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  #961  
Old 10-02-2011, 07:55 PM
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I think by the end of WWII the reputation of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor was pretty much shot and the only people who associated with them were people who were living equally shallow lives. There wouldnt have been much of a life for them had they settled in London. Real society, especially at that time, would have known that associating with W & E would have meant them being barred from access to the highest levels of society and to events they cherished like getting into the Royal Enclosure at Ascot. They would have had less room to manouver in London than they did in Paris.
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  #962  
Old 10-02-2011, 08:29 PM
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So the people who congregated around the Duke and Duchess throughout the 50s and 60s long after the war were just shallow? The presidents who invited them to the White House were also shallow? The people who had an interest in them before the war still had an interest in them after the war OR new people developed an interest in them.
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  #963  
Old 10-02-2011, 09:36 PM
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I think after the war, when "Society" returned to some kind of normal, many of their "friends" re-evaluated the perceived cost of that friendship and dropped them. The call of Ascot etc. too loud to ignore.

It is a matter of record that the Windsors had few real friends and that the Duchess' last years were very sad and very lonely. It is a mystery to me how someone can live as long as they did and yet make no real Friends.
  • Did they not make any real effort to make or keep real friends as some sort of self imposed martyrdom?
  • Or, once the false friends had fled, were they sufficient unto themselves to the exclusion or all others?
  • Or, was David unable to make friends as, by virtue of who he was, he had always been surrounded by friends and admirers and had, therefore, never had to actually make the first move or work at it?
Whatever the cause, I am sure that Wallis would have supported David totally, even to her own detriment.
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  #964  
Old 10-02-2011, 10:06 PM
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Originally Posted by XeniaCasaraghi View Post
So the people who congregated around the Duke and Duchess throughout the 50s and 60s long after the war were just shallow? The presidents who invited them to the White House were also shallow? The people who had an interest in them before the war still had an interest in them after the war OR new people developed an interest in them.
Pretty much. They hung out with what was at the time referred to as cafe society or the international set, people who would host them in NYC and Palm Beach and would dine with them at their house in the Bois. As far as the White House I only know of one dinner for them there and that was given by the Nixons, not a great recommendation IMO. Its not as if they were regularly dining at the WH with every president. Lots of people had an interest in "the great love story" and they did have some kind of star power, no denying that, but their social set I would class as pretty shallow in most cases.
Given their wealth and long lives I don't think they contributed much to the world in which they lived.
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  #965  
Old 10-02-2011, 10:40 PM
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They were guests of Nixon and Eisenhower who was a WWII hero. Also Edward's grand niece and nephews visited him and were said to be found of him. But if calling the people who actually liked the Duke and Duchess shallow makes you feel better than more power to you. It doesn't change that after the war their reputation was not shot and they were still popular in France and America.
Has anyone read "The Queen and Di"? Early in the book it is stated that Diana said she saw Elizabeth crying at Wallis' funeral; does anyone know where this notion came from?
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  #966  
Old 10-07-2011, 02:31 PM
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Has anyone read "The Queen and Di"? Early in the book it is stated that Diana said she saw Elizabeth crying at Wallis' funeral; does anyone know where this notion came from?

I have read this book...very good look at both sides of these women.

The book is pieced together from third parties (eye witnesses) of people who where supposed to be there during the events it covers.

The book talks about the relationship with Wallis, it is known that the Queen Mother blamed Wallis for her husband becoming king and part of his early death. The notion that she was crying at loss was not the implacation I got from this book. More so that a chapter in her and her mothers life had ended with the death of the Duchess of Windsor, but it was a funeral and it is not all out of prospective to cry even for royality...IMO different people read these things differently.
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  #967  
Old 10-07-2011, 03:31 PM
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The Queen no doubt had fond memories of her Uncle David from when she was a little girl, before The Abdication completely upset their lives; and childhood memories are extremely powerful.


