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  #201  
Old 04-27-2013, 12:36 AM
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OK, but did he at least position himself as a leader of the democracy movement, someone to rally around? Was he a Christian X or a Leopold III? Was he a lion or a mouse? Leadership after all requires one to be willing to take risks.
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  #202  
Old 04-27-2013, 12:42 AM
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Dear Brazilian, it is my belief, and that of many others, that Queen Victoria and her husband (and/or her husband) passed on unhealthy genes to their children and grandchildren. Just because they looked normal (no two-heads, etc.) does not mean that they were normal. Yes, normal enough to have many children and reign, but the Queen and some of her descendants suffered from more than one hereditary illness. The practice in England of heirs marrying commoners is positive because it will improve this gene pool. the gene pool was not bad in all respects, producing some fine people who were healthy, but even into my lifetime there have been some royal sufferers of hereditary disease.

These diseases occurred on the continent as well as in England, but I am not sure if they are in any way in the house of Orleans-Braganca (which I think, from my limited knowledge) is the major descent of the Brazilian claimants. It is perfectly possible for cousins who are free of illness to produce unaffected children. In some ailments, there seems to be an encouragement of severe illness if both parents have the ailment, which can happen if affected parents marry. if as you say the royal Brazilians are healthy and not affected by hereditary illness, then this is a blessing. It would seem that the Luxembourg house is, from any observation I have done by reading online, free of such illness as well. However, there are various lines extending back from the Luxembourg rulers, including that of Queen Victoria of England, which were affected. Maybe these things are now back far enough from the present to have been eliminated.

The Catholic Church traditionally forbade marriages between close cousins, so it surprising that so many were allowed. Likewise, the Church of England forbade cousin marriage in anything closer than the 4th degree (and spelled out what this meant in great detail in a book from England which my ancestors brought over from England, but which was destroyed in a forest fire). I would guess that Albert and Victoria had to have special permission from the Archbishop of Canterbury to marry in a degree closer than that permitted by the Church. I know that the people of where I live now, Hispanics living in Santa Fe New Mexico, had to send members regularly to Rome to receive permission of the Pope to marry within proscribed degrees. I saw a plaque in a church near here showing the marriage of seven generations of people with the same last name, with but one marriage outside the immediate family, and I was told by the guide there that these early residents of Santa Fe had to go every time to Rome for permission.
Incidentally, the Prince and Princess of Astrurias were here at the cathedral for the celebration of the 400th year of the city of Santa Fe de San Francisco d'Assis, which is the full name of the city of Santa Fe.
Most of the original settlers of Santa Fe were "hidden Jews" escaping from the persecution of Mexico, as their forefathers had escaped the Spanish inquisition.
This fact is now taught in the universities of New Mexico and Arizona. My handyman is a descendant of the first families who came 400 years ago, to the first Capitol city of America.
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  #203  
Old 04-27-2013, 07:50 AM
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Yup, and I think those guys are pretty pathetic too. (Archduke Imre, for example, reminds me of Kenneth the Page from 30 Rock, only kind of evil looking.)
Why is he pathetic? Because he married an American commoner or because he has right-wing political views that he shares with millions and millions of other people?

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So? The Imperial Family has to throw away their traditions because of a coup? I believe the same would go for the Imperial Families of Russia and Germany.
Germany is a little different. Prince Georg-Friedrich of Prussia was the last one required to make an equal marriage in order to keep his inheritance; his sons will be free to marry whoever they want to. In 1920, it was agreed that the heir and the next heir would need to make equal marriages - equal meaning a noble person, not a royal. Prince Louis Ferdinand married a Grand Duchess of Russia, his two firstborn sons married commoners and his third and fourth sons married countesses. So the third son, also named Louis Ferdinand became the heir. He tragically died two years after his wedding while his wife was pregnant with their second child. Their first child, Prince Georg Friedrich, became the new heir. If his father would have outlived his own father, Georg Friedrich wouldn't have needed to marry a fellow aristocrat.
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  #204  
Old 04-27-2013, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Saschana View Post
Why is he pathetic? Because he married an American commoner or because he has right-wing political views that he shares with millions and millions of other people?
Seems that everyone who doesn't act in the same way she acts, or who doesn't put any value on family traditions, is pathetic.
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Germany is a little different...
Oh, I wasn't aware of that. Thank you for the information, Shaschana.

