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Friday, 5 February 2016

King Leopold I & Baron Stockmar - Two Irksome Characters



In researching my new book, I can’t help thinking that the Belgian King Leopold’s – and later Prince Albert’s - advisor and physician Baron Stockmar was, in his own way, like a cross between Bismarck and Polonius in Shakespeare’s Hamlet. He was forever watching people – like Polonius spying from behind the arras – and reporting back to King Leopold about them. Like Bismarck, he seemed to want to control kings and was forever criticising the young royals that he was sent to watch.
King Leopold himself is, to me, a very irksome character, manipulating his nephews into marriages, whether or not they, or their parents, wanted it – a prime example being King Ferdinand II of Portugal, for, although his was a happy marriage, he had had no desire whatsoever to take on such responsibility, or, for that matter, to marry a girl whom he had never even met. King Leopold liked to have finger in every pie, and Stockmar was his eyes-and-ears throughout the courts of Europe. Stockmar’s seemed to view himself as an oracle of all wisdom, offering marriage guidance, advice on raising children, making harsh judgements, and generally patronising everyone who was younger than he was. Between them, he and King Leopold interfered in the lives of the King’s relations far more intrusively than Queen Victoria interfered in the lives of her children and grandchildren. They remind me of two old busybodies - how irksome they are!

Friday, 29 January 2016

Victorian Showerers

Apart from her fondness for sea-bathing (with the help of her wonderful bathing machine!), I believe that, unlike many of her predecessors, Queen Victoria took regular baths and regular showers, and according to one of her granddaughters, she was usually scented with orange blossom. Her granddaughter, Grand Duchess Elizabeth, had her bath water scented with rose petals. Prince Albert, too, took regular baths and showers, and so I was much amused when I came across a book published in 1866 which was aimed at guiding people into the best time to take - or to avoid - showers:


"It is not upon creeping out of bed in the morning, that a chlorotic young lady, or a feeble youth, should be advised (as they so often are) to place themselves under the streaming tortures of cold affusion. The shock at such a time to delicate constitutions can hardly be overstated, or its power to do serious mischief. But after a romping game in the nurserybefore dinner, or a goal at football, or a ride in Rotten Row,when the quick pulses of young life are throbbing through every vessel, the shower-bath is of inestimable service."

So, avoid cold morning showers!


Queen Victoria's Bathing-Machine as it appears today at Osborne House
 

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Happy Birthday, Kaiser Wilhelm II

Happy Birthday to the much-maligned and misrepresented Kaiser Wilhelm II - a man, in my opinion, 'more sinned against than sinning.' I sincerely hope that one day he will be seen very differently, as the 'Apostle of Peace', as he was described by an American commentator in 1913.

His son, with whom he did not always see eye-to-eye, wrote this of him:

 
With my father it has often seemed to me as though 
speech had been bestowed upon him that he might 
open to his hearer every nook and bypath of his rich 
and sparkling inner world. He has always allowed his thoughts
and convictions to gush forth instantaneously and immediately without prelude and without prologue,
an incautious and noble spendthrift of an ever-fertile intellect which draws its sustenance from 
comprehensive knowledge and a fancy whose only 
fault is its exuberance. Moreover, he is by nature and 
by ethico-religious training free from all guile ; he 
would regard secrecy, dissimulation or insincerity as 
despicable and far beneath his dignity. The idea that 
the Kaiser could ever have wished to gain his ends 
by false pretences or to pursue them by tortuous 
routes is for me quite unimaginable....
In the depths of his nature my father is a thoroughly 
kind-hearted man striving to make people happy and 
to create joyousness around him...
The Kaiser, too, in those years of self-repression 
and of weakness, just as in his days of unbroken self- 
confidence, desired to do his best, and he regarded 
as the best the peace of the realm. Nothing should 
destroy that ; with every means at his command he 
would secure that to the empire. The terrible tragedy 
of his life and of his life's work lay in the fact that 
everything he undertook to this end turned to the 
reverse and became a countercheck to his aims, so 
that finally a situation arose in which we were beset 
by enemy upon enemy. 
 
