Friday, February 25, 2022

The Visit of the Prince of Wales to Ukraine in 1996

Prince Charles greeted at the airport in Kyiv by three women in a traditional Ukrainian costume, 11/4/96.
Photo (c) Getty Images / John Stillwell.
The prince speaking to young academics at the Mohyla Academy, 11/4/96.
Photo (c) Getty Images / Tim Graham.
Ukrainian youths hold posters of the Prince of Wales during his visit, 11/4/96.
Photo (c) Getty Images / Tim Graham.
Prince Charles receives a salute from a Ukrainian solider at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, 11/4/96.
Photo (c) Getty Images / Tim Graham.

In November 1996, the Prince of Wales visited Ukraine for two days as part of a nine day tour of formerly Soviet occupied countries. Prince Charles began his visit on Monday, 4 November, when he arrived in Kyiv, then known as Kiev, the nation's capital. He was met at Boryspil International Airport by Hennadiy Udovenko, then Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine. As part of that day's schedule, the heir to the British throne took a wreath to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Glory Square, which is dedicated to the Ukrainian soldiers who died fighting against the Nazis in World War II. The prince visited elderly and ill persons at the Novo-Belichi Resident Hospital. Prince Charles participated in a Prince of Wales Business Leaders Forum with businesspeople and entrepreneurs at the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy; he was met at its entrance by a large group of students carrying photos of the prince and welcoming banners, one of which read: "Dear Prince Charles, You Are The Best Prince We Have Ever Seen." During the business seminar, the Prince of Wales noted, "It is only too clear to all of us that the countries of the former Soviet Union are at an historic crossroads and urgently need the partnership of the West to tackle environmental problems and to alleviate the disillusionment of their young people. If what we call free market systems are to be sustainable in the long run, international management must share its management skills." On Monday evening, Prince Charles attended a dinner given by President Leonid Kuchma at the Mariinskyi Palace.

Prince Charles and local youth greeting one another in Sevastopol, 11/5/96.
Photo (c) Getty Images / Tim Graham.
The prince at the Battle Balaclava lookout, 11/5/96.
Photo (c) Getty Images / Chip Hires. 
The Prince of Wales on the grounds of Saint Sophia Cathedral in Kyiv, 11/5/96.
Photo (c) Getty Images / Tim Graham.

On 5 November, the second day of his visit, Prince Charles traveled to Sevastopol in the region of Crimea in southern Ukraine. While there, the prince went to see the historical markers to the Battle of Balaclava, a battle that took place during the Crimean War in 1854. Balaclava witnessed the ill-fated Charge of the Light Brigade. Later that day, the Prince of Wales returned to Kyiv, where he was given a tour of Saint Sophia Cathedral. Prince Charles then departed Ukraine for Turkmenistan.

Head of Serbian Royal House Calls For Peace in Face of Russian Invasion of Ukraine


From Belgrade, HRH Crown Prince Alexander of Serbia has issued an appeal today for a peaceful solution to the conflict in Ukraine:

With great disturbance and sadness, I have been following the news about the conflict in Ukraine. I want to send my appeal to all parties included, to all world leaders, to find a peaceful solution for this terrible conflict. War is never a good option, it only brings destruction, pain, and suffering to innocent people, and I am deeply worried for the future of the entire society if this conflict continues.

There is no issue that can not be resolved with open talks; negotiating table is always the only proper place to resolve conflicts. When guns start to speak, humanity suffers. I wish and pray to see all parties included in this conflict to sit down and find a peaceful solution.

I am strongly supporting the official position of the Republic of Serbia, not to take sides in this tragedy, but to remain neutral, to respect the territorial integrity and international law, which is of high importance for our country as well, and to appeal for and keep peace. People of Serbia know very well how much terror conflicts like this bring, we have suffered a lot in the past. And no one should suffer like that anymore. The world that we all live in, needs peace desperately!

