Friday, August 12, 2016

Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaievna in England

The Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaievna of Russia and her husband, Charles, Crown Prince of Wurttemberg visited England in August 5, 1853. They were warmly received by Queen Victoria at Osborne House a few days after their arrival. The young Queen wrote to his uncle Leopold, King of the Belgians about Olga:
"Olga is still very handsome as to features, figure, but she is a wraith which is a sad thing for one who was so beautiful and is so young. She is terribly thin and pale... Her manners are very dignified and pleasing."

(Photo courtesy of The Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg
Quote courtesy of The Royal Collection)

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Elisabeth Ludovika of Bavaria, Queen of Prussia

Princess Elisabeth Ludovika of Bavaria,
Queen Consort of Prussia
by Joseph Stieler
My post for today is about another beloved Prussian queen, Elisabeth Ludovika, consort of Frederick William IV of Prussia. The Bavarian-born princess was one of the daughters of Maximilian I, King of Bavaria and his second wife, Caroline of Baden. Elisabeth, called "Elise" by her family, has an identical sister named Amalie who would become Queen of Saxony. By all accounts, Elisabeth's childhood was happy and carefree. She and her sisters were allowed to roam freely around the Nymphenburg Palace. Court atmosphere was tolerant and liberal, owing to their father's preference for a simple and bourgeois way of life. The Bavarian princesses were also taught in literature, history and geography by the philologist and theologian Friedrich Thierch. The Bavarian royal family spent their summers in Tegernsee, where the countryside greatly appealed to Elisabeth. Her visits to Tegernsee intensified her love for her homeland and she would always remain a Bavarian in heart and soul.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Royal Portrait: Augusta Amalie, Duchess of Leuchtenberg with Her Children

A beautiful portrait of Princess Augusta Amalie of Bavaria, Duchess of Leuchtenberg and Vicereine of Italy by Andrea Appiani. It was commissioned by the Princess herself as a wedding gift to her husband, Eugene de Beauharnais while he was in Eisenstadt. She was depicted here with her two eldest children, Josephine and Eugenie. Augusta was pointing with her daughter's finger on the Hungarian city of Raab where Eugene and Napoleon's troops defeated their Austrian opponents.

This portrait is courtesy of Neumeister Alte Kunst-Moderne.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Elisa Radziwill and Prince William of Prussia: A Love Found and Lost

Princess Elisa Radziwill as the Goddess Peri by
Wilhelm Hensel. She wore this costume on the
play "Lalla Rookh".
(Courtesy of Getty Images)
Long before Kaiser William I, became King of Prussia and German Emperor, he had been in love with a pretty Polish princess named Elisa Radziwill. Theirs was a touching but poignant story; due to their ranks and the political circumstances surrounding them, the call of duty eventually outweighed their love for each other. Love was not enough to conquer all. 

Friday, June 3, 2016

From Royal to Monastic: Grand Duchess Alexandra Petrovna of Russia

Alexandra of Oldenburg,
Grand Duchess Alexandra Petrovna of Russia
Another member of the Romanov family that I am writing about today is the Grand Duchess Alexandra Petrovna, wife of Grand Duke Nicholas Nikolaievitch, a grandson of Tsar Nicholas I of Russia. The Grand Duchess Alexandra was a scion of the German princely family of Oldenburg, who were descended from Tsar Paul I thru his daughter, Grand Duchess Catherine Pavlovna. The Grand Duchess Catherine married Duke George of Oldenburg and they had two sons. The youngest one, Peter, was Alexandra's father.

Prince Peter, despite his Oldenburg title, was born and raised in Russia. He married Princess Therese of Nassau-Weilburg in 1837 and together they had eight children; Alexandra was their eldest child.

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