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Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine, Marchioness of Milford Haven
April 4, 2014
6:38 pm
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Susan
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Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine, granddaughter of Queen Victoria
Full name: Victoria Alberta Elisabeth Mathilde Marie
Victoria was the daughter of Louis IV, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine and Princess Alice of the United Kingdom.  She married Prince Louis of Battenberg and they were the maternal grandparents of Prince Philip.
Unofficial Royalty: Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine

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Susan

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March 18, 2015
2:37 pm
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CyrilSebastian

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Victoria seemed the ideal lady. She had the first name of her maternal grandmother, the Queen. She was born in the Spring. She was born on Easter Sunday. Hopefully Queen Victoria was pleased with these factors.     

 It was interesting to learn that Princess Victoria kept records of books she had read. 

March 19, 2015
9:54 pm
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Prof H

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Victoria was quite the royal character. 

Her grandmother, for whom she was named, was present at her birth (Alice having been instructed to return to Windsor for her first confinement).  Victoria lived well into her 80s (in spite of being a heavy smoker from her youth).  One daughter was the Queen of Greece, the other the Queen of Sweden.  She lived long enough to attend the wedding of her grandson Philip to Princess Elizabeth and to see her two Windsor (or Mountbatten-Windsor--just teasing because of the long thread on the subject) great-grandchildren, Charles and Anne, born.  

During Prince Philip's rackety childhood in England, Victoria who lived in a flat in Kensington Palace after her husband's death provided security for her grandson.  Her home was a way station between his school terms at Gordonstoun and his holidays with various Mountbatten, Greek, and German relatives.  

"If I had been born crested not cloven, you would not talk to me thus, sir."  Elizabeth I of England  

March 19, 2015
11:09 pm
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Scott

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Prof H said
Victoria was quite the royal character. 

Her grandmother, for whom she was named, was present at her birth (Alice having been instructed to return to Windsor for her first confinement).  Victoria lived well into her 80s (in spite of being a heavy smoker from her youth).  One daughter was the Queen of Greece, the other the Queen of Sweden.  She lived long enough to attend the wedding of her grandson Philip to Princess Elizabeth and to see her two Windsor (or Mountbatten-Windsor--just teasing because of the long thread on the subject) great-grandchildren, Charles and Anne, born.  

During Prince Philip's rackety childhood in England, Victoria who lived in a flat in Kensington Palace after her husband's death provided security for her grandson.  Her home was a way station between his school terms at Gordonstoun and his holidays with various Mountbatten, Greek, and German relatives.  

The birth at Windsor was not originally in the plans.  Alice had insisted on coming to England for her brother Bertie's marriage to Alexandra of Denmark, which took place on March 10th.  The plan was then to return to Hesse so the baby could be born on "home soil", but Queen Victoria pushed her own wishes on her daughter, resulting in Alice staying, and giving birth at Windsor.  Alice and her husband insisted on having the Hessian court minister coming to Windsor to officiate Victoria's christening (one of many instances of Princess Alice standing up to her mother!)

Just a quick correction.  While one of Victoria's daughters was the Queen of Sweden, the other was not Queen of Greece.  Princess Alice was married to Prince Andrew, the son of King George I of Greece.

March 20, 2015
9:02 am
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Prof H

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Realized the error about 2 a.m.  I should never post late at night or early in the morning.  I debated getting up to edit the post.  Decided someone like Scott would catch it or I'd wait till this morning.

 

Princess Of Greece.  At the end of WWII Philip was very close to being the direct heir to the Greece throne.  Uncles except for Paul were childless or in disgrace.  Neither Philip nor Lord Mountbatten nor the English royal family wanted anything to do with a shaky throne in an unstable country.

"If I had been born crested not cloven, you would not talk to me thus, sir."  Elizabeth I of England  

March 20, 2015
7:54 pm
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Prof H

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Victoria and her sister Irene grew up in the shadow of their sisters Ella ("the most beautiful princess in Europe") and Alex ("Sunny").  I find it ironic that both Victoria and Irene had happy marriages and contented lives while Ella and Alix suffered tragedies in their personal lives before they were killed by the Bolsheviks.

Neither Victoria nor Irene were particularly attractive.  Victoria married Prince Louis of Battenberg who was, after all, merely "a Serene Highness," not particularly wealthy, and destined only for a career in the Royal Navy, but not for greatness.  Irene married her cousin Heinrich (Henry) of Prussia who spent his early life in the role of "spare" to his brother Willy as heir to his grandfather and then to his father. Interesting, he too from childhood was destined for a career in the navy. Neither husband was particularly faithful.  Louis was reported to be the father of Lily Langtry's daughter (though there are other candidates).  Henry spent part of an official trip to the United States in a Chicago brothel with an assortment of prostitutes sitting on his knees.  Victoria's first daughter was born deaf.  Two of Irene's sons suffered from hemophilia.  Yet both couples were devoted to each other.  Irene even encouraged Henry to repair his relationship with his mother the Empress Victoria.  Henry and Irene were such pleasant people that they were known in the family as "the very Amiables."