Well, it isn't carved in stone that a member of the Brazilian Imperial Family has to renounce his/her succession rights if not marry equally. The decision to give or not Dynastic consent is solely reserved for the Head of the Imperial House. When the time comes, Prince Rafael, as the Head of the Imperial House, willl be able to let his children marry commoners an keep their succession rights. Who knows what will happens.
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Yes, normal enough to have many children and reign, but the Queen and some of her descendants suffered from more than one hereditary illness.
Interesting, Mariel. I always thought the only hereditary illness that Queen Victoria's descendants inherited from her was hemophilia, which was transmitted by the Duke of Kent (the Queen's father), not as a result of Victoria and Albert's inbreeding.
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OK, but did he at least position himself as a leader of the democracy movement, someone to rally around? Was he a Christian X or a Leopold III? Was he a lion or a mouse? Leadership after all requires one to be willing to take risks.
He was the leader of the Monarchists, who, naturally, opposed the Government. But, by the time, been a Monarchist was illegal (that was a Federal Decree from 1889 to 1988).

The Imperial Family and their followers opposed the Military Government, but not too openly. Otherwise, they would all end up killed.
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  #205  
Old 04-27-2013, 04:36 PM
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Brazilian, I am not aware whether Victoria's husband Albert had a genetic disease, as I am not aware very much of his family background. But they were close cousins, and since Victoria probably transmitted Porphyria, it is likely that Albert's family might have had it. The statistics on Porphyria are that 50% of children get if if one parent has it, 75% if both parents have it, but these are just averages--a family of nine, such as Victoria had, might have only one child with porphyria, or might have all nine, but the chances would increase if her husband had the disease. Homozygotous recipients of porph are usually more ill, too, than heterozygotous ones. There have been efforts on both sides of the issue of whether QV had porphyria. Her family of origin was SO ill, most of them, that it seems very likely she was afflicted.
As you may have read on other threads, I have this very rare disease myself. Did I get it from the Stuart friends of my Medieval ancestor Robert de Pollock, or did it come in through a Plantagenet line, or a Tudor line, or what? I don't have any records and my modern ancestors on these lines were just common people without records. As someone said, probably they were too sick to have the energy to keep extensive family records.

Because of many reasons, my porph-line grandmother was estranged from her sister's family, the prime reason being that the sister married a Catholic and my grandma was a rigid Presbyterian. So I didn't know the nine cousins born to my father's aunt Jessie. Later in life, curious as to what happened to them concerning the Porphyria, I went to the funeral of the last one. I met a healthy handsome successful family whom I wish I had known. To my knowledge, only one of them had Porphyria, a man who appealed to my father for help when I was a small child, and who after that drowned because of the neurological impairment. The other eight seem to have been fine. But in my dad's family, he and his sisters all had Porphyria, although it was not diagnosed in their lifetimes, only in mine.

People on this site don't like discussion about Porphyria very well, so I have been mostly silent about it, but I have a long memory and an incredible amount of experience in this "field."
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  #206  
Old 04-27-2013, 05:05 PM
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Queen Maria I of Portugal (1734-1816), Prince Rafael's great-great-great-great-great-great-grandmother, and Princess Alexandra's great-great-great-great-great-grandmother, also had porphyria.
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  #207  
Old 04-27-2013, 05:07 PM
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Whatever porphyria Victoria's descendants may have, it has nothing to do with the fact that she married her first cousin - porphyria is an illness seen in the BRF before Victoria - her grandfather, George III, being one of the more famous (hypothesized) cases of it. Thus, any porphyria genetics in Victoria and her descendants came from Victoria's father (much like the hemophilia likely came from). As she was related to Albert through her mother, inbreeding did not cause any problems on that count.

If George III did have porphyria (it is technically a hypothesis), then it's possible that he got it from his Scottish ancestors, as it's believed that Mary, Queen of Scots and her father, James V, may have also had it.

