Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Marquis Antoine de Castellane (1934-2021): French Aristocrat, Artist, & Close Relative of the Arenbergs and Orléans

Antoine de Castellane.

French aristocrat and artist Comte and Marquis Antoine de Castellane died on 3 February 2021. He was eighty-six years-old. 

Antoine's father: Count Henri de Castellane.
Antoine's mother: Doña Silvia Rodríguez de Rivas.

Born on 8 October 1934 at Paris, Antoine was the second child and eldest son of Count Henri de Castellane (1903-1937) and his wife Doña Ana Rosa Silvia Rodríguez de Rivas y Díaz de Erazo (1909-2001), who married in 1931. Antoine had an elder sister and a younger brother: Doña Cordelia de Castellane y Rodriguez de Rivas, VI Condesa de Castilleja de Guzmán (b.1932); and Henri-Jean de Castellane (1937-2018; father of Silvia de Castellane, who married Prince and Duke Pierre of Arenberg). Through his father, Antoine was a second cousin of Diane de Castellane (1927-2010; married Philippe de Noailles, Duc de Mouchy; mother of Vicomte Alexis de Noailles, who married Princess Diane d'Orléans).

Antoine's stepfather: Boson de Talleyrand-Périgord, Duke de Talleyrand.
Antoine's stepfather: Erich von Posch-Pastor.

After the death of his father, Antoine's mother Silvia married in 1938 Paul Louis Archambauld Boson de Talleyrand-Périgord, VI Duc de Talleyrand, VIII Herzog zu Sagan, VI Duca di Dino (1867-1952). Silvia and the Duke divorced in 1942. In 1945, Silvia remarried Eric von Posch-Pastor (1917-1962). The couple had two children, among them a daughter, Barbara de Posch-Pastor (b.1951; married Prince Michel d'Orléans, Count d'Évreux). Silvia and Eric divorced in 1955.

Antoine and his wife Francine.
Photograph (c) Getty Images.
Antoine's daughter: Victoire de Castellane.

On 28 May 1960, Marquis Antoine de Castellane married Françoise Dufour (b.1937). The couple had one child, Victoria de Castellane (b.1962; married 1st Paul-Emmanuel Reiffers; married 2nd Thomas Lenthal). In 1967, Antoine de Castellane and Françoise Dufour divorced. In 1976, Antoine married Francine Latour-Touya (b.1930). The marquis is survived by his widow, his first wife, his daughter and son-in-law, and his four grandchildren.

To learn more about the career and artistic portfolio of Antoine de Castellane, please visit this website: Antoine de Castellane

May the Marquis Rest In Peace.

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank Welcome Their First Child!

Jack and Eugenie hold their newborn son's hand.
Picture courtesy of Princess Eugenie's Instagram.

This morning Princess Eugenie (b.1990) and her husband Jack Brooksbank (b.1986) welcomed the arrival of their first child, a baby boy!

Buckingham Palace put out the following statement:
Her Royal Highness Princess Eugenie was safely delivered of a son today, 9th February 2021, at 0855hrs at The Portland Hospital. Jack Brooksbank was present.

The baby weighs 8lbs 1oz.

The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Duke of York, Sarah, Duchess of York, and Mr and Mrs George Brooksbank have been informed and are delighted with the news.

This is Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank’s first child, The Duke of York and Sarah, Duchess of York’s first grandchild, and the ninth great-grandchild for The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh. Her Royal Highness and her child are both doing well.
The young Master Brooksbank, whose name will be announced in time, is eleventh in the line of succession to the British throne. His parents married in 2018. Baby Brooksbank was born on the nineteenth anniversary of the death of his great-great-aunt Princess Margaret.

Monday, February 8, 2021

Infanta Elena and Infanta Cristina Visit King Juan Carlos in His Self-Imposed Exile

Infanta Elena and Infanta Cristina of Spain.

Since King Emeritus Juan Carlos of Spain left his country for the United Arab Emirates in August 2020, there has been much speculation about the possible familial visits he might receive. Now, we have learned that both of his daughters, the Infantas Elena and Cristina, have gone together to see their father.

Over this past weekend, Elena and Cristina separately flew to Abu Dhabi to visit King Juan Carlos. Infanta Elena left Spain for the UAE on Saturday, 6 February. Infanta Cristina departed for Abu Dhabi on Sunday morning, 7 February, after traveling earlier in the weekend from Geneva to Spain spend time with her husband Iñaki Urdangarín. 

