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  #421  
Old 05-18-2009, 05:42 AM
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Originally Posted by wbenson View Post
Henry VIII married quite a few times after his coronation. Edward III also married. Richard II married twice (the second time was a purely political move, though, and his bride was only 8). Henry IV, V, and VI all married after theirs, as did Edward VI and Henry VII.

I think you meant Edward IV not Edward VI. Edward VI never married and died aged 16. Edward IV married Elizabeth Woodville.
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  #422  
Old 05-18-2009, 05:16 PM
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Oops. That is what I meant.
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  #423  
Old 06-21-2009, 02:38 PM
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I just found this picture of the Duke of Windsor (Edward, Prince of Wales at the time) from 1920.
Next to Prince Edward (second from left in the picture) is Louis Francis Victor Albert Nicholas Mountbatten, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma (left) and two officers from HMS Renown.

The picture is taken on a tarpon fishing expedition during a Royal Tour of New Zealand.

http://cache1.asset-cache.net/xc/329...6DF449FAE5DA5C


I have rarely seen a picture of Prince Edward (and the Earl of Mountbatten, come to that), looking so relaxed, happy and at ease.
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  #424  
Old 07-29-2009, 02:17 PM
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King Edward VIII

I have just finished reading his official biography and I must admitt that my views of him have somewhat changed. At first I would have thought he was a Pro Nazi and a weak minded fool. Now however I feel that perhaps he was both misunderstood and in my view abused by the so called establishment. It has led me to perhaps think that he may have been a very great King and a mordern one at that. His govonership of the Bahamas seems to justify that to me.

What do the folk here think about the King that never was?
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  #425  
Old 07-29-2009, 03:35 PM
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Very interesting! Well, I was always interested in David (Edward VIII.) and I have read several books about him, including his own memoirs. IMO it wasn't a highlight from him to visit Hitler on the Obersalzberg, but I doubt he was a Nazi. As you said, I think, he was misunderstood and of course establishment disliked him in one way.

I think, he would have been a modern monarch, well fitted to the 20th century. And I never thought, that he was a fool or something, but sometimes you could think, he never really wanted to be King. I'm not sure about that.
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  #426  
Old 07-30-2009, 11:34 AM
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I don't think it was as much that he didn't want to be King but that he didn't want to be the kind of King Stanley Baldwin and the like wanted him to be. Which was how his father and brother were. I think his ideal was more along the lines of what his grandfather had done, except much more modern and in touch with the people. But still being able to go home at night to his friends and parties and the woman of his choice. Also, like his grandfather he wasn't a fan of the dispatch boxes they sent him and preferred to talk things over with people rather than sit around doing paperwork.
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  #427  
Old 07-30-2009, 04:27 PM
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I think he was too self-indulgent to have been a good king. I don't think he possessed the work ethic... a monarch's life isn't going to be one long party with cocktails.
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  #428  
Old 07-30-2009, 05:19 PM
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...he wasn't a fan of the dispatch boxes they sent him and preferred to talk things over with people rather than sit around doing paperwork.
The problem with that is that the boxes are the real work of the monarch.

David wanted the glory without the work side of things.

He was a disaster and thankfully the government were able to get rid of him in a fairly non-controversial way.

I find it interesting that Dorothy L Sayers in one of her Peter Wimsey stories refers to Peter Wimsey having to go to Paris to rescue some documents that Edward had left lying around there. Big deal you say but her last Wimsey stories were published in 1939 so even that early after the abdication his lack of security about official documents was well enough known to be referred to in a fictional work.

He didn't seem to understand what a constitutional monarch's role was (just like his grandfather who at least, having interferred e.g. over negotiations with the French, left it to the Foreign Office to finalise). Edward VIII felt that he was more a monarch in the form of the early George's - i.e. that he actually had a say. Victoria, under Albert's guidance, had established a truly constitutional monarch - one with no real power and one who simply had the right to advise, warn and be consulted. Edward was prepared to do that and made controversial and even political statements, which he had no right to do as that was something he simply wasn't allowed to do.
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  #429  
Old 07-30-2009, 08:54 PM
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Well, I disagree with some of the posts here. He wasn't only a "party-prince". Remember all his travellings round the world and british empire when he was still a young Prince of Wales, which he did not for his own pleasure but for the crown. Its unfair to call him fool, useless or even more worse things only because he enjoyed nightlife from time to time, was often dressed well and so one. He was very popular I think - until the abdiction of course. Well, you can say, he left his duty too easily when he abdicated - everyone I think has his own oppinion about this case. But after all I read you can't call him a lazy hedonist only...