Inbreeding can cause genetic problems, but typically it's the result of a history of inbreeding, particularly among first cousins. The disabilities in the Habsburgs didn't simply happen because two cousins married, it happened because extensive inbreeding happened - to the point that by the time of Charles II of Spain, every one of his eight great-grandparents was a close descendant of Joanna and Philip I of Castile.
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  #208  
Old 04-28-2013, 12:39 AM
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Originally Posted by BrazilianEmpire View Post
Interesting, Mariel. I always thought the only hereditary illness that Queen Victoria's descendants inherited from her was hemophilia, which was transmitted by the Duke of Kent (the Queen's father), not as a result of Victoria and Albert's inbreeding.
Correct, the Haemophilia was not, nor was it spread by, inbreeding. Then there is Porphyria, which Mariel is quite interested in, but that was something that was common through the centuries and not a result of inbreeding either. Ish covers it quite well. I find it interesting that people always say, Öh the royal families are inbred"and yet the only example they can quote of where this was a problem is that of poor Charles Habsburg, who lived several centuries ago.
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  #209  
Old 04-28-2013, 03:02 AM
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I find it interesting that people always say, Öh the royal families are inbred"and yet the only example they can quote of where this was a problem is that of poor Charles Habsburg, who lived several centuries ago.
I'm going to both agree and disagree with you on this one - hear me out.

Royal families are inbred. There is a long history of relatively close cousins marrying other relatively close cousins in just about every European royal family - if not all of them outright. Even look at the current Queen of England - she married her 3rd (I believe) cousin, and they're both descended from Queen Victoria, a woman who married her first cousin. QEII is also descended from the KGV/Mary of Teck union, which was another pair of cousins marrying. Inbreeding happens.

What don't actually see, or don't frequently see, is genetic disasters caused by inbreeding - the reasoning being that there is typically enough diversity and the actual cousins marrying isn't as close or as frequent as people tend to believe. There is even the rather regular introduction of fresh genetics periodically, to keep the gene pool diverse. The problem with the Habsburgs wasn't that there were cousins marrying cousins, it was that there were so many cousins marrying cousins (and I believe even aunts/uncles marrying nephews/nieces). You don't get Charles Habsburg just because two cousins married, you get it because a whole bunch of cousins married.

The problem that houses that require dynastic marriages, such as the Brazilian Imperial Family, is at risk of facing is that bunch of cousins. The Brits have a history of royals marrying cousins, but they also have a history of royals marrying not related royals, and royals marrying members of the aristocracy, and royals marrying commoners (okay, the last one is newer, but even before they started marrying the commoners they were still screwing them). This keeps the gene pool fresher.

To go back to the original discussion that started this all, the best argument that I think has been put forth in favour of dynastic marriages in the Brazilian Imperial family is simply that it's tradition. I'm not convinced that it's necessary to maintain an imperial family - not all former ruling houses maintain dynastic marriages in the 21at century, but the members of them are, in my opinion at least, as royal as the Brazilian family, plus making marriage and inheritance complicated can fracture the family and endanger it in the long run - nor do I believe that it's done for the good of the country. Tradition, however, has a degree of sense to it - once again, here me out here.

The rules regarding a succession are law, and as such can only be changed by changing the law. If a house is no longer in power they no longer have the ability to set the law, and therefore they have no grounds upon which to change the rules governing the line of succession. As such, the rules regarding the succession essentially have to be preserved as they were at the time of the family's disposition.

This is why the Stuarts are able to make a claim to the British throne - because at the time James II was overthrown the laws requiring the heir to the British throne to be a descendant of Sophia of Hanover and not a Catholic didn't exist. It's also why Puren's claim to the Chinese throne is disputable, or why the future of the claim to the Romanian throne can be disputed, or why the Russian throne has two pretenders. The Brazilian Imperial family - and other deposed families - has to maintain dynastic marriages in order to maintain a claim to the throne, because dynastic marriages were the rule when the family sat on the throne.

In contrast, houses currently in power have the ability to change the rules and laws surrounding their succession. QEII can have the succession changed in order to allow elder daughters to inherit before younger sons because she's in power. Other houses can abolish, or at least alter, Salic law because they're still in power. The Brazilians don't have that luxury, however, and are rather stuck with what is an archaic system.
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  #210  
Old 04-28-2013, 03:54 AM
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The Brits have a history of royals marrying cousins, but they also have a history of royals marrying not related royals, and royals marrying members of the aristocracy, and royals marrying commoners (okay, the last one is newer, but even before they started marrying the commoners they were still screwing them). This keeps the gene pool fresher.

