Thursday, June 22, 2017

Prince Casimir of Say-Wittgenstein-Sayn to marry American model

The Prince and Princess of Say-Wittgenstein-Sayn have announced the engagement of their son, Prince Casimir, to American model Alana Camille Bunte.

Miss Bunte was born on October 2, 1990 at Laguna Beach, California, the daughter of Brady Bunte and Angela Lopez.

She studied art and design at the University of the Arts and Central Saint Martin, both in London.

The couple met in London two years ago.  The wedding is expected to take place at Schloss Sayn in the coming year.

Prince Casimir, 41, is the second son and third child of the Prince and Princess.   He was named Johann Casimir Ludwig Karl Andreas Maria Rudolf, and was born at Koblenz  on May 4, 1976.   His first marriage in London on October 26, 2000 to Corinna  Larsen, was dissolved by  divorce in 2005.     Casimir has a son, Prince Alexander, by Corinna Larsen.

He received a degree in management and marking from Middlesex University in England, and has served as a visiting professor for International Tax and Services program at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego, California.

Prince Casimir is a managing partner in a firm that "invests, upgrades and manages farmland in emerging markets."


Belgrade, 22 June 2017 – A Holy Liturgy and Memorial Service were held at the Church of St. George in Oplenac today, on the occasion of the fifty sixth anniversary of death of Her Majesty Queen Maria. The Clergy of St. George Church officiated the services. On behalf of His Royal Highness Crown Prince Alexander, Mr Predrag Markovic member of the Crown Council and Mr Dragan Reljic, the director of HM King Peter I Foundation laid flowers.

HM Queen Maria was the daughter of HM King Ferdinand of Romania and HM Queen Marie of Romania (a daughter of HRH Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, a son of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom). The Queen was born in Gotha, Thuringia, in Germany 6 January 1900 and died in London 22 June 1961. Her Majesty married HM King Alexander I of Yugoslavia in Belgrade 8 June 1922 and they had three sons Crown Prince Peter (later HM King Peter II, father of HRH Crown Prince Alexander), Prince Tomislav and Prince Andrej.

She was loved very much by the Serbian people. She was a role model of a devoted and caring wife and mother. She was very much engaged in humanitarian work. After the assassination of HM King Alexander I in Marseilles 9 October 1934 she continued to care for her sons and became the Queen Mother. She was very active with the Red Cross during World War II, and sent a lot of humanitarian help to Yugoslavia, but always signed herself with alias Maria K. Djordjevic.

She lived modestly on her estate in Kent, England after the World War II. General Charles de Gaulle decorated her with the Great Cross of the Legion of Honour in 1959. She passed away on 22 June 1961, and was buried at the Royal Cemetery in Frogmore in Windsor. Her remains were transferred to Serbia on 29 April 2013, and she was buried at the Royal Mausoleum in Oplenac during the State funeral 26 May 2013.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Princess of Wales visits Dundee in September 1983

@Marlene A. Eilers Koenig  (with a 110 camera)

The Princess of Wales visits the Keiller Candy factory in Dundee, Scotland, September 7, 1983.  

An interview with Prince Georg Friedrich

Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia, head of the Imperial House of Prussia, and the great-grandchild of the last German Emperor, recently sat down with a reporter from the Stuttgarter Nachrichten.

"Prussia is not as evil as many think," said Prince Georg Friedrich. 

But unlike his ancestors, he has no political ambitions.  The interview took place at Hechingen, at Burg Hohenzollern, which Georg Friedrich owns jointly with the Prince of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen.

If the monarchy still existed in Germany, Georg Friedrich would be the Kaiser.  He sees himself as the representative of the House of Hohenzollern, and is a devoted father to his four children, including a set of twin sons.

Prince Georg Friedrich was asked: "When did you last change diapers?"

"Two and a half hours ago."   "My wife and I share this duty. I like to  take care of the little ones when I am at home, and go shopping."  

Prince Georg Friedrich and his wife, Princess Sophie of Isenburg, are able to live with their children out of the public eye.

