Sunday, November 29, 2020

The Death of Fürst Johannes von Khevenhüller-Metsch (1956-2020)

Fürst Johannes von Khevenhüller-Metsch
Death notice.


HSH Fürst Johannes "Hans" von Khevenhüller-Metsch died in Rome on 26 November 2020. Johannes was sixty-four years-old. The prince had suffered from the effects of COVID-19 for some time.

Fürst Max von Khevenhüller-Metsch

Count Maria Johannes Franz Xaver Lazarus Maximilian Felix Hubertus von Khevenhüller-Metsch was born on 20 November 1956 as the first child and eldest son of Count Max von Khevenhüller-Metsch (1919-2010; succeeded as Fürst in 1977 upon the death of Max's father Franz) and Countess Wilhelmine Henckel von Donnersmarck (b.1932). Johannes was followed by three younger brothers and two younger sisters: Count Bartholomäus (b.1958), Count Karl (b.1959), Count Georg (b.1960), Countess Melanie (b.1967), and Countess Isabel (b.1972). Johannes was a nephew of Princess Hella of Bavaria.

Camilla Borghese
In 1986, Count Johannes von Khevenhüller-Metsch married Donna Camilla Borghese (b.1962), the only child of Don Giovanni-Angelo Borghese, Principe di Nettuno (1928-2010), and Nobile Lydia dei Conti Cremisini (1940-1987). Johannes and Camilla had four daughters: Countess Francesca (b.1988; married Count Damiano Minozzi), Countess Helena (b.1989; married Prince Peter von Lobkowicz), Countess Sophie (b.1992), and Countess Cecilie (b.1997). In 2010, Johannes succeeded as X Fürst von Khevenhüller-Metsch after the death of his father.

Johannes Khevenhüller

In 1981, Johannes started his career working for Siemens in Zurich. In 1994, he joined the family business of his wife Camilla, IBI (Istituto Biochimico Italiano), which was founded in 1918 by Camilla's maternal great-grandfather Professor Giovanni Lorenzini (1886-1940). After Giovanni's death, IBI would be led by his daughter Loredana Lorenzini (1914-2010), by his granddaughter Lydia Cremisini, and, currently, by his great-granddaughter Camilla. Camilla Borghese is the President of IBI and Johannes Khevenhüller was the CEO of the pharmaceutical company.

May the Fürst Rest in Peace.

Saturday, November 28, 2020

The Passing of Princess Ilke zu Wied (1936-2020)

Princess Ilke and Prince Ulrich zu Wied at the wedding of Duchess Fleur of Württemberg.
Photograph (c) Seeger-Presse.


Aged eighty-three, Princess Ilke zu Wied passed away on 26 November 2020. Born Ilke Fischer on 9 December 1936 at Bonn, she was the daughter of Dr. Gottfried Fischer and Dr. Maria Mühlenbein. In 1968, Ilke Fischer married Prince Wilhelm Friedrich Ulrich zu Wied (1931-2010). The couple had two children: Prince Wilhelm (b.1970) and Princess Marie (b.1973; married Duke Friedrich of Württemberg).

Princess Ilke zu Wied with her daughter Duchess Marie of Württemberg and her granddaughter Duchess Dorothée of Württemberg.
Photograph (c) Seeger-Presse. 

May Princess Ilke Rest in Peace. 

Divorce for Archduke Karl and Archduchess Francesca of Austria

Karl and Francesca.

HI&RH Archduke Karl of Austria, Head of the Imperial House of Habsburg, recently confirmed that he and Archduchess Francesca have divorced. The couple married in 1993 and separated in 2003. A divorce was rumoured to be on the cards in 2008, but it did not occur. The archduke and archduchess maintained an amiable separation: Karl lived in Salzburg, and Francesca lived in Vienna. Karl's father Archduke Otto was reported to have said at the time: "My son is Catholic enough to know what he has to do." The divorce occurred sometime after their youngest child reached her majority, so it is possible that Karl and Francesca’s union ended as early as 2017. Interviews with Francesca in late 2019 related that she and Karl had recently terminated their marriage; however, the date of this imperial divorce is not certain.

