Author Topic: Princess Sybilla  (Read 53806 times)

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Offline TJ Jones

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #15 on: April 23, 2005, 09:00:37 PM »
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What is the event in this picture? I read on another website that Sweden no longer has coronations.
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Offline lexi4

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #16 on: April 23, 2005, 11:21:06 PM »
I would also like to know more about her. Does anyone know which of her relatives were Nazis? I have been able to find very little information on her.
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Offline Frederika

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #17 on: April 24, 2005, 03:30:20 AM »
Sybilla on her honeymoon 1932


« Last Edit: February 16, 2011, 04:05:55 AM by Svetabel »

Offline crazy_wing

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #18 on: April 24, 2005, 04:06:59 AM »
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I would also like to know more about her. Does anyone know which of her relatives were Nazis? I have been able to find very little information on her.


Her father was one.  

Offline lexi4

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #19 on: April 24, 2005, 02:05:47 PM »
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Her father was one.  

Was she sympathetic to the Nazis?
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Polaris

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #20 on: April 29, 2005, 09:09:05 AM »
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What is the event in this picture? I read on another website that Sweden no longer has coronations.
This picture is from the Grand Opening of Parliament in January 1970, in the grand old way it used to be.

Here you can see Princess Sibylla as the nations first lady, assisted by two pages who handle her train. At these kind of grand occasions, the first lady of the country (at this time it was Sibylla) was always assisted by two pages, the rest of the royal ladies by one.

It's a pity we only have the "normal" Opening of Parliament left... :(

Offline TJ Jones

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #21 on: April 29, 2005, 09:58:26 AM »
So, you live in Sweden? Do you know anything about Princess Sybilla not posted here? I have looked and I cant find anything.
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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #22 on: April 29, 2005, 10:55:12 AM »
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So, you live in Sweden? Do you know anything about Princess Sybilla not posted here? I have looked and I cant find anything.

When we talk of Princess Sibylla and our current King's childhood, we really have to put it into perspective. These were the days of the old Court - a very strict and old fashioned Royal Family and Court, surrounded by rules and regulations - but of course there was also more pomp and glitter in those days.

The Swedes feeling for Sibylla pended between being cold and warm. During the war years it was hard for all Germans in Sweden, and especially for Sibylla because she had family members (Saxe-Coburg-Gothas) who were involved with the nazis.

She was welcomed when she arrived in Sweden after her marriage, but the life that awaited her was a very hard and regulated one. The pressure for her to deliver a boy, a coming King, was enormous. So when she gave birth to four girls in a row, it wasn't easy for her.

She was never a loved royal in the way others are, but as I said - off and on warm and cold feelings for her came from the people.

When it comes to the life of Princess Sibylla, I really don't know that much, her life is quite in the dark these days. I do know that she was a devoted Scout throughout her life, something which the current King has "inherited".

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #23 on: April 29, 2005, 11:10:39 AM »
To give yall some insight to the climate of those days, I will post here a translation of an article from a Swedish newspaper in March that I did for http://www.theroyalforums.com at the time it was published.


The King’s dark childhood
(Translated article from Expressen, march 2005)

King Carl Gustaf, 58, has always missed his father. The truth is that he also missed his mother. During his, sometimes sad, childhood, he lived isolated and was not even allowed to live in the same apartment as his mother, Princess Sibylla.

After the flood wave catastrophe, King Carl Gustaf for the first time bared to tell about his family secret: the regret for a father.
- Many children have lost one or both their parents. I think I know what that means. I have myself been a child like that, he said.

With that, he lifted the lid off a subject that had been taboo during his upbringing. Expressen have mapped out how it was to grow up as a Crown Prince without a father – and with a mother who was seldom at hand.

It was never spoken about that there was no father in the family; that Carl Gustaf, when he was only nine moths old, lost his father; Crown Prince Gustaf Adolf, 41, in a plane accident. It was a Tuesday. Gustaf Adolf was returning from a hunting trip to Holland and the Princesses where leaving fro Bromma airport to welcome him.

The next morning, the children were allowed to enter the bedroom where Princess Sibylla sat in the bed and cried. She said:
- Your father is dead.

Then it was not talked about any further. Carl Gustaf didn’t get to know the truth until he turned seven years old.
- It was out mother’s way of handling the situation, to cope with living her life. We were not to talk about it. That’s just how it was.
- It was of course not good for us children. It would’ve been much better to be allowed to talk about father’s death, Princess Birgitta has said in an interview.