"We live in Fischerhude, a village near Bremen, where I grew up. This is extremely rural area with a view of the Wümmewiesen. I spend a lot of  my time working in Berlin,  where I also take care of the administrative matters of my house."

Georg Friedrich visits Burg Hohenzollern every two weeks.  

"The castle business has grown considerably over the past ten years. Sometimes I come with the whole family - like this time. We celebrated the baptism of our youngest son Heinrich.  However, the castle is not as comfortable and luxurious as many people think. The residential tract has more of a hostel character."

The interview takes place on a small terrace at the castle.  It is a lovely day, Kaiserwetter, and coffee is being served.  In the background, the black and white flag of Prussia is flying, a sign that the owner is home.   But the prince goes unrecognized in tourist center.

"Do you remember your childhood days at Hohenzollern?"  

Yes, I have many memories,  We had sword fights in the weapons chamber and threw snowballs on the shuttle bus in the winter. My mother has often come with us. I unfortunately lost my father early. He was a lieutenant of the reserve, was seriously wounded in a maneuver with an armor, and died shortly thereafter. I was a year old. I often miss him. All the more I am now looking forward to being there for my children as a father."

Georg Friedrich admits that running Burg Hohenzollern is a challenge. "The facility is neither a dusty museum nor a Prussian Disneyland. We have 300 000 visitors a year, some guests from America, Asia and many parts of Europe. We are one of the few private museums on this scale that manages to get out of itself."

"You are the administrator of a permanent construction site. There's always somewhere crumbling?"

"That's true. We will continue to rebuild  over the next ten years. This is going to happen this year. Since many hundred tons of material have to be moved, all in consultation with the memorial office. We first work on the foundation walls, then the driveway is to follow. If possible, we will rehabilitate the same stone as the castle was built in the second half of the 19th century: yellow Angulatensandstein. But that is rare. We have found it in the princely forest near Grosselfingen. Whether there is enough, we do not know."

The castle has been used in several movies and television programs, including the thriller, Cure for Wellness," and The Worst Witch, which was shown on German TV earlier this year.  

According to Prince Georg Friedrich, the castle became a Hogwarts-type residence for young witches.  He said he got to watch the shooting  

of "Cure for Wellness," which he found "exciting." 
Prince Georg Friedrich was also asked about the Prussian royal house's strict marriage laws.   Marriages must be of equal rank.  The two older brothers of Georg Friedrich's father married commoners and lost their dynastic rights.

Georg Friedrich said he never felt exposed to the pressure of an equal marriage, as he had known his wife, Sophie for 35 years.
 "Our paths crossed often. At home we have a picture our ourselves as ages two and three years, playing in the swimming pool.  I am happy that we found ourselves seven years ago in Berlin."

His great-grandfather, Kaiser Wilhelm II, believed that a marriage between a prince and a commoner is as impossible as the connection between a swan and a goose."

"Are such house laws not antiquated?"

"We've recently had a family dinner, where we talked about how to update the family laws, as other families have done. The main goal is to keep the family together."

"How are you connected with the European nobility? "  

"The kinship to the British royal house is very limited  Queen Victoria is my fourfold great-grandmother.  She died in the arms of her favorite grandson, Emperor Wilhelm II. Since the two world wars the British royal house has stepped back with regard to its roots and family connections to Germany.  This is understandable.  I am delighted to meet the Prince of Wales at different festivities."

Georg Friedrich was asked his position as head of the house was a burden or a privilege."

"At the age of eighteen, after the death of my grandfather, I became chief of the House of Hohenzollern. At first it was not easy. I had to work on many things and often justify them. I was confronted with people thinking that I was waiting for the return of the monarchy. At the same time, I always had the inner impulse to prove to myself and to others that I can build something of my own. I have studied business management and worked as an employee for many years. But the tasks within the family have grown, especially the administration calls on me."

"Do not you sometimes dream of being an emperor, honestly?

"No, I definitely do not. My family has no political responsibility in the country and I do not want to take over any. We have remained a cultural responsibility. We receive Hohenzollern Castle as a national cultural monument. In Berlin and Brandenburg, as a family, we are the largest private lender for the great Prussian foundations."

