ::)

Offline Eric_Lowe

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #216 on: May 14, 2007, 04:55:00 AM »
I agree that we should move away from Helena now since her marriage wasn't a love match as well.

A new topic, was Alice Gloucester's marriage a love match ?

Offline Duke of New Jersey

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #217 on: May 14, 2007, 02:02:14 PM »
Just a quick question:

Who is
Quote
Louise Coburg
?

-Duke of NJ

Offline eejm

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #218 on: May 14, 2007, 02:14:09 PM »
I agree that we should move away from Helena now since her marriage wasn't a love match as well.

I know we were planning on moving away from Helena, but I do have a topical question.  I've actually never been clear as to whether Helena's and Christian's marriage was more of a love match or an arranged match.  John van der Kiste maintains it was strictly arranged in Victoria's Children, which was of the reason for Alice being so angry about the marriage, believing that her mother was trying to trap Helena. 

Packard, in Victoria's Daughters, claims that upon meeting Christian, Helena was very attracted to him and wanted to marry him.  Granted, he does mention that Helena was anxious to marry so as not to end up like Beatrice (forever in her mother's service), but according to him, Helena did want Christian.  As for Christian, he seemed pretty easygoing and low-key, liked Helena and didn't have any other prospects, so he went for it.

Can anyone comment on whether the match was more arranged or for love?  Whatever the case, I do think they grew to love one another.

Offline Prince_Lieven

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #219 on: May 14, 2007, 04:56:39 PM »
I think it was arranged, but they were quite happy for it to be arranged, and, as you say, feel deeply in love. I do remember reading that Alice was very unhappy about it, thinking (among other things) that Christian was too old for Helena.
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Offline Eric_Lowe

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #220 on: May 14, 2007, 07:57:19 PM »
I second that. It was an arranged match. QV believed that with Helena's looks, she may not find another beau. However QV also stopped Alix's brother Freddy from persuing Helena.  ???

Offline Grace

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #221 on: May 15, 2007, 02:22:22 AM »
Eric, you speak as if she was green and scaly!  She was just an ordinary looking woman who, much to her mother's disappointment, simply didn't care about artificial enhancements, clothes etc. to aid her appearance as most other women of her time did.  Simple.  ;)

Offline Eric_Lowe

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #222 on: May 15, 2007, 02:31:17 AM »
Well...I think QV was much more critical of Helena's looks than anything I could have written (Remember she was her mother !). Yes I don't think she was ugly, just plain perhaps (compared to Louise, who was voted as the beauty of the family).  ???

Offline eejm

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #223 on: May 15, 2007, 10:07:53 AM »
Well...I think QV was much more critical of Helena's looks than anything I could have written (Remember she was her mother !). Yes I don't think she was ugly, just plain perhaps (compared to Louise, who was voted as the beauty of the family).  ???

I never really understood why Louise was looked at as the great family beauty.  There is a picture of her and Helena as young women and they look nearly identical.  I'd agree that Louise has perhaps finer features than Helena, but otherwise I've never really seen Louise as so much prettier than Helena or any of her sisters for that matter.  To me, all of Victoria's children were nice, regular-looking people. 

Offline Eric_Lowe

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Re: Love matches in Victoria's family
« Reply #224 on: May 15, 2007, 08:34:57 PM »
Well...I think Louise had better colouring and nicer features. Helena suffered as being a tomboy. No I think Alice was vey delicate looking and ladylike (compared with her other sisters).  :(