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Alexander Howard
1294647.  Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:11 pm Reply with quote

Indeed - and neither was named 'Josephine'. Josephine's actual name was Rose, or in full, Marie-Josèphe-Rose. Bonaparte, coming across this pretty and flirtatious widow (her husband had been guillotined in the reign of terror) invented the name 'Josèphine' for her.

Napoleon's first love was Désirée Clary (later Queen Desideria of Sweden and Norway): a biography of the Emperor which I lapped up tells that he disliked the implications of the name Désirée and nicknamed her 'Eugénie' (which by coincidence was the actual name of Napoleon III's empress). The unreliable Wikipedia, which might have to trust on this occasion, says that Désirée was in fact born 'Eugénie Bernardine Désirée', which rather ruins the story.

Josephine's daughter was a queen too, briefly: Hortense married Napoleon's younger brother, who was made King of Holland, before being deposed by his brother and step-father. Their son, Louis-Napoleon, became Emperor Napoleon III.

I am sure that genealogists can tell me whether Rose / Josephine has descendants today in the royal houses of Europe. Napoleon however doesn't.

 
Dix
1294711.  Fri Sep 07, 2018 8:03 am Reply with quote

Back to the queens:

Margrethe I of Denmark. Described as "One of Scandinavia’s most eminent monarchs" in Encyclopaedia Britannica.
She ruled the roost when her Norwegian husband was alive, then, after her fathers death, got her young son elected as king of Denmark and herself as regent. Husband then dies; add Norway. Son dies; she adopts a six-year-old nephew which becomes nominal king and she stays in power.
Cue some unrest in Sweden; she backs the right side; add Sweden.

Not a bad achievement for a woman in the 14th century.

The current Danish queen deliberately chose to reign as Margrethe II.
In case anyone thought they could pass Margrethe I off as "just being regent".

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Margaret-I

 
suze
1294718.  Fri Sep 07, 2018 11:09 am Reply with quote

Alexander Howard wrote:
I am sure that genealogists can tell me whether Rose / Josephine has descendants today in the royal houses of Europe. Napoleon however doesn't.


Her son by first marriage is an ancestor of the pretender to the throne of Lithuania. There are half a dozen other descendants who rank in the hundreds in order of succession to the British throne (or in some cases, would do but for being Catholic).

But she has no descendant who is a direct part of an extant royal line.

 
DVD Smith
1296165.  Mon Sep 24, 2018 5:39 am Reply with quote

Q: Who is the current Colonel-in-Chief of the Princess of Wales Royal Regiment?

[Klaxon: The Queen / Prince Charles / Duchess of Cornwall / Princess Diana]

A: It's actually the Queen of Denmark. Not Sandi Toksvig, but Queen Margrethe II.

When the regiment was created in 1992, it was the most senior English infantry regiment, and the Colonelcy was shared jointly between Princess Diana and Queen Margrethe. However when Diana divorced Charles in 1996, she relinquished the title and Margrethe has remained the sole Colonel ever since. [1] [2]

Queen Margrethe is also an accomplished artist, and provided the illustrations for the first Danish edition of The Lord of the Rings under the pseudonym "Ingahild Grathmer". [3] [4] [5]



The story goes that in the early 1970s before she became Queen, she sent some of her sketches to JRR Tolkien, who loved them and was struck by how similar they were to his own drawings. He agreed to use them in the Danish edition (redrawn by professional artist Eric Fraser) and they have since been used in other publications, including in the 1977 British Folio Edition. [6][7] She also reportedly helped with the original Danish translation of the books. [8]

The image above is one of her sketches, of the Nazgûl (Black Rider) on horseback. You can see more of her sketches and drawings here.

 
Dix
1296446.  Wed Sep 26, 2018 7:55 am Reply with quote

Another Scandi:

Christina of Sweden

Queen at six years old, educated as a (male) prince would be (including the weapons and the swearing), took fully over as reigning queen at 18, refused to marry, collected art, abdicated at 28, converted to Catholicism and went to live in Rome.