Their sisters who made glittering and grand marriages had much less happiness in their own lives and ended up in front of Bolshevik death squads.  There's obviously a lesson to be drawn here.

"If I had been born crested not cloven, you would not talk to me thus, sir."  Elizabeth I of England  

March 20, 2015
8:31 pm
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Scott

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Prof H said
Realized the error about 2 a.m.  I should never post late at night or early in the morning.  I debated getting up to edit the post.  Decided someone like Scott would catch it or I'd wait till this morning.

 

Princess Of Greece.  At the end of WWII Philip was very close to being the direct heir to the Greece throne.  Uncles except for Paul were childless or in disgrace.  Neither Philip nor Lord Mountbatten nor the English royal family wanted anything to do with a shaky throne in an unstable country.

No worries... it can get awful confusing sometimes.  It was another Victoria - Victoria, Princess Royal and later German Empress - whose daughter Sophie later became Queen of Greece

April 14, 2015
8:02 pm
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CyrilSebastian

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Victoria's mother, Grand Duchess Alice of Hesse Darmstadt died in 1878. Victoria wrote: "My mother's death was an irreparable loss ... My childhood ended with her death for I became the eldest and most responsible."

April 18, 2015
4:52 pm
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Prof H

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Victoria's role as caretaker to family members extended to her grandchildren, especially her grandson Philip, as well.  We associate Philip being taken care of as a schoolboy by Lord Mountbatten, but in fact he was closer at first to his uncle George (2nd Marquess of Milford Haven) who died in 1938 and his wife Nada. Their son David would be Philip's best man at his wedding to Princess Elizabeth.  

Victoria's apartments at Kensington Palace often served as a way station for Philip as he travelled from school to holiday visits to his Mountbatten uncles, his Greek relatives, and his sisters in Germany.  His grandmother often sent notes to family family members drawing up his schedules beginning with the words "Philip had better...."  She even was known to select appropriate photographs of her grandson for him to include in thank you notes.

After the war and before his 1947 wedding, Philip (and his cousin David) used her flat as a bachelor pad.  David recalled creeping back across the rooftops at dawn to sneak in through the windows so as not to let their grandmother know how late they had been out.  

Victoria, her daughters Alice and Louise of Sweden, the Mountbatten cousins, and Prince George ("Big George") of Greece and his wife were the only members of Philip's family to sit in the chairs on the north side of the Abbey opposite the King and Queen and other members of the RF at Philip and Elizabeth's wedding.

"If I had been born crested not cloven, you would not talk to me thus, sir."  Elizabeth I of England  

November 25, 2017
7:26 pm
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Prof H

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Victoria's daughter Alice (the mother of Prince Philip and all those daughters) and Prince Andrea of Greece were married in Darmstadt.  Someone asked me why.  The Battenbergs lived mostly in England (where Louis was a major serving naval office).Andrea was, of courses Prince of Greece. 

Until her marriage, Victoria ran her brother Ernie's husband.  Uncle Ernie was beloved by all his nieces and nephews.  The other reason I can think of was the Battenbergs were Protestant and Andrew Orthodox.

Can anyone enlighten me (and my friend) as to why the marriage of Alice and Andrea took place in Darmstadt?

"If I had been born crested not cloven, you would not talk to me thus, sir."  Elizabeth I of England  

November 26, 2017
8:30 am
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Susan
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Prof H said
Victoria's daughter Alice (the mother of Prince Philip and all those daughters) and Prince Andrea of Greece were married in Darmstadt.  Someone asked me why.  The Battenbergs lived mostly in England (where Louis was a major serving naval office).Andrea was, of courses Prince of Greece. 

Until her marriage, Victoria ran her brother Ernie's husband.  Uncle Ernie was beloved by all his nieces and nephews.  The other reason I can think of was the Battenbergs were Protestant and Andrew Orthodox.

Can anyone enlighten me (and my friend) as to why the marriage of Alice and Andrea took place in Darmstadt?  

Perhaps there is some information in Hugo Vickers' biography of Alice.  I'll try to remember to look.

Susan

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November 26, 2017
2:55 pm
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Susan
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According to Hugo Vickers' biography Alice: Princess Andrew of Greece, Alice's maternal uncle Ernst Ludwig, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine hosted Alice and Andreas' wedding.  Alice's family actually lived in several places as her father was stationed in places other than England.  Frequently, Alice, her mother, and her siblings lived in Hesse and by Rhine when they could not live with her father because of his naval assignment.  Although Alice had been born at Windsor Castle, she was not a British royal.  

