29 December 2015

Royalty Digest Quarterly no. 4, 2015

I received the last issue of Royalty Digest Quarterly (no. 4, 2015) exactly one week before Christmas Eve, and have speent a large part of this evening reading it. I will probably read several of the articles once more during the new year's weekend, as they deserve to be spent more time on.

Some times the publisher and editor Ted Rosvall uses his Editor's Corner to give his views on a recent royal event, other times he uses a royal event as a jumping-off point for diving into history. In the present issue Rosvall mentions the fairly recent death of Leonid Kulikovsky, a grandson of Grand Princess Olga of Russia (1882–1960), in order to list other members of the Gotha "who have chosen to retire from Royal life in favour of privacy, and sometimes solitude", such as King George IV Adolf of Sweden (1778–1837), Johann Salvator of Austria-Tuscany/Johann Orth (1852–1890?) and Prince Christopher of Yugoslavia (19601994). Thankfully Rosvall didn't mention Alexander Hugo Köhler, by some people believed to be Johann Orth!

The very same day I received the present issue, it was exactly 200 years since Brazil joined with Portugal to form the United Kingdom of Piortugal, Brazil and the Algarves. Claudia Witte gives the background of the union in her article on the bicentenary, and outlines the history of the short-lived union until King João VI left Brazil in April 1821. Brazil's independence was declared the year after and Brazil became an empire.

Charlotte Zeepvat then returns with her traditional family album, this time covering The Royal House of the Netherlands. This also explains the photo on the front cover, which shows Queen Julia of the Netherlands with her family (Prince Bernhard, Princesses Irene, Margriet, Maria Christina and Beatriz) on her inauguration day in 1948. I must say that the history of the House of Orange-Nassau is rather complex, but Zeepvat does well in guiding the readers into the period from 1255 until 2013, and all these years on only three pages! The photo album this time includes 95 photos as well as 4 pages of genealogical tables.

I have been to Munich twice, the first time in the summer of 1987 when I spent 3 weeks there attending a German language course. The Deutsche Bundesbank, which is located at the site once occupied by the palais, was not too far from where I tried to learn more German. I didn't know then, though. Elizabeth Jane Timms gives a good outline of the history of the palais, which was demolished in 193738.

In April next year Dagmar von Arbin, the eldest daughter of Count Carl Bernadotte of Wisborg and the former Baroness Marianne de Geer and thus a great-grandchild of King Oscar II, will celebrate her 100th birthday. Roger Lundgren has used the occasion to make an interview, published in the article Dagmar von Arbin. The next Bernadotte centenarian. I would love to read more such interviews with people who is related to and has so much insight into royalty!

Marion Wynn tells the story of the then Crown Princess Victoria of Prussia's visit to Flete (Flete House at Holbeton, Devon) in 1887, before Charlotte Zeepvat dives into the scandals of Princess Louise of Belgium (18581924), daughter of King Leopold II and married to Prince Philipp of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (1844-1921) from 1875 to 1906, in the article Her Own Affairs. The extraordinary life of Princess Louise of Belgium. Extraordinary, indeed, What a dreadful life! And that father ... "Louise was severly punished once for eating a peach from the garden, not realising that her father kept careful count of every piece of fruit on the tree". Good grief!

Earlier today I complained that Royalty Digest Quarterly seemed to have stopped publishing book reviews, but that was before I actually looked into the present issue. Because on page 62 Ted Rosvall himself gives a rather critical review of Royal Exiles in Cannes. The Bourbons of the Two Sicilies of the Villa Marie-Thérèse by David McIntosh and Arturo E. Beéche (Eurohistory.com, 2015, ISBN 9781944207014).

Finally, the readers can enjoy the column The World Wide Web of Royalty, with news from the imperial, royal or princely houses of Croy, Erbach-Erbach, Isenburg, Italy, Orsini and Rosenberg, Prussia, Russia, Saxe-Meiningen, Two Sicilies, Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, Waldburg-Wolfegg-Waldsee and Waldburg-Zeil-Trauchburg.

Information on Royalty Digest Quarterly can be found at its editor's website Royalbooks.se. See earlier presentation of RDQ here. See also its Facebook page.


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