The infantas intend to be with their father for at least one week. This will be the first time that Infanta Cristina has seen her father since he left Spain. It will be the third time Infanta Elena has visited the King Emeritus after his self-imposed exile. 

Count Folke "Ockie" Bernadotte Turns 90!

Count Ockie and Countess Christine Bernadotte.

On 8 February 1931, Count Folke "Ockie" Bernadotte af Wisborg was born at Pleasantville, New York, as the second son of Count Folke Bernadotte af Wisborg (1895-1948) and his wife Countess Estelle (1904-1984; née Manville). Ockie Bernadotte made his entrance to the world at the home of his maternal grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. H. Edward Manville. He joined an older brother, Count Gustaf Eduard (1930-1936). Upon the birth of their second child, Folke and Estelle received congratulations from King Gustaf V of Sweden and other members of the royal family. 

Prince Oscar Bernadotte.
Princess Ebba Bernadotte.

Count Ockie Bernadotte (b.1931) is the paternal grandson of Prince Oscar of Sweden (1859-1953), Duke of Gotland, who married Ebba Henrietta Munck af Fulkila (1858-1946) in 1888. As a result of this marriage, Oscar gave up his royal and ducal title as well as his rights of succession and was created Prince Bernadotte and Count af Wisborg. The latter title, Count(ess) Bernadotte af Wisborg, is borne by the descendants of Oscar and Ebba. Count Ockie Bernadotte is the maternal grandson of Hiram Edward Manville (1872-1944), the president of the Johns-Manville Corporation, and his wife Henrietta Estelle Romaine (1878-1947). 

Countess Estelle Bernadotte.
Count Folke and Countess Estelle with their sons Gustaf Eduard and Ockie, 1934.
Count Folke and Countess Estelle with their sons Ockie and Bertil on Rhodes, February 1948.
Photograph (c) Getty Images/Frank Scherschel.

In 1928, Count Folke Bernadotte, son of Prince Oscar and Princess Ebba Bernadotte, married Estelle Romaine Manville, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. H. Edward Manville. Folke and Estelle had four sons: Count Gustaf Eduard (1930-1936), Count Folke "Ockie" (b.1931), Count Frederik (1934-1944), and Count Bertil (b.1935). Ockie's father Folke was a Swedish diplomat. During World War II, Count  Folke Bernadotte negotiated the release of around 31,000 prisoners from German concentration camps, including 450 Danish Jews from the Theresienstadt camp. In May 1948, Folke Bernadotte was unanimously chosen to be the United Nations Security Council mediator in the Arab–Israeli conflict of 1947–1948. The count, aged fifty-three, was assassinated at Jerusalem in September 1948. In 1973, his widow Countess Estelle Bernadotte married Carl Erik Sixten Ekstrand (1910-1988).

Ockie Berndotte and Christine Glahns.
The cover of Svansk Damlidning: Count Ockie and Countess Christine.
Count Ockie and Countess Christine Bernadette af Wisborg. 

On 2 July 1955, Count Folke "Ockie" Bernadotte af Wisborg married Christine Glahns (b.1932) at Grangärde. The couple have four children, two daughters and two sons: Countess Anne Christine (b.1956; married Per Larsen), Count Carl Folke (b.1958; married Birgitta Elisabeth Larsson), Countess Maria Estelle (b.1962; married Umberto Ganfini), and Count Gunnar Fredrik (b.1963; married Karin Lindsten). 

We wish Count Ockie many happy returns of the day!

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For further news and articles about Europe's imperial, royal, and noble families, join Eurohistory:

Sunday, February 7, 2021

The 70th Birthday of the Fürst zu Oettingen-Oettingen und Oettingen-Spielberg

Fürstin Angela and Fürst Albrecht zu Oettingen-Oettingen und Oettingen-Spielberg at the wedding of Prince Manuel of Bavaria, 2003. 
Photograph (c) Seeger-Press/Nieboer.