It is actually not surprising that Alice's maternal uncle, Ernst Ludwig, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine hosted her wedding as both her mother and her father had ties to Hesse and by Rhine.  Alice's mother Victoria was the daughter of Ludwig IV, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine.  Alice's paternal grandfather, born Prince Alexander of Hesse and by Rhine, was the youngest son of Ludwig II, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine.  Alexander married morganatically so his children (including Alice's father) were not in the line of succession for the Hesse and by Rhine throne. His wife and his children were given the title  Count/Countess of Battenberg with the style Illustrious Highness. The origin of the title came from the small town of Battenberg in northwestern Hesse, and its castle, Schloss Battenberg.  In 1858, Alexander's wife and children were given the title of Prince/Princess of Battenberg, with the style Serene Highness.

We have a number of articles about the Hesse and by Rhine and Battenberg family which can be found at Unofficial Royalty: Hesse and by Rhine/Battenberg/Mountbatten Index.

Susan

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November 26, 2017
7:36 pm
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Prof H

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Thanks, Susan.

 

I suspected the close relationship between the families of Hesse and by Rhine (and especially "Uncle Ernie") would have had some thing to do with Alice's Darmstadt wedding.  The question I was asked was why since Andrea was a prince of Greece the wedding was not held there,  I didn't want to give an incorrect answer.

 

We're in the process of moving (retirement does that to you; my husband is tired of shoveling snow and mowing grass; I want to be nearer to my granddaughters) so almost every book we own is packed in a tote in our garage.  We can't get from one side to the other.

 

How was your cruise?  One of this is on my list of things to do.

"If I had been born crested not cloven, you would not talk to me thus, sir."  Elizabeth I of England  

November 26, 2017
8:39 pm
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Susan
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Prof H wrote: I suspected the close relationship between the families of Hesse and by Rhine (and especially "Uncle Ernie") would have had some thing to do with Alice's Darmstadt wedding.  The question I was asked was why since Andrea was a prince of Greece the wedding was not held there,  I didn't want to give an incorrect answer.

For the most part, it was traditional for royal weddings to be held in the home country of the bride.  The Grand Duchy of Hesse and by Rhine was the home country of both Alice's mother and her father's family.  Sometimes weddings were held in the country of the groom if he was the monarch or the heir to the throne.  For example, the wedding of Princess Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg (daughter of Princess Beatrice and Prince Henry of Battenberg) and King Alfonso XIII of Spain was held in Spain.

Susan

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November 27, 2017
11:48 pm
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Gidzmo
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Susan said

Prof H wrote: I suspected the close relationship between the families of Hesse and by Rhine (and especially "Uncle Ernie") would have had some thing to do with Alice's Darmstadt wedding.  The question I was asked was why since Andrea was a prince of Greece the wedding was not held there,  I didn't want to give an incorrect answer.

For the most part, it was traditional for royal weddings to be held in the home country of the bride.  The Grand Duchy of Hesse and by Rhine was the home country of both Alice's mother and her father's family.  Sometimes weddings were held in the country of the groom if he was the monarch or the heir to the throne.  For example, the wedding of Princess Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg (daughter of Princess Beatrice and Prince Henry of Battenberg) and King Alfonso XIII of Spain was held in Spain.  

Now that you mention that, Susan, I remember Princess Victoria's wedding to Crown Prince Friedrich of Prussia.  From what I have read, Victoria was quite adamant that the wedding be held in England.  The Hohenzollerns wanted it in Berlin.  

"Men's evil manners we write in brass; their virtues we write in water."

--Griffith, Queen Katherine's servant (from Shakespeare's "Henry VIII")

November 28, 2017
7:39 am
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Susan
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Gidzmo said

Now that you mention that, Susan, I remember Princess Victoria's wedding to Crown Prince Friedrich of Prussia.  From what I have read, Victoria was quite adamant that the wedding be held in England.  The Hohenzollerns wanted it in Berlin.    

Royal weddings, when the groom is the sovereign or heir to the throne, can be the exception to the wedding being held in the bride's country.  However, in January 1858, at the time of the wedding, Friedrich was not yet Crown Prince of Prussia although it was inevitable that we would eventually be so. His childless uncle Friedrich Wilhelm IV was King of Prussia until his death three years later in January 1861 when Friedrich's father Wilhelm I succeeded to the throne and Friedrich became Crown Prince.

Susan

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November 29, 2017
5:43 pm
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Susan said

Royal weddings, when the groom is the sovereign or heir to the throne, can be the exception to the wedding being held in the bride's country.  However, in January 1858, at the time of the wedding, Friedrich was not yet Crown Prince of Prussia although it was inevitable that we would eventually be so. His childless uncle Friedrich Wilhelm IV was King of Prussia until his death three years later in January 1861 when Friedrich's father Wilhelm I succeeded to the throne and Friedrich became Crown Prince.  

Oh, I had forgotten about Friedrich not having been Crown Prince just then.  Wilhelm would have been heir-presumptive.

"Men's evil manners we write in brass; their virtues we write in water."

--Griffith, Queen Katherine's servant (from Shakespeare's "Henry VIII")

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