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Originally Posted by Iluvbertie View Post
He didn't seem to understand what a constitutional monarch's role was (just like his grandfather who at least, having interferred e.g. over negotiations with the French, left it to the Foreign Office to finalise).
Thats right and he didn't WANT to be a constitutional monarch in the old fashioned sense.
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  #430  
Old 07-30-2009, 09:51 PM
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Thats right and he didn't WANT to be a constitutional monarch in the old fashioned sense.

Actually he wanted to be a constitutional monarch in the old fashioned sense of the early Hanoverians - having a say - whereas the role of the monarch had moved to symbolic only and he wanted to take it back to a place it hadn't been for over a century (sense William IV had agreed to swamp the House of Lords to get the Reform Bill passed in 1832). Edward had an inflated opinion of the role of the monarch and his importance to the political system. He wouldn't accept that a true constitutional monarch in the twentieth century said nothing and read and signed documents.
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  #431  
Old 07-30-2009, 10:07 PM
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Hmm... I'm not sure. Of course he didn't want to be a King like his father and I think also not like Queen Victoria. Edward VII may have been quite exemplary to him, I've read it in Davids memoirs. His reign maybe would have had a similar style like his grandfathers, more like the early Hanoverians... Most of all I think, he would have refreshed the monarchy.
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  #432  
Old 07-31-2009, 06:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Iluvbertie View Post
He wouldn't accept that a true constitutional monarch in the twentieth century said nothing and read and signed documents.
His father sometimes said things. He was very vocal when he met Gandhi at Buckingham Palace in 1933, telling him Britain would have no truck with Indian "terrorism", and that he was going to see that a stop was put to it. HM told him he held him responsible, and as Gandhi was leaving said, "Remember Mr Gandhi, I won't have any attacks on my Empire". At the time David was chatting to some Indian Princes and one murmured to David, "This will cost you India".

It's in the book I'm currently reading: "Indian Summer", about the end of the Empire, which also tells us that in 1920 David was seriously thinking of tossing it all in and marrying divorcee Freda Dudley-Ward, and in one letter to her said, "who knows how much longer this monarchy stunt is going to last". Doesn't sound like he had a high opinion of the family business at that time.
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  #433  
Old 07-31-2009, 06:39 AM
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I believe David was good to go as King, as long as it didn't interfere with his lifestyle. Let's face it, love him or loath him, he really was just a middle-aged play-boy with too much money and too many women until he chased one who caught him! Even then he thought he could have his cake and eat it.

The "norm" for the everyday man was much the same as that enjoyed by the Duke and Duchess of York and their family. Marriage, home, hearth and children and David, the elder, was not planning on slowing his carousing in the forseeable future.

When informed of the consequences of his intended actions, the only thing David excelled at was screwing as much money out of not just the government, but his own family, by fair means or foul! He literally "sold" his birthright for what he later came to realise was a mess of pottage! He married, didn't have any children, and lived a lonely and bitter life yearning for what he had lost, or in his case, thrown away!
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  #434  
Old 07-31-2009, 09:00 AM
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I'm still not sure what I think of David. I find him an interesting character, and one who would have made an interesting monarch if Mrs Simpson hadn't been in his life. I like to think he would have done a good job when it came to the crunch, like Edward VII, but I need to read more about him.
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  #435  
Old 07-31-2009, 03:41 PM
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Edward was a very flawed character who demonstrated much selfishness and lack of commitment to duty. This went back long before Wallis Simpson came along. She was the convenient excuse he needed to rid himself of the responsibilities he had long resented, rather than embraced, as his purpose in life.

His attitude and character were completely at odds with being a constitutional monarch. When the time came, he showed no hesitation in giving up the throne and dumping the responsiblity on his brother, The Duke of York.
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  #436  
Old 07-31-2009, 04:23 PM
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This is so crazy, but coming out of Costco on Tuesday there was a dapper older gentleman dressed all in white at the entrance. He looked more than a little in passing like David and I couldn't help but smile at him and he smiled back, his sad, sweet smile so like David it was enchanting. I can see what the ladies found so appealing in David Windsor if this pretender was just a smidge like the real thing!
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  #437  
Old 07-31-2009, 04:43 PM
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That's cool! I understand it as well.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

I think, the view on David is a bit manipulated from the press, media and several books and movies. I wonder, if we today would see him as a not dutiful person, if he had never abdicated and ruled for a quite while. Do you get me? I mean, the abdication itself made him to a prime example for a foolish, selfish, not dutiful person in the eyes of most people. I don't know. I stand by my word: I think he was a diligent young man when he was Prince of Wales. Kings and Queens in the end are human beings and no one is without mistakes as long as he's from flesh and blood...
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  #438  
Old 08-04-2009, 10:46 PM
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In his world and time, there was only one purpose...to do your duty. It was his duty to be King and to accept the sacrifices necessary to carry out his solemn oath as monarch.

