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  #141  
Old 09-18-2017, 12:42 PM
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I think many of the problems George V's sons suffered was the result of George, a rather shy and emotionally repressed man, employing a quarter deck manner with them. They were frightened of being summoned to his study as children when he felt they needed a ticking off.

I think George was fond of his children in his own way, but didn't know how to express it. He certainly didn't give much praise to them as they grew up. However, he did express pride in Albert, his second son, as an adult. Mary was reputedly his favourite child, and he didn't bellow at her. I believe all of them probably hid things from him when they were adults, but that isn't unusual, even nowadays!

May, his wife, was a gentler character, but also emotionally repressed, shy and detached. She did teach her children some French and how to embroider (one of Edward's hobbies as an adult was tapestry work.) Her son Edward is on record as saying that she was a different person when George wasn't around. She had the most tremendous respect for her husband as King and Emperor and so rarely interceded with him on the children's behalf.

The couple certainly didn't see too much of their offspring when they were very small, (and George objected to excessive noise, crying etc at York Cottage) however, there are lots of photos of the family enjoying outdoor activities at Sandringham and Balmoral when the children were a bit older.

Considering the times, when most upper class parents saw their offspring for an hour a day if that, (plenty of anecdotal evidence of parents and children in those households leading quite separate lives) I do think that the family did spend a reasonable amount of time together when the parents weren't involved in Royal duties.
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  #142  
Old 09-18-2017, 04:49 PM
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I think the reference to being better is the result of more hands on approach than other in the upper class, not that it was done correctly.
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  #143  
Old 09-18-2017, 05:08 PM
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You should read several books and decide... What problems did Prss Mary have? I haven't heard of any
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  #144  
Old 09-18-2017, 09:47 PM
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I know she was extremely shy, inclined to be nervous among strangers, and there was an impression that Prss Mary was quite reclusive because she wasn't seen much in London.
However, her eldest son said she wasn't like that at all among family and friends and did a great deal of charity work and opening buildings etc in Yorkshire. He also said that, contrary to rumours, his parents marriage was happy and they had lots of things in common. However, like THEIR parents, and their class, they weren't demonstrative with their children, nor did they ever really talk about feelings, emotions.
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  #145  
Old 09-19-2017, 05:16 AM
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I don't think they were BAD parents but boht were conscious of appearances and of how important it was for the monarchy to be seen to be "behaving well". Edward VII was not too worried about this, and he and Alix were very fond of their grandchildren and inclined to be indulgent with them. However G and Mary were concerned to ensrure that the children were well behaved and proper and learned to be seen "looking good" in public.. and Q Mary wanted them to have a good education unlike many other royals.
and I think both of them were shy repressed people who found it hard to be overly affectionate with small children and it was know that "if the baby cried he'd be handed back to Nanny"... and one of the nannies used to pinch (was it David) or Albert, to make him cry when he saw his parents. But I don't think that that idea that "if Baby cries you hand him back to his nanny and he goes back to the nursery" was that unusual among upper class parents.. who also of course sent their children off to boarding school and left them to the care of governesses and Nannies a lot.
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  #146  
Old 09-23-2017, 04:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Curryong View Post
I know she was extremely shy, inclined to be nervous among strangers, and there was an impression that Prss Mary was quite reclusive because she wasn't seen much in London.
However, her eldest son said she wasn't like that at all among family and friends and did a great deal of charity work and opening buildings etc in Yorkshire. He also said that, contrary to rumours, his parents marriage was happy and they had lots of things in common. However, like THEIR parents, and their class, they weren't demonstrative with their children, nor did they ever really talk about feelings, emotions.
I didn't see this.. sorry. But yes I gather that Prss Mary, Lady Harewood was shy, like many of her family. but I've never heard that she had problems as such or that she was "bullied" by her father the way that he DID yell at his sons. As the only girl I got the impression she was the favourite and he was esp fond of her and of course he didn't expect things of her that he did of his sons.
I did read in some places htat her marriage to Lrd harewood was not happy, but not "terriby unhappy".. just that they weren't very close. however I don't know muich about her.
I got the impression that she and Harewood were "country horsey doggy" people, and got on OK...
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  #147  
Old 09-23-2017, 05:03 AM
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Yes, I think both were horsey and doggy country people, who lived the very comfortable lifestyle on the family estates, in between their county roles and dispensing charity to the needy, that the aristocracy of their time usually did.