BBC World service had a brilliant program about her recently. Available onlline. Recommended.

 
DVD Smith
1296564.  Thu Sep 27, 2018 5:05 am Reply with quote

Shifting gears slightly - here's a clip of a Queen gig at Wembley Stadium where you can actually see the sound waves travel through the crowd as they clap.



Source: https://rebrn.com/re/speed-of-sound-visualized-via-waves-of-queen-fans-clapping-in-ry-2820627/

 
AlmondFacialBar
1296611.  Thu Sep 27, 2018 6:25 am Reply with quote

Going by Freddie's outfit that was actually Live Aid. Which is admittedly beside the point. Very cool visualisation of the speed of sound indeed!

:-)

AlmondFacialBar

 
DVD Smith
1297100.  Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:47 am Reply with quote

Q: Which member of the Royal Family has the title "Duke of Lancaster"?

[Klaxon: Any male member of the Royal Family]

A: Queen Elizabeth II.

The Duke of Lancaster is one of the many titles held by the current English/British monarch, ever since 1413 when the Duke of Lancaster became King Henry V.

More info in the 'Dukes' thread here.

 
Alexander Howard
1297129.  Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:16 am Reply with quote

DVD Smith wrote:
The Duke of Lancaster is one of the many titles held by the current English/British monarch, ever since 1413 when the Duke of Lancaster became King Henry V.

More info in the 'Dukes' thread here.


Henry IV, actually...

Henry Bolingbroke invaded England to force King Richard II to restore to him the title and lands that had belonged to his father, John of Gaunt as Duke of Lancaster (who was a nasty piece of work by all accounts apart from Shakespeare's). The result of his campaign placed Henry himself on the throne, so his claimed rights and title would by law have merged in the crown. Having come this far for them, Henry was not going to lose that title and its rights, so he declared the Duchy to be a separate franchise vested in the Crown.

In Lancashire, so I am told, the loyal toast is to "The Queen, The Duke of Lancaster". Then there is the proclamation declared each Lancashire Day.

(When I lived in the West Country, the television news always described Prince Charles as 'Duke of Cornwall', not 'Prince of Wales'. That's a bit off the topic of Queens though. Cornwall has a Duke but no queens of its own, not since the Dark Ages, but you do find Indian Queens there.)

 
DVD Smith
1297132.  Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:22 am Reply with quote

Alexander Howard wrote:
Henry IV, actually...


You're correct in that Henry IV (Bolingbroke) did have the title, but he relinquished it to his son while Henry was still king. When his son became Henry V, the titles of Duke of Lancaster and King of England were unified again, and ever since the reigning monarch has always carried the title of Duke of Lancaster.

So yeah, my original fact could have been clearer, but I meant "without interruption". :)

 
Alexander Howard
1297156.  Mon Oct 01, 2018 10:35 am Reply with quote

Ah - you are right. I did not know that detail.

 
suze
1297178.  Mon Oct 01, 2018 11:43 am Reply with quote

Alexander Howard wrote:
In Lancashire, so I am told, the loyal toast is to "The Queen, The Duke of Lancaster".


In the Channel Islands, the toast is to La Reine, notre Duc. The reference in this case is to the title of Duke of Normandy, which is one of HM's many titles.

That was a French title which should have disappeared when the French peerage was abolished in 1848. But Queen Victoria liked the title, so it was "rescued" by being reinvented as the one and only title within the Peerage of Jersey.