The newlyweds in 1993.

Of course it is a very unfortunate affair for me. Because you can see that two people living together does not necessarily always work. We tried to save the relationship, but it did not work,” Karl stated, continuing, "all too often the children are the ones who suffer. That is why the wellbeing of our children was always the most important thing for me and Francesca.
Karl and Francesca with their three children.
Archduke Karl of Austria (b.1961) and Archduchess Francesca (b.1958; née Baroness Thyssen-Bornemisza de Kászon et Impérfalva) have three children: Archduchess Eleonore (b.1994), Archduke Ferdinand (b.1997), and Archduchess Gloria (b.1999).
Karl’s partner since 2017 is Christian Nicolau de Almeida Reid, a woman of British and Portuguese descent. Of Mrs. Reid, the archduke said, "Christian is a cultured and sensitive woman with elegant decency. She is a loving counselor, sometimes a valuable critic and always available to me, a partner in the best sense of the word. In short, she is an incredible asset to my life and I am happy to have her by my side." Christian Reid is the daughter of the late Robin Reid, OBE, and his wife Elsa Andresen Nicolau de Almeida. 

Archduke Eduard of Austria Is Author of Children's Book

Dubbie: The Double Headed Eagle

Archduke Eduard of Austria, the Hungarian Ambassador to the Vatican, has authored a children's book. Dubbie: the Double-Headed Eagle is scheduled to be published by Full Quiver Publishing on 15 December. The book's illustrator is James Hrkach.

Archduke Eduard of Austria and Baroness Maria Theresa von Gudenus on their wedding day.

Eduard is the son of Archduke Michael of Austria and Archduchess Christiana (born Princess zu Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg). Archduke Eduard of Austria has been married since 1995 to Baroness Maria Theresia von Gudenus. The couple have six children and live in Rome. 

Friday, November 27, 2020

The Radziwill Tiara, Formerly Worn by Princess Eugenie of Greece, To Be Sold in the United States

The Radziwill Tiara Photograph (c) Hindman

The tiara worn by Princess Eugenie of Greece and Denmark at her wedding to Prince Dominick Radziwiłł will be sold on 7 December 2020 in Chicago by the auction house Hindman. Bidding is currently at $4,400, although it is likely that the tiara will fetch much more due to its historical value. The auction house notes the following about the tiara's condition and composition: "Containing numerous old mine, rose and mixed cut diamonds weighing approximately 18.00-20.00 carats total and seven diamond simulants. Mounted in silver-topped gold. Formerly from the Collection of the House of Habsburg by descent through the the Radziwill family. Worn by Princess Eugenia (daughter of Princess Marie Bonaparte and Prince George of Greece and Denmark) for her 1938 wedding to Prince Dominik Radziwill. The tiara's seven main diamonds have been removed and replaced with paste by a previous owner." The tiara was part of a dispute in 1949 between Princess Eugenie and Prince Dominick after the failure of their marriage, when the prince took a number of jewels (including the Radziwill Tiara and a necklace of Habsburg provenance) from a safety deposit box. 

After-note: The tiara (and accompanying Habsburg pin) sold for $68,750.



Diamond Pear-shaped Tiara | Wedding Diadem Princess Radziwill
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Thursday, November 26, 2020

The Engagement of India Hicks, Daughter of Lady Pamela Mountbatten, to Her Partner David Flint Wood

David Flint Wood and India Hicks.


The engagement between India Amanda Caroline Hicks and David Flint Wood, both of Harbour Island, Bahamas, has been announced in The Telegraph


The wedding of Lady Pamela Mountbatten and Mr David Hicks, 1960.