This was why Queen Mary could never accept his choice or his wife. In her mind, the throne came first and nothing else but doing your duty mattered. To ask the nation, the Dominions and the royal family to accept a twice-divorced American woman as his consort or morganatic wife in 1936 was outrageous and ridiculous.
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  #439  
Old 08-05-2009, 09:29 AM
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I think, the view on David is a bit manipulated from the press, media and several books and movies. I wonder, if we today would see him as a not dutiful person, if he had never abdicated and ruled for a quite while. Do you get me? I mean, the abdication itself made him to a prime example for a foolish, selfish, not dutiful person in the eyes of most people. I don't know.
Huh? Ruled for a while and then . . . . . . doesn't marry Wallace? doesn't marry at all? marries some bright young deb and/or drops dead? If he had ruled we wouldn't be having this discussion.

For me, when I debate something historical, it is essential that I see it "in it's correct time and place". Without that anchor I can postulate anything I want and it really has no relevance to the actual event.
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I mean, the abdication itself made him to a prime example for a foolish, selfish, not dutiful person in the eyes of most people. I stand by my word: I think he was a diligent young man when he was Prince of Wales. Kings and Queens in the end are human beings and no one is without mistakes as long as he's from flesh and blood...
Diligent? Apart from News Reel footage of the PofW at pre-arranged events such as Edward's frequent, and popular, visits to depressed areas wilst living an opulent almost profligate private life, and reading the Newspapers, the average man or woman in the street saw little of the Royals although David's playboy lifestyle got a lot more coverage in the society pages, unlike his his admiration for Mussolini. Even more so with the arrival of the twice married Wallis.

I believe the British were rather proud of their handsome and dashing Prince of Wales, they even sangs songs about his amorous proclivities "I danced with a man who's danced with a girl who's danced with the Prince of Wales." ... and considered his behavior to be the normal sowing of wild oats. I don't think any of them thought for one moment he could or would go on living that sort of life as "The King".

Yes he was flesh and blood but he was expected to honour his duty. He didn't! Bear in mind that thousands of ordinary subjects were expected to honour theirs in 1939. They did!
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  #440  
Old 08-05-2009, 10:03 AM
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Huh? Ruled for a while and then . . . . . . doesn't marry Wallace? doesn't marry at all? marries some bright young deb and/or drops dead? If he had ruled we wouldn't be having this discussion.
For me, when I debate something historical, it is essential that I see it "in it's correct time and place".
Well, its a bit difficult to explain for me what I really ment. You're of course right with your last sentence. I only ment with my statement that with the whole "abdiciton-thing" it seems that EVERYTHING he did before is seen in this light. Isn't it the cause most people just say: "He abdicated, he was a fool." And thats not how I'd say it.


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Diligent? Apart from News Reel footage of the PofW at pre-arranged events of Edward's frequent, and popular, visits to depressed areas wilst living an opulent almost profligate private life, and reading the Newspapers, the average man or woman in the street saw little of the Royals although David's playboy lifestyle got a lot more coverage in the society pages, unlike his his admiration for Mussolini. Even more so with the arrival of the twice married Wallis.
Well, apart from all the parties and opulent lifestyle he managed it to circle the world in a few months for his empire... And tell me a royal which doesn't lead an privileged life in which they may be sometimes profilgated. What about todays Harrys and Willams lifestyle? You may say, times have changed and they aren't quite popular for that also. I just think, they're young, they have to "carry the heavy weight of burden" all their life. Not everyone can be as dutiful as HM (which is excellent).

I know, that all aren't really serious arguments and I don't want to argue. I know, Edward VIII. is a red rag for most people, most monarchists. I only have a slightly different view on him. I wouldn't say, that he was not a bit foolish. Yes, he wasn't a prime example, was eccentric and maybe many more things but I think, he did a few good things also. And excuse me, but it isn't that easy for me to accomplish my thoughts in a language which isn't my first language. Maybe for that I shouldn't say anything here about this issue...
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