Princess Christina has also witnessed of how it was:
- No one ever told me that father was dead. It took me about five six years to understand that I had no father.
- I feel no grudge or bitterness towards mother, because I think I understand her. She was devastated herself, and it was a terrible shock for her.

- She was so young when she came here, to a foreign country and she stuck in a very intense family life.
- She gave birth to children constantly, her deliveries were difficult and she was not feeling well during the pregnancies.

Princess Sibylla felt the pressure to give birth to a son – and secure the male succession. Carl Gustaf was therefore a longed-for boy. Gustaf Adolf and Sibylla had four girls – Princesses Margaretha, 11, Birgitta, 9, Désirée, 7, and Christina, 2 – and finally had a son that could secure the succession.

His father called him ”the Duke”. The fist thing Gustaf Adolf used to say when he returned home was:
- How is the little Duke?

The King’s mother, Princess Sibylla, was devastated after Gustaf Adolf’s sudden death. She realised that she on her own would not cope to raise five children. Instead it became the staff’s business to take care of the Princesses and Prince. Little Prince Carl Gustaf’s rescue was the nanny Ingrid “Nenne” Björnberg, who had to provide almost all of the love, closeness and affection. During the night after Gustaf Adolf’s death, she decided that the Princely children would become the task of her lifetime.

Nenne Björnberg lived with the five children in a special apartment at Haga Palace. In another apartment lived mother, and every morning the children were allowed to come down and say “good morning” – and then they had to eat breakfast in another apartment.

It was Nenne that put the little Prince to bed. It was Nenne that sat beside his bed and comforted when he was sick. It was her arms that he sought for when he looked for closeness and when he was sad.

Once per year, Nenne Björnberg was granted a holiday and went away. Little Carl Gustaf dreaded her leaving him. Princess Birgitta describes it in her memoirs “My own way”:
“Nenne had barely left the house before Carl Gustaf started crying. He was impossible to comfort and he cling to me like an ape. My attempts to calm him made no difference, he just went on crying whatever I did. At last I started to get tired in my arms and tried to put him down on the ground again, but he didn’t want to hear about it. He cling my arm and bit me by reflex in the arm!”

The little Prince and Birgitta – maybe also the other siblings – saw Nenne as a deputy mother; their real mother was seldom at hand when they needed her.

Princess Birgitta writes:
“Our mother was sometimes enormously jealous at her, because it was to Nenne that we turned with our small and big troubles. This had a natural explanation though. Our mother was forced to devote a lot of time to the Court’s duties and was often away from home on different assignments.”

When Carl Gustaf was sent to the boarding school in Sigtuna, that he was not allowed to leave at the holidays, he found his place very well there. But Birgitta writes:
“The one he missed the least was our mother – not by lack of love, but because the official duties took so much of her time.”

Nenne was the good mother in the little Prince’s life. Nenne also became like a grandmother to the royal children Victoria, Carl Philip and Madeleine. Nenne passed away in 1994.

But Carl Gustaf was also to be brought up by men, among others his favourite uncle, Prince Bertil. The air force Colonel Ulf Björkman, who was Gustaf VI Adolf’s Aide-de-Camp, and who sometimes stepped as it for “the little King”, tells:
- I stepped in for him when he lived at the bachelor apartment at the Palace. We used to sit in the kitchen and cooked and talked. But we never talked about the fact that his father was dead.

Ulf Björkman also tells about a man who came to mean a lot for Carl Gustaf:
- He had a spare father in the General Malcolm Murray, who was a very good friend to Princess Sibylla.
- He was a part of the “council” that were to take care of the Crown Prince’s upbringing. Malcolm was a very nice person – happy and liked to joke.

Princess Birgitta says:
- My brother had no memories of his own from our father, but always when we meet – we talk about him.
- He loves to hear us sisters’ talk about father.
- It’s great that my brother is not talking about his loss. It has been great through out his life.

Only once before has King Carl Gustaf mentioned the regret for his father:
- Many of my friends’ fathers became like some sort of spare fathers for me. And then it happened that one felt one would have wanted a father.

The King’s missing of a father and a present mother has characterized his life, and above all how we values his own children.
- When one has three healthy, harmonious children – yes, one is happy. It’s great to be with the children.
- It’s the whole point.

Offline TampaBay

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #24 on: April 29, 2005, 02:01:38 PM »
Polaris,

Thank you for the wonderful article!!!

Do you have any information on how Sybilla met her Sweedish Prince?