India Hicks is the daughter of Lady Pamela Carmen Louise Mountbatten (b.1929; daughter of Earl Mountbatten of Burma) and her late husband Mr David Nightingale Hicks (1929-1998). India was born on 5 September 1967 at London. She was the youngest of the three children of David and Pamela: sister Edwina and brother Ashley preceded her. In 1981, India Hicks was a bridesmaid to Lady Diana Spencer at her wedding to the Prince of Wales, who is India's godfather. Through her mother, India is a descendant of Queen Victoria.

David Charles Flint Wood was born on 3 March 1961 at London as the son of Derek Flint Wood and Alice Wendy Jackson. 

David and India with their children.

India and David have four children together: Felix (b.1997), Amory (b.1999), Conrad (b.2003), and Domino (b.2007; goddaughter of Crown Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece). They are also the parents of Wesley. 

Congratulations to India and David upon their engagement!



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Friday, November 13, 2020

110 Years Since the Marriage of Prince Victor Napoléon and Princess Clémentine of Belgium

The Newlyweds: Prince Victor Napoléon and Princess Clémentine of Belgium
On Monday, 14 November 1910, Prince Victor Napoléon and Princess Clémentine of Belgium were married at Moncalieri, a picturesque village a few miles from Turin. Before the religious rites, the pair were wed in a civil ceremony by the Mayor of Moncalieri at the French Consulate. The religious ceremony uniting the couple took place in the chapel of Moncalieri Castle, built in the fifteenth century, which had been the home of the groom's mother Princess Clotilde of Savoy ever since she returned to Italy following the collapse of the Second French Empire. The Bishop of Biella presided over the Roman Catholic service. The witnesses for Prince Victor were his brother Prince Louis Napoléon and his cousin the Duke of Aosta; the witnesses for Princess Clémentine were Prince Ernest de Ligne, who represented King Albert I of the Belgians, and Archduke Friedrich of Austria. The imperial wedding was attended by the following esteemed personages: Archduke Friedrich of Austria; Princess Marie of Belgium, Countess of Flanders; Princess Stephanie of Belgium, Countess Lonyay; Prince Louis Napoléon; Princess Clotilde of Savoy, Dowager Princess Napoléon; Prince Emanuele Filiberto of Savoy, Duke of Aosta; Princess Laetitia of Savoy, Dowager Duchess of Aosta; Prince Vittorio Emanuele of Savoy, Count of Turin; Prince Luigi of Savoy, Duke of the Abruzzi; Prince Umberto of Savoy, Count of Salemi; Prince Tommaso and Princess Isabella of Savoy, Duke and Duchess of Genoa; and Prince Philipp of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.
Princess Marie-Clotilde Napoléon
Prince Louis Napoléon
Princess Clémentine Napoléon with her children. Photograph (c) National Portrait Gallery
At the time of their union, Prince Victor Napoléon was forty-eight years-old, and Princess Clémentine of Belgium was thirty-eight years-old. In 1912, the prince and princess welcomed their first child, a daughter: Princess Marie-Clotilde Napoléon, who was named after her paternal grandmother. In 1914, the couple were delighted with the arrival of their second child, a son: Prince Louis Napoléon. The imperial family lived in Brussels.
The Prince and Princess Napoléon
Princess Marie-Clotilde Napoléon and Prince Louis Napoléon
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Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Pre-orders for RECOLLECTIONS: The Memoirs of Victoria Marchioness of Milford Haven

Pre-orders now available!

Pre-orders for our next book, RECOLLECTIONS by Victoria Marchioness of Milford Haven are now available!

Clients who pre-order the book through our website at will get a copy ahead of the book being listed on AMAZON. Our printer has informed us that the book will begin shipping 14-10 days b before Christmas!

Expanded and annotated by Ilana D. Miller and Arturo E. Beéche the book contains the memoirs of one of the most intriguing and exceptional granddaughters of Queen Victoria: Victoria, Dowager Marchioness of Milford Haven. 