Thursday, February 24, 2022

The 70th Birthday of Prince Andreas of Liechtenstein

Prince Andreas of Liechtenstein in London, 1998.
Photo © Desmond O’Neill Features.

Today, Prince Andreas of Liechtenstein celebrates his seventieth birthday!

Born on 25 February 1952 at Vienna, Prince Andreas Duarte Emanuel Ulrich Benedikt Josef Maria Karl Rafael Ignatius Mathias Paulus of Liechtenstein was the second child and son of Prince Karl Alfred of Liechtenstein and Archduchess Agnes of Austria. Andreas has six siblings: Prince Dominik (1950-2009), Prince Gregor (b.1954), Princess Alexandra (1955-1993), Princess Maria (b.1960), Princess Katharina (b.1964), and Princess Birgitta (b.1967). 
On 29 September 1978 at Madrid, Prince Andreas married Silvia Prieto Figueroa (b.1952). The couple do not have children.
Our best wishes to the Prince on his birthday!

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Head of Imperial House of Russia Calls for Peace


"Events taking place in our Homeland have been very alarming and deeply grieving.

Fully recognizing the independence and sovereignty of all the states that were formed after the fall of the USSR, I am at the same time convinced that all of the peoples who historically belonged to the civilizational space of the former Russian Empire are united by the concept of a Homeland in the highest spiritual and cultural sense of the word.

It is frightful and painful to see how, for the past 8 years, brothers and sisters, whose fathers, grandfathers, and great-grandfathers together defended their common Homeland, have been pitted against each other and spilt their blood; how peaceful citizens are dying and suffering; how parents shed inconsolable tears over the coffins of their children. Now the course of these events has culminated in an even greater cataclysm.

The Russian Imperial House does not make statements of a political nature, and in any event, in the current conditions we do not have complete information that would allow us to make them without risking unintended harm. But we are utterly convinced and will always affirm that Russia and Ukraine—all their populations—must never be enemies. This is as monstrous and unnatural a thing as members of the same family murdering each other.

I, my son and heir, The Grand Duke George of Russia, and his spouse, Princess Victoria Romanovna, pray for the immediate implementation of peace.

We are deeply grateful to those who are now making efforts to prevent war and provide assistance to the suffering: the wounded, those who have lost their homes and belongings, and refugees. 

May Almighty God save our peoples and may He free us from fratricidal enmity.

H.I.H. The Grand Duchess Maria of Russia
Madrid, 11/24 February 2022

Monday, February 21, 2022

Luxembourg/Sirgue Engagement Called Off

Louis and Scarlett-Lauren.
Photograph (c) Grand Ducal Court.

Today, Prince Louis of Luxembourg and Mademoiselle Scarlett-Lauren Sirgue announced in an interview with Point de Vue that their engagement has been cancelled, but that they remain friends. They noted that they had realised they had differences of opinions which made it best for them to end their romantic relationship. On 6 April 2021, the Grand Ducal Court had announced the engagement of Prince Louis and Scarlett-Lauren Sirgue. The couple had been in a relationship for some time. Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa issued the following statement: "We are very happy to announce the engagement of our son, Prince Louis, to Miss Scarlett-Lauren Sirgue. Princes Gabriel and Noah join us in surrounding the new couple with all our affection. We wish them immense happiness."

Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, Prince Louis, Scarlett-Lauren Sirgue, and Grand Duke Henri.
Photograph (c) Grand Ducal Court.



Tuesday, February 15, 2022

The 85th Birthday of Duchess Sophie of Württemberg!

Duchess Sophie of Württemberg at the wedding of Duchess Sophie of Württemberg and Maximilien d'Andigné, 2018. 
Photo (c) Getty Images / David Nivière.

Today, Duchess Sophie of Württemberg celebrates her eighty-fifth birthday!