 

Friday, 22 January 2016

Remembering Queen Victoria

Remembering Queen Victoria, who died on 22 January 1901.


Monday, 28 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...Royal Jubilees of the 19th/Early 20th Centuries?

How Well Do You Know...Royal Jubilees of the 19th/Early 20th Centuries? (The answers to the previous quiz are below)
1. Which territories were annexed by Austria-Hungary in celebration of Franz Josef’s Diamond Jubilee?
2. Where did the Royal Family attend a service of Thanksgiving for George III’s Golden Jubilee?
3. Why did Queen Victoria initially decide not to invite her grandson, Wilhelm of Prussia, to her Golden Jubilee celebrations? (She later relented.)
4. What jubilee did the Romanovs celebrate in 1913?
5. Whom, at the time of a Silver Jubilee, did Andrew Carnegie describe as ‘anxious for peace and the progress of the world’?
6. When were the first stamps celebrating a royal jubilee issued?
7. Who said, after celebrating a jubilee, “No one ever, I believe, has met with such an ovation as was given to me, passing through those six miles of streets… The crowds were quite indescribable and their enthusiasm truly marvellous and deeply touching.”
8. Why did Queen Victoria not celebrate her Silver Jubilee?
9. In 1911 Prince Arthur of Connaught represented George V at the celebrations of which country’s jubilee of the nation’s unity?
10. Who described Emperor Franz Josef as ‘a noble ruler, true ally, and mighty guardian of peace’ at his Diamond Jubillee?
11. Which people of Franz Josef’s empire refused to participate in his jubilee pageant, and why?
12. What other – more personal – event did Kaiser Wilhelm II celebrate in his Silver Jubilee year?
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Counting-House-Christina-Croft-ebook/dp/B00368B6R4/ref=la_B002BMCQQ6_1_13?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1451290407&sr=1-13
How Well Do You Know...What Happened When in Royal Events of the 19th/Early 20th Centuries?
1. Who was married on 25th January 1858?
Vicky and Fritz of Prussia
2. Why was the date 10th February so important to Queen Victoria?
It was her wedding day.
3. Why, relating to her birthday, was Queen Victoria’s Connaught granddaughter named Patricia?
She was born on the feast of St Patrick
4. Who was born on April 25th 1843?
Alice
5. On what date was Queen Victoria born?
24 May 1819
6. Who celebrated his fourteenth and final wedding anniversary on June 28th 1914?
Franz Ferdinand
7. Who was married on July 6th 1893?
George V (then Duke of York)
8. Who was born on August 26th 1819?
Prince Albert
9.  Which of the Kaiser’s sons died on September 22nd 1948?
Adalbert
10. Which of Queen Victoria’s grandsons was born on 15th October 1874?
Alfred
11. Which two of Queen Victoria’s children were born in November?
Vicky & Bertie
12. Why did Queen Victoria call 14th December the ‘terrible 14th’?
It was the date of Albert’s death

Saturday, 26 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...What Happened When in Royal Events of the 19th/Early 20th Centuries?

As the year is drawing to a close, this quiz is based on a calendar of events for each month of the year (the answers to the previous quiz are below):
 
How Well Do You Know...What Happened When in Royal Events of the 19th/Early 20th Centuries?
 