Born Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine in 1863, she became one of her English grandmother's most frequent correspondents, as well as a surrogate mother to her younger siblings after the untimely death in 1878 of their mother, Grand Duchess Alice of Hesse. Married in 1884 to her father's first cousin, Prince Louis of Battenberg, Victoria soon became a witness to some of the most momentous historical episodes of her lifetime. Her thoughts (open, frank, no-nonsense, clear) are to be found inside the 280-page book containing her memoirs, her "recollections." The book has been handsomely illustrated with nearly 400 exquisite images sourced from various archives, family collections, as well as the incomparably vast EUROHISTORY Royal Photographic Archive.

To purchase the book, you can click on the link below!

Recollections Pre-orders

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Tuesday, November 10, 2020

All The Queen's Women: The Death of Lady Moyra Campbell, Maid of Honour at Queen Elizabeth II's Coronation

Lady Moyra Hamilton in 1953.
Photograph (c) National Portrait Gallery. 

Lady Moyra Kathleen Hamilton was born at London on 22 July 1930 as the first child and only daughter of James, Marquess of Hamilton (1904-1979; later 4th Duke of Abercorn), and his wife Lady Mary Crichton (1905-1990), who married in 1928. Moyra's paternal grandparents were James, 3rd Duke of Abercorn (1869-1953), and Lady Rosalind Bingham (1869-1958). Moyra's maternal grandparents were Henry Crichton, Viscount Crichton (1872–1914), and Lady Mary Cavendish Grosvenor (1883-1959).
HM The Queen with her six Maids of Honour for the Coronation. Photograph (c) National Portrait Gallery
On 2 June 1953, Lady Moyra was one of six maids of honour who were chosen to assist the new British monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, at her coronation. In an interview with the BBC on the occasion of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee in 2012, Lady Moyra remembered this momentous event. "I was terribly lucky to be invited to be one of the maids of honour to carry the Queen's train. There were so many highlights. The amazing feeling in the abbey; the incredible prayerfulness throughout and the sight of all those crowds who had been waiting in appalling weather all night; some of them had been there overnight, others had been there from early the day before. The rain was teeming down and yet there was this joyful feeling and the abbey was full of people from all over the globe." The five other maids of honour from the 1953 Coronation still survive: Lady Jane Vane-Tempest-Stewart (b.1932; former wife of Max Rayne, Baron Rayne, and later wife of Robert Lacey), Lady Anne Coke (b.1932; wife of 3rd Glenconnor), Lady Mary Baillie-Hamilton (b.1932; former wife of John Bailey and later wife of David Russell), Lady Jane Heathcote-Drummond-Willoughby (b.1934), and Lady Rosemary Spencer-Churchill (b.1929; wife of Charles Muir).
Lady Moyra Campbell in the 1960s. Photograph (c) National Portrait Gallery.
Commander Peter Campbell. Photograph (c) National Portrait Gallery.

On 12 November 1966, Lady Moyra Hamilton married Commander Peter Colin Drummond Campbell (b.1927), the son of Major-General Sir Douglas Campbell. Moyra and Peter had two sons: Rory (b.1967), and Michael (b.1970). From 1954 until the late 1960s, Lady Moyra served as a Lady-in-Waiting to Princess Alexandra.

Lady Moyra in later life.

Lady Moyra Campbell died at Belfast, Northern Ireland, on Sunday, 8 November 2020. She was ninety years-old. Lady Moyra's funeral will occur in the strictest family environment due to the pandemic. 

The Lady Moyra Kathleen Campbell, CVO 1930-2020
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Friday, November 6, 2020

Prince Luiz, Head of the Brazilian Imperial Family, Released From Hospital Yesterday

Prince Luiz upon leaving hospital.

Yesterday, 6 November, Prince Luiz of Brazil was discharged from the Santa Catarina Hospital in São Paolo after a hospitalisation of several days. He had been dealing with bronchitis, which was successfully treated with antibiotics. The prince is eighty-two years-old.
On Saturday, 31 October, the secretariat of the Imperial House announced that Prince Luiz was admitted to hospital to remove a cyst near his eye. It is not clear if the prince was already ill with bronchitis at that time.
Earlier this year, six members of Prince Luiz's family were diagnosed with COVID-19, which thankfully they all survived. 