The engagement of Albrecht Eugen of Württemberg and Nadejda of Bulgaria is announced in January 1924.
Newlyweds: Duke Albrecht Eugen of Württemberg and Princess Nadejda of Bulgaria

Born on 16 February 1937 at Stuttgart, Duchess Sophie Eudoxie Louise Josepha Margarethe Theresia vom Kinde Jesu Konrada Donata of Württemberg was the second daughter and fifth child of Duke Albrecht Eugen of Württemberg (1895-1954) and his wife Princess Nadejda of Bulgaria (1899-1958), who married in 1924. Sophie had four older siblings: Duke Ferdinand Eugen (1925-2020), Duchess Margarethe (1928-2017; married François Luce de Chevigny), Duke Eugen Eberhard (b.1930; married Archduchess Alexandra of Austria-Tuscany), and Duke Alexander (b.1933). Sophie's paternal grandparents were Duke Albrecht of Württemberg (1865-1939) and Archduchess Margarete Sophie of Austria (1870-1902). The duchess's maternal grandparents were King Ferdinand of Bulgaria (1861-1948) and Princess Marie Louise of Bourbon-Parma (1870-1899).

Lindach Castle.

Until the outbreak of World War II, Duke Albrecht Eugen and Duchess Nadejda of Württemberg lived with their children at a property in Silesia. After 1945 and the loss of this property to the Polish government under Soviet control, the family relocated to Schloß Lindach, near Schwäbisch Gmünd. Duchess Sophie, the couple's youngest child, spend her youth at Schloß Lindach. She attended a convent school in Wald run by nuns. In 1954, Sophie lost her father when Albrecht Eugen was killed in an automobile accident. In 1957, Sophie studied at the School of Household Arts in Stuttgart. The following year, in 1958, a day before her twenty-first birthday, Sophie was orphaned when her mother Nadeja died on 15 February, aged only fifty-nine. After the death of her mother, Sophie went to live with her brother Alexander in Munich. In 1961, the duchess went to Paris in order to study French. For six months, she took courses at the Alliance Française. Sophie then joined the fashion firm Heim Jeunes Filles as a sales assistant and designer, then, in 1967, she went to work for Maison Balmain.

Duchess Sophie during her religious wedding wearing the Chaumet Diamond Fringe Tiara, which formerly belonged to Queen Eleonore of Bulgaria.
Duchess Sophie, Antonio Manuel Rôxo de Ramos-Bandeira, Duke Ferdinand, Duchess Margarethe, Princess Eudoxia of Bulgaria, Duchess Alexandra and Duke Eugen Eberhard. 
Duchess Sophie at her wedding ball.

In February 1969, Duchess Sophie of Württemberg married Portuguese diplomat Antonio Manuel Rôxo de Ramos-Bandeira (1937-1987), the son of Dr. Antonio de Ramos-Bandeira and Alice de Souza-Rôxo. In addition to members of the Württemberg royal family, the wedding was attended by 120 guests, including Archduke Hubert and Archduchess Rosemary of Austria-Tuscany, Margravine Valerie of Baden, Prince Ludwig and Princess Marianne of Baden, Princess Eudoxie of Bulgaria, Fürst Friedrich and Fürstin Margarethe of Hohenzollern, Hereditary Prince Alois-Konstantin zu Löwenstein-Wertheim-Rosenberg, Duke Friedrich August and Duchess Marie Cecile of Oldenburg, Duke Roberto of Parma, Fürst Franz Joseph of Thurn und Taxis, and Fürst Georg of Waldburg zu Zeil und Trauchburg. A most unhappy chapter for the duchess, Sophie and Antonio's union ended in divorce in 1974 and was religiously annulled in 1976. The couple did not have children.

Sophie during her time with Nina Ricci, 1988.
Princess Masha Magaloff and Duchess Sophie of Württemberg - two of Nina Ricci's leaders, 1993.
Photo (c) T. Umeda.