You only get hints about Princess Mary, don't you; that she was valued by her parents, (won't say spoiled but certainly not bellowed at by her father,) that Viscount Lascelles had proposed to her only to win a bet at his club, etc etc. (I dont believe that, by the way, lol.)

Also that she was unhappy in her marriage, and was disgusted by the way David, who was apparently her favourite brother, was treated on his wedding day by his family and siblings.

The trouble is that her elder son's autobiography was overly discreet and there are no decent modern biographies of Mary's life alone (though she appears in books on George V's children) although in truth there's probably no interest in publishing any.
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  #148  
Old 09-23-2017, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by duchessrachel View Post
I recently finished reading two books on Queen Mary (one of them authorized) and one on King Edward VIII (Duke of Windsor), also authorized, and these books discussed the parenting style of King George V and Queen Mary as not being very good. One of the books attributed King George VI stuttering problem with how he was parented and also his sister Mary's problems (which I had never heard of) to the same parenting, not to mention the Duke of Windsor's issues. However, I am currently reading the biography by Kenneth Rose on King George V and he says the opposite. He says that they were better parents than most people in their social class. He includes a quote from a lifelong friend of Queen Mary who says they were affectionate and loving but that the tragedy was that they did not understand the mind of a child. So which is it? I am confused.
I've stated before that I think that they were bad parents to their older children, particularly their sons but their bad parenting was more due to their parenting skills, or lack thereof, and not that they were unloving or uncaring. However I will say that I have no issue with how they handled Prince John and his maladies.

I think the confusion may lie in the paradox that George and Mary could not be characterized as uncaring but that they still made egregious mistakes and miscalculations as parents. I think the highlighted quote perfectly sums up the paradox of their parenting.

P S.
It is hard to excuse away the crazy nanny situation and how that went undetected for so long especially considering that the family was cooped up in "poky" York Cottage.
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  #149  
Old 09-24-2017, 06:43 AM
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The trouble is that her elder son's autobiography was overly discreet and there are no decent modern biographies of Mary's life alone (though she appears in books on George V's children) although in truth there's probably no interest in publishing any.
She's not well known, so I suppose noone's going to write about her. I did read that the marriage wasnt' all thtat happy, but I'm not sure. It sounds as if they had plenty in common and probably they were OK.. she was shy and quiet and preferred a country life, not doing many royal engagements.. and to be honest I suspect that given the times (lack of men after the War, her status as a PRincess) she probably reckoned she was Lucky to have found a husband.. and if they had some interests in common and did not quarrel much, she problaby "made up her mind to be happy". I haven't heard of her feeling that David was badly treated.. if she had, couldn't she have attended the wedding?
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  #150  
Old 09-24-2017, 07:50 AM
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Again I've only read vague stories of this and it was years ago, that Mary felt that they had ganged up on David somewhat. However, she had her mother and brother Bertie to consider as well. The family were determined to stick together, show solidarity, and so she stayed away.

She and her husband did visit David after the Abdication, while he was in Austria, lonely and waiting for Wallis's divorce decree to be finalised. It's been said, without much proof certainly, that Mary refused to attend Elizabeth and Philip's wedding because her brother hadn't been invited. She gave bad health as the excuse.
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  #151  
Old 09-24-2017, 07:58 AM
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I cant remember if George D of Kent attended the wedding? If not he DID keep in touch with David more than the others.. as I recall.
I'm just surprised that Mary felt that david had been badly treated, because I really don't think he was, and I'm sure that pretty much all of the family felt that he was the one who was at fault. But I suppose she might have felt that he couldn't help faling in Love with Wallis and that even if he HAD to give up the throne, they could visit him in private and treat him as a still loved member of the family.
but clearly for the most part they DIDNT want to treat him as family, any more, beyond an absolute minimum. While I'm not one who dislikes Q Mary, there's soemthing chilly abuot her saying when Wallis had a hysterectomy, "I send a kind message to your wife".. just ONCE I imagine, in years that she showed any kindness towards Wallis
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  #152  
Old 09-24-2017, 08:12 AM
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I cant remember if George D of Kent attended the wedding? If not he DID keep in touch with David more than the others.. as I recall.
I'm just surprised that Mary felt that david had been badly treated, because I really don't think he was, and I'm sure that pretty much all of the family felt that he was the one who was at fault. But I suppose she might have felt that he couldn't help faling in Love with Wallis and that even if he HAD to give up the throne, they could visit him in private and treat him as a still loved member of the family.
but clearly for the most part they DIDNT want to treat him as family, any more, beyond an absolute minimum. While I'm not one who dislikes Q Mary, there's soemthing chilly abuot her saying when Wallis had a hysterectomy, "I send a kind message to your wife".. just ONCE I imagine, in years that she showed any kindness towards Wallis
George Duke of Kent was dead in 1947
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  #153  
Old 09-24-2017, 08:18 AM
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what has that got to do with his attending David's wedding in 1937?
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  #154  
Old 09-24-2017, 08:31 AM
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Yes, the Duke was alive in 1937 and there were rumours that he too was rather torn about David. (You wouldn't have thought that Marina, who could be very snobbish and snooty, would have gone to see the Windsors too willingly.) I think George visited his brother privately too after the Abdication, but didn't turn up for the wedding. So family unity was maintained for public consumption.

