Bertie and Queen Victoria's passing

When Queen Victoria died in January 1901, the whole of Europe seemed to reel in shock at the end of a magnificent era. Her granddaughter, the then Crown Princess Marie of Roumania, wrote: "To see it all again if only for a day or two…to have a last peep at the old house…with out dear old Granny the last link is cut off!...I tell you it is inconceivable sorrow for me..."
Another granddaughter, Alice Albany (later of Athlone) wrote: "I had come to regard her as permanent and indestructible - like England and Windsor Castle.”

And a granddaughter-in-law, the future Queen Mary of England wrote: "The thought of England without the Queen is dreadful even to think of. God help us all.”

However, her heir, Bertie, King Edward VII, while dutifully paying his respects to his mother, seemed to breathe a huge sigh of relief and took very little time to throw out many vestiges of her reign. Statues of her favourite servant, John Brown, were disposed of in no time; Buckingham Palace was redecorated and Osborne House was given to the nation (with the exception of the Queen's rooms, which were for many decades gated off).

It might seem quite cold that Bertie should change everything so quickly and, at the same time, the Queen's passing was the passing of a person whose name had become synonymous with all that was best and worst of almost a century. Even to this day, the epithet of 'the Victorians' evokes so many images and it is interesting to look at the small woman who created such a mystique, with which her eldest son was so eager to dispense. "The Albertian era" would probably be more accurate a description of that time, since virtually all of the Queen's positive influence came from the influence of beloved Albert.

For Bertie, though, life in such a household was not an age of enlightenment, but an age of incarceration and asphyxiation. He was unfortunate in being the eldest son of a mother who had such fear of anyone in her family turning out like her 'wicked' Hanoverian uncles, and a father whose horror of infidelity sprang from the effects of his earliest childhood. These parents wanted to do the very best for their son - to keep him 'pure' and turn him into the ideal prince, and eventual king. Instead, unwittingly, they attempted unsuccessfully to curb everything which they saw as 'wrong' and to mould him into their image of what was perfect. Small wonder the poor boy sought outlets in excess; small wonder, too, that while he loved his parents, he strained at the bit and, eventually finding freedom, threw out so many relics of their era, which seemed to him the age of oppression.

Equally interesting is the speed with which Grand Duchess Elizabeth altered everything following the murder of her husband, Serge. Within a few months her life changed in such a way that it appears she must have been dreaming of something quite different for years. It's almost like a simmering, overheated engine that suddenly blows a gasket and it is shocking....but suddeny settles down into a quite different place. The influence of one person over another is tremendous but ultimately, everyone finds his/her own level and nothing lasts forever...

It's interesting that when someone passes on, there are those who choose to mourn for a length of time, and those who choose to move on. There's a weird obligation to feel sad about them, and about someone's passing and not to feel sad is seen as heartless but that isn't always the case. Bertie, without sentimentality, was surely correct. It was immensely sad that the era had gone...but to him a tyrant had let go of the reins and he was free.

It's a bit of a pity that Bertie didn't live long enough to really come into his stride and enjoy the power of his own benign influence for longer. King for only 9 years...had he lived as long as his mother did, I think the First World War might have been avoided.

Louis XIV's First Love

Marie was horrified and frightened. Her dying mother had threatened to put her in a convent because she lacked classical good lucks. Marie was religious, but she didn't want to go to a convent!

Luckily, the dark and slender teenager captured the attention of the nineteen year old King. This surprised everyone at the glittering French court because Marie was not pretty. Many people at the court thought that the younger girl had cast a spell on the King, including his pious mother, Queen Anne.

Louis, well-educated and interested in intelligent conversation and the arts, found a soul-mate in Marie. She was unusually well-educated and cultured for an upper-class French woman of the sixteenth century. She liked painting, music, and literature. She admired the plays of Corneille, especially Le Cid. Louis was happy to find a young woman who shared his love for the arts.

She also shared a love of riding with Louis. According to Antonia Fraser, Marie looked irresistible in 'black velvet edged with fur, including a matching hat above the huge dark eyes that were her best feature." Marie and Louis could finally be alone when they went riding together.

Marie's only claim to fame was that she was Cardinal Mazarin's niece. The imposing Cardinal was still one of the main 'powers behind the throne' at this time, and a good friend of Queen Anne. She and the Cardinal wanted a much better marriage for Louis. They had their eyes on the Spanish Infanta, a much more suitable prospect.

When Louis thought of marrying his 'Galatea', Queen Anne decided to put a stop to the romance once and for all. She spent an hour alone with the young man in her Appartment des Baines. Louis knew what was best for him and submitted fairly easily.
Queen Anne told Madame de Motteville: "One day Louis will thank me for the harm I have done him." 1.

Louis gave Marie two lovely farewell gifts: Henrietta Maria's pearls and a cute spaniel puppy. She made a grand marriage, but it was destined to be unhappy. Marie married the Italian Prince Colonna. He was surprised that she was still a virgin, because of the wild reputation of the French court. He said that he didn't expect to find 'innocence among the loves of kings.'2.

1. Fraser, Antonia, Love and Louis XIV, The Women in the Life of the Sun King, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London, 2006, p.52.

2. Ibid.

These Two Weeks in Princesses

Weddings and funerals and memorials. These past two weeks have been filled with joyous and somber gatherings, but some princesses still managed to snatch some vacation time.