1. Who was married on 25th January 1858?
 
2. Why was the date 10th February so important to Queen Victoria?
 
3. Why, relating to her birthday, was Queen Victoria’s Connaught granddaughter named Patricia?
 
4. Who was born on April 25th 1843?
 
5. On what date was Queen Victoria born?
 
6. Who celebrated his fourteenth and final wedding anniversary on June 28th 1914?
 
7. Who was married on July 6th 1893?
 
8. Who was born on August 26th 1819?
 
9.  Which of the Kaiser’s sons died on September 22nd 1948?
 
10. Which of Queen Victoria’s grandsons was born on 15th October 1874?
 
11. Which two of Queen Victoria’s children were born in November?
 
12. Why did Queen Victoria call 14th December the ‘terrible 14th’?
 
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Goose-Girl-Christina-Croft/dp/1515016579/ref=la_B002BMCQQ6_1_10_twi_pap_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1451130096&sr=1-10
 
 
 
 
How Well Do You Know...Royal Animals of the 19th/Early 20th century?
 
1. Which favourite dog died in 1844?
 
Eos
 
2. Which little dog did Queen Victoria ask for on her deathbed?
 
Turi
 
3. How did Prince Alice’s little bullfinch meet his end?
 
His cage was not fastened and another bird came in and killed him.
 
4. What breed of dog was Tsarevich Alexei’s Joy?
 
Spaniel
 
5. Who was given a present of a lamb named Millie?
 
Princess Alice
 
6. What was the name of Queen Victoria’s dog, which she hurried home to bathe after her coronation?
 
Dash
 
7. What was the name of Edward VII’s dog, that followed his coffin at his funeral?
 
Caesar
 
8. Which of Franz Ferdinand’s pets escaped from the Belvedere Palace and caused him a good deal of embarrassment?
 
His parrot
 
9. What sort of creature was Lory, given to Queen Victoria by Prince Albert’s father?
 
A parrot
 
10. Who presented Queen Victoria with a pair of Tibetan goats on her accession?
 
The Shah of Persia
 
11. Which animals did Edward VII, when Prince of Wales, give to Harriet Mordaunt, whose husband subsequently shot them?
 
Two ponies
 
12. What sort of animal was Queen Victoria Jacquot?
 
A donkey

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

The Christmas Spirit

This is my poem for Christmas...It speaks of the image of God in all the creatures of creation, and is called 'The Christmas Spirit':

I saw the Christmas spirit in an image of the past,
In a stable warm and sheltered from the winter’s icy blast,
When the shepherds trudged at midnight through the pastures bleak and wild
To behold that God is with us in the clear eyes of a child.


And all the Christmases since then and not so long ago,
When we ran together laughing through a childhood in the snow,
When we hung our hopeful stockings and we listened for the sleigh,
And we knew that God is with us in the joy of Christmas Day.

I saw the Christmas spirit in an image of our time,
When the world grew dark and fearful, filled with violence and crime,
When the holy Child of Bethlehem, who came to set us free,
Hung battered, broken, dying on a hill called Calvary.

And I saw the busy people rushing through the crowded shops,
When the homeless called, “Big Issue!” but they had no time to stop;
With ten thousand turkeys slaughtered as we celebrate the birth
Of the son of the creator of all creatures on the earth.

Then I saw the Christmas spirit in a dream of what might be
When we recognise his beauty and the truth will make us free,
When the kindness shown at Christmas still abides with us all year.
If we know him in the manger, we could recognise him here;

We could see him in the cattle, in the pigs and sheep and birds;
We could see in all creation, incarnations of the Word;
We could honour all that’s holy in each person and each beast;
Then our hearts would be wide open to the meaning of this feast.

O little child, once sleeping on the sharp and prickling straw,
Come live in us this Christmas; make us innocent once more.
Let us find you in each other, then, like angels from above,
We’ll rejoice that God is with us and be messengers of love.
(copyright Christina Croft 2015)

(The answers to yesterday's quiz will be available tomorrow)

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...Royal Pets of the 19th/Early 20th century?