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Volodia's return!


More than 16 years ago, EUROHISTORY published a rare biography of the young poet Prince Vladimir Paley, son of Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich and Olga Karnovich (later Countess von Hohenfelsen, Princess Paley).

Authored by Jorge Francisco Sáenz, the world's authority on "Volodia" Paley, A POET AMONG THE ROMANOVS was an immediate success. Two print runs of a paperback issue were sold overnight. 

Now, we are about to send to the printer an expanded, hardbound version of the book, that will also include a larger photo section!

Stay tuned...because Volodia's return is upon us!


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The Passing of Archduchess Sárolta of Austria (1940-2020), Daughter of the Last Duke of Teschen

Sárolta Wutholen in 2015.

On 2 November 2020, Sárolta von Habsburg-Lothringen Wutholen died at the age of eighty in Switzerland.

Archduke Albrecht of Austria and Katalin Bocskay de Felsö-Bánya on their wedding day.

Born at Budapest on 3 March 1940, Sárolta (Charlotte) Isabella Mária Krisztine Eszter Katalin Pia von Habsburg, was the first child of Archduke Albrecht of Austria (1897-1955), Duke of Teschen, and his second wife Katalin Bocskay de Felsö-Bánya (1909-2000). Albrecht and Katalin married in 1938 and had two daughters: Sárolta and Ildikó (b.1942). The Second World War and its subsequent consequences were devastating for the family. Since Hungary was behind the iron Curtain, Albrecht lost most of his property, estates that at one point had made his father one of the richest Habsburgs. His marriage, by then was finished in all but name. Hence, the family had to seek new places where to rebuild their devastated lives. As a displaced person, Katalin moved to the United States with her daughters in 1949. Archduke Albrecht was granted a Mexican divorce from his wife in 1951. 

Katalin with her daughters Sárolta and Kathy, 1949.

After their move to the United States, Katalin gave several interviews to the press in the summer of 1949. "'Tis is a wonderful feeling, the freedom of America. No furtive looks for ever-present harassing officials. We even can go from one city to another without registering and rigamarole. Fear has almost left our hearts." About the fate of her husband Albrecht, who had ostensibly been captured by the Soviets, Katalin mused: "It seems almost hopeless. He vanished on a business trip between Hungary and Austria, in both of which he had properties, now confiscated." By 1955, Katalin and her daughters had settled in San Francisco. Shortly after learning of the death of her former husband following a heart attack in Buenos Aires, Katalin again spoke to the press: "I am not divorced from him. We are just legally separated. I never filed a divorce; I never received notice of one. In fact, I have heard nothing from my husband in all these years." She continued, elaborating on her concern for her daughters Sárolta and Kathy: "You must promise, please, to not mention my age. This is not just because of the vanity, you understand, but it might make a difference in my future. I am no longer teenaged, and I must think of my girls' future. I am their sole support and have only what I earn. This expression, 'middle-aged,' I would not object to that." Katalin and her younger daughter eventually became US citizens. Katalin von Habsburg first worked in a department store before becoming an office employee at the University of California. 

Katalin with her daughter Kathy, who holds a picture of her father Archduke Albrecht, 1958.
Sárolta von Habsburg in 1958.
Countess Sárolta von Habsburg, Princess of Hungary, attended San Diego College for Women. While she was a freshman at university in 1958, she and her mother and sister learned that a Vienna court ruled that Katalin was the legal widow of Archduke Albrecht, which entitled the family to substantial compensation. Sárolta commented on the development in the amelioration of her family's financial situation: "Well, I'm going to continue attending classes here. This won't change my plans. And, when I graduate, I still want to enter the foreign service."

In 1967, Sárolta von Habsburg married Ferdinand Joseph Wutholen (1927-2018). The couple had four children: Isabella (b.1968), Alessandra (b.1970), Marina (b.1973), and Misha (b.1981). While entitled to use the title of Archduchess of Austria, Princess of Hungary (due to titulature changes proclaimed by the Head of the House), Sárolta chose not use them. She and her family always sought to be private people and never sought public exposure. Sárolta is survived by her children, their partners, and her four grandchildren, as well as by her sister Ildikó Kathy Fortier. 

