NO ROYAL dynasty has quite the fascination or influence of Queen Victoria and her descendants.
The Queen had, in all, forty grandchildren spread throughout the courts of Europe. They reigned in Great Britain, Germany, Russia, Greece, Norway, Spain and Romania, while others were to rule lesser principalities and duchies. They were all part of an extended, single European royal family, dominated by a formidable matriarch, and divided by all the squabbles, jealousies, love affairs, scandals and feuds that occur in large families anywhere. The variety of these princes and princesses was extraordinary, from the exotic and flamboyant Marie of Romania and the autocratic, complex yet ultimately dignified Kaiser Wilhelm II, to the down-to-earth and stolid King George V.
Yet all Victoria's grandchildren were united in respect, love and admiration for their eminent grandmother—the leading member of 'the royal mob', as she liked to call them. And a different, tragic thread also linked these children—haemophilia. Victoria, quite unknowing, was a carrier of the disease that was to cast a dark shadow over the lives of many of her grandchildren.
This book brings together for the first time the stories of all forty of Queen Victoria's grandchildren. It is a superb interweaving of their private and political lives, illustrated with numerous fascinating photographs, many of which have rarely been seen.
LANCE SALWAY was born in Brighton, Sussex in 1940, and was educated mainly in Zambia, South Africa and Hong Kong.
He works as a writer, editor and translator, and Queen Victoria's Grandchildren has grown out of his lifelong interest in royalty, particularly Queen Victoria and her descendants. He has drawn on many years of research, as well as his own extensive collection of royal memorabilia, for this book.