How Well Do You Know...Royal Pets of the 19th/Early 20th century?
1. Which favourite dog died in 1844?
2. Which little dog did Queen Victoria ask for on her deathbed?
3. How did Princess Alice’s little bullfinch meet his end?
4. What breed of dog was Tsarevich Alexei’s Joy? 
5. Who was given a present of a lamb named Millie?
6. What was the name of Queen Victoria’s dog, which she hurried home to bathe after her coronation?
7. What was the name of Edward VII’s dog, that followed his coffin at his funeral?
8. Which of Franz Ferdinand’s pets escaped from the Belvedere Palace and caused him a good deal of embarrassment?
9. What sort of creature was Lory, given to Queen Victoria by Prince Albert’s father?
10. Who presented Queen Victoria with a pair of Tibetan goats on her accession?
11. Which animals did Edward VII, when Prince of Wales, give to Harriet Mordaunt, whose husband subsequently shot them?
12. What sort of animal was Queen Victoria's Jacquot?
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Alphabetical-Quiz-Book-Christina-Croft-ebook/dp/B00C7ATASO/ref=la_B002BMCQQ6_1_14?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1450797005&sr=1-14
How Well Do You Know...Royal Accidents
1. Which of Queen Victoria’s sons-in-law lost an eye following a shooting accident?
Prince Christian
2. Whose little dog was killed when her carriage ran over it?
Princess Beatrice’s
3. Who lost his sight after being struck in the eye by either a watch chain or a curtail tassel?
George of Cumberland/King of Hanover
4. Who narrowly escaped death when the horses pulling his carriage were frightened by a train and galloped through a level crossing?
Prince Albert
5. What accident did Vicky suffer shortly before her wedding?
She burned her arm when her sleeve caught on a candle.
6. Why did Victoria of Hesse limp down the aisle on her wedding day?
She had sprained her ankle jumping over a coal scuttle.
7. What terrible accident resulted in the death of Queen Mary’s grandmother in 1841?
She was trampled to death in a cavalry charge after falling from her horse at a review.
8. Where did Leopold slip and injure his knee, ultimately leading to his death in 1884?
Cannes
9. In which royal home did a fire break out in 1853, damaging four storeys of the building?
Windsor Castle
10. What precipitated a fit in Alexandra of Greece (Grand Duchess Pavel) which ultimately resulted in her death?
She tripped getting into a boat.
11. Who, as a child, damaged his face by falling from his horse onto an iron gate?
Edward VII
12. Who accidentally shot Prince Albert’s dog, Eos? (Happily, Eos recovered!)
His uncle, Prince Ferdinand of Saxe-Coburg

Monday, 21 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...Royal Accidents of the 19th/Early 20th century?

How Well Do You Know...Royal Accidents of the 19th/Early 20th century? (The answers to yesterday's quiz are below)
1. Which of Queen Victoria’s sons-in-law lost an eye following a shooting accident?
2. Whose little dog was killed when her carriage ran over it?
3. Who lost his sight after being struck in the eye by either a watch chain or a curtain tassel?
4. Who narrowly escaped death when the horses pulling his carriage were frightened by a train and galloped through a level crossing? 
5. What accident did Vicky suffer shortly before her wedding?
6. Why did Victoria of Hesse limp down the aisle on her wedding day?
7. What terrible accident resulted in the death of Queen Mary’s grandmother in 1841? 
8. Where did Leopold slip and injure his knee, ultimately leading to his death in 1884? 
9. In which royal home did a fire break out in 1853, damaging four storeys of the building?
10. What precipitated a fit in Alexandra of Greece (Grand Duchess Pavel) which ultimately resulted in her death?
11. Who, as a child, damaged his face by falling from his horse onto an iron gate? 
12. Who accidentally shot Prince Albert’s dog, Eos? (Happily, Eos recovered!)