That is the first time that I have seen a reference to something that happened at times over 500 years ago as 'newer'.

John's first wife wasn't a royal - although she was a noble in her own right as Countess of Gloucester - in the late 1100s

Then there is Edward IV in the mid-1400s

Richard III is another who married a commoner in the mid-late 1400s.

Henry VIII married 4 commoners.

If Jane is amongst the list of monarchs you count then she too married a commoner.

Mary Queen of Scots married two subjects in Darnley and Bothwell.

James II also married a commoner in Anne Hyde.

It is more a matter with the British that the Hannoverians were more sold on the royal to royal marriage thing then their precedessors from the 1400 - 1700s.
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  #211  
Old 04-28-2013, 04:30 AM
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Apart from finding a suitable (equal) partner now, these families need to also think about the future.. if the only really suitable partner is a cousin, the children from the relationship will have no choice left :-)

Historically speaking for catholics, for marriage between relatives a dispensation is needed, this used to be for relations up to fourth degree and both blood as 'spiritually' related (meaning that this also is for 'step families' or for instance a widower marrying a relative of the deceased wive)
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  #212  
Old 04-28-2013, 05:10 AM
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That is the first time that I have seen a reference to something that happened at times over 500 years ago as 'newer'...
Take an anthropology or archaeology class - then anything less than 1000 years old is definitely new.

As to whether or not marrying commoners is new in the BRF (in terms of contemporary versus not), while precious monarchs have of course married women without princely titles, most did marry women who were the daughters of people who held titles. Until William, the only notable member of the historic BRF that I can think of having married someone not related to or descended from anyone with title is John of Gaunt, who of course married his mistress.

King John's first wife was a Countess and the daughter of an Earl. Her paternal grandfather was an illegitimate son of Henry I.

Elizabeth Woodville's maternal grandfather was the Count of St. Pol, Conversano, and Brienne. Her father was pretty self-made, but he was eventually granted an Earldom.

Richard III married the daughter of a Countess (in her own right). Her father, who became an Earl through his marriage, was the son of another Earl.

Henry VIII married in order a Spanish princess, the daughter of an Earl (and the granddaughter of a Duke), the daughter of a member of the gentry (I'll agree to call her a commoner), the daughter of the Duke of Cleves, the granddaughter of a Duke (through a younger son), and another daughter of a member of the gentry (her grandfather was a Baron). So, really 2 out of 6 were not of the aristocracy, and even then I'd question how not aristocratic they were.

Jane married the son of a Duke.

Mary, Queen of Scots married the son of a king then two sons of Earls - while I would agree that she definitely took several steps downwards, I wouldn't say that Henry Stuart or James Hepburn weren't of the aristocracy. Henry Stuart was his father's heir apparent until his death, and James Hepburn inherited his father's title.

James II married first the daughter of an Earl.

Pretty much none of these royal consorts were without aristocratic or royal pedigree, something which Catherine cannot claim. Sure, if this was 500 years ago (or even more recently) her family most likely would have been of the gentry owing to their economic class, but they aren't, and that does set her apart - the closest equal she has is Katherine Swynford.
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Old 04-28-2013, 05:57 AM
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With the exception of John's first wife who was a Countess in her own right the others were all commoners - no different to Kate - a commoner.

Daughters of aristocrats are still commoners - and so it isn't a 'new thing' for the British monarchy to marry commoners but has happened fairly regularly over the last 500+ years.

I have taken archaeology classes and nothing was ever said about 1000 years being new - new was classed as modern i.e. the 20th C and every pre 1901 was old and subdivided into early modern, medieval, ancient, preshistoric and that period was subdivided (I have a double major in history and a minor in archaeology in my BA and then an MA in History).

I also teach Archaeology as part of the Ancient History course I teach.
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Old 04-28-2013, 12:28 PM
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Bertie I'm not going to argue with you over a technicality. If you want to say that a king marrying the daughter of a duke or an earl is the same as William marrying a girl from a family with no aristocratic or royal pedigree, so be it. I don't see it that way, and that was the point that I was trying to make.