"How does it feel to know your great grandfather was one of the instigators of the first World War?"  

;I am reluctant about the war debt. There are still new findings. What makes me more stressful is the theme of the Third Reich. "They've prostituted us as a family," my grandfather always said. The National Socialists have claimed that they were in the immediate succession of the Hohenzollerns and continued Prussianism. This was an integral part of their propaganda, which, unfortunately, continues to be felt to this day.

Some members in their family supported the National Socialists.
There were both, we have an open approach to the subject. My great-great uncle, Prince August Wilhelm, called Auwi, had been involved in the Nazi regime and gave speeches for the NSDAP. My grandfather, Louis Ferdinand, and his father, the Crown Prince William, maintained a close connection with the political resistance from the outset, with the clear goal of restoring the monarchy in Germany."

Georg Friedrich Ferdinand Prince of Prussia was born in 1976 in Bremen. He went to the Gymnasium in Bremen and Oldenburg. He passed his exams at Glenalmond College in Aberdeen, Scotland.

In September 1994, his grandfather, Prince Louis Ferdinand,  died, and he succeeded as head of the house of Prussia.  In Freiberg,  he studied business administration. The Prince has been married to Princess Sophie of Isenburg since 2011. They have four children: four-year-old twins Carl and Louis, two-year-old Emma and Heinrich, who was born last November.

Countess Mountbatten's funeral date announced


Countess (Patricia). Wife of the late Lord Brabourne (John). Beloved sister, mother, grandmother and aunt. Died peacefully at home, Mersham, 13th June 2017. Funeral 27th June, 3 p.m., St Paul’s Church, Knightsbridge, London.  No memorial service. Donations to The Compassionate Friends  Flowers to CW Lyons, 01227 463508.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Death of William IV - Young Victoria succeeds

June 20, 1837

The Times is reporting the death of King William IV.  "It is with feelings of the most deep and poignant regret that we announce to the public that one of the most excellent , the most patriotic, and the most British Monarchy that ever sat on the imperial throne of these realms, is no more."

The "melancholy event" occurred between 2:30 and 2:45 a.m.  It is understood that the King was "sensible to the last moment of his existence, and expressed the most heartfelt satisfaction at the constant and unremitting attentions which received from different members of his family."

Queen Adelaide was with her husband when he died.

"We are not inclined to be the flatterers of rising greatness, but we are only performing an act of justice to that dignity whose sun is set, in declaring that the brightest gem in the diadem of our young Queen -- whom may God long preserve, for the welfare and happiness and good government of these realms"

The Archbishop of Canterbury left Windsor "immediately after the demise of his lamented Majesty" and arrived at Lambeth Palace at 6 a.m.

The new queen is King William's niece, Princess Alexandrina Victoria of Kent, the only child of the late Prince Edward, Duke of Kent.  She reached her majority on May 24.    She will be known as Queen Victoria.  May "her name be an augury of triumphant  fortune."

The young queen, who resides at Kensington Palace, was awakened early this morning, and learned of her uncle's death.  She will be proclaimed as Queen tomorrow.

The Duke of Cumberland, who has succeeded his late brother, as King of Hanover was the first to take the oath of allegiance to the Queen.  Although he is now the King of Hanover, he remains as heir presumptive to the British throne.

Friday, June 16, 2017

King Simeon II: a celebration of an extraordinary life

King Simeon - 80 years

When King Simeon of Bulgaria was born on June 16, 1937,  there were few who would have thought that this infant, a much wanted son,  would become king at age six,  in 1943 following the mysterious death of his father, King Boris III, who became ill after meeting Adolf Hitler.

Bulgaria's political instability increased during the second world war,  joining the Axis powers.  On September 5, 1944  the Soviet Union declared war on Bulgaria, and within three days,  the Red Army marched in Bulgaria with no real resistance.  Within a few days,  Prince Kyril, Simeon's uncle, who served as one of several regents for the young king, and two regents were deposed and arrested.  All three were executed in February 1945.