On 7 February 1951, Prince Albrecht Ernst Otto Joseph Maria Notger zu Oettingen-Oettingen und Oettingen-Spielberg was born at Munich. The prince was the eldest son and third child of Fürst Alois zu Oettingen-Oettingen und Oettingen-Spielberg (1920-1975) and Fürstin Elisabeth (1922-2005; née Countess zu Lynar), who had married in 1946. Albrecht has four sisters: Princess Franziska (1947-2011; married Fürst Ferdinand zu Hohenlohe-Bartenstein), Princess Alexandra (b.1948; married Fürst Hubertus Fugger von Babenhausen), Princess Gabriele (b.1953; married Peter Gollwitzer), and Princess Margarita (1957-2000; married Prince Franz von Lobkowicz). Upon the death of his father in 1975, Albrecht succeeded as Fürst zu Oettingen-Oettingen und Oettingen-Spielberg. 

Left to right: Duke Philipp of Württemberg, Fürstin Angela, the late Duke Friedrich of Württemberg, and Fürst Albrecht at the wedding of Duchess Fleur of Württemberg, 2004.
Photograph (c) Seeger-Press/Kirkham. 

In 1980, Fürst Albrecht married Angela Jank (b.1951). The Fürst and Fürstin have four children: Hereditary Prince Franz-Albrecht (b.1982; married Baroness Cleopatra von Adelsheim von Ernest), Princess Theresa (b.1984; married Carl-Christian Oetker), Princess Antonia (b.1987), and Princess Nora (b.1990; married Lord Max Percy). 

From left to right: Prince Leopold of Bavaria, Hereditary Carl-Eugen zu Oettingen-Wallerstein, Fürst Moritz zu Oettingen-Wallerstein, and Fürst Albrecht zu Oettingen-Spielberg surround the coffin of Duke Albrecht of Bavaria.
Photograph (c) Seeger-Press.

The Oettingen-Spielbergs are a steady presence at Gotha events, both on the Continent and in the United Kingdom. The fürst was among the chief mourners at the funeral of Duke Albrecht of Bavaria. In 2011, Fürst Albrecht and Fürstin Angela attended the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. When their only son Franz-Albrecht married model/noblewoman Cleopatra in 2016, Prince Harry (now Duke of Sussex) was in attendance. 

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For further news and articles about Europe's imperial, royal, and noble families, join Eurohistory:

Saturday, February 6, 2021

The 40th Anniversary of the Death of Queen Frederica of Greece

Queen Frederica of Greece in mourning for her husband King Paul. 
Queen Frederica of Greece.
Photograph (c) Getty Images / Evening Standard.
Queen Frederica of Greece.
Queen Frederica of Greece.

On 6 February 1981 at 11:30pm, Queen Frederica of Greece died at Madrid after suffering heart failure following eyelid surgery. She was sixty-three years-old. The queen was survived by her three children: Queen Sofía of Spain, King Constantine II of the Hellenes, and Princess Irene of Greece. 

The infant Princess Frederica of Hannover.
Princess Viktoria Luise holding her daughter Princess Frederica.
The Duke and Duchess of Braunschweig-Lüneburg with their five children in 1927.
Photograph (c) Smith Archive / Alamy Stock Photo.
Princess Frederica with her mother Princess Viktoria Luise.

On 18 April 1917, Princess Friederike Luise Thyra Viktoria Margarete Sophie Olga Cecile Isabelle Christa of Hannover, Duchess of Braunschweig-Lüneburg was born at Blankenburg, Harz. The princess was the first and only daughter of Prince Ernst August of Hannover (1887-1953) and his wife Princess Viktoria Luise (1892-1980; née Prussia). Frederica had four brothers: Prince Ernst August (1914-1987), Prince Georg Wilhelm (1915-2006), Prince Christian (1919-1981), and Prince Welf (1923-1997). Frederica's family moved to Austria when she was still an infant, and she grew up there, in Gmunden. She was educated by her mother and an English governess until, at the age of seventeen, she was sent to school in England. While there, she attended the wedding of Prince George, Duke of Kent, and Princess Marina of Greece. Further studies took Frederica to Florence. It was there that she met her future husband for the first time. At the home of Queen Mother Helen of Romania, Princess Frederica of Hannover was introduced to Crown Prince Paul of Greece, Helen's brother. Upon meeting Paul, Frederica recalled: "I lost my head and my heart.