Japan's Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko bow as they offer prayers before an altar during a memorial service for those who died in World War Two during a ceremony marking the 65th anniversary of Japan's surrender in the war at Budokan Hall in Tokyo August 15, 2010.  REUTERS/Toru Hanai (JAPAN - Tags: ANNIVERSARY POLITICS ROYALS)

Empress Michiko and Emperoro Akihito of Japan attended a memorial ceremony honoring those who died in World War II on the 65th anniversary of World War II. The emperor's father, Hirohito, was a young emperor during the war and was still considered to be a living god. The imperial family is still highly honored but not "revered" in the same way.


Jordan's King Abdullah laughs with his wife Queen Rania as they watch the Royal Military Tattoo at Edinburgh castle, Scotland August 18, 2010. The royal couple's visit to the Tattoo, which runs for three weeks in August on Edinburgh Castle's esplanade and is celebrating its diamond anniversary having first been staged in 1950, marks the first occasion a sovereign from the Middle East has attended. REUTERS/David Moir (BRITAIN - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT ROYALS IMAGES OF THE DAY)

Do you like my hat? Oh yes, Your Majesty! King Abdullah and Queen Rania of Jordan were all giggles during a visit to Scotland for the 50th anniversary of the Royal Military Tattoo. Living in the Middle East, the king and queen are used to seeing men in longer "skirts" and probably were amused by all the knobby knees under those kilts.


OREBRO, SWEDEN - AUGUST 21: King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, Queen Silvia of Sweden, Princess Victoria of Sweden, Prince Daniel of Sweden, Prince Carl Philip of Sweden and Princess Madeleine of Sweden attends the bicentennial anniversary of the Parliament session of 1810 in Orebro at Orebro Castle on August 21, 2010 in Orebro, Sweden. (Photo by Torsten Laursen/Getty Images)

Having returned from their honeymoon and dodged bribery accusations for getting it paid for by a rich businessman, Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel (in the center) joined King Carl Gustaf, Queen Silvia, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madeleine for the bicentennial celebration of Sweden's parliament. Carl Philip has been taking heat for dating a reality star who is apparently allergic to wearing clothes and Princess Madeleine has been spending more and more time in the U.S. since her ex-fiancee allegedly cheated on her.

ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 21: Princess Mary of Denmark arrives at her friend and bridesmaid, Amber Petty's 40th birthday celebration at The Promethian on August 21, 2010 in Adelaide, Australia. Princess Mary is in Adelaide visiting longtime friend and bridesmaid Amber Petty, who's celebrating her 40th birthday. She also spent time with family and friends in Hobart, who she hasn't seen since her last Tasmanian visit in 2008. (Photo by Morne de Klerk/Getty Images)

On a "solo" holiday Down Under, Australian-born Crown Princess Mary of Denmark is still showing no sign that she is actually a "trio" at the moment since she is due to deliver twins in about five months. She keeps tricking the watching photographers by wearing loose blouses but this ensemble and the skinny jeans she's been wearing around Australia show no sign of baby bumps.


Pauline Ducruet, the daughter of Princess Stephanie of Monaco competes in the youth women's 3m springboard preliminary round at the Youth Olympic Games 2010 in Singapore on August 23, 2010. Pauline qualified for the final round to be held on August 23. Photo by Frederic Nebinger/ABACAPRESS.COM Photo via Newscom

Pauline Ducruet flipped out in Singapore where she was competing in the 2010 Youth Olympics. The 16-year-old daughter of Princess Stephanie of Monaco is a hopeful for the 2012 London Olympics.


DUNGENESS, ENGLAND - AUGUST 24: Princess Beatrice watches as Richard Branson prepares to Kite Surf across the English Channel on August 24, 2010 in Dungeness, England. Richard Branson is making the attempt to become the oldest person to Kite-surf across the English Channel to celebrate his 60th birthday. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

Princess Beatrice of York got a bit windswept on the English coast where she was watching billionaire Richard Branson unsuccessfully attempt to kite-surf across the English Channel for his 60th birthday. Bea is dating Branson protege Dave Clark.
SPETSES, GREECE - AUGUST 24: (L-R) I aki Urdangarin, Infanta Cristina, Infanta Elena of Spain, Crown Princess Letizia of Spain and Crown Prince Felipe attend a pre-wedding reception at the Poseidon Hotel on August 24, 2010 in Spetses, Greece.The small greek Island, three hours from Athens, is gearing up for the Royal Wedding of Prince Nikolaos of Greece and Tatiana Blatnik on Wednesday. Royals from all over Europe and the world are expected to attend the ceremony.Prince Nikolaos is the second son of King Constantine and Queen Anne-Marie while Tatiana is an events planner for Diane Von Furstenburg in London. Many of the VIP guests are expected to stay in the Poseidon Hotel in the town centre. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

The entire Spanish royal family invaded Greece for the wedding celebrations of Prince Nikolaos, whose father King Constantine II is the brother of Queen Sofia of Greece. Apparently, however, Infanta Cristina did not get the notice that they were all supposed to wear white pants to the party! She looks lovely nevertheless standing next to her handsome husband Inaki, sister Elena, sister-in-law Letizia and brother Felipe.