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The book talks about the relationship with Wallis, it is known that the Queen Mother blamed Wallis for her husband becoming king and part of his early death. The notion that she was crying at loss was not the implacation I got from this book. More so that a chapter in her and her mothers life had ended with the death of the Duchess of Windsor, but it was a funeral and it is not all out of prospective to cry even for royality...IMO different people read these things differently.
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  #968  
Old 10-07-2011, 03:34 PM
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The Queen no doubt had fond memories of her Uncle David from when she was a little girl, before The Abdication completely upset their lives; and childhood memories are extremely powerful.
Well we were taking about Wallis not David. ....I am not sure what kind of relationship the Queen had with her aunt if any..but ...........

Yes, I have read that her and her Uncle were very close, when she was told that he was going away she ran off crying " what like forever". I agree with you but we're talking about the point of veiw givin in one book not what is or is not the truth..
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  #969  
Old 10-07-2011, 03:54 PM
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Has anyone read "The Queen and Di"? Early in the book it is stated that Diana said she saw Elizabeth crying at Wallis' funeral; does anyone know where this notion came from?
Diana was explaining to Ingrid Seward (in her last interview a few months before she was killed) that The Queen was "reserved" and the first and only time she ever saw her cry was at the burial of The Duchess of Windsor at Frogmore. It was her, Charles and The Queen at the burial site and she was stunned when HM began crying.

She then related The Queen had "been incredibly kind" to The Duchess and paid all of her bills in the last years of her life. She stated The Queen had been incredibly kind to her as well.
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  #970  
Old 10-07-2011, 05:47 PM
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I think that the death of Aunt Wallis would have brought back memories of her Uncle David and perhaps of her own father. I find that any funeral brings back thoughts of those we've lost.

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Well we were taking about Wallis not David. ....I am not sure what kind of relationship the Queen had with her aunt if any..but ....
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  #971  
Old 10-07-2011, 09:13 PM
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Diana was explaining to Ingrid Seward (in her last interview a few months before she was killed) that The Queen was "reserved" and the first and only time she ever saw her cry was at the burial of The Duchess of Windsor at Frogmore. It was her, Charles and The Queen at the burial site and she was stunned when HM began crying.

She then related The Queen had "been incredibly kind" to The Duchess and paid all of her bills in the last years of her life. She stated The Queen had been incredibly kind to her as well.
Yes that was stated clearly in the book. I have heard that Elizabeth got along well with David and Wallis and that her children got along even better. But if she was so fond of her that she cried at her funeral then that is very surprising and makes me wonder how close they really were. It is a nice thing to imagine if it did indeed happen, but the source isn't always entirely reliable, though I don't know why Diana would make up something like that.
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  #972  
Old 10-07-2011, 09:42 PM
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This is the first that I am hearing that the Queen cried at Wallis funeral. I have read several books about the Windsors and this tidbit is not mentioned in any book. The Queen (as a child) was very attached to her Uncle David but the Abdication and not being around to continue such a relationship surely altered their relationship. Not to say that she didn't love and care for him but if she was going to cry at anyone's funeral....surely it was her Uncle and not an Aunt by marriage that she probably met 10 times or less during her lifetime.

No disrespect to Tina Brown...but grain of salt.
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  #973  
Old 10-07-2011, 09:47 PM
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I think that the death of Aunt Wallis would have brought back memories of her Uncle David and perhaps of her own father. I find that any funeral brings back thoughts of those we've lost.
I agree The Queen certainly would not have shed any tears over Wallis. More likely, she was remembering her father and certainly the pain coming to the throne unexpectedly had brought him.

I do believe she grew fond of The Duke in his last years, who very much was like her father in some ways, but The Duchess was not exactly welcomed with any affection.
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  #974  
Old 10-07-2011, 09:50 PM
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This is the first that I am hearing that the Queen cried at Wallis funeral. I have read several books about the Windsors and this tidbit is not mentioned in any book.

No disrespect to Tina Brown...but grain of salt.
The Queen crying at the Duchess' burial was noted in Robert Lacey's "Monarch", Ingrid Seward's "The Queen and Di" and Greg King's "The Duchess of Windsor".