Prince Ernst August and Princess Viktoria Luise of Hannover with their son-in-law and daughter Crown Prince Paul and Crown Princess Frederica of Greece.
The marriage of Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece and Princess Frederica of Hanover.
Photograph (c) Hulton Deutsch.
Crown Prince Paul and Crown Princess Frederica of Greece.
Photograph (c) Getty Images / Imagno.
King George VI of the United Kingdom gives his consent to the marriage between Princess Frederica of Brunswick-Luneburg and Prince Paul of Greece, December 1937.
Image from The London Gazette.

Princess Frederica of Hannover married Crown Prince Paul of Greece (1901-1964) at Athens on 9 January 1938. The crown prince was the third son of King Constantine I of the Hellenes (1868-1923) and his wife Queen Sophie (1870-1932; née Princess of Prussia). Paul and Frederica were first cousins once removed; the pair were descendants of Queen Victoria. At the time of her marriage to the Greek heir, Frederica was thirty-fourth in the line of succession to the British throne.

Frederica of Greece with her children Sophia, Constantine, and Irene.
The King and Queen of Greece with their three children.
Queen Frederica of Greece with Princess Sophia, Crown Prince Constantine, and Princess Irene.
Photograph (c) Getty Images / Genevieve Naylor.

During the early years of their marriage, Paul and Frederica resided at a villa in Psychiko. The couple had three children: Princess Sophia (b.1938; later Queen Sofía of Spain), Prince Constantine (b.1940; later King Constantine II of the Hellenes), and Princess Irene (b.1942).

King Paul and Queen Frederica of Greece.
King Paul and Queen Frederica of Greece.
The King and Queen of Greece with their children.

In 1947, Paul succeeded his brother George II as King of the Hellenes. Political instability in Greece led to the Greek Civil War, which lasted from 1947-1949. As the granddaughter of German Emperor Wilhelm II, the queen was persistently attacked by political opponents of the monarchy for her ancestry. Queen Frederica attended the wedding of her husband's cousin Prince Philip to Princess Elizabeth (future Queen of the United Kingdom). While at the festivities surrounding the marriage, Frederica sat next to Winston Churchill at a dinner. Churchill asked the queen: "Wasn't your grandfather the Kaiser?" Her Majesty retorted that he was indeed her grandfather and that "If you had Salic Law in England, my father would be your King today!" Standing five feet three inches tall, Frederica was remembered by many who encountered the queen for "her informal manner, easy smile, curly brown hair, and laughing eyes." Like so many consorts, Frederica was an iron first within a velvet glove. A woman of immense internal strength and willpower, the queen did all she could to protect what she believed to be the best interests of her husband and her son. 

King Constantine II of Greece with Queen Mother Frederica at the funeral of King Paul.
King Constantine II of Greece with Queen Mother Frederica at the funeral of King Paul.
Pictured behind them is Princess Irene.
Photograph (c) Getty Images / Jack Garofalo.
King Constantine II of Greece with his mother Queen Frederica at the funeral of King Paul.
Photograph (c) Getty Images / Keystone.

King Paul of Greece died on 6 March 1964, aged sixty-two. He had been suffering from cancer, and, during his final days, his wife became ill with a case of pneumonia. Frederica became a widow at forty-six. After her son King Constantine II married his cousin Princess Anne-Marie of Denmark in September 1964, Queen Mother Frederica stepped back from most of her public duties in favour of her daughter-in-law. Alas, Frederica remained a figure of controversy: she was accused in the Greek press of being the éminence grise behind the throne.

Queen Mother Frederica of Greece with her daughter Princess Sofía and grandchildren, 1968.
Infanta Pilar is pictured in the background.
Frederica with her granddaughters Infanta Elena and Infanta Cristina.
Queen Anne-Marie and King Constantine II of Greece, Princess Irene, Queen Mother Frederica, and Princess Sofía and Prince Juan Carlos of Spain, La Zarzuela, 1968.

In 1967, the Greek royal family left the country following Constantine II's failed counter-coup against the military dictatorship. The family first settled in Rome and then in London. Frederica accompanied her son into exile. The queen mother often visited her daughter Sofía and family in Madrid. Along with her daughter Irene, Frederica spent a great deal of time in Madras, India. The queen mother was extremely interested studying Indian culture. In 1976, Queen Sofía of Spain and her children flew to India as Queen Frederica was reported to be in delicate health. 


After her death in 1981, Queen Mother Frederica of Greece was buried next to her husband King Paul at Tatoi.