Helen of France, the Duchess of Aosta, returned from one of her African expeditions with two children bought from a slave market. The children became her pages at the Capodimonte Palace in Naples. One day, while the duchess was away from home, her elder sister, Queen Amelie of Portugal, had the children baptized. After informing her sister, the duchess became so enraged that she chased the queen from the palace.
My maternal grandfather, Jean of Orléans, the Duke of Guise, was exiled as the head of the House of France. He took up residence in the suburbs of Brussels, at the Anjou Manor. While in the capital, he stayed at the Métropole Hotel. Here he poses with my grandmother, Isabelle, in the hall of that respected institution.
The marriage of Crown Prince Paul of Greece and Princess Frederica of Hanover, in Athens, 1938. Here the bride exits the carriage and climbs the stairs of the Cathedral.
My great-grandmother, Alexandra of Saxony-Altenburg, Grand Duchess Constatin of Russia, poses with my father, Prince Christopher, sitting on her knees at her home, the Pavlovsk Palace, just outside Saint Petersburg.
“Don’t Move Clarence” was the name of the Duchess of Guise’s riding horse. Here the duchess, my grandmother, poses in front of the steps of her home in Larache, Morocco. She loved that home, and taught me to love it equally.