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Saturday 22 March 2014

Vicky's Former Home at Kronberg

Following the untimely death of her husband, German Emperor Frederick III, Queen Victoria’s eldest daughter Vicky purchased a home for herself, Villa Schonberg in Kronberg in the Taunus Mountains, and was later presented with the old Schloss Kronberg by her son, Kaiser Wilhelm II. An aesthete and avid collector of art and furniture, Vicky delighted in her new home, filling it with beautiful artistic treasures. Today, the property remains in the hands of her descendants but is now a luxury hotel, which clearly, from these images and descriptions maintains the sort of atmosphere which Vicky created and would still deeply appreciate. What a wonderful experience it must be to stay there, taking tea in the library, which is still filled with her books...

Sheer and utter beauty!

Sunday 16 March 2014

Albert & Alice

The more I learn about Prince Albert, the more I admire this amazing man, and I was delighted to have been able to write about him for the wonderful Royal Central site:
Also, today, Amazon Kindle in the UK and Europe is carrying out a promotion of Alice, The Enigma, so if you are interested it is a very good time to purchase a copy!

Thursday 13 March 2014

May They Do The Right Thing!

It would be unthinkable if anyone killed in an accident had to be buried where he/she died. Great lengths are gone to to have the bodies of soldiers killed overseas repatriated and yet Richard III, England’s last Plantagenet king is to be buried in Leicester?
Today the High Court will decide on that ruling and I trust the right thing will be done and the case for Richard to be buried in York will be re-opened.
1.  Richard was Lord of the North.
2   He lived, loved and was loved in Yorkshire.
3   York remained loyal to him to the end.
4   He paid for chapels/chantries in York..a sure sign he wished to be buried there.
5   His beloved son is buried in Yorkshire
6   His present day descendants wish him to be buried here.
6   The decision to inter him in Leicester was reached by secret agreement but Richard was King of England and the people of England have a right to make the decision. Secret agreements, after all, led to the First World War and host of other evils!
7    Richard belongs to Yorkshire and had no ties with Leicester where his body was mutilated after death. 

Sunday 2 March 2014

Jacquot & Other Interesting Donkeys & Friends

A couple of weeks ago The Guardian  reviewed a new book, which looks very interesting, about Queen Victoria's life in Aix-Le-Bains, speaks of the donkey, Jacquot, which the Queen adopted:

Guardian Article

Jacquot was only one of several donkeys who became members of the extended family of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, as a very interesting article from 'The Idler' shows.

It is quite strange that people even now speak of the humble donkey as though this beautiful creature is somehow a sort of second-rate horse or something, when you consider the strength and serenity as well as the nobility of donkeys. It is virtually impossible to look at a donkey or spend any time with one without feeling instantly calmed and receiving an awareness that there is something far more supernaturally powerful here than mere flesh and bone. I cannot for the life of me think why G.K. Chesterton should describe the donkey as 'the devil's walking parody' or speak of the 'monstrous head or sickening cry' of these incredibly beautiful animals:

and I would like to draw more attention to the late Elizabeth Svendsen, whose wonderful work continues in The Donkey Sanctuary  wherein rescued donkeys work with children with disabilities or difficulties and produce amazing results.

"The Donkey Sanctuary was founded in 1969 by Dr Elisabeth Svendsen MBE. It is only through her amazing devotion to donkeys and hard work that the Sanctuary grew to the international charity it is today. Over 50 million donkeys and mules exist in the world. Many need care and protection from a life of suffering and neglect, whilst others have a vital role to play in human survival and happiness; they are at the heart of everything we do here at The Donkey Sanctuary."

I am sure that, had Queen Victoria been alive to see the Donkey Sanctuary's foundation, she would have been eager to have given it Royal Patronage!