As Archduke Otto and Archduke Karl, the late and current Heads of the Austrian Imperial Family, retroactively recognised marriages of archdukes who had married Christian brides (who were considered unequal at the time of their unions) as dynastic, Sárolta was entitled to the title and style Her Imperial and Royal Highness Archduchess Sárolta of Austria, Princess of Hungary. However, her family confirmed that she never claimed nor used any titles at all.

May Sárolta Rest In Peace.


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Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Serbian Royals Remember the 50th Anniversary of the Passing of King Peter II

Prince Philip and Princess Danica of Serbia at Oplenac. Photograph courtesy of HRH Prince Philip.
Prince Philip lays a wreath at the tomb of his grandfather. Photograph courtesy of HRH Prince Philip.
Princess Danica puts flowers on the tomb of King Peter. Photograph courtesy of HRH Prince Philip.
On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the passing of HM King Peter II, a memorial service for the late King was officiated by His Grace Bishop Jovan of Sumadija at the Royal Family Mausoleum of St. George in Oplenac. The service was attended by Their Royal Highnesses Prince Philip and Princess Danica. On behalf of HRH Crown Prince Alexander, wreath was laid on the tomb of the late King by Mr Dragomir Acovic, chairman of the Advisory Bodies of the Crown. Present were also Mr Ljubodrag Grujic member of the Privy Council and Mr Predrag Markovic, member of the Crown Council. Kingdom of Serbia Association also laid a wreath on the tomb of HM King Peter II.
Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine of Serbia at the Serbian Orthodox Church of Saint Sava in New York. Photograph courtesy of HRH The Crown Prince.
The Crown Princely Couple remember the late King Peter II. Photograph courtesy of HRH The Crown Prince.
The Crown Prince and Crown Princess of Serbia with clergy. Photograph courtesy of HRH The Crown Prince.
On the same day, at 11:00 am (EST) in New York, His Grace Bishop Irinej of Eastern America officiated a memorial service for His Majesty King Peter II in the presence of Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine who lit candles in memory of the Crown Prince’s father, HM King Peter II, at the Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of Saint Sava. His Majesty King Peter II was very close to the Cathedral during his time in the United States.
King Peter II of Yugoslavia was born in Belgrade 6 September 1923 as the first born son of King Alexander I and Queen Maria of Yugoslavia. His Godparents were King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (later Queen Mother of Great Britain). His education commenced at The Royal Palace Belgrade he then went to Sandroyd School in England, he left after his father’s assassination in 1934. Since King Peter II was 11 years old and underage at the time of his father’s assassination, a regency was formed consisting of three regents including his great uncle Prince Paul Karadjordjevic. King Peter II was nearly killed when the Palace was bombed during the night by the Nazis.The Second World War forced King Peter II to leave the country along with the Yugoslav Government – initially to Greece, Palestine and then to Egypt. King Peter II then joined other monarchs and leaders of German occupied Europe in London in June 1941. There King Peter was regarded by the people of Yugoslavia as the symbol of resistance against Nazism. King Peter II completed his education at Cambridge University and joined the Royal Air Force. King Peter II never abdicated. After the Second World War King Peter II lived in exile, initially in London, with his wife Queen Alexandra of Yugoslavia (previously Princess of Greece and Denmark) and their son Crown Prince Alexander who was born in 1945. He spent the last years of his life in America. After a long and grave illness, King Peter II died 3 November 1970 in Denver Hospital Colorado, and he was buried at the St. Sava Monastery Church in Libertyville Illinois. He was the only king buried in the United States. The King’s remains were transferred to the Royal Family Mausoleum of St. George in Oplenac 26 May 2013 when a State Funeral took place.
To learn more about the Royal Family of Serbia, please visit their website.
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Tuesday, November 3, 2020

