Thursday 1 December 2022

"Where Are You Really From?"

They can call themselves whatever they like, but it is simply a matter of fact that upon the death of Queen Elizabeth II, our reigning dynasty changed from the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a branch of the House of Wettin, to the House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg, a branch of the House of Oldenburg.

The House of Oldenburg has reigned in Sweden in its time, and it reigns in Denmark and Norway to this day. It has also provided Kings of Iceland, Kings of the Hellenes, and Emperors of Russia, but until 8th September 2022 it had been pared back to its Danish and Norwegian roots. Then it acquired 15 new Realms, from Saint Lucia to the Solomon Islands, plus an array of Crown Dependencies, Overseas Territories, associated states, and so on.

It has only taken that House 308 years. None of the children of Queen Anne and of Prince George of Denmark survived, so the Throne passed to the House of Hanover. That was largely due to arrangements made by the Spencers, entwining the two dynasties for centuries until they went too far and intermarried.

Until recent days, Spencerism was a kind of Whig Jacobitism, demanding that the Succession skip a generation and alight on the sometime Princess Diana's elder son precisely as such. But the Succession has happened seamlessly, because that is what it does. By the way, like Sarah Ferguson, both of Charles III's wives have been descended from the numerous illegitimate children of Charles II. In fact, although there are others in the mix, they have all been descended from the same one, Charles Lennox, 1st Duke of Richmond. William V will be the first monarch descended from Charles II, who left no legitimate heir when he died in 1685.

Others, however, have no shortage of legitimate heirs. Although one of them is too young to know, and the other no doubt considers it an honour to two beloved grandparents, there are two patrilineal descendants of Elimar I, Princes of the ancient and illustrious House of Oldenburg and specifically of the House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg, who bear instead the double whammy of "Mountbatten-Windsor", as will their respective sisters until marriage. There has never been a Principality of Battenberg, and there is no such place at all as Mountbatten. "Where are you really from?", indeed.


  1. Do they have any connection to Battenberg?

    1. Not that I can tell. "Where are you really from?" would have been quite a question to Julia Hauke.