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Messages - LenelorMiksi

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The Hohenzollern / Re: Princess Alexandra of Hohenlohe-Langenburg
« on: June 21, 2008, 11:54:06 AM »
I highly doubt that Sandra convinced Marie Coburg to give her the majority of the jewels, or that the grand duchess had lost her backbone.  Sandra was the only one of her daughters on the German side of the war.  She still loved her other daughters, but nonetheless a rift was created, and Marie Coburg felt intensely patriotic to her adopted Germany.  So doesn't it make sense that she would want the majority of her jewels to go to a princely germanic house, and to the daughter who had nursed the German soldiers?  Also, why should Sandra part from the jewels that her mother had left her?  After being the "least interesting" of the sisters her entire life, she finally got to feel like the favorite.  Ducky won favor by converting to Orthodoxy and becoming a Russian Grand Duchess, Missy was a beautiful, popular queen, and Baby Bee was the Benjamina, the only one allowed to wait for a marriage of love rather than rushed into one in her teens.  Really, I don't find it hard to understand that Sandra would be reluctant to part with this physical proof of her mother's love. 

Balkan Royal Families / Re: Tzar Ferdinand of Bulgaria and his family
« on: June 08, 2008, 01:20:09 PM »
I've been reading Stephane Groeff's biography of King Boris III, "Crown of Thorns", and it has good information about the princesses.  Apparently, the four siblings (Boris, Kyril, Eudoxia, & Nadejda) were very close.  Their father was very authoritarian.  Princess Eudoxia was closest to King Boris.  From "Crown of Thorns"... "Four children who grew up without a mother, in the shadow of an overpowering father who never gave them an affectionate hug or a tender word: "Bo," the eldest, the most sensitive, a very intelligent youngster and conscientious worker; "Kiki," a bigger, stronger boy although a year younger, more extroverted and mischievous, and a lazy student; Evdokia, of "Koka," four years younger than the crown prince, probably the brightest child, a girl with an unusually strong will and explosive temper, like her father's; Nadejda, called "May" or "Micky", a pleasant and obedient girl at whose birth their mother, Princess Maria-Louisa, née Bourbon-Parma, died."
  When Ferdinand abdicated in October of 1918, the entire family were exiled from Bugaria except Boris.  His sisters were allowed to return in 1922, and later on Prince Kyril.  The princesses provided emotional support for the young ruler, who was struggling to maintain a throne while so many other monarchs, of much older dynasties, were abdicating.  Another excerpt on the princesses' personalities- "Boris, for instance, had never heard Evdokia and Nadejda discuss haute couture or hairdressers, nor seen them wear makeup or fancy jewelry.  When they were girls, their stepmother, Queen Eleanore, dressed them, invariably, in austere old-fashioned garb, prim and proper enough to satisfy the monarch, who personally decided on the family jewely the wore, on special occasions only.  Later, in the sober atmosphere of the postwar years, the princesses never developed the slightest interest in clothes, girl talk or frivolities of any sort.  Instead they became, especially the brilliant and politically minded Evdokia, the closest confidantes of their harassed brother, who often discussed important public affairs with them."
Princess Nadejda married Albrecht in the beginning of 1924.  Eudoxia, on the other hand, loved her native Bulgaria so much that she did not wish to marry and thus be forced to leave it.  When Boris married Princess Giovanna of Italy, some sister-in-law unpleasantries arose and Eudoxia moved into a house newly-built for her.  Apparently, Boris was the only person Eudoxia would aquiesce to when things did not go her way.  Eudoxia abhorred the Nazi movement, and at one point Nadejda and Albrecht escaped problems with the regime only because of Nadejda's connection to King Boris.

The Windsors / Re: Helena, Princess Christian of Schleswig-Holstein
« on: May 14, 2008, 07:50:51 PM »
I think when family members (read Queen Victoria) criticized Helena's appearance they were speaking more of her manner than her looks.  How one appears to others- perhaps she was ungraceful, or walked strangely, or had mannerisms that were more in common with men of her period- has a strong affect on a person's overall attractiveness.  I've often wondered why Helena was called unattractive.  However, a remark from "Victoria's Daughters" has stuck in my head.  In a passage on Helena's tomboyish personality in youth, Packard remarks that Lenchen had to discard her favorite pursuits as unfeminine once she grew older.  She liked athletic and mechanical activities- neither of which were acceptable for a Victorian princess.  "Only once she lost this innocence during her teens would her life take on its coloring of apathy..."  I know if I could not enjoy my favorite hobbies I would become a far less colorful person.  Maybe the environment stunted Lenchen's personality in a way that showed outwardly.

Italian Royal Families / Re: Daughters of King Vittorio Emmanuele III
« on: April 26, 2008, 03:07:31 PM »
Princess Maria Francesca (1914-2001) was the youngest child of King Victor Emanuel III of Italy (1869-1944) & Queen Elena née princess of Montenegro (1872-1952).  She married Prince Louis of Bourbon-Parma (1899-1967).  I've always thought she was very pretty from her pictures, and I came across a comment made by Queen Marie of Romania when she visited the royal family of Italy.  She said, "As to the youngest, little Maria, then about five or six years old, she was all eyes and dark curls, a perfect treasure, almost too good to be true, a real Christmas-card baby one does not expect to meet in reality.  Never had I seen eyes so large, round and black; they shone like polished gems, while as a contrast her pouting lips were cherry-red."  Marie of Romania can really bring the image of someone to life, especially as black-and-white photographs can only do so much.