The young king, along with his mother, Queen Giovanna and his older sister, Princess Maria Luisa, remained at the Vrana Palace in Sofia as three new, pro-Soviet regents were named.  There is no doubt that the referendum on September 15, 1946 was rigged, as the Soviet army made sure that Bulgaria's citizens were aware of the country's new masters.

There was no doubt that the population (97%) would vote for a republic and the end of Bulgaria's monarchy.
Belgrade 2013 State Funeral  @Marlene A Eilers Koenig

The following day,  the royal family went into exile, first to Alexandria, Egypt, where Queen Giovanna's father, King Victor Emmanuel III was living, after going into exile earlier that year. A referendum in June 1946 ended the Italian monarchy, and Giovanna's brother, King Umberto and his family, were forced to leave their homeland.

The young king attended schools in Alexandria, Madrid and the Valley Forge Military Academy and College in Pennsylvania.  When he reached his majority at age 18,  Simeon II swore his allegiance to the Bulgarian people, as the Tsar of Bulgaria.
Belgrade 2010 @Marlene A,. Eilers Koenig

After returning from the United States,  he studied law and business administration, and worked in business for many years.

Simeon married Doña Margarita Gomez-Acebo y Cejuela on January 21, 1962.  The couple had five children:  Crown Prince Kardam (1962-2015), Prince Kirill (1964), Prince Kubrat (1965), Prince Konstantin-Assen (1967) and Princess Kalina (1972).  All five children have married Spaniards.  

The King and Queen have 11 grandchildren.
After the collapse of communism, the king visited Bulgaria for the first time since 1946.  It was in 2001 when the king returned to Bulgaria to form a new political party, the National Movement Simeon II, where he promised a positive change for Bulgaria after 800 days.   His party won a majority in the election in June 2001.   Simeon was named as Prime Minister.   Two of his accomplishments were to bring Bulgaria into NATO and the European Union.

His party did not do as well in the 2005 elections, and took part in a coalition government.   In 2009, the party won no seats, and Simeon resigned as the party's leader.  As Prime Minister, he swore an oath to uphold the Bulgarian republic, and he has never spoken publicly on a monarchical restoration.

King Simeon's heir is his grandson, Prince Boris, now 19 years old.  Although some sources have referred to Boris as Prince of Turnovo, a title his father bore,  this is incorrect.  King Simeon has not given the title to his grandson, and is unlikely do so in the future.  The reason for this is simple:  Boris' life is in Spain.  He was educated in Spain and in Austria, and his ties to Bulgaria are limited.

An heir in Bulgaria

June 16, 1937

Queen Giovanna of Bulgaria gave birth to the long awaited heir, a son at 5:45 a.m, reports the New York Times.

A 101 gun salute in Sofia announced the birth to the residents of the capital.

Telephone calls were made to provincial garrisons and soon "guns were booming throughout the land."

Queen Giovanna and her infant son are doing well.  The queen gave birth at the Clementine Hospital, which was founded by King Boris's grandmother,  Princess Clementine of Orléans, the mother of King Ferdinand of Bulgaria.

Large crowds gathered outside the palace and Sofia's mayor "led a procession of more than 100,000 persons through the palace grounds.:" The happy and proud father King Boris, appeared on the balcony, and, with a smile, thanked the crowd for the great ovation.

"I pray that my son and heir may be spared to rule over this country as a good thing."

The new Crown Prince will be named Simeon, after Bulgaria';s "great tenth century ruler, who reigned during a time when Bulgaria's power was at a zenith.

The birth of the Crown Prince is "particularly important" as succession to the throne is limited to males.   The king and queen's four and half year old daughter, Princess Marie Louise, cannot succeed to the throne.  The king has one younger brother, Prince Kiril, who is unmarried.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

The new Earl Mountbatten of Burma

Norton Louis Philip Knatchbull, the 8th Baron Brabourne, will officially be styled as the 3rd Earl Mountbatten of Burma, after his mother's funeral and burial.

He was born at London on October 8, 1947, the eldest child of Lady Patricia Mountbatten (elder daughter of Louis, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma) and John, the 7th Baron Brabourne.   He is married to Penelope Eastwood.