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Any-Other-Name-Christina-Croft/dp/149495950X/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1450696173&sr=1-11
How Well Do You Know...Royal Affairs?
1. What was the name of the flamboyant Irish-born mistress of Ludwig I of Bavaria?
Lola Montez
2. Which actress was the long-term mistress of the Duke of Clarence, later William IV?
Dorothea Jordan
3. Who secretly married Alexandra Kolomine on his daughter’s wedding day?
Grand Duke Ludwig IV of Hesse
4. Which alleged mistress of Edward VII was confined in a lunatic asylum after accusing him of being the father of her child?
Harriet Mordaunt
5. Whose mistress, prior to his marriage, was Matilda Kschessinska?
Tsar Nicholas II’s
6. Whose mistress was Julie St. Laurent?
Edward, Duke of Kent’s
7. Which of his mistresses did Alexander II entertain in his own home while his wife lay dying?
Catherine Dolgurukova
8. Who was Edward VII’s last mistress?
Alice Keppel
9. Where was George V alleged to have had an affair and fathered a child – an allegation for which he later sued his accuser?
Malta
10. Who was Maria Vetsera?
Crown Prince Rudolph’s mistress who died with him at Mayerling
11. What was the name of the actress with whom Emperor Franz Josef had an affair?
Katharina Schratt
12. Which of Queen Victoria’s acknowledged himself to be the father of Valerie Marie Schwalb?
Albert of Schleswig-Holstein

Sunday, 20 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...Royal Affairs?

How Well Do You Know...Royal Affairs?
 
1. What was the name of the flamboyant Irish-born mistress of Ludwig I of Bavaria?
 
2. Which actress was the long-term mistress of the Duke of Clarence, later William IV?
 
3. Who secretly married Alexandra Kolomine on his daughter’s wedding day?
 
4. Which alleged mistress of Edward VII was confined in a lunatic asylum after accusing him of being the father of her child?
 
5. Whose mistress, prior to his marriage, was Matilda Kschessinska?
 
6. Whose mistress was Julie St. Laurent?
 
7. Which of his mistresses did Alexander II entertain in his own home while his wife lay dying?
 
8. Who was Edward VII’s last mistress?
 
9. Where was George V alleged to have had an affair and fathered a child – an allegation for which he later sued his accuser?
 
10. Who was Maria Vetsera?
 
11. What was the name of the actress with whom Emperor Franz Josef had an affair?
 
12. Which of Queen Victoria’s acknowledged himself to be the father of Valerie Marie Schwalb?
 
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Wonderful-Walter-Christina-Croft-ebook/dp/B00D5G5YY8/ref=la_B002BMCQQ6_1_15?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1450634020&sr=1-15
 
 
How Well Do You Know...Who Said What?
 
Which royal person said the following (these are not confined to the Victorian era):
 
1. Although I have the body of a weak and feeble woman, I have the heart and stomach of a King.
 
Elizabeth I
 
2. We are not interested in the possibilities of defeat. They do not exist.
 
Queen Victoria
 
3. The highest of distinctions in service to others.
 
George VI
 
4. I have no objection whatsoever to the notion of the Eternal Father, but every objection to the concept of an eternal mother.
 
Edward VII
 
5. Bugger Bognor!
 
George V
 
6. My whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great Imperial family to which we all belong.
 
Elizabeth II
 
7. (Referring to smoking) A custom loathsome to the eye, hateful to the nose, harmful to the brain, dangerous to the lungs, and in the black, stinking fume thereof, nearest resembling the horrible Stygian smoke of the pit that is bottomless.
 
James I (James VI of Scotland)
 
8. (Referring to his wedding) We're supposed to have just a small family affair.
 
Prince William
 
9. I’d like to go to Russia very much – although the bastards murdered half my family.
 
Prince Philip
 
10. Now for a nice English cup of tea.
 
Kaiser Wilhelm II
 
11. (On his deathbed, to his son) Witness how a Catholic and an Emperor conducts himself when dying.
 
Emperor Karl of Austria-Hungary
 
12. (On the assassination of his nephew) One has not to defy the Almighty. In this manner a superior power has restored that order which I unfortunately was unable to maintain.
 
Emperor Franz Josef

Saturday, 19 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...Who Said What?