Beginning in 1982, Duchess Sophie of Württemberg became an executive with Nina Ricci, a position that she held for several decades. She directed the fashion house's haute couture department. She worked side-by-side with Princess Masha Magaloff (née Asanschevski-Asancheyev), the wife of Russian aristocrat Prince Michael Magaloff. In the early 1990s, the duchess and the princess were in Hawaii for a Ricci show. While there, they gave a very amusing and insightful interview to The Honolulu Advertiser about the goings on in the world of a fashion insider. Sophie started: "You go to the office, you have a meeting with your director, maybe shouting for an hour, and right after work you go to a cocktail party and you have to be chic. So you have a lovely suit and you change it with a little scarf, another necklace, earrings a little more sparkly. A gray suit is very nice, then you change the blouse for the evening. Pink perhaps." Masha added: "Pink is always magic to a ladyI have a fatal love for pink." Sophie then went on to muse about the arduous consultations that involve working with a bride choosing a haute couture gown, which she noted usually took days: "The bride has one idea. Mama has another. Grandmama has another..." Masha interjected: "[And] Auntie has another." "Then the bride starts crying," Sophie summarised. Sophie continued: "Black can be super chic, but on some women it can be too cruel. Navy is gentler." The duchess mentioned that Princess Barbara of Yugoslavia was an ideal client: "She'll see a dress and say, 'That's the one.' Others try the whole collection and say, 'Now I cannot was too much.'"

Duchess Sophie in 2000.
Photo (c) Seeger-Presse.
Duchess Sophie and her brother Duke Alexander at the 70th birthday celebrations of their first cousin Duke Carl of Württemberg, 2006.
Photo (c) Seeger-Presse / Sandra Zellner.
Duchess Sophie and her brother Duke Ferdinand at the wedding of Hereditary Prince Hubertus of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, 2009.
Photo (c) Seeger-Presse / Albert Nieboer.

A favourite amongst her relations, Sophie of Württemberg is often to be seen at royal weddings and funerals. The duchess lives in Paris.

Duchess Sophie in 1997.
Photo (c) Seeger-Presse.

Our best wishes to Duchess Sophie on her birthday!

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

The 70th Birthday of Prince Carlo Alessandro della Torre e Tasso

Principe Carlo Alessandro della Torre e Tasso.

Today, Prince Carlo Alessandro della Torre e Tasso, Duke of Castel Duino, celebrates his seventieth birthday!

Carlo Alessandro's father Raimundo in the late 1930s.
Princess Eugenie of Greece and Denmark with her husband Prince Raimundo della Torre e Tasso, 1953.
Photo (c) Getty Images.

Born on 10 February 1952 at Neuilly-sur-Seine, Prince Carlo Alessandro della Torre e Tasso was the only child of Prince Raimundo della Torre e Tasso (1907-1986) and Princess Eugenie of Greece and Denmark (1910-1989). Raimundo and Eugenie married in 1949 and divorced in 1965. This was the second marriage for Princess Eugenie, who from 1938 until 1946 was married to Prince Dominic Radziwill. From his mother's first union, Prince Carlo Alessandro had two half-siblings: Princess Tatiana Radziwill (b.1939; married Jean Henri Fruchaud) and Prince Jerzy Radziwill (1942-2001; married Françoise Lageat).

Prince Alexander von Thurn und Taxis.


Prince George of Greece and Princess Marie Bonaparte.

The paternal grandparents of Carlo Alessandro are Prince Alexander von Thurn und Taxis and his first wife Princess Marie de Ligne. The maternal grandparents of the prince are Prince George of Greece and Denmark and Princess Marie Bonaparte. Through his mother Eugenie, Prince Carlo Alessandro is a second cousin of the Prince of Wales. 

Carlo Alessandro and Véronique.