In the King biography of The Duchess, one of Wallis' American friends commented that "if The Queen wept, they were tears of guilt, not grief".
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  #975  
Old 10-07-2011, 10:12 PM
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Elizabeth had nothing to feel guilty for. I just believe they had a cordial relationship and the Queen was sad to see her die especially in such a sad state. If Elizabeth did indeed pay her bills that would show that there is even less for her to feel guilty about because she was doing a good thing for her. The entire story is tragic, and if she did indeed cry we will probably never know why for a couple of years after the Queen is dead and people start telling the truth about the events of her life.
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  #976  
Old 10-07-2011, 10:28 PM
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The Queen crying at the Duchess' burial was noted in Robert Lacey's "Monarch", Ingrid Seward's "The Queen and Di" and Greg King's "The Duchess of Windsor".

In the King biography of The Duchess, one of Wallis' American friends commented that "if The Queen wept, they were tears of guilt, not grief".
Thanks.....I haven't read Lacey's Monarch or Seward The Queen and Di (although I believe I have them both)....I guess that is why I referenced Windsor books in my post. I have to check my Windsors book to see if I have King's book.

Why would the Queen pay Wallis bills? I though Blum had cut her off from everyone?
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  #977  
Old 10-08-2011, 12:51 AM
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Thanks.....I haven't read Lacey's Monarch or Seward The Queen and Di (although I believe I have them both)....I guess that is why I referenced Windsor books in my post. I have to check my Windsors book to see if I have King's book.

Why would the Queen pay Wallis bills? I though Blum had cut her off from everyone?

I suspect that the Queen paid Wallis' bills simply because she was able to do so for her aunt. Even if they weren't close during their lifetimes the Queen had been close to her Uncle David and probably felt that it was the right thing to do - rather than have an aunt die with debts. Not necessarily out of affection but because it was the honourable thing to do for her aunt.
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Old 10-08-2011, 02:50 AM
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Even though Edward (David) was always pleading the poor mouth he left Wallis very wealthy and there would be no need for the Queen to pay her bills. They didn't even own a house, except for the Mill which was bought when they were both getting on in years. The beautiful house in Paris was given to them by the French at a peppercorn rent. Wallis stayed at the Palace for her husband's funeral but the whole royal family left to spend the weekend at Windsor although I believe they did ask her if she wanted to go too.
Stephen Birmingham in his book said "She (the Duchess) had become obsessive, almost hysterically so, about money, though it was hard to see quite why. Though royal wills are never made public, the Duke had died worth, by the most conservative estimates, well over $10,000,000, and Wallis, as his "universal legatee" had got it all, with no death duties to pay Shortly after the Duke's death, she sold three and and a half acres of land in Marbella for 82,000 British pounds, the Duke had sold his 4,000 acre ranch in Canada for 110,000 pounds and the Mill was sold by Wallis for nearly a $1,000,000." No there would certainly be no need for The Queen to pay any bills for Wallis.
Earlier on the same author mentioned the visit the Queen made to her uncle just before he died. "In the press, her visit was termed a "reconciliation", but it was really no more than a necessary duty call. Wallis had wanted to go to Spain, to Marbella, in order to be out of the country while the Queen was in Paris, But the state of the Duke's healthy had prevented their going anywhere."
I am sure the Queen could have shed a few tears for the Uncle David she had when she was a child, but for Wallis, no I can't believe this.
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  #979  
Old 10-08-2011, 04:30 PM
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The Duke died with approximately $3 million in liquid assets, not $10 million. A year after his death, The Mill was sold for $1 million, adding to The Duchess' assets.

Their fortune was much-diminished due to inflation, bad investments and overspending. You have to remember their extravagant lifestyle, including a staff of over thirty servants, wasn't cheap. They lived in a very expensive city and their tastes were expensive too.

After The Duke's death, Wallis began reducing her staff and cutting her expenditures. As she aged, her medical care became very expensive and by 1976, she required round-the-clock nursing, which lasted for ten years. All of that resulted in her money being exhausted by 1980, at which point The Queen is believed to have contacted Blum and assumed all of the expenses.
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Old 10-08-2011, 10:51 PM
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I thought it was just a case of continuing the small allowance that had been paid to the duke throughout his life.
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