SPETSES, GREECE - AUGUST 25: Prince Nikolaos of Greece and Princess Nikolaos of Greece and Denmark (Tatiana Blatnik) kiss after getting married at the Cathedral of Ayios Nikolaos (St. Nicholas) on August 25, 2010 in Spetses, Greece. Representatives from Europe s royal families will join the many guests who have travelled to the island to attend the wedding of Prince Nikolaos of Greece, the second son of King Constantine of Greece and Queen Anne-Marie of Greece and Tatiana Blatnik an events planner for Diane Von Furstenburg in London. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

A flower-draped carriage was just one fantasy moment for Europe's new fairytale princess and her Prince Charming, as the 29-year-old Tatiana Blatnik married 40-year-old Prince Nikolaos of Greece and Denmark on a lovely Greek island surrounded by friends and family who just happen to include most of the crowned heads of Europe.


HELSINGBORG, SWEDEN - AUGUST 26: Princess Victoria of Sweden and Prince Haakon of Norway commemorate Folke Bernadotte's lifesaving 'White Buses' mission at Ramlosa Brunnspark on August 26, 2010 in Helsingborg, Sweden (Photo by Torsten Laursen/Getty Images)

Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden was a vision in strawberry pink as she and Crown Prince Haakon of Norway led the 65th anniversary commemoration of their common cousin Folke Bernadotte's "White Buses" mission, which rescued more than 30,000 people from German concentration camps.


The King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia at the opening ceremony for the Chinese terracotta army at East Asian Museum and the most recent archaeological findings will be exhibited in Stockholm during the fall of 2010. The exhibition will be unique since it will be displayed in a spectacular environment and feature several new unique findings from other similar gravesite. This is the second time for the Terracotta soldiers to visit Sweden. The first visit took place in 1984. Photo by Lars Hoglund/Stella Pictures/ABACAPRESS.COM Photo via Newscom

You'll never get this soldier to blink! King Carl Gustav and Queen Silvia of Sweden came face-to-face with some Chinese warriors who have been on sentry duty since the death of the first Chinese emperor. No two of the 8000 terracotta soldiers are the same. They were all part of a huge mausoleum still being excavated in China.

Britain's Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall (L) walks with HMS Astute's Commanding Officer Andy Coles as they arrive for the commissioning ceremony of the Royal Navy submarine HMS Astute at the Clyde Naval Base near Glasgow, Scotland August 27, 2010.  REUTERS/David Moir   (BRITAIN - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT MILITARY SOCIETY PROFILE)

Meanwhile, Camilla Duchess of Cornwall was looking very "queenly" in this smart cream ensemble: Giant feathery hat? Check. Large brooch? Check. Gloves? Check. Handbag with no money in it? Check. Sensible shoes? Check.


Crown Prince Haakon with his children Princess Ingrid Alexandra, Prince Sverre Magnus and Mette's sonMarius attends the Anniversary screening of the Norwegian movie masterpiece Flaaklypa at Klingenberg Cinema in Oslo, Norway, on August 28, 2010. Photo by Glenn Svendsen/Stella Pictures/ABACAPRESS.COM Photo via Newscom

A day out with dad. Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway slipped out to the movies with dad, Crown Prince Haakon, and her brothers Marius and Sverre Magnus on Saturday.

Dutch Crown Prince Willem-Alexander and his wife Princess Maxima, arrive at the Santa Maria della Steccata church for the burial of Duke Carlos Hugo of Bourbon-Parma in Parma August 28, 2010. REUTERS/Alessandro Garofalo(ITALY - Tags: ROYALS OBITUARY)

Things were not as cheerful in sunny Parma, as Crown Prince Willem Alexander and Crown Princess Maxima joined the mourners for the funeral of Prince Carlos Hugo of Bourbon-Parma, who died at the age of 80. One of many pretenders to the French throne, Carlos Hugo was married to Willem Alexander's aunt, Princes Irene of the Netherlands for 17 years before they divorced. Irene had to elope with the prince and give up her claim to the Dutch throne because of her groom's Catholicism and his controversial claim to the French throne. Despite that controversy and the divorce, his body laid in state at The Hague in the Netherlands before being transported to Italy for internment.

Princess Mary's Best Friend

Amber Petty, Princess Mary's pretty, blonde best friend, recently held a huge party to celebrate her fortieth birthday. Princess Mary was the special guest and one of Petty's 'life' maids.

The radio announcer and journalist decided to make her special friends, 'life' maids because she's never been married and she wants them to share her journey through life. This was a lovely idea.

Although Petty is probably best known as Princess Mary's best friend, she has had an impressive career. Recently made the Communications Director for the agency, Fnuky, she has interviewed many famous people and appeared on the TV programme, Sunrise. She also wrote columns for the magazine, New Idea.

She wrote about kissing a 'toyboy' at a New Year's party and stripped off for a campaign about 'women's body issues'. As many women were photographed for the radio campaign, she thought that it was only fair that she joined them!

Petty has had a few boyfriends but I don't think that she has one at the moment. Perhaps Prince Frederick has a handsome, wealthy, aristocratic friend? He has to be nice too, of course!

Party Outfits

Petty wore a long, fairy tale gown with a scalloped hem to her party in Adelaide. It was a gorgeous dress, but I haven't found out who the designer was.

I preferred her outfit to Princess Mary's. The Princess wore a dark, strapless jumpsuit. It was quite stylish but I just like pretty dresses.

Amber Petty has an interesting blog at

Amber Petty and she also has a cool Facebook page. You can see photos there.