On 10 February 1976 at Saint Tropez, Prince Carlo Alessandro della Torre e Tasso married Véronique Lantz (b.1951). Prince Carlo Alessandro and Princess Véronique have three children: Prince Dimitri (b.1977; married Elinor de Pret Roose de Calesberg), Prince Maximilian (b.1979), and Princess Constanza (b.1989). Prince Carlo Alessandro and Princess Véronique live at the family's ancestral home, the Castello di Duino.

Princess Véronique and Prince Carlo Alessandro, 2017.

Our best wishes to the Prince on his birthday!

Saturday, February 5, 2022

The Ruby Wedding Anniversary of Archduke Carl Christian and Archduchess Marie Astrid of Austria

The newlyweds.

Today, Archduke Carl Christian and Archduchess Marie Astrid of Austria celebrate forty years of marriage!

Princess Marie-Astrid and Archduke Carl Christian.

The engagement of Archduke Carl Christian of Austria and Princess Marie Astrid of Luxembourg was announced on 9 November 1981 by the Grand Ducal Court. Born on 26 August 1954 at Beloeil, Archduke Carl Christian of Austria was the third child and second son of Archduke Carl Ludwig of Austria (1918-2007) and his wife Archduchess Yolande (b.1923; née Princess de Ligne). The archduke studied political science and worked as a banker in Brussels. Born on 17 February 1954 at Schloß Betzdorf, Princess Marie Astrid of Luxembourg was the first child of Grand Duke Jean of Luxembourg (1921-2019) and his wife Grand Duchess Joséphine Charlotte (1927-2005; née Princess of Belgium). The princess had trained as a nurse. Carl Christian and Marie Astrid were second cousins; their shared great-grandparents were Duke Roberto I of Parma and his second wife Infanta Maria Antonia of Portugal.

A view of the wedding in Notre Dame.
Left to right: Princess Margaretha of Luxembourg, Hereditary Grand Duchess Maria Teresa and Hereditary Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg, Queen Fabiola and King Baudouin of Belgium, and Grand Duchess Joséphine Charlotte of Luxembourg.
Grand Duchess Charlotte of Luxembourg, Empress Zita of Austria, and Princess Philippine de Ligne.
Left to right: Prince Guillaume, Prince Jean, Princess Margaretha, Hereditary Grand Duchess Maria Teresa and Hereditary Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg.
Princess Benedikte of Denmark and her husband Fürst Richard zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg.
Infanta Elena of Spain and Prince Andrew of the United Kingdom.

On 6 February 1982, Archduke Carl Christian of Austria and Princess Marie-Astrid of Luxembourg were religiously married at Cathédrale Notre-Dame in Luxembourg City. The couple were joined in holy matrimony by Apostolic Nuncio Eugenio Cardinale, Bishop Jean Hengen of Luxembourg, and Bishop Bruno Wechner of Feldkirch. Among the guests were the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, Prince Andrew of Great Britain, Fürst Franz Joseph and Fürstin Georgina of Liechtenstein, Prince Louis and Princess Alix Napoléon, Queen Beatrix and Prince Claus of the Netherlands, Crown Prince Harald and Crown Princess Sonja of Norway, Queen Sofía of Spain, and Prince Bertil and Princess Lilian of Sweden.

Archduke Carl Christian and Archduchess Marie Astrid with their children, 1998.
Photo (c) Seeger-Presse.

Archduke Carl Christian and Archduchess Marie Astrid have five children: Archduchess Marie Christine (b.1983; married Count Rodolphe de Limburg-Stirum), Archduke Imre (b.1985; married Kathleen Walker), Archduke Christophe (b.1988; married Adelaide Drapé-Frisch), Archduke Alexander (b.1990), and Archduchess Gabriella (b.1994; married Prince Henri of Bourbon-Parma). Carl Christian and Marie Astrid have twelve grandchildren.

The archducal couple at the wedding of their son Christoph in 2012.
Photo (c) Getty Images / AFP.

Our congratulations to Archduke Carl Christian and Archduchess Marie Astrid on their Ruby Anniversary! 

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