Charles III of the United Kingdom, Crown Prince Wilhelm of Germany and Prussia, Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, German Emperor Friedrich III, German Emperor Wilhelm II, King Edward VII of the United Kingdom, May 6, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom
From the Emperor’s Desk: Along with today’s coronation of King Charles III, May 6th was the birthday of Crown Prince Wilhelm of Germany and Prussia, the date of the death of his wife, Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, and the date of the death of King Charles III’s great-great grandfather King Edward VII of the United Kingdom.
Also, on Monday I will post my thoughts and feelings about the coronation.
Edward VII (Albert Edward; November 9, 1841 – May 6, 1910) was King of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions, and Emperor of India, from January 22, 1901 until his death on May 6, 1910.
Prince Albert Edward was born at 10:48 a.m. on November 9, 1841 in Buckingham Palace. He was the eldest son and second child of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and her husband, Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha. He was christened Albert Edward at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, on January 25, 1842. He was named Albert after his father and Edward after his maternal grandfather, Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn. He was known as Bertie to the royal family throughout his life.
As the eldest son of the British sovereign, he was automatically Duke of Cornwall and Duke of Rothesay at birth. As a son of Prince Albert, he also held the titles of Prince of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha and Duke of Saxony. He was created Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester on December 8, 1841, Earl of Dublin on January 17, 1850.
Albert Edward married Princess Alexandra of Denmark at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, on March 10, 1863. He was 21; she was 18. Her father was Prince Christian of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg (later King Christian IX of Denmark) and her mother was Princess Louise of Hesse-Cassel.
He was Prince of Wales and heir apparent to the British throne for almost 60 years. During the long reign of his mother, he was largely excluded from political influence and came to personify the fashionable, leisured elite. He travelled throughout Britain performing ceremonial public duties and represented Britain on visits abroad. His tours of North America in 1860 and of the Indian subcontinent in 1875 proved popular successes, but despite public approval, his reputation as a playboy prince soured his relationship with his mother.
As king, Edward VII played a role in the modernisation of the British Home Fleet and the reorganisation of the British Army after the Second Boer War of 1899–1902. He re-instituted traditional ceremonies as public displays and broadened the range of people with whom royalty socialised.
He fostered good relations between Britain and other European countries, especially France, for which he was popularly called “Peacemaker”, but his relationship with his nephew, the German Emperor Wilhelm II, was poor. The Edwardian era, which covered Edward’s reign and was named after him, coincided with the start of a new century and heralded significant changes in technology and society, including steam turbine propulsion and the rise of socialism.
He died on May 6, 1910 in the midst of a constitutional crisis that was resolved the following year by the Parliament Act 1911, which restricted the power of the unelected House of Lords. King Edward VII was succeeded by his only surviving son, King George V.
Edward VII’s great-nephew was…
Wilhelm, German Crown Prince, Crown Prince of Prussia (May 6, 1882 – 20 July 1951)
Wilhelm was born on May 6, 1882 as the eldest son of the then Prince Wilhelm of Prussia, and his first wife, Princess Augusta Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein. He was born in the Marmorpalais of Potsdam in the Province of Brandenburg, where his parents resided until his father acceded to the throne. When he was born, his great-grandfather Wilhelm I was the German Emperor and his grandfather Crown Prince Friedrich Wilhelm was the heir apparent, making Wilhelm third in line to the throne.
As Emperor Wilhelm II’s heir, he was the last Crown Prince of the German Empire and the Kingdom of Prussia.
Wilhelm became crown prince at the age of six in 1888, when his grandfather German Emperor Friedrich III died and his father became Emperor. He was Crown Prince for 30 years until the fall of the empire on November 9, 1918. During World War I, he commanded the 5th Army from 1914 to 1916 and was commander of the Army Group German Crown Prince for the remainder of the war.
Wilhelm married Duchess Cecilie of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (September 20, 1886 – May 6, 1954) in Berlin on 6 June 1905. After their marriage, the couple lived at the Crown Prince’s Palace in Berlin in the winter and at the Marmorpalais in Potsdam, later on at Cecilienhof in Potsdam. Cecilie was the daughter of Friedrich Franz III, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1851–1897) and his wife, Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna of Russia (1860–1922). Their eldest son, Prince Wilhelm of Prussia, was killed fighting for the German Army in France in 1940.
After his return to Germany in 1923, he fought the Weimar Republic and campaigned for the reintroduction of the monarchy in Germany. After his plans to become president had been blocked by his father, Wilhelm supported Adolf Hitler’s rise to power, but when Wilhelm realised that Hitler had no intention of restoring the monarchy, their relationship soured.
Wilhelm became head of the House of Hohenzollern on June 4, 1941 following the death of his father and held the position until his own death on July 20, 1951.