I hope to write a historical post soon.

First Impressions

Moretta of Prussia (pictured here with her sisters, Mossy and Sophie), sister of Kaiser Wilhelm, daughter of the Empress Frederick, and granddaughter of Queen Victoria lived such a sad life that I have often wondered about. It always seemed that she 'came in' at such a difficult time for her mother. It was the middle of the Austro-Prussian War, and her elder brother, Sigismund, had just died of meningitis while his father was away in battle. Her mother, Vicky (Queen Victoria's eldest - and probably most intellectually brilliant - child) was deeply mourning Sigismund's death and worrying about her husband, and the strained relationship with her sister, Alice, whose husband, as heir to the Grand Duchy of Hesse, was fighting with the opposing army - what a mess to be born into!!

In Moretta's earliest years, she was noted as having a horror of old ladies in black - unsurprising when you consider the extent of Victorian mourning.
Her life didn't improve much. After several failed romantic attachments, she despaired of ever finding happiness and eventually settled for someone whom she might or might not have loved, only to find further heartache in that she could not have children and the estate they expected to inherit became subject of a law suit. When World War 1 broke out, she was thrown into further disarray because she, though German, had great affection for her mother's native England, and, following the death of her husband, she eventually re-married a much younger man who ran off with her money and abandoned her.

This week, an elderly relative passed on. She was born in 1917, in the middle of the horror of WW1, only 6 months after her mother's favourite brother and several other members of that family had been killed on the Somme. I guess, at that time, most people were going around in mourning and wearing black a lot. My relative's life was, like Moretta's, filled with misery, darkness and gloom - one illness after another for 93 years.

Herein lies the question! In everyday life, first impressions count for a lot with most people. They say we make up our minds about someone within the first 4 or 5 seconds of meeting them. Imagine coming into this world and following that trend. Perhaps, within the first few minutes of being here, we decide how life will be and look for evidence of it all around us: "this is a dark, nasty world....", "this is a sad world where things don't work out....", or, "this is a beautifully happy place...." "Wow! I'm here!"

The good thing is that, whatever we decide then, if we are aware of it, we can change it. I think we all make choices. Some people seem to settle into patterns of gloom and remain there. Others walk through the darkness, maybe look for meanings and work their way out of it. Others live in the moment, smile and shake off the ideas of previous generations. It's our choice, I think. Had Moretta known her own power, her life might have been very different and the same is true of all of us....perhaps....

Rosersberg Castle

During nmy recent Stay in Stockholm i also made an Visit to Rosersberg Castle.By coincidenece it was the 21.08.2010 the day Jean Baptiste Bernadotte who used this Palace as Summer Residence was elected as swedish Crown Prince 200 years ago.
The Palace was statret to build in 1634 for the Lord High Treasurer Gabriel Bengtsson Oxenstierna, It got his name after the mother of it'Äs founder who came from the Tre Roser Family. In the second half of the 17th Century the Palace was modernized in the Barocque Style. In 1747 the Palace was bought by Baron Erland Broman who again mordernized it. After his death 10 years later it was bought by the swedish State who oput it at the disposal of Prine Karl, Duke of Södrmanland, the youngest brother of King Gustaf III. Prince Karl succeeded as King Karl XIII. after his nephew King Gustaf IV. Aolf had to abdicate in 1809. Later it was used by his adopted son King Carl XIV. Johan and his wife Queen Désirée who spend their summer there. They where the last members of the Royal family who used the Palace. It was later used by the swedish Infantry and until 1961 was a school of musketry. Now the Palace is open to the Public from June till August every year.













Männer Frisuren für Mittellange Haare

Haarstyling für Männer kann sehr vielseitig sein. Um heraus zu finden was dir am besten gefällt solltest du einfach auch einmal offen sein für neues. Ein wenig Inspiration schadet da also ganz bestimmt nicht. Heute habe ich euch ein paar Bilder zum Thema "Männer Frisuren für Mittellange Haare" zusammen gesucht. Wer braucht da noch professionelle Styling Tips ;-)

HRH, Princess Theodora of Greece and Denmark

Her Royal Highness, Princess Theodora of Greece and Denmark 

Her Royal Highness, Princess Theodora of Greece and Denmark, was born on June 20, 1983 in London. She is the younger daughter and fourth child of King Constantine II of Greece and Princess Anna Marie of Denmark.

Theodora descended from the powerful European royal family. Her father, Constantine II, the deposed King of Greece, is the son of King Paul I of Greece and Queen Federica, both great- grandchildren of Queen Victoria of England, the late Greek King was also the grandson of King Christian IX of Denmark. Constantine II has two sisters, Queen Sophia, wife of King Juan Carlos of Spain, and Princess Irene who now lived in Spain. Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, husband of Queen Elizabeth II of England, is King Constantine II’s paternal uncle. 

His Royal Higness, Prince William of Wales. He and Princess Theodora has the same royal family tree, they are both descendant of Queen Victoria of England, King Christian IX of Denmark and Emperor Nicolas I of Russia 

Theodora’s mother, Anna Marie, is a daughter of King Frederick IX of Denmark and Queen Ingrid, she is a younger sister of the current Danish monarch, Queen Margrethe II, her other sister, Princess Benedikte married a German Prince. Through Queen Anna Marie, Theodora is a great-great-niece of Queen Elizabeth II of England who is also her godmother. She is listed as the 300th in line to the British throne. She is related to the former Russian Imperial family, her great grandmother, Queen Olga, was a granddaughter of Emperor Nicolas I of Russia.

