Of deposed royals and shifting perceptions

The end of the Great War saw three great Imperial families scattered to the winds– the Prussian Hohenzollerns, the Austrian Hapsburgs, and the Russian Romanovs– and the resulting dismantling of their empires. With that being said, the end of WWII saw an equal fall of a number of minor houses, including the Savoy family in Italy, the Saxe-Coburg-Gotha house in Bulgaria, the Karađorđević dynasty in Yugoslavia, and the Romanian Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen franchise. Meanwhile, the House of Glücksburg in Greece just barely held on.

Two of those came full circle this month.

King Michael I of Romania (25 October 1921 – 5 December 2017) cousin of Queen Elizabeth II and member of the Royal Victorian Order, was given a full state funeral in Romania last week attended by members of just about every royal family in Europe. He was escorted by a military honor guard and his coffin– with the crown he was forbidden to wear– carried to the sepulcher on an artillery caisson pulled by a U.S.-made humvee, Romania being a NATO ally and all these days.

The crowd, reportedly, went wild.

Michael of course was no saint, allowing much of the crap that happened in Romania during the era of dictator Ion Antonescu.  Nevertheless, he did, in the darkest days of WWII, turn against the Germans and support a coup ousting Antonescu that brought the country to the side of the Allies and saved his throne until the communists forced him from it at gunpoint in 1947, going into exile in the West simply as “Prince of Hohenzollern” rather than King of Romania.

Further, as reported by the AP: “The remains of Italy’s King Victor Emmanuel III were repatriated from Egypt and interred in a family mausoleum Sunday in northern Italy, 71 years after Italians rejected the monarchy in a referendum and the country’s royals went into exile.”

Notably, he was placed at the Sanctuary of Vicoforte, a church in the northwest Piedmont region tied to his family, rather than the Pantheon where Italy’s first two Savoy kings, Victor Emmanuel II and Umberto I, and its first queen, Margherita, are buried.

King Victor Emmanuel III (short) of Italy visits Russia – 1902. He kept his throne much longer than Tsar Nicholas II to his right, but in the end died in exile, just not at the hands of his own people as in Nicky’s case

The “Soldier King” was on the throne during both World Wars, the first an outright territorial grab by the Italians against their former allies Austria and Germany, the second the product of Il Duce, whom Victor abided and dutifully accepted the crown of “Emperor of Ethiopia” and “King of the Albanians” from after Mussolini’s further colonial efforts. In the end, with the Allies in Sicily, Victory dismissed Mussolini in 1943 in favor of Marshal Pietro Badoglio and ordered the strongman’s arrest (which is tempered with the fact that he allowed him and the Blackshirts to achive power in the first place in 1922), this knocked Italy out of the Axis bullpen and sparked a brutal civil war for two years. In the end, Victor abdicated but, in 1947 when the socialist government revoked the Italy privileges of all male members of the House of Savoy, left the country for Egypt where he died.

This month an Italian air force military plane officially repatriated the remains of Victor Emmanuel III, which were transferred from Alexandria to the sanctuary of Vicoforte, near Turin, and interred with honors over the howls of Italy’s Jewish community and those still around who fought against the fascists.

I guess in a way time heals all some wounds.

Tags: , , ,

About laststandonzombieisland

Let me introduce myself. I am a bit of a conflict junkie. I am fascinated by war and warfare, assassination, personal protection and weaponry ranging from spud guns and flame throwers to thermonuclear bombs and Soviet-trained Ebola monkeys. In short, if it’s violent or a tool to create violence it is kind of my thing. I have written a few thousand articles on the dry encyclopedia side for such websites as Guns.com, University of Guns, Outdoor Hub, Tac-44, History Times, Big Game Hunter, Glock Forum, Firearms Talk.com, and Combat Forums; as well as for print publications like England Expects, and Strike First Strike Fast. Several magazines such as Sea Classics, Military Historian and Collector, Mississippi Sportsman and Warship International have carried my pieces. Additionally I am on staff as a naval consultant and writer for Eye Spy Intelligence Magazine. Currently I am working on several book projects including an alternative history novel about the US-German War of 1916, and a biography of Southern gadfly and soldier of fortune Bennett Doty. My first novel, about the coming zombie apocalypse was released in 2012 by Necro Publications and can be found at Amazon.com as was the prequel, Chimera-44. I am currently working on book two of that series: "Pirates of the Zombie Coast." In my day job I am a contractor for the U.S. federal government in what could best be described as the ‘Force Protection’ field. In this I am an NRA-certified firearms, and less-than-lethal combat instructor.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

USS Gerald R. Ford

Mission Ready, Qualified & Competent, On Time Execution!

The Unwritten Record

Exploring History with the National Archives Special Media Division

Stuff From Hsoi

Writing about whatever interests me, and maybe you.

Louisville Gun

Thoughts and Musings on Gun Control & Crime

Ted Campbell's Point of View

An old soldier's blog, mostly about Conservative politics and our national defence and whatever else might interest me on any given day

CIVILIAN GUNFIGHTER

Identifying the Best Training, Tools, and Tactics for the Armed Civilian!

MountainGuerrilla

Nous Defions!

Under Every Leaf.

A Site for the British Empire 1860-1913

JULESWINGS

Military wings and things

Western Rifle Shooters Association

How are you using the time this weekend?

Meccanica Mekaniikka Mecanică

The Mechanix of Auto, Aviation, Military...pert near anything I feel relates to mechanical things, places, events or whatever I happen to like. Even non-mechanical artsy-fartsy stuff.

Eatgrueldog

Where misinformation stops and you are force fed the truth III

The LBM Blogger

Make Big Noise

Not Clauswitz

The semi-sprawling adventures of a culturally hegemonic former flat-lander and anti-idiotarian individualist who fled the toxic Smug emitted by self-satisfied lotus-eating low-land Tesla-driving floppy-hat-wearing lizadroid-Leftbat Coastal Elite Califorganic eco-tofuistas ~ with guns, off-road moto, boulevardier-moto, moto-guns, snorkeling, snorkel-guns, and home-improvement stuff.

The Angry Staff Officer

Peddling history, alcohol, defense, and sometimes all three at once

To the Sound of the Guns

Civil War Artillery, Battlefields and Historical Markers

%d bloggers like this: