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Royalty


Royalty in all shapes and forms
THE DIGESTIVE OF THE TIME OF THE WAR_Michael_of_greece_digeen temps de guerre

THE DIGESTIVE OF THE TIME OF THE WAR

My mother’s first cousin, the Duke of X, was as charming as he was jovial. During the Second World War, like so many Frenchmen, he and his whole family sought refuge in the family castle in the country. At that time, the question of where the ingredients and foods that appeared on the table came…

Elisabeth_Charlotte_de_Baviere_La_Palatine

A GHOST STORY AS TOLD BY THE PRINCESS PALATINE

Elisabeth Charlotte of Bavaria, Princess Palatine and the second wife of Louis the 14th’s brother and the Duke of Orleans, or ‘Monsieur’ (the traditional title given to the eldest living brother of a French king), is one of my favourite ancestors. Larger-than-life; sincere; courageous; she would share her thoughts with everyone; she enjoyed cold cuts,…

Family portraits of France

Princess Mathilde Bonaparte She was first cousin to Napoleon III. A great lady under the Second Empire, she was even more so under the Third Republic. The whole wide world would visit her in her hotel on Rue Courcelles and in her Château de Saint Gratien, amongst whom many intellectuals and many artists. She was…

THE REGENT’S WEDDING

At the moment I am watching the television series “Versailles”, in which I find many of my ancestors portrayed in a rather unorthodox manner. There is however a story the scriptwriters have omitted. Louis XIV had many children from his mistress the marquise de Montespan, both boys and girls. He had showered them with donations,…

THE FALSE REMAINS OF LOUIS XVI

One of the mysteries I recently uncovered has to do with how the Revolution would dispose of its victims, all these princes and dukes, these women, these young people. Until now, I believed that they would be thrown into mass graves and that their bodies would be doused in quicklime to render them unrecognizable. Apparently…

THE CROWN JEWELS OF FRANCE

Their story is interesting in that they do not exist. Certain ceremonial objects from the Coronations of the kings of France have survived: Charlemagne’s sword; Charles V’s Sceptre; the Main de Justice (hand of justice). All of these, kept at the Louvre, were used during the countless coronations of France’s kings, right up until the…

SULTAN SEEKS SOLDIERS

In the year 1794, the sultan Selim III reigned over the Ottoman Empire. He was young, intelligent and determined to reform, to modernize, to reinforce his empire. Most of all, he wished to thoroughly reorganize his army, the famous ottoman army which had conquered one of the biggest empires of the planet but which was…

Portrait of the future Duke of Guise

This is a portrait of my grandfather Jean of Orléans, the future Duke of Guise, found entirely by chance when googling the castles belonging to the family. He is here shown with his eldest sister, Marguerite of Orléans, who, being a princess of France, married the son of the first president of the 3rd Republic,…

INFERNAL LAUZUN

Monsieur de Lauzun was one of the ornaments to adorn the court of Louis XIV. Small, ugly, irresistible; no woman would yield to him; no man would accept him as a friend. The audacity of the man knew no limit: he had an unspeakable cheek and an unshakeable courage. He was a great friend of…

AUNT BELLINA

My grandmother, the Duchess of Guise, had a younger brother, Ferdinand of Orleans, Duke of Montpensier, who was charming but somewhat wayward: taking drugs, among other things. His sisters, one of whom was my grandmother, decided to marry him off. They found the rare pearl they were looking for in a wealthy girl of the…