Princess Theodora born a decade after her father was deposed and moved to London with the rest of their family. As a direct descendant of the Royal House of Glucksburg-Oldenburg of Denmark, Theodora is carrying a Danish passport.

Just like any other upper class girls, the Greek princess attended boarding school through out her elementary and secondary schools. She went to the United States and matriculated at the prestigious Brown University in Rhode Island where she finished Bachelor of Arts degree major in Theater Arts in 2006. After her graduation she moved back to London and studied fashion designing at Central Saint Martins College of Arts and Design.
 The Greek royal family. From left: Queen Anna Marie, King Constantine II, Princess Alexia, Carlos Morales, Princess Theodora and Prince Philippos
In 2009, she opened a clothing line in London but early this year, she went to Los Angeles to pursue a career in cinematography. The Princess has been touted to be Prince William’s perfect match. Just like him, Theodora comes from a distinguished European royal house and very familiar with the royal routine. She grew up around royalty and a perfect choice to be a future Queen Consort of Great Britain.

Royal Engagements!

Last June 19, 2010, the world witnessed the lavish wedding ceremony of Sweden's future Queen, Victoria, to a commoner gym owner, Daniel Westling. But it seems the European royals caught a marriage bug after attending the ceremony that two of the most eligible princes in the world followed by announcing their

The first to announce is the 52-year-old ruler of Monaco, Prince Albert II, current head of the Royal House of Grimaldi. Monaco is a tiny, but glamorous principality in the Mediterranean coast, southwest of France. The palace spokesman announced Albert's official engagement to the 32-year-old South Afrian Olympian, Charlene Wittstock, on June 26, 2010. The royal wedding is set on the summer of 2011. 

His Serene Highness, Prince Albert II of Monaco and his fiancee, Charlene Wittstock

Prince Albert has been Monaco's ruler since April 2005 upon the death of his father, Prince Rainier III. Prince Albert is the only son of Prince Rainier and Hollywood actress, Grace Kelly. He has two sisters, Princess Caroline and Princess Stephanie. Charlene Wittstock is a South African Olympian who took part in the 2000 Sydney Olympics as a backstroke swimmer. She and the Prince met in 2006 during a swimming competition in Monaco and started dating months later. Charlene moved a year later to the principality and became Albert's constant companion in many social events.

Albert's stubbornness to find a suitable wife created a growing concern among the people of Monaco, if he would die without a legitimate successor and provided none of his sisters would willing to assume the responsibility to head the House of Grimaldi, the tiny principality would be taken back by France. Prior to his death, Prince Rainier declared his eldest child, Princess Caroline as Albert's presumptive heir until Albert sired legitimate children. Prince Albert's former girlfriends include Supermodel Claudia Schiffer, Brooke Shields, Tatjana Oxenova, and one German aristocrat.

  His Royal Highness, Prince Nikolaos of Greece and Denmark with his fiancee, Tatiana Blatnik

Another European royal who will soon walking-down-the-aisle is the dashing Greek Prince, Nikolaos, second son of Constantine II, the deposed King of Greece and Queen Anna Marie, both direct descendants of Queen Victoria of England and King Christian IX of Denmark. The 40-year-old Greek royal is related to all European royals. His father is the closest friend and second cousin of Prince Charles of England and a younger brother of Queen Sophia of Spain, her mother, Anna Marie, is the youngest sister of Queen Margrethe II of Denmark. He is working in his father's business in London. His future bride, 29-year-old Tatiana Blatnik is of noble origin, her German mother is a descendant of King George II of England. She is a fashion designer and event planner of the fashion house, Diane von Furstenberg, based in London. The Prince previously dated Supermodel Elle Mcpherson and actress Gwyneth Paltrow. Prince Nikolaos and Tatiana will wed on August 25, 2010 with a romantic backdrop of sunset at the whitewashed 19th century monastery of Ayios Nikolaos, overlooking the ancient harbor of the mystical Greek island of Saronic and Spetses.

It seems, the children of Ex-King Constantine II is mesmerized with the fashion designing world. His eldest son, Prince Pavlos, married Marie Chantal Miller, daughter of American billionaire, Robert Miller. Chantal is into fashion designing too and owns a children clothing line in London. His youngest daughter, Princess Theodora is recently opened a fashion house in London after she graduated from the prestigious fashion school in London, St.Martin. Both Princess Theodora and Prince Nikolaos earned a college degree at the prestigious Brown University in the United States.

Anyway, this news is a relief to all royal watchers who had been tailing the romantic affairs of these two irresistible royal princes, who, for so long, refused to settle down.