Perhaps the loving memories Mary and George had of their older brother just clashed with the shock they both felt about his actions as King Emperor. After all, as far as George was concerned David had helped him conquer his drug addiction, and earlier David had been angry with his parents for (in his eyes) forcing the Harewood marriage on his sister. He seems to have felt that it wasn't a love match, though Mary was apparently a cheerful enough bride.
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  #155  
Old 09-24-2017, 08:32 AM
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George Duke of Kent was dead in 1947
And Edward & Wallis married in 1937. AFAIK none of the Royal Family attended their wedding.
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  #156  
Old 09-30-2017, 08:24 PM
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I really don't know where to put this question so I will put it here since I just finished a book on King George V. I recently began reading books on members of the British Royal Family. Here are the ones I have read:

Diana, Her True Story--Andrew Morton
The Housekeeper's Diary -- Wendy Berry
Diana, In Search of Herself --Sally Bedell Smith
Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother(official bio) -- Shawcross
The Untold Story of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother - Lady Colin Campbell (kind of ashamed to say I read that book on the Queen Mother)
Queen Mary (official bio) -- Henessey
Matriarch: Queen Mary and the House of Windsor - Edwards
King Edward VIII (official bio) -- Ziegler
King George V - Kenneth Rose

I am about to read "The Reluctant King" about King George VI written by Sarah Bradford. I don't have any books waiting for me after I finish this one. I like to have at least one book waiting for me to read so can anyone recommend some more books on the British Royal family. I was thinking about reading the new biography on Prince Charles by Sally Bedell Smith, but it is not cheap enough yet. I like to get my books from thriftbooks.com. I had thought about reading one on Queen Elizabeth II, but there are so many. What I am really interested in, though, are those members of the family who have already passed on. The Queen's and Prince Charles's bios are still being written so to speak. Could someone please recommend some books? Thanks.
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  #157  
Old 09-30-2017, 08:42 PM
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Not to go too far off topic but as all these folks are related to George V, here's a few I have. I've read the first one and plan on reading the second one this month.

Philip and Elizabeth: Portrait of a Royal Marriage by Gyles Brandreth
Victoria's Daughters by Jerrold Packard

Enjoy!
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  #158  
Old 09-30-2017, 08:43 PM
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You might find Princes at War by Deborah Cadbury interesting as it covers the reaction/responses of George V's sons in the lead up to and during WWII.

I'm currently reading Elizabeth the Queen by Sally Bedell Smith and so far, so good!
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  #159  
Old 09-30-2017, 08:50 PM
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How far back would you like to go? If you want to tackle Victoria and Albert you could do worse than to start with Elizabeth Longford's biography on Queen Victoria. It was written years ago but I'm sure there are copies in secondhand bookstores.

I'd really recommend you read the bio of Queen Alexandra by Georgina Battiscombe if you can get hold of a copy. It was written quite a while ago but I'm sure it's still around in public libraries etc. It's an interesting read, I think. Not that much is known about the private Alexandra (or the public one for that matter) and this lifts the lid a little.

There's an entertaining but well researched book on Edward VII by Stanley Weintraub called 'Edward the Caresser:The Playboy Prince'. It isn't all about Bertie's love life in spite of the title, and it's crammed full of incidents of his life I'd never known before. Alexandra comes into that too, of course.
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Old 09-30-2017, 09:27 PM
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I really enjoyed That Woman by Anne Sebba, about Wallis Simpson.

There's also King Kaiser Tsar by Catherine Clay about George V, Wilhelm II, and Nicholas II.

If you want to go back further, A Royal Affair by Stella Tillyard is about the siblings of George III.
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