The Fiftieth Anniversary of the Untimely Death of King Peter II of Yugoslavia

Today, fifty years have passed since the death of King Peter II of Yugoslavia on 3 November 1970. The office of Crown Prince Alexander II of Serbia, the king's only child, issued the following communiqué on 2 November 2020:

A memorial service for His Majesty King Peter II (son of the great unifier His Majesty King Alexander I) is going to be officiated tomorrow Tuesday, 3 November 2020 by His Grace Bishop Jovan of Sumadija at the Church of Saint George in Oplenac. According to protocol the first wreath will be laid by Mr. Dragomir Acovic, chairman of the Advisory bodies of the Crown on the behalf His Royal Highness Crown Prince Alexander head of the Serbian Royal Family (son of Hs Majesty King Peter II) on the tomb of the late King. In New York His Grace Bishop Irinej of Eastern America will officiate a memorial service for His Majesty King Peter II in the presence of Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine who will light candles in memory of the Crown Prince’s father, HM King Peter II, at the Serbian Orthodox Cathedral of Saint Sava. His Majesty King Peter II was very close to the cathedral during his time in the United States.

King Peter II of Yugoslavia in London, 1968.

On Thursday, 5 November 1970, Lieutenant Colonel C. Stojilkovic, a member of the Royal Yugoslav Airforce and former staff member to Yugoslavia's last king, announced that His Majesty King Peter II of Yugoslavia had died on Tuesday, 3 November 1970, in Los Angeles, California, in hospital after suffering from cardio-respiratory failure caused by pneumonia. The king was forty-seven years-old and had been a resident of Playa del Rey, California. Peter had been residing there with Dr and Mrs Frank Lowe. The delay in announcing the king's death was attributed to the fact that his entourage had to wait to contact his next of kin. It was reported that since April 1970 King Peter had been in and out of hospital in Los Angeles, suffering from kidney problems and other ailments that were brought on when he was diagnosed with pneumonia in September 1970. King Peter II of Yugoslavia lay in state for several days at Christ the Savior Serbian Orthodox Church in Arcadia, California. His attorney Sam Silverstein noted that the king's will stipulated that the monarch be buried at the Serbian Orthodox Monastery in Libertyville, Illinois. 

King Peter II and Queen Alexandra of Yugoslavia in Paris, 1967.

King Peter's widow, Queen Alexandra of Yugoslavia (née Greece), his son Crown Prince Alexander, and his brother Prince Tomislav had filed a court motion at the Los Angeles Superior Court challenging the Libertyville burial. The royals stated that Peter had wanted to be buried in London. Queen Alexandra and Crown Prince Alexander also filed a motion in the Lake County, Illinois, Circuit Court asking that the funeral services for King Peter be performed by Bishop Firmilian Ocokoljich, who served as chaplain to the royal family in London during World War II. The family's attorney, Thomas J Karacic, stated that it would be "sacrilegious" to have services for the king be performed by the group controlling the Saint Sava Monastery near Libertyville. The North American diocese opposed the government of Yugoslavia, while the Serbian Orthodox Patriarch in Belgrade did not. Mr Karacic noted that if services went ahead under the Saint Sava leadership, then Queen Alexandra, Crown Prince Alexander, and Prince Tomislav would boycott the ceremony. Alas, Circuit Court Judge L Erie Carey ruled that the services would be conducted at the monastery by Bishop Iriney and Bishop Dionisije, in accordance with the king's wishes.

The funeral service of King Peter II of Yugoslavia at Saint Sava in Libertyville, Illinois.