Thanks again!!!

TampaBay
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 06:00:00 PM by TampaBay »
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Offline La_Mashka

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2005, 12:48:26 PM »
Wow!!

Thats an awesome insight on a kings life...  It sounds like a very sad childhood...


BTW, in the picture where Princess Sybilla is going to the Parliament, doesnt she resemble Queen Elizabeth II??  ???
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Offline CatherineNY

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #26 on: May 30, 2005, 11:45:51 AM »
Sybilla was the granddaughter of Leopold, Duke of Albany, Queen Victoria's hemophiliac son, and the daughter of Charles Edward, Duke of Saxe-Coburg Gotha (who, as was mentioned above, became a Nazi, and was imprisoned for a while at the end of WWII). There is information on Sybilla's father and family, and on her, in Theo Aronson's "Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone". Princess Alice was Sybilla's aunt. You can also find information on the family in Marlene Eilers Koenig's "Queen Victoria and Her Descendants".

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #27 on: May 30, 2005, 01:33:54 PM »
John van der Kiste in his book 'Northern Crowns' writes that because Sybilla's father (his own cousin) was such a devout Nazi and because GV distrusted Hitler, he refused to allow the POW to attend the wedding in Coburg. Probably a good thing since 'on the evening of the wedding, four thousand Nazis marched in a torchlight procession through the town. On the day itself the wedding route was lined by saluting Brownshirts, and a message from Hitler was read out at the reception. King Gustav [V] had been anxious to attend his grandson's wedding, and was with difficulty dissuaded from doing so, on the grounds that the ceremony would almost certainly be used to stage Nazi demonstrations.'

He goes onto say that CE's influence did indeeed prove 'potentially harmful' towards his SIL. 'Shy by nature, autocratic and irascible' GA was 'very unlike' his father (and his mother!). A report on the Swedish royal family in 1932 (the year he married) commented that he was 'headstrong and often led by his obstinancy into imprudences which expose him to criticism. He does not share in the same measure the popularity...enjoyed by the other members of the family.'The Social democrats (the largest party) viewed him as 'violently (albeit discrettly) right-wing' and the civic dignitaries in Stockholm refused to take part in the wedding festivities held in Nov 1932 when the newlyweds returned on the grounds that shortly before GA had been present at a Stahlhelm (a Germany nationalistic org) meeting. As Hitler gained influence Gustav V began to worry about his grandson's views but he was 'unable to resist the charm of his granddaughter-in-law, discreet as she was, and they were fast becoming devoted to each other' much to the consternation of the government who noted that 'it was evident that he was taking her unduly into his confidence, and ministers feared that by doing so he was placing the monarchy in danger'.
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Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #28 on: May 30, 2005, 01:42:48 PM »
GA died in Jan 1947 when he was returning from a hunting trip in the Netherlands with Prince Bernhard (consort of Queen Juliana). He caught a Dutch plane which made daily commutes from Amsterdam to Stockholm. Immediately upon take-off from a layover in Denmark, the plane crashed killing all 22 aboard (including the opera singer/actress Grace Moore) were killed instantly. 'The Prince's trouble years were long since forgotten. A devoted husband and father' his son was just 9 mos old. He had become President of the Swedish Boy Scouts and begun to seriously involve himself in community & welfare programs. A keen sportsman, he was a great fencer and horsemen and was chairman of the Swedish Olympic Committee. Victor Mallet even noted that 'many people think that he would make a better King than his father, because he is a stronger character.' His father wrote that he grieved for his 'poor daughter-in-law and for the 5 children. [This apparently brought back memories of his being widowed in 1920 with 5 children, ironically 4 boys and 1 girl] She is wonderful. I am full of admiration. May she be granted strength to continue, I fear as time goes on it may be more difficult even than at the present moment. She never lost her moral balance, though it was a devastating blow. I can only repeat: she is an example to all of us.' CPss Louise wrote that he was much taken up with his DIL and 'they are such good friends' and that Sybilla was a 'help to him through the quite wonderful way she bears her loss & sorrow, a spiritual courage & calmness & balance which is truly quite marvellous.'
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Offline grandduchessella

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Re: Princess Sybilla
« Reply #29 on: May 30, 2005, 01:44:11 PM »
King Gustav VI Adolf declined great celebrations for his 90th birthday in 1972 since Sybilla was seriously ill. In Sept she was admitted to the hospital where a cancer diagnosis was made. She died that Nov at age 64.
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