Growing up in the more or less leafy suburbs of a northern city, founded and once flourishing on the wool trade, and much preferring the more original Yorkshire landscape of moors and rivers and crags and gardens, it often seemed to me as a child that the nearer I went to the city centre, the uglier the city became. The main problem was bricks! Thousands upon thousands of them - millions even! Travel, in those days (the 1970s) by car, and there were endless rows of terraces. My school itself, which I loved and which was beautiful, was built of countless red bricks. Travel by train, and there were numerous red brick bridges, tunnels and sidings. Bricks, bricks, bricks; walls, walls, walls....and they all seemed so very ugly, so uniform and confining, so colourless and dull. They were solid. They didn't flow like rivers flow. They were static. They didn't change like the trees change. They lacked the creativity and beauty of the original stone walls that divide fields and which blend so beautifully into the landscape. They were just there - millions and millions of red bricks. Occasionally I wondered who could have spent so long putting them there and wasn't it utterly soul destroying to have to start placing one brick on another to create even a small wall, let alone miles upon miles of tunnels and terraces. To some extent they stood for all that was the worst about the Victorian era and the industrial revolution - that terrible (to my mind) change from living with Nature, to living with so-called progress. The era when people were no longer people but merely cogs in the wheel of industry. (Incidentally, I also think that was one of the most beautiful eras in the whole of history - the age of civility, house parties, Queen Victoria, monarchs and pageants and loveliness!).

The other day, though, I saw part of the BBC programme about 'Great Railway Journeys' in which the presenter spoke so enthusiastically about Isambard Kingdom Brunel's brilliance in standing up to the all the cynical voices which say something can't be done. Rather than arguing, Brunel just went ahead and did whatever he had planned and he succeeded in all of it. His railways, his ships, his bridges - everything flourished because he believed in them and didn't give the cynics a second thought. What a brilliant man! What a brilliant mind! One bridge, according to the programme (possibly this one??*) involved him measuring the angle of every single brick - wow!! Who could be so single-minded as to do such a thing? Better still, Brunel created beauty. He combined his engineering skill with an aesthetic sense (and this was a man whose father, like Dickens' father, was stuck in debtors' prison) A long time ago, I saw a couple of other programmes about the building of the sewers in London (how many bricks are there??) and the building of the London Tube (again - all those bricks!!). Those feats of engineering are so awe-inspiring. More awe-inspiring are the aspirations of those Victorians who had a vision of something and brought it into being.

I still find the brick walls ugly but that is probably a fault in my vision. Some people love and find beauty in power stations and cooling towers. Personally, I prefer rivers and trees and the changing scenery of Nature but I do stand in awe of that vision and the almost Zen-like attention to detail of those who day after day place one brick upon another and enabled me to travel by rail to town. I guess that without all that Victorian engineering, there would never have been room for people to move on to develop such fabulous things as computers, the internet, the ability to write on blogs and to be in contact with people from all over the world.

Next time I see the brick tunnels, I shall say, "Thank you!"


Wedding Dresses Made in China

Check the tag, affairs are whatever it is, It's Fabricated In China and "sold" in the United States. Alike if it's fabricated in the United States, affairs are you can get it Fabricated In China and at a atom of the cost!

Let's say for instance bells dresses, I am not absolutely adeptness with the artist labels but I apperceive what I like and will accept you do as well. Just a accidental Google chase "wedding dresses 2010" alternate a bells dress which is a whopping $3500. - $4500. WOW! I don't apperceive about you but that is a lot of dineros for a dress you're activity to abrasion once! Unless of advance you accept this affectionate of money to absorb again by all agency go ahead, but if you appetite the attending after the amount tag, apprehend on...

Now, in China, a commensurable bells dress can be purchased for a atomic $139.99! additional aircraft of course, but alike with aircraft costs your activity to save BIG! and appropriate now this accurate armpit is alms a 55% abatement on shipping. Imagine all the money you will save and what you can do with it on your honeymoon! Another abundant armpit that I use is area you will acquisition added abundant deals and selections on bells dresses.

Worried about authoritative a acquirement from China? Don't fret, best of the sites from China except their acquittal via escrow, this agency that a 3rd affair (the site) holds your money until you accept the account and audit it. Once you are annoyed with your acquirement you bright acquittal and the armpit will again pay the vendor. You additionally accept your best of aircraft methods, but I use the EMS (China Courier) it's cheaper and you about accept your acquirement in a anniversary or two.

You don't accept to absorb a affluence on a bells dress but you can attending like you did and no one will apperceive the difference! So why pay more?


Recently I heard a brief news report about the necessity of making battlefields heritage sites and therefore protected land . Apparently, as the law stands at the moment, anyone can build anything on the sites where people fought and died - and there are so many of them around England. Initially, I thought, "Yes, of course, they must protect these sites...." and then began to wonder...

This rainy summer's evening, driving home as often happens across the site of Towton - the 'bloodiest battle ever fought on English soil' (with 'losses' - euphemism for slaughter - which, by the size of the population at the time are equivalent or perhaps exceed the slaughter on the first day of the Somme) - I looked across the fields and wondered whether there is an inch of land anywhere on which people didn't die and kill for someone else's beliefs. There are many people who keep alive the memory of what happened at Towton that Palm Sunday, nearly 600 years ago. They enact the battle sometimes, I think, and the same is true of all of the English Civil War battles and perhaps many others from the Wars of the Roses. Perhaps old wounds and old causes are somehow rooted in our psyche, but it's interesting that no one yet dares to re-enact or play at the First or Second World War battles. Perhaps they need that buffer of history to soften the blow of what really went on.

So, at Towton, the Lancastrians were basically massacred and it was a great Yorkist victory. But, as far as I can make out, the bizarre thing is that the Lanscastrians were were more 'northern' and the Yorkists were based more or less in the south - so, like all wars, it was nothing like it first appeared, nor was it fought for the reasons that history presents. I guess most of the thousands of young men (boys) who died that day were either just looking for a better way of life or looking for excitement. How many of them really knew what they were fighting for? Even now, centuries later, it's so hard to know what they were really fighting for.