After the murder of his grandfather by the IRA in August 1979,  the Hon. Norton Knatchull became Lord Romsey, the secondary title for the Mountbatten earldom, which his mother succeeded to in her own right.   The earldom had a special remainder for Louis' two daughters and their male descendants.

Norton inherited the Broadlands estate from his grandfather, who had inherited it from his wife, the late Edwina Ashley, who died in 1960.  The estate is not entailed.

Lord Brabourne will most likely be styled as the Earl Mountbatten of Burma.  He will not cease to be be the Baron Brabourne, but the earldom is a higher peerage.  Both titles are in the peerage of the United Kingdom.

So what will happen to the Brabourne title.  Nothing.  Norton will remain as Baron Brabourne until his death, and both peerages, as well as the Knatchbull baronetcy, will pass to his only son, the Hon. Nicholas Knatchbull, 36.

The new earl may decide to have the Brabourne barony be his son's courtesy title, rather than Lord Romsey.   There is at least one precedent for this.

In 1959,  James George Alexander Bannerman Carnegie, who bore the courtesy title, Lord Carnegie, as heir to his father's earldom, the Earl of Southesk, succeeded his maternal aunt, Princess Arthur of Connaught, as the 3rd Duke of Fife.   He remained heir apparent to his father's earldom.

The Earl of Southesk died in 1992,  Shortly afterwards, the Duke of Fife announced that his son, Charles, then styled as the Earl of Macduff (secondary title for the Fife dukedom) would now be styled as Earl of Southesk.   The Duke remained the titular Earl of Southesk, but allowed his son to be styled as the earl (but not as the peer.)  This was due to the inheritance of the Southesk estates in Scotland.

Lord Southesk succeeded as the 4th Duke of Fife in 2015.  His eldest son, Charles, is now styled as the Earl of Southesk.

Thus it seems plausible that the new Earl will make a similar decision, and have Nicholas styled as Baron Brabourne, rather than Baron Romsey, as the courtesy title.

Nicholas is not married.  The order of succession for the Mountbatten earldom is:  the Hon. Michael-John Knatchbull (brother of Norton);  the Hon. Philip Knatchbull (brother of Norton);  Frederick Knatchbull; John Knatchbull (sons of Philip); the Hon. Timothy Knatchbull (brother of Norton); Milo Knatchbull; Ludovic Knatchbull (sons of Timothy) and Ashley Hicks, who is last in line.

There are other male heirs to the Brabourne barony after Ludovic Knatchbull.  These are the descendants of the Hon. Adrian Norton Knatchbull-Hugessen, the youngest son of the first Baron.

The new earl is a godson of the Duke of Edinburgh, and is one of the Duke of Cambridge's godparents.

a Princely wedding: Fugger von Babenhausen - Löwenstein-Wertheim-Freudenberg

In just over a week,  Princess Sophie of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Freudenberg will marry Count Constantin Fugger von Babenhausen, in an ecumenical service on June 24 at the Wertheim Stiftskirche.  

The bride is Lutheran and the groom is Roman Catholic.

The couple's legal wedding, the civil ceremony, took place in December at Schloss Kreuzwertheim.

Sophie is the daughter of the Prince and Princess of Löwenstein-Wertheim-Freudenberg.   Her mother, Princess Elisabeth, is in the final week of preparations, and things have  not gone completely smoothly.  The crane that was to be used to help erect the tends, proved to be a bit too heavy and started to sink into the ground.

Three tents have been erected.  "One is set up as a lounge and serves as an extension of our salon in the afternoon," said Princess Elisabeth.  It stands next to the larger tent, which will host the "bridal soiree."

Most of the flower arrangements will be in blue and yellow, the colors of the bride;s house.  The bride's flowers will also be blue and yellow.

500 guests have been invited to the afternoon reception, where finger food will be served.  A more intimate reception (280 guests) will be held in the evening.  This will be a three-course meal with wines from the family's vineyard, and a "very special Bordeaux" from the vineyards of the Count Stephan of Neipperg.
Nineteen cooks have been hired to prepare all of the meals.

