Monday, May 4, 2009

The Wild Princess

The young girl ran out onto the street and stood there bewildered. Luckily a kindly man watching from an upstairs window saw that she was lost and helped her by hailing a cab for her.

She was Princess Charlotte Augusta, the daughter of George IV and Charlotte of Brunswick, but the taxi driver didn't know this. He thought that she was a fine lady's maid!

Torn between her drunken and dissolute father and her promiscuous mother, Charlotte was often left with her rather stern grandmother and her strange aunts. She took after her mother and grew up to be rather rebellious. This was not surprising because her father was very jealous of her popularity and often tried to keep her in seclusion.

When she went to her mother's in the cab, Princess Charlotte was distraught because her father had found out that she wanted to break off her engagement to the Prince of Orange who had been drunk at a social occasion. Charlotte was not impressed!

The Princess was in love with Prince Augustus of Prussia at this time, but he was already married. She had also had a relationship with the handsome and flirtatious Captain Hesse but he didn't intend to marry her.

Eventually she married Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg, who was also young and handsome. He was penniless but very ambitious and the Tsar of Russia was very impressed with the young man. He first visited England in the Tsar's entourage but Charlotte took no notice of him because she loved someone else.

Sophisticated Prince Leopold had excellent manners so Princess Charlotte's boisterous and impulsive ways shocked him at first. But the young couple fell in love quite quickly.

Charlotte died tragically in 1817 after a year of happiness with Leopold at their country house, Claremont, after having a still-born baby. She was only 23. The nation's grief was so great that it resembled the mourning after Princess Diana died.

Soon afterwards Princess Victoria was born.


Lucy said...

Wow- what a great piece! For me this was so timely...At Royal Intrigue we're reading Jean Plaidy's -Indiscretions of the Queen (all about this royal family)- I'm sure you'd love it. Come visit us at

Thanks Viola:)

Viola said...

Thank you so much, Ms.Lucy. I do like Jean Plaidy. She introduced me to British history and I've loved it ever since! I read 'The Queen's Favourites' recently and enjoyed it very much.

I'll certainly come and visit. :)

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Passages to the Past said...

Ha - I was just reading the review that Ms. Lucy was talking about - how funny! Miss Caroline seems like an interesting woman....I'm off to find some novels on her to add to the wishlist!

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