As for my comment regarding the archaeology course, it was a joke. I have taken courses that focus on periods of time so long ago that anything less than a million years is considered new. I've also seen courses that refer to something that happened 500 years ago as being modern. New is all relative to what your overall focus is. Sorry, I should have made myself clearer in explaining that I wasn't being serious there.
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Old 04-28-2013, 04:24 PM
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Ish, you make the point that I should have made, regarding inbreeding. The danger lies in the amount and frequency of lines crossing. Bertie and others have pointed out that almost all British royals have married people who had direct genetic lines to royals OR who have repeatedly married their own kin and married into the royal houses. The genes do not care at all how high in title the marriage partner had, all they care about is that the gene was present in the marriage partner.

In my own family, although not able to trace all the lines, due to being a commoner whose family were not even slightly interested in this problem, I studied the history of inbreeding in the Maxwell family. The Maxwells are considered to be the "same family" as my family, because of the high number of cross breeding instances. Within the Maxwell family, it was the deplorable custom to marry first cousins in order to keep land in the family. This often resulted in divorces based on having committed the breach of law called "consanguine marriage", a term for marrying cousins. The cousin whom a Maxwell man married was sometimes cast aside as soon as the landed heir was produced. The only object was producing an heir who could keep or enlarge the land holdings.

Today there are many fine Maxwells around--presumably they no longer behave in this way. And many fine Pollocks, as I illustrated above in my account of my Aunt Jessie's family. For most of these, the inbreeding menace is past, not even known to exist. For me....I caught the brass ring, definitely brass rather than gold. But I will say this, catching this ring made me much more aware of what goes on in the world and opened to me a field of history that I otherwise would have ignored as irrelevant. Before I knew the history of the Pollock family, or even its modern members, I was more interested in the Irish side (mother's) of my family and the English side which married the Pollock l/4. The English side was the side who lived in a castle, although they were just gentlemen farmers.

since the question came up, I should look at the family of Prince Albert, Victoria's husband, to see who married whom.

Brazilian, you surely know your history, to know that very distant ancestor of both Rafael and Alexandra had porphyria. I would never have known that. Goodness me! It is also important to realize that porph comes in varying degrees of severity, and affects people in different ways, depending on which nerves are attacked.
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Old 05-05-2013, 01:30 PM
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Apart from finding a suitable (equal) partner now, these families need to also think about the future.. if the only really suitable partner is a cousin, the children from the relationship will have no choice left :-)
Everyone in the Gotha are cousins.

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Historically speaking for catholics, for marriage between relatives a dispensation is needed, this used to be for relations up to fourth degree and both blood as 'spiritually' related (meaning that this also is for 'step families' or for instance a widower marrying a relative of the deceased wive)Everyone in the Gotha are cousins.
Is the dispensation still required? I know very little about Canon Law.
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Old 05-05-2013, 01:47 PM
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....So can Cousin Jenny validly marry Cousin Mike? Not according to canon 1091.2, which says marriages are invalid up to and including the fourth degree. First cousins, therefore, cannot marry in the Church......

But as for two first cousins… the Church’s position is that they are forbidden to marry only by ecclesiastical law, not by divine law. For this reason it is canonically possible to receive a dispensation that permits two first-cousins to marry validly in the Catholic Church. (This assumes, of course, that it is legal under civil law in the area where the marriage is to take place—and in the U.S., some states permit it, while others don’t.)
Can Cousins Marry in the Church?


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  #218  
Old 05-06-2013, 07:16 PM
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There is a similar thread about Grand Duke George Mikhailovich of Russia.

So, I was thinking: what about a dynastic union between the Grand Duke and Princess Amélia of Brazil?

I know he's Orthodox and she's Catholic, but her relative, Princess Maria da Glória of Orleans-Braganza married Crown Prince Alexander of Serbia, an Orthodox.
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Old 05-06-2013, 07:23 PM
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They divorced citing religious and cultural incompatibility.
I prefer to see Princess Amélia marrying a Catholic Prince. A Wittelsbach would be an excelent option.
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  #220  
Old 05-06-2013, 07:30 PM
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They divorced citing religious and cultural incompatibility.
Well, maybe will work for Grand Duke George and Princess Amélia.
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