How Well Do You Know...Who Said What?
Which royal person said the following (these are not confined to the Victorian era):
1. Although I have the body of a weak and feeble woman, I have the heart and stomach of a King.
2. We are not interested in the possibilities of defeat. They do not exist.
3. The highest of distinctions is service to others.
4. I have no objection whatsoever to the notion of the Eternal Father, but every objection to the concept of an eternal mother.
5. Bugger Bognor!
6. My whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great Imperial family to which we all belong.
7. (Referring to smoking) A custom loathsome to the eye, hateful to the nose, harmful to the brain, dangerous to the lungs, and in the black, stinking fume thereof, nearest resembling the horrible Stygian smoke of the pit that is bottomless.
8. (Referring to his wedding) We're supposed to have just a small family affair.
9. I’d like to go to Russia very much – although the bastards murdered half my family.
10. Now for a nice English cup of tea.
11. (On his deathbed, to his son) Witness how a Catholic and an Emperor conducts himself when dying.
12. (On the assassination of his nephew) One has not to defy the Almighty. In this manner a superior power has restored that order which I unfortunately was unable to maintain

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Shattered-Crowns-Betrayal-Trilogy-Book-ebook/dp/B00AEXEP90/ref=la_B002BMCQQ6_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1450536321&sr=1-6
How Well Do You Know...19th/early 20th Century Royal Humour?
1. When, according to her granddaughter, Alice of Albany, did Queen Victoria say, “We are not amused”?
She never said it!
2. How did the Kaiser offend Ferdinand of Bulgaria in what he viewed as a light-hearted prank?
He smacked him on the bottom.
3. What creature did Waldemar of Prussia release under his grandmother’s desk?
A live crocodile
4. When a young Prince Albert put cheese into the pockets of a visiting lady, how did she take her revenge?
She put frogs in his bed.
5. What did Lily Langtry playfully pour over Edward VII, causing him great offence?
Ice cream
6. As a punishment for what prank were Vicky and Alice forced to apologise to a maid and to buy her a new set of clothes?
They covered her in black-leading.
7. What did George and Eddy of Wales do when Queen Victoria chastised them for their appalling behaviour at dinner?
They jumped out from under the table stark naked and ran around the room like Red Indians.
8. What did Queen Victoria say when a lady presented her with an ostrich egg on which she had painted her name?
“You would think she had laid it herself!”
9. What prank a young Prince Albert and his companion play on the crowds who were waiting to greet their carriage?
They crouched down so only his greyhound, Eos, was visible in the carriage.
10. How did Franz Ferdinand’s parrot create a good deal of laughter when it escaped to a nearby park?
It did a perfect impression of Franz Ferdinand criticising all his relations.
11. How, much to Queen Victoria’s amusement, did an elderly and deaf admiral respond when she asked how his sister was?
“She’ll be fine when we turn her over and scrape the barnacles off her bottom!” (He thought she was referring to a sunken ship.
12. What, much to the amusement of the court, did a tall and powerful African chief ask for when Queen Victoria invited him to choose a gift?
Her little white widow’s cap...which he and subsequent chiefs then wore as a sign of being a great leader!

Thursday, 17 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...19th/early 20th Century Royal Humour?

How Well Do You Know...19th/early 20th Century Royal Humour?
 
1. When, according to her granddaughter, Alice of Albany, did Queen Victoria say, “We are not amused”?
 
2. How did the Kaiser offend Ferdinand of Bulgaria in what he viewed as a light-hearted prank?
 
3. What creature did Waldemar of Prussia release under his grandmother’s desk?
 
4. When a young Prince Albert put cheese into the pockets of a visiting lady, how did she take her revenge?
 
5. What did Lily Langtry playfully pour over Edward VII, causing him great offence?
 
6. As a punishment for what prank were Vicky and Alice forced to apologise to a maid and to buy her a new set of clothes?
 
