Tuesday, February 13, 2018

The Order of the Elephant

By Sodacan - Own work: Based on: File:Order of the Elephant (heraldry).svg, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=9711613

Crown Princess Mary recently looked beautiful at a royal New Year's reception, wearing the Order of the Elephant.  This is Denmark's oldest and most distinguished Order of chivalry, which dates back to the fifteenth century.  This unusual Order always looks attractive. This badge has a white-enamelled gold elephant with a castle on its back and a cross to one side with the reigning Sovereign's monogram on the other.

Originally, the Order was called the 'Fellowship of the Mother of God', which King Christian 1 founded in about 1470. The medal of the Virgin Mary and the baby Jesus was worn on a chain of tower-bearing elephants. An elephant seems a strange symbol for such a cold northern kingdom. However, elephants carrying towers were apparently associated with the Virgin Mary, and battle elephants were also a Christian symbol representing purity and chastity. Denmark also had a close relationship with the Thai royal family, whose most sacred sytmbol was the elephant.

After the Reformation, the Order's association with Catholicism was not in favour, but it was revived in the sixteenth century and new rules were made for the presentation of the insignias in 1693 by King Christian V.  These rules are still in existence. However, the statutes were amended by a Royal Ordinance in 1958, allowing both men and women to wear the order.

On New Year's Eve, the Order is worn on the chest on a chain-link collar, but on other occasions, it is worn on a blue sash. The monarch is the head of the Order.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

The Queen's Christmas Message 2017

I know that this is very late but better late than never! I found our Queen's speech very moving, especially after seeing the flowers and tributes to the victims of the terrorist attack at Westminster Bridge earlier in the year.

Monday, November 27, 2017


Buckingham Palace has announced the engagement of Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle! We wish them every happiness.

I will be writing about Meghan Markle here soon!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Riot at Watford!

I was a bit surprised to read about a riot in Watford when King Edward VII's Coronation was cancelled!

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Earl Spencer Says That He Was Told Lies

Interesting article: Earl Spencer Told Lies

Should these poor boys have had to walk behind their mother's coffin?

Monday, June 26, 2017

Did Thomas Seymour Abuse Princess Elizabeth?

I like the film Young Bess so I got quite a shock when I read Aidan J McQuade's review of Lamentation by C J Sansom in which he criticised the movie-makers for changing the relationship between Thomas Seymour and Princess Elizabeth (later Elizabeth 1) into a romance.

Since then I have read two views about whether Thomas Seymour sexually abused the young princess. Susanna Lipscomb argues that he did in this article from History Extra, while Claire Ridgeway graciously gives Seymour the benefit of the doubt in this article from The Elizabeth Files.
Both writers present compelling cases.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Queen Visited Manchester Victims

Unfortunately, there has been another terrible terrorist attack in the UK since the Manchester bombing, so I am a bit late putting this up.
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