Another odd thing about wars is that when they are over and monuments rise, we always speak of people dying for this or that just cause. It's never really mentioned that they actually killed other human beings for the same cause. There is something heroic about dying for a cause and nothing heroic about killing for one....basically, the causes are never just, and there has never been any truth in 'the old lie' (quote Wilfred Owen) 'dulce et decorum est pro patria (or anything else!) mori"

I would not like to see a car park or tower block or anything else built over Towton or any other battlefield but I sometimes think it would be beautiful if, instead of honouring 'heroes' of old wars with monuments, we simply put a wreath of flowers that said, "ooh...we made a mistake there..." and perhaps, rather than honouring where we went wrong so often in the past, we raised many more monuments in places where we got it right. Perhaps the odd daisy chain in a happy park one summer's afternoon or a bluebell filled wood one May day might say,

"Here,thousands of people came over centuries.
They spent their afternoon watching birds soar through the wisps of clouds in the brilliant blue sky,
Watching swans glide over the water,
Listening for the hum of earthworms in the soil,
The sound of grass growing,
And the love song of the bee to the buttercup.
Here, people laid aside causes and lived one happy summer's day,
and they were free."

Shopping for Plus Size Wedding Dresses

Large women do not accept to anguish about their weight and actualization and how these can ruin their actualization on their bells day. There are means for ample women to attending adorable and feel like a ability during their appropriate day.

In attractive for the best bells dress, plus-sized women should apperceive a brace of things. First, it is all-important for them to agenda an arrangement with conjugal boutiques. It will additional you of troubles if you can accept a attending at the dresses of you and your bridesmaid a few months afore the bells day.

Secondly you should accept a account of shops area you can get the best deals on ample admeasurement dresses. One of the abundant shops to go to is SalwarkameezIndia's online abundance because they accord promotions like outfitting your absolute affair if you win a contest. They additionally action tailoring, as able-bodied as shoes and adornment to accentuate your attending during bells day. However, there are abounding added aces online food which could accord you absolutely what you are attractive for.

Weddings may additionally crave the helpmate to put on some affectionate lingerie, so it could be acceptable for the helpmate to boutique for adult additional lingerie. Victoria's Secret may not be recommended but activity online is. You could try browsing online for assorted websites affordable deals on affectionate lingerie for your appropriate night.

Remember, you don't accept to anguish about your weight in adjustment to feel like a ability on your bells day. Keep in apperception these simple, applied reminders and affairs are you will attending your best on your appropriate day.

The Ragamuffin Sun

The Ragamuffin Sun is a collection of 32 of my poems together with an appendix of brief selections of lyrics from the musicals 'Branwell' - based on the life of Branwell Bronte - and 'Tsaritsa' based on the life of Alexandra Feodorovna, the last Tsarina of Russia. A few of the poems in the collection are taken from my earlier volume 'Child of the Moon' (Downlander 1986) but most are previously unpublished or have been availble only in magazines.

Since the poems were written over two decades, I do not see the world in the same way as I did when I wrote all of them though, of course, some things remain the same.

The collection will be available on Amazon Kindle within the next 24 hours.

Brittany - scenegirl

scene girl hair
scene girls
scene girl
Your hair looks so fluffy. Brittany

A Princess's Fight For Her Life

"I already told you. I don't know," Princess Elizabeth exclaimed.

She laid her head in her hands, then she quickly lifted it again and straightened her shoulders. She must not let these interrogators get the better of her!

The harassed Princess knew that her governess, Kat Ashley, and her servant, Mr.Parry, had told what they knew about her relationship with the handsome, ebullient Admiral, Thomas Seymour. They had told Tyrwhit about the Admiral's visiting her in her bedroom in the mornings and annoying her while his wife was asleep. She hadn't wanted the much older man's attentions and ran away. However, she was only a young teenager attracted to a very handsome man and she had let him hug her in the garden at one stage. His wife, Katherine Parr, sent her away after that.

Did her interrogators also know that? She prayed not. She had been suspicious that Seymour wanted her because he had his eye on her throne, but she'd been very careful not to let herself get too involved with him. She was also very fond of Katherine Parr, her late father's wife, and she felt very guilty about upsetting her.

The interrogators told the Lord Protector that there wasn't enough evidence to convict the young Princess of treason. He was angry but understood that they 'could not get anything out of her'. She had convinced the Council that she would never have considered marriage without their approval.

When Thomas Seymour was beheaded Princess Elizabeth is supposed to have remarked: "There dies a man of much wit and very little judgement." The young Princess was not to have a peaceful existence after this, however. It was one of the first of her many struggles before she attained her throne.

Children in the Wedding

Amidst the pageantry of a royal wedding, a small group of children almost always takes center stage after the bride and groom. This troupe of tiny attendants takes the place of adult bridesmaids and groomsmen. For more about this tradition, view my guest blog at Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel Blog.

Here's a look at children at royal weddings from the past.


STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN - JUNE 19: Page Boys Ian De Geer, Prince Christian, flower girls Princess Ingrid Alexandra, Princess Catharina-Amalia, Vera Blom and Leopold Sommerlath attend the wedding ceremony between Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden and Daniel Westling at Stockholm Cathedral on June 19, 2010 in Stockholm, Sweden. (Photo by Torsten Laursen/Getty Images)

Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden included several of her royal godchildren and young relatives in her Stockholm wedding. The boys were dressed in sailor suits while the girls's dresses reflected the simple, clean lines of Victoria's gown. The youngsters included(from left to right) were Prince Christian of Denmark, Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway, her cousins Leopold Sommerlath and Ian de Geer, the groom's nieces Vera and Hedwig Blom, and Princess Catharina Amalia of the Netherlands, along with three other girls.


NOORDWIJK, NETHERLANDS - AUGUST 27:  The bridesmaid's children arrive prior to the church wedding of Prince Pieter Christiaan and Anita van Eijk at 'Jeroenskerk' Church on August 27 2005 in Noordwijk, The Netherlands. The prince has not asked the Parliament's permission, therefore he will be excluded from the succession to the throne. (Photo by Michel Porro/Getty Images)

When the Dutch Queen's nephew Prince Pieter Christiann married Anita van Eijk, the little ones in their party were dressed in pale yellow with light green trim. The girls were the classic smocked dress of generations of little girls, but the ruffles on the boys' shirts echoed a more distant past.


BRUSSELS, BELGIUM - APRIL 12:  Flower girls leave after attending the wedding ceremony of Belgium's Princess Claire Coombs and Belgium's Prince Laurent at the Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula April 12, 2003 in Brussels, Belgium.  (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

Claire Coombs decided to have only three girls and no boys at her marriage to Prince Laurent, youngest son of the King of Belgium. The lovely lasses were simple white dresses with pale sashes and wreathes of flowers on their heads. They were (from left) family friend Clothilde de Meulenaere, Claire's niece Emma Grant and Prince Laurent's niece Princess Luisa Maria.


29th July 1981:  A family group In the throne room of Buckingham Palace after the wedding of Charles, Prince of Wales, and Princess Diana (1961 - 1997).  Back row, left to right : Edward Vancutsen, Lord Nicholas Windsor, Sarah Jane Gaselee, Prince Edward, Prince Charles, Princess Diana, Prince Andrew and Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones. Front row, left to right : Catherine Cameron, India Hicks and Clementine Hambro.  (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Most people still think of the wedding of Charles Prince of Wales and Lady Diana Spencer when they think of royal weddings, even thought it was nearly 30 years ago. Charles' brothers, Prince Andrew in his naval uniform and Prince Edward in a gray morning suit acted as his 'supporters.' The younger boys, in suits inspired by military uniforms, were blonde-haired royal cousin Lord Nicholas Windsor and friend of the family Edward van Cutsem. The girls ranged from four-year-old Clementine Hambro, a great-granddaughter of Winston Churchill to 16-year-old royal cousin Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones, daughter of Princess Margaret. The other girls were family friends Catherine Cameron and Sarah Jane Gaselee as well as the now famous designer India Hicks, a cousin of the prince on his father's side. The girls' puffy dresses in ivory satin were designed by David and Elizabeth Emmanuel to match Diana's iconic fairytale princess gown.


circa 1975:  Princess Margaret's children, Viscount David Linley and his sister, Sarah Armstrong-Jones, among the pageboys and bridesmaids at a society wedding.  (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Here's Lady Sarah Armstong-Jones (now Chatto) several years earlier in a society wedding where her big brother, David Viscount Linley (center), wore a red kilt.


Princess Margaret and  her new husband Antony Armstrong Jones pose for a picture with their bridesmaids at Buckingham Palace, 6th May 1960. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

At Sarah and David's mother's wedding, Princess Margaret choose her niece Princess Anne (who celebrates her sixtieth birthday this week) as her chief bridesmaid. Anne, then 10 years old, is standing on the bride's right. All eight young bridesmaids wore long white dresses with elaborate floral headbands.


20th November 1947:  Princess Elizabeth, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh with King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (right) and members of the immediate and extended Royal Family at Buckingham Palace after their wedding.  (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Princess (now Queen) Elizabeth selected more mature bridesmaids when she married the Duke of Edinburgh. Among them was her beautiful 16-year-old sister Princess Margaret (on the groom's right) and the youngest bridesmaid was 10-year-old Princess Alexandra of Kent. The two kilt-clad pageboys were royal cousins Prince William of Gloucester and Prince Michael of Kent, both about five years old.


1893:  The wedding at Buckingham Palace of the Duke of York, later King George V (1865 - 1936) and Princess Mary of Teck (1867 - 1953). From left to right (back) - Princess Alexandra of Edinburgh, Princess Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein, Princess Victoria of Edinburgh, the Duke of York, Princess Victoria of Wales, and Princess Maud of Wales. Original Publication: From left to right (front) - Princess Alice of Battenberg, Princess Beatrice of Edinburgh, Princess Margaret of Connaught, the Duchess of York, Princess Victoria of Battenberg, Princess Victoria Patricia of Connaught.  (Photo by W. & D. Downey/Getty Images)

Jumping back a couple of generations to the wedding of the Elizabeth and Margaret's grandparents, the future King George V and Queen Mary, the 10 young bridesmaids were all princesses--sisters and cousins of the groom. They included the future Queen Maud of Norway (standing on the far right) and the Duke of Edinburgh's mother, Princess Alice of Battenberg (seated on the far left).