7. What did George and Eddy of Wales do when Queen Victoria chastised them for their appalling behaviour at dinner?
 
8. What did Queen Victoria say when a lady presented her with an ostrich egg on which she had painted her name?
 
9. What prank a young Prince Albert and his companion play on the crowds who were waiting to greet their carriage?
 
10. How did Franz Ferdinand’s parrot create a good deal of laughter when it escaped to a nearby park?
 
11. How, much to Queen Victoria’s amusement, did an elderly and deaf admiral respond when she asked how his sister was?
 
12. What, much to the amusement of the court, did a tall and powerful African chief ask for when Queen Victoria invited him to choose a gift?
 
 
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Christina-Croft/e/B002BMCQQ6/ref=la_B002BMCQQ6_ntt_srch_lnk_7?qid=1450340968&sr=1-7
 
 
How Well Do You Know...19th/early 20th Century Royal Interests & Hobbies?
 
1. Whose interest in human biology shocked Queen Victoria?
 
Princess Alice’s
 
2. What did George V reply when told that ‘some damned fool’ had spent a fortune on a stamp?
 
“I was that damned fool.”
 
3. Which of Queen Victoria’s sons taught himself to play the violin?
 
Alfred
 
4. Which of Kaiser Wilhelm’s interests took him to Corfu shortly before the outbreak of war?
 
Archaeology
 
5. Which of Queen Victoria’s grandsons developed an interest in homeopathy?
 
Arthur of Connaught
 
6. What sport did Henry of Prussia introduce into the German navy?
 
Boxing
 
7. Whose interest in art led him to establish an artists’ colony, the workshop of which was named in his honour?
 
Ernest Ludwig of Hesse
 
8. Which of Queen Victoria’s grandsons played the violin for her as she lay on her deathbed?
 
Leopold Battenberg
 
9. Where did George V participate in a shoot in which 3,900 pheasants were killed in one day?
 
Hall Barn
 
10. Which Queen wrote books under the pseudonym Carmen Silva?
 
Elizabeth of Roumania
 
11. What was the name of the suffragette who was trampled by George V’s horse at the 1913 Derby? (An extra 5 points for the name of the horse!)
 
Emily Wilding Davison, and the horse was Anmer...I’ll have to take the anthem on trust!
 
12. What was the name of Queen Victoria’s book describing her experiences in Scotland?
 
Leaves from a Highland Journal (and More Leaves from a Highland Journal)

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...19th/early 20th Century Royal Interests & Hobbies?

How Well Do You Know...19th/early 20th Century Royal Interests & Hobbies? (The answers to yesterday's quiz are below)
 
1. Whose interest in human biology shocked Queen Victoria?
 
2. What did George V reply when told that ‘some damned fool’ had spent a fortune on a single stamp?
 
3. Which of Queen Victoria’s sons taught himself to play the violin?
 
4. Which of Kaiser Wilhelm’s interests took him to Corfu shortly before the outbreak of war?
 
5. Which of Queen Victoria’s grandsons developed an interest in homeopathy?
 
6. What sport did Henry of Prussia introduce into the German navy?
 
7. Whose interest in art led him to establish an artists’ colony, the workshop of which was named in his honour?
 
8. Which of Queen Victoria’s grandsons played the violin for her as she lay on her deathbed?
 
9. Where did George V participate in a shoot in which 3,900 pheasants were killed in one day?
 
10. Who was Carmen Silva?
 
11. What was the name of the suffragette who was trampled by George V’s horse at the 1913 Derby? (An extra 5 points for the name of the horse! And an extra 10 points if you can whistle the suffragettes' anthem!!)
 
12. What was the name of Queen Victoria’s book describing her experiences in Scotland?
 
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Innocence-Kaiser-Wilhelm-II-ebook/dp/B0112FGBQS/ref=la_B002BMCQQ6_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1450262264&sr=1-9
 
 
 
 
How Well Do You Know...Royal Christmases?
 