On 15 November 1970, around fifteen thousand mourners filed past the bier in the Byzantine chapel of Saint Sava's Eastern Orthodox Church in Libertyville, IL, to render their last homage to their late king. The king's body lay in a brown, metallic coffin, the front half covered with glass. Clad in a Yugoslav Air Force uniform, he looked more like an eighty year-old than his age of 47, it was written. A World War II amputee who had served in the king's armed forces said, "He was an unhappy man. He helped thwart Hitler's movement into Russia and then his country was given the Russians." Bishop Iriney of Pennsylvania delivered a moving eulogy: "He was a unique and unusual man and he lived and reigned under even more unusual circumstances. One of his brothers wanted him to be buried in Westminster Abbey in London. King Peter could have been buried there with the rulers and all the dignitaries of the world in attendance. Instead, he rejected world glamour and brought himself to the level of his people. His choice to be with the Serbian people and lead them against the Axis war machine was of great historical importance. He delayed Hitler three months in attacking the Soviet Union. He could have stayed in the palace and enjoyed the everyday privileges of the royalty. He knew that any resistance would result in the sacrifice of many lives and wholesale destruction. But he also knew that any temporary security for himself and his people would result in the erosion of his people's essential liberties." Neither Queen Alexandra, who was estranged from her husband, nor Crown Prince Alexandra attended the funeral of King Peter in Illinois. The only member of the king's family to attend his burial was his youngest brother Prince Andrej.

The grave of King Peter II of Yugoslavia at Saint Sava's Eastern Orthodox Monastery in Libertyville.

It was not until Friday, 20 November 1970, that it emerged through Denver Post reporting that King Peter II of Yugoslavia had actually died at Denver General Hospital on 3 November. The king had been admitted to Denver General on 7 October and on 8 October underwent a liver transplant. Peter had been suffering from advanced cirrhosis of the liver for some years, and on 7 October the king had been flown from California via a private chartered jet to Denver, where he underwent the transplant surgery the next day. The liver intended to prolong the monarch's life had come from Barbara Virginia Peterson, aged fifteen, who died on 7 October after an automobile accident on 3 October in Garden Grove, California. The Denver Post reported that Peter had died in hospital while still recovering from the operation. On his death certificate, which was filed with the Colorado Health Department, the king's name was given as Peter Petrovich. Following his death, the king's body was immediately flown by private jet back to Los Angeles. A friend of the royal family gave the following statement: "He [King Peter] had been in and out of hospitals (John Wesley and Queen of Angels) most of the year, and the doctors were trying to keep him alive long enough to find a donor for a liver transplant. When an acceptable donor was located in Denver, he was flown there." When questioned as to why the truth behind the king's death was not given earlier, the source replied, "Because the queen [Alexandra] had kept up the pretext of his being here [in California], and she couldn't very well suddenly admit he'd been in Denver for almost a month. Besides, she didn't want to discourage potential liver transplant recipients and donors." At the time of King Peter's death, his wife Queen Alexandra was living in Venice, Italy. 

Crown Prince Alexander at the memorial service held in London for his father King Peter.

Crown Prince Alexander attended a memorial service for his late father King Peter at the Serbian Orthodox Church in Notting Hill, London, on 11 August 1971.

On 26 May 2020, King Peter II of Yugoslavia was reburied in the mausoleum of the Karadjordjević dynasty at the Church of Saint George in Oplenac. Along with the king, Queen Alexandra of Yugoslavia (his wife), Queen Marie of Yugoslavia (his mother), and Prince Andrej of Yugoslavia (his younger brother) were also reburied in the family mausoleum. 


Crown Prince Peter of Yugoslavia was born at Belgrade on 6 September 1923 as the eldest son of King Alexander I of Yugoslavia and his wife Queen Marie (born Princess of Romania). Peter was joined by two younger brothers: Prince Tomislav and Prince Andrej. The crown prince became King Peter II of Yugoslavia in 1934 after the assassination of his father Alexander. In 1945, Peter lost his throne due to the Communist takeover of Yugoslavia in the aftermath of World War II. 

In 1944, King Peter II of Yugoslavia married Princess Alexandra of Greece (1921-1993), the daughter of King Alexander I of the Hellenes and his wife Princess Aspasia of Greece (née Manos). King Peter and Queen Alexandra had one child, Crown Prince Alexander II of Serbia (b.1945). 

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