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All you need to know about Princess Alice Of The United Kingdom. Princess Alice Of The United Kingdom
Princess Alice Maud Mary of the United Kingdom VA CI (25 April 1843 – 14 December 1878) was the Grand Duchess of Hesse and by Rhine from 1877 to 1878. She was the third child and second daughter of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Alice was the first of Queen Victoria's nine children to die, and one of three to be outlived by their mother ...
Princess Alice Of The United Kingdom. Princess Alice Maud Mary, the third child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, was born on April 25, 1843, at Buckingham Palace. She was the best-looking of Victoria’s daughters, but she was also kind and compassionate. She often visited the labourers who lived on the Royal estates, taking an interest in ...
But his death in December 1861 cast a shadow of grief over the wedding, making it a subdued affair. Princess Alice of the United Kingdom married Prince Louis of Hesse on July 1, 1862 in a private ceremony in the dining room of Osborne House. Her paternal uncle, the Hereditary Prince of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, gave her away.
Princess Alice of the United Kingdom. The Princess Alice (Alice Maud Mary: Grand Duchess of Hesse and by Rhine by marriage; April 25, 1843 – December 14, 1878). She was the second daughter of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. In 1861, she acted as the nurse to her dying father, and became interested in nursing.
Princess Alice of the United Kingdom VA CI (Alice Maud Mary; 25 April 1843 – 14 December 1878) was the Grand Duchess of Hesse and by Rhine from 1877 to 1878. She was the third child and second daughter of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Alice was the first of Queen Victoria's nine children to die, and one of three to be outlived by their ...
- Early life and family
- Later life
- Death and legacy
Alice was born in 1843 and was the third child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Her name was chosen because Lord Melbourne, the former prime minister had expressed to Queen Victoria that it was his favourite name. As a child, Alice was raised with her eight siblings under the watch of a series of tutors and governesses, developing especially close relationships with her elder siblings Vicky and Bertie. Alice was always a loving and caring child and was called the family caregiver. This role led to Alice caring for her dying grandmother and also her dying father in 1861 and subsequently to her role as her mothers unofficial secretary and emotional crutch in the following years. It was young Alice who carried the weight of the family on her shoulders during this difficult period and became the representative for the monarchy as Victoria pulled back from public life.
Despite the court still being in deep mourning in 1862, it was also the year that Alice got married. The wedding had been planned before her grandmother and fathers deaths, and Queen Victoria decided that the event should go ahead as planned as Albert would have wished. The wedding plans had begun two years earlier when Alices sister Vicky was given the task of composing a list of potential husbands. The chosen suitor was Prince Louis of Hesse, the nephew of the Grand Duke of Hesse. He had not been the highest in rank in the list of potential grooms, but after he attended Ascot races in 1860, it was clear that Alice and also her parents had taken a liking to him. After a substantial dowry had been provided, the wedding went ahead on 1st July 1862. The plans for a magnificent royal wedding were set aside, due to the family circumstances, and the couple were married in a small ceremony at Osborne house on the Isle of Wight. Queen Victoria was shielded from view of the ceremony by her sons, while Alices younger sisters were her bridesmaids. Alices uncle Ernest stepped in to give her away since her father had passed away. The day itself was wet and miserable which only added to the deep sadness felt by the family due to Alberts absence. Queen Victoria wrote a letter to Vicky, her eldest daughter who was at her home in Prussia, stating that the wedding was more like a funeral than a wedding and later called the day the saddest day she could remember. It must have been difficult for Alice and Louis to find happy moments in their day, especially as Alice was only allowed to wear her wedding gown for the ceremony before changing back into her mourning clothes. Despite the sad start to their married life, Alice and Louis were happy together in the early years. They had an enjoyable honeymoon before beginning their lives together in Darmstadt in the Grand Duchy of Hesse and by Rhine. Despite being welcomed enthusiastically on her arrival to Darmstadt, Alice struggled to settle into life in Hesse. As a Princess of the United Kingdom, Alice had been used to the highest standards of living, whereas in Hesse she had to make do with a repurposed home next to a busy street and a much smaller income. Alice tried her hardest to fit into life in her new realm and dedicated her time to charity work and studying art. In 1863 the first of the couples children was born; baby Victoria arrived while Alice was attending the wedding of her brother the Prince of Wales and Alexandra of Denmark. The baby was born in the presence of her grandmother the Queen, who quickly made it clear to Alice that she did not like her style of parenting. Alice wished to breastfeed her own children, an idea which appalled Victoria, but she persisted and raised her children as she wished. By 1874, the couple had seven children; Victoria, Elisabeth, Irene, Ernest, Friedrich, Alix and Marie.
Aside from her role as a mother, Alice continued to support numerous charities especially devoting herself to womens causes. She became interested in nursing and befriended Florence Nightingale; this interest became useful when Hesse was caught up in the Austro-Prussian war on the side of Austria in 1866. This war meant that Alice and her sister Victoria the Crown Princess of Prussia were set against each other as enemies. During the war, Alice visited the sick, and her charities took over the running of the state military hospitals. Hesse fared badly at the end of the war and lost both wealth and territory which deeply upset Alice, especially as her sister celebrated Prussias victory. In May 1873, Alice experienced yet another tragedy when her youngest son Friedrich fell from a window and died. Alice felt lonely and did not receive the emotional support she needed from her mother or her husband. The cracks began to appear in the marriage of Alice and Louis, and their relationship was never the same again after this. After this Alice threw herself into her charity work and spent time on projects on social reforms and housing problems.
On 14th December, the anniversary of her fathers death, Alice died. Her final words had been dear papa as she must have been reflecting on the death of her father at the time. Princess Victoria mourned her sister deeply but was not allowed to attend her funeral due to the hostilities between their nations. Alice was the first child of Victoria and Albert to die, and her mother survived her by two decades.
Even after Alices death, her family continued to suffer terrible tragedies. Alices daughter Alix went on to marry Tsar Nicholas II of Russia and Elisabeth married Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich of Russia. These choices of marriage partners were a fatal mistake for Alices daughters, as both were brutally murdered by the Bolsheviks, as were Alixs five children which led to the end of the Romanov dynasty. In 1978, Alices grandson Louis Mountbatten was assassinated by the IRA, apparently due to the continued British interference in Ireland.
It seems that the descendants of Alice of the United Kingdom are now experiencing better luck and happier times. Her great-grandson is Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh; he has recently celebrated 70 years of happy marriage and lives surrounded by his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and has dedicated his life to philanthropy and royal duties just as his great-grandmother Alice did.