I don't know anything about her personality or life beside this little snippet, but I'll try to find out more!

Part of the problem with the biographies on Victoria Melita is the lack of anything written by her.  I believe I remember reading that the authors did not have access to letters or diaries written by her.

Alexander II certainly hurt many people and possibly himself by his relationship with Princess Dolgorukaya.  Nobody can live up to the standards of "royal paragon".  Certainly, Alexander III & Nicholas II had exemplary family lives.  Yet both tended towards reactionary rule, in my opinion, whereas Alexander II really tried to bring some democratic principles to Russia.  No one can be perfect, no matter how hard he or she may try.  I find many aspects of AII's adultery distasteful, but it seems he really loved Pss Dolgorukaya.  It's easy to pass judgement.  It's much harder to try and step into someone's shoes and imagine why and how they acted the way they did.  However, it's worth the effort.

Their World and Culture / Re: Philip Alexius de Laszlo
« on: March 29, 2008, 04:38:52 PM »
Who are the sitters in the two portraits gdssella posted above?

Having Fun! / Re: Colored pictures XXIII
« on: February 26, 2008, 07:14:21 AM »
Isabel, that picture with Toria and the boys is absolutely gorgeous.

The Windsors / Re: King George III, his Queen Charlotte and their family
« on: February 17, 2008, 01:25:17 PM »

Here is the portrait of Sophia by Beechey.

For a close-up:

Mary and Sophia by Sir Thomas Lawrence in 1824 & 1825.


It's strange how in the Beechey portrait Sophia has golden hair and in the Lawrence portrait she has brunette hair.  Maybe her hair got darker with age.

No, Olga Konstaninovna is not in that picture. The two younger women are Vera K's twin daughters Elsa & Olga, and Elsa's husband Prince Albrecht of Schaumburg-Lippe.

The Stuarts of Scotland / Re: Best Looking Stuarts
« on: January 05, 2008, 06:04:04 PM »

Okay, I kept wondering about this portrait and the symbolism in it.  Palatine already said the white horse was the symbol for the House of Hanover.  The red lion she's holding was on the coat. Half of her skirt is red because she was executed wearing a red petticoat- which I think was very spirited.  She surrounded by the red and white roses of the Tudors.  What the red glove means is beyond me.  The other side of her skirt is decorated with the fleur-de-lis because she was Dowager Queen of France.  Queen Elizabeth is peering out of half of her bodice. The Knight on her side has a bunch of men quarreling in his head- maybe they are the Scottish lords fighting with themselves.  The woman being chased down by a man on horseback may be Bothwell abducting her.  The Knight's sword is in some kind of fruit- I'm not sure what that's all about.  She has the arches of a cathedral above her, surely a reference to Catholicism.

The Stuarts of Scotland / Re: Charles I and family
« on: January 05, 2008, 05:34:03 PM »
I didn't mean that Elizabeth would have survived longer if she'd gone to Holland- I just think she and Henry would have been happier there with family.  I'm sure the medical care there was centered on bleeding like everywhere else in Europe at the time, which we know just weakens resistance to disease.  Probably having a dead pigeon put on one's head would be more beneficial than bleeding- at least then maybe the placebo effect could kick in. I didn't realize that rickets could be caused by lack of sunlight.  That makes a lot of sense, and tuberculosis was so prevalent a person weakened by rickets would be especially prone to die of it.

The Stuarts of Scotland / Re: Charles I and family
« on: January 05, 2008, 10:33:43 AM »
What a beautiful tomb.  Thank you palatine, I had been searching for pictures of it!

  As for the ill treatment, Alison Plowden states in The Stuart Princesses that Elizabeth's and Henry's various wardens actually treated them well, but the main tragedy was in them being kept away from their real family for so long.  I imagine they would have been much happier if they were allowed to join their sister Mary and aunt Elizabeth in the Netherlands. 
  However, when St. Thomas's church was rebuilt in the 1850's a Dr. Ernest Wilkins examined the remains and declared that Elizabeth suffered from a softening of the bones called rickets, and that their appearance indicated some deformity.  To my knowledge, rickets is caused by malnutrition.  It seems incongruous to state that she was not ill treated if she was not fed well enough to prevent malnutrition. 

The Stuarts of Scotland / Re: Charles I and family
« on: January 01, 2008, 06:44:09 PM »
I don't know if Henry was a burden- I thought he was probably a comfort.  Elizabeth was six years old when her parents fled and her little brother was a year and a half. 

Margaret Dicksee painted this picture entitled "The Children of Charles I" in the 19th century, probably after Queen Victoria reinterred her remains and erected a monument in Elizabeth's honor.  I'm assuming it's Elizabeth sitting with Henry.

The Stuarts of Scotland / Re: Charles I and family
« on: January 01, 2008, 01:13:23 PM »

These are the younger surviving children of Charles I (excepting Minette): Elizabeth, James of York, and Henry.  This is the oldest portrait I can find of Elizabeth; she died at fourteen, but her character still fascinates me.  From this picture she was no beauty, but I feel so sorry for her, as she had to live out her life away from her older siblings and parents.  At least she got to know her father before he died, but really I think she suffered the most from Charles' death since her mother got to live in freedom in France, and Henry got out of England to enjoy an admittedly short life on the continent.

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