The only other French peerage still in existence is the Baron de Longueuil. Longueuil is in Québec, and this one was reinvented as the one and only title within the Peerage of the Dominion of Canada. The 12th Baron - a second cousin to the Queen - is a retired GP from the Isle of Arran, and has only even been to Canada once. When he dies the title will pass to his daughter Angela, who teaches ballet in West London.

 
medievalist1155
1305176.  Fri Nov 30, 2018 6:53 am Reply with quote

I hope this is quite interesting:

I wrote and presented a research paper arguing that the Merovingian kings (early medieval France) practiced polygyny (multiple queens). Scholars are pretty well divided 50/50 on whether they did or not, but there is compelling evidence in favour of it being practiced. Dagobert I, in addition to his three named wives (there is a debate as to whether they were sequential or simultaneous), is described by the Fredegar chronicler as having so many concubines that a list of all of them would render his chronicle too long. All kinds of goodies like that, and I would be happy to send the elves the original paper (which isn't long), but I can't post it, as I wish to have it published after some revising.

 
Alexander Howard
1306507.  Wed Dec 12, 2018 2:40 am Reply with quote

I was going to write something insightful about queens in the Middle Ages, but will just run some statistics.

In the Anglo-Saxon period from King Alfred to the end of the Danish period there are fifteen Queens of the English recorded, of whom a third were named Ælfgifu. In fact from Alfred up to the Conquest, all the Queens but two had names echoing those used in the royal House of Wessex, which used names beginning ‘Ælf’, ‘Æthel’, ‘Ead’ or ‘Eald’. This suggests a lack of imagination in female names, or that noble families knew how to suck up to royalty.

The queens of Edward the Confessor and Harold both Edith, as was Harold's mistress (and his sister, although that was Edward's queen so I am double-counting), and Henry I's queen, though she was also known as Matilda. She was the last Queen Edith.

In the Middle Ages, from the Conquest to Henry VI, of 22 queens, six were named Elizabeth or Isabella (variants on the same name).

Ask any pub know-all about the famous Eleanor Crosses which used to line the route from Lincoln to London, and he will tell you they were for Eleanor of Aquitaine, but no – she survived her husband; there were three Queen Eleanors in a short space of time: the crosses were for Eleanor of Castile, Edward I’s first queen.

The Queen of Edward’s rebel enemy, Llywelyn the Last, was also an Eleanor. She was Edward’s cousin. It is uncertain whether the mountain in Snowdonia, Yr Elen, is named after her, but it is close to Carnedd Llywelyn, and another beside them has recently been renamed Carnedd Gwenllian after their daughter.

 
Alexander Howard
1307702.  Fri Dec 21, 2018 1:03 pm Reply with quote

Marie Antoinette: you could do a complete programme about her.

In Vienna (in the Hofburg, I think) there is a whole gallery devoted to Marie Antoinette, the Emperor's favourite daughter, showing her in childhood and as a growing young woman. In many of them, even as a child, she wears a red ribbon around her neck and frequently holds her hand carelessly pointing at her neck; it looks horribly prescient, until you learn that these portraits were not painted during the childhood they portray but after her death.

I like the story that when she was sent to marry Prince Louis she was led to the Rhine by her Austrian attendants, conveyed across the river, then led into a tent, where she was stripped of her Austrian clothes and redressed as a French princess to be received by her future husband.

I read that she wore potato flowers in her hair and understood that it was when she was playing at being a peasant maid - until a recent QI episode I did not realise that Antoine Parmentier had send potato flowers to the court. Rather than leaving the poor to starve then, Marie Antoinette was actually leading the way to seeing them all fed.

She certainly never said "let them eat cake" - that story long precedes the French Revolution (Rousseau refers to it in his Confessions). Other scandals were simply invented. Even today people are willing to believe a malicious slander to give them an excuse to hate someone else - it is a universal human characteristic, and Twitter's share price depends on it.

Violent revolutions occur when reform is beginning, when things are in flux and the extremists realise that they must strike before they settle again and someone else's vision is established. We forget that every generation and learn it again every generation, most recently in the Arab world. Marie Antoinette then was slain by the deep flaws not in herself but in humanity and in order that one political faction could climb briefly to the top over its opponents' corpses and those of a King and Queen.

 

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