Guests include members of the Saxe-Coburg, Bavaria, Hohenzollern, Sayn-Wittgenstein. Oldenburg, Württemberg, two branches of the Waldburg family, Leiningen and Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenvberg,

"Many guests come from other european countries and from overseas as well," said Princess Elisabeth.,4675664

BUSTED Fake "Prince Stefan" finally nabbed

from the faux prince's Facebook page

Italian police have arrested two men, CS and SS, pretending to be Prince Stefan Crnojevic of Montenegro, and his valet, on the charges of " false declaration of identity, and possession and manufacture of forged identity documents."

I first wrote about this loser in 2014 when he bestowed the title countess on Pamela Anderson.   "Stefan" threatened me with a lawsuit for defamation.    I laughed it off then, as now.   In fact, I think I get the last laugh.

The arrests were made in Turin.  The Italian police have been pursuing a case against the two men, since 2016,  who have not been named, and are known only by their initials.  

So happy to see the faux prince and his sidekick brought down a few pegs.  They can lament about their deceit in an Italian jail, one hopes.

Poor Pamela ... not so bright after all.

HRH Duchess Margarethe of Württemberg (1928-2017)

HRH Duchess Margarethe Louise Eudoxie Nadejda Maria Josepha Albertine Therese Amélie Elisabeth Benedicta Rosa Catharina  Elisabeth-Bona of Württemberg died at Paris on June 10, 2017.  She was 88 years old.

Duchess Margarethe was second of five children of HRH Duke Albrecht Eugen Maria Philipp Carl Joseph Fortunatas of Württemberg and HRH Princess Nadejda of Bulgaria.  She was born at Karlsruhe on November 25, 1928.  

Margarethe married at Schloss Althausen on August 17, 1970 to Vicomte Francois Luce de Chevigny (1928).

The couple's marriage was childless.

Margarethe is survived by her four siblings, Duke Ferdinand, Duke Eugen, Duke Alexander, and Duchess Sophie, as well as her natural son,  Patrick de la Lanne, and three grand children, Marie Charlotte, Berenice and Cyran de la Lanne-Mirrlees.   Patrick was the mayor of Delmenhorst, Germany, from 2006 through 2014.   He was estranged from his natural father, Robin de la Lanne-Mirlees, who died in 2012, and left his estate to Patrick's son, Cyran.

She was a granddaughter of King Ferdinand of Bulgaria and Princess Marie Louise of Bourbon Parma.  Her first cousins include Princess Marie Louise and King Simeon of Bulgaria and Carl, Duke of  Württemberg, present head of the house.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Patricia, 2nd Countess Mountbatten of Burma (1924-2017)

taken in 1989 in NYC @Marlene A. Eilers Koenig

It is with great sadness to report the death of Patricia, 2nd Countess Mountbatten of Burma, elder daughter of the late Louis, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma and the Hon.  Edwina Ashley.    She was born  February 24, 1924.  She died at her home at Mersham in Kent on June 13, 2017.

Lady Mountbatten was 93 years old.

 Lady Mounbatten was a first cousin of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and a childhood friend of Queen Elizabeth II.   She was the last surviving godparent for the Prince of Wales.

Lady Brabourne and Lady Pamela Hicks outside Lady Brabourne's home near Harrods in the 1980s.  Taken by me ... after spending an afternoon having lunch with two charming ladies

Patricia married John Ulick Knatchbull, 7th Baron Brabourne (1924-2005), on October 26, 1946.   Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret and Princess Alexandra of Kent were among the bridesmaids.

The couple had eight children,  and six survive:  Norton, 8th Baron Brabourne, who succeeds as 3rd Earl Mountbatten of Burma, the Hon. Michael-John Knatchbull,  Lady Joanna Zuckerman,  Lady Amanda Ellingworth,  the Hon. Philip Knatchbull and the Hon. Timothy Knatchbull.  She is also survived by her sister, the Lady Pamela Hicks and numerous grandchildren.

A truly lovely lady.  We corresponded for many years.