1. Whose coronation took place on Christmas Day 1066?
 
William the Conqueror’s
 
2. What popular Christmas decoration did Prince Albert introduce to Britain?
 
Christmas trees
 
3. When was the first royal Christmas message broadcast and by whom?
 
1932 by George V
 
4. When was the first televised royal Christmas message broadcast and by whom?
 
1957 by Elizabeth II
 
5. Which Bohemian king ‘looked out on the feast of Stephen’?
 
Wenceslas
 
6. Where does the Queen usually spend Christmas?
 
Sandringham
 
7. Which of Queen Victoria’s friends was found dead on Christmas morning 1900?
 
Lady Jane Churchill
 
8. Each year a Festival of 8 Lessons is televised from King’s College, Cambridge. Which King founded the college?
 
Henry VI
 
9. Who wrote the comic poem, “King John’s Christmas’?
 
A.A. Milne
 
10. What, according to tradition, were the names of the three kings who followed a star to Bethlehem?
 
Caspar, Melchior & Balthazar
 
11. In Shakespeare’s ‘The Winter’s Tale’, Leontes is King of which country?
 
Sicily
 
12. Whose martyrdom four days after Christmas prompted King Henry II to walk barefoot to Canterbury where he allowed the monks to flog him?
 
Thomas a Becket’s

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

How Well Do You Know...Royal Christmases?

How Well Do You Know...Royal Christmases? (The answers to yesterday's quiz are below)
1. Whose coronation took place on Christmas Day 1066?
2. What popular Christmas decoration did Prince Albert introduce to Britain?
3. When was the first royal Christmas message broadcast and by whom?
4. When was the first televised royal Christmas message broadcast and by whom?
5. Which Bohemian king ‘looked out on the feast of Stephen’?
6. Where does the Queen usually spend Christmas?
7. Which of Queen Victoria’s friends was found dead on Christmas morning 1900?
8. Each year a carol Festival of 9 Lessons is televised from King’s College, Cambridge. Which King founded the college?
9. Who wrote the comic poem, “King John’s Christmas’?
10. What, according to tradition, were the names of the three kings who followed a star to Bethlehem?
11. In Shakespeare’s ‘The Winter’s Tale’, Leontes is King of which country?
12. Whose martyrdom four days after Christmas prompted King Henry II to walk barefoot to Canterbury where he allowed the monks to flog him?
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Most-Beautiful-Princess-Christina-Croft/dp/0955985307/ref=la_B002BMCQQ6_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1450173682&sr=1-4
How Well Do You Know...Prince Albert
1. Where are Albert born?
The Rosenau
2. What was the name of Albert’s beloved greyhound?
Eos
3. What was the name of Albert’s tutor during his childhood?
Christoph Florschutz
4. Whose death in 1860 marred Albert’s final visit to Coburg in 1860?
His stepmother’s
5. What great feat did Albert achieve in 1851 despite ridicule from ministers and members of his family who said it couldn’t be done?
The Great Exhibition
6. To whom did Albert write: “I am not of a demonstrative nature, and therefore you can hardly know how dear you have been to me, and what a void you have left behind in my heart; yet not in my heart for there you assuredly will abide henceforth as you have always done...”?
His daughter, Vicky
7. Which famous composer stated that, had he not been a Prince, Albert would have also been a great composer?
Mendelssohn
8. Which painting, now in the Royal Collection, did Albert create while at university in Bonn?
The Savoyard Minstrel Boy
9. Which humorous talent – also shared by the present Queen – did Albert employ to entertain his friends while at university?
Mimicry
10. Which country had Albert been touring immediately before he arrived in England when Queen Victoria proposed?
Italy
11. What was ‘the moment in its saddest form’ that was ‘ever before me’, according to Albert in 1837?
His separation from his brother, Ernest
12. Who wrote of Albert, “Such an entire life for duty, so joyously and unpretendingly borne out, remains for all times something inexpressibly fine and grand!...I never knew a man fit to place beside him, or so made to be loved and admired.”
His daughter, Alice