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NGalitzine 10-20-2011 04:55 PM

When Do Ex-Royals Cease To Be Royal ?
My question is when do ex-royals or members of families who were once royal cease to be royal. The Romanoffs, Habsburgs, Hohenzollerns ceased to reign after WWI. Roumania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia and Italy ended their monarchies after WWII. It has been even longer since families like the Orleans, Bourbon Two Siclies , Braganzas reigned, not to mention all of the minor reigning & mediatized familes of Germany and the Holy Roman Empire. A lot of us have royal or noble families in our ancestry but we don't consider ourselves royal or noble. What period of time has to pass before members of these former royal families come to be thought of as commoners with interesting ancestors and rather pretentious for them to still use royal styles and titles.

nascarlucy 10-20-2011 07:23 PM

I would guess when the average person doesn't recognize a family as being royal when they talk about them in the past tense. Many of these families the Romanoffs, Habsburgs, Hohenzollerns are still royal because they have generally have married into royal families or nobility considered acceptable and people recognized them as such. If they had broken away from their traditions and consistently married non-royals or common people, they probably wouldn' be considered royal today.

Those of us who are not considered royal or noble probably started out not being royal at all to begin with. In my family's case the mother was the daughter of the gardner or landscaper of the castle and the father was the grandson of the baron. The baron had another son who would claim all the inheritance rights. Not sure if he had other children.

My ancestor because of being born out of wedlock got no such rights even though he was acknowledged as being one of the grandsons of the baron. I believe he was probably paid by his grandfather or his father to leave Poland and go to America to live. He was given enough to live on, it appears. Once he was gone, out of sight, out of mind.

The higher the royal is, the more likely you would retain this title especially if you were recognized as the son or daughter of the royal. If that son or daughter married royally, then this would continue. It would probably not continue if the son or daughter married non-royals or someone of a lower status and then their children married non-royals. Then it would be just interesting family history.

One would have to wonder how many royal children came to America. On my dad's side, the grandson of a Polish Baron came to the United States in 1800. Once he came here, any royal status he had was gone. If he had stayed in Poland, he still would have the royal status but in name only. No money or property. It's just an interesting family story which was passed down the generations. I would imagine someone who is royal would say the same thing.

This is just my guess.

NGalitzine 10-20-2011 08:09 PM

Interesting idea. There is a garbage collector/city worker in Toronto who is a legitimate great great grandson of Queen Victoria.....I wouldnt consider him royal. There is also Hermann Von Leiningen who is banking executive. His father was a Prince Von Leiningen and his mother is the sister of former King Simeon of Bulgaria. I consider him a commoner with interesting ancestors as well since German royalty went out of business in 1918.

AristoCat 10-20-2011 08:45 PM

To me it's a matter of legal recognition by the state as well as socially. The Romanovs still have their lineage, but the state itself does not legally recognize them as an official part of the Russian state. In Britain, titles among the British aristocracy and the BRF are legally recognized as part of the official state and government structure.

COUNTESS 10-20-2011 09:12 PM

Royal is just someone saying so. The days of the "big sword" are gone. No one is, really, any better than any one else, except their ancestors, through might, took what they wanted to and left the others to forage and pledge alligiance. The Romanovs, the Hohenzollenen's and the Habsburgs are, hardly, royal, today. The Greek "royal family" live everywhere and anywhere, they were never Greek to begin with. If nations allow their "royals" a status that is becuase they like them, and, many are very likable and unoffensive. They toil to make their nations as best as they can.

branchg 10-21-2011 12:22 AM

Traditionally, this is where the concept of equal marriages comes into play. To marry a commoner or a subject meant the dilution of the blood royal and was considered a threat to the supremacy of a monarch and the Crown.

Today, with constitutional monarchy and democracy, these ideas are considered old-fashioned and out of step with a modern world.

hellokittylover 10-24-2011 05:32 PM

Do you mean legally, or socially? Legally, most countries define who is "royal." I believe the law in Britain states that the monarch, his/her children and grandchildren, and male-line greatgrandchildren are royal. When it comes to countries that no longer have a monarchy, then no one is legally royal. But they may be viewed as "royal" by others in their country.

Muhler 10-24-2011 06:08 PM

Do you also mean in protocol terms?

In Denmark the general rule is: Once a majesty always a majesty.
If a majesty has had the title of king and/or queen, and been officially acknowledged as such, then he/she may have been overthrown or dethroned but is still addressed and treated as a majesty in DK. - Albeit pretty low on the royal ladder. Reigning monarchs are way higher up the ladder.
So the answer in this context is: You are a majesty for life, unless you abdicate.

NGalitzine 10-24-2011 07:31 PM

I guess I mean how long are we expected to treat these people as royal? I dont have a problem granting royal status to King Constantine or King Michael or King Simeon as they were all reigning monarchs and left their countries under duress. I mean more in terms of families like the Romanoffs, the Habsburgs, Hohenzollerns, Braganzas, Orleans, and all the minor German princes etc. There is probably no one in their families who can even remember when they were reigning, and yet socially people still grant them some special status instead of simply Mr or Miss Romanoff or Monsieur or Madam Orleans.

Cory 10-24-2011 07:35 PM

Reigning or not a royal is a royal!

COUNTESS 10-24-2011 09:03 PM

What makes anyone royal? Other than their ancestors killed more and took more territory. Everyone is the same. Whatever title you want to use.

doric44 10-24-2011 09:37 PM

well all German royals and nobility their titles now are purely custom after WW1. and their titles have simply become part of their surnames. as for most countries that no longer have royals or nobility the titles are purely customary and hold no power or position.

so they are not really royal or noble anymore but many of the remaining European noble and royal families still recognize the non royal or noble families out of courtesy. like the Greek royal family they really have no titles anymore because the Greek nation revoked them.
but the other royal family's through relation and friendship still treat them as such

but no one really needs to address Constantine II as your majesty because he is no longer a king but if you want to out of custom or respect go nuts

NGalitzine 10-24-2011 09:37 PM


Originally Posted by Cory (Post 1329707)
Reigning or not a royal is a royal!

That is where we disagree, at some point these families become just people who had interesting ancestors. My question is how many decades or centuries have to pass before that happens. Families like the Orleans have been out of office for well over a century, and seem to squabble amongst themselves.

blauerengel 10-24-2011 10:05 PM

I was taught that the Habsburg family had to give up their royal privileges and rights after WW1 because it was required to build up a democratic republic. After the war was lost the people wanted to see some change and have a more just and equal political system-individuals born into wealthy/aristocratic families used to have better chances and opportunities in life and a lot of wealth-so of course there were many who critisised the monarchy,made it responsible for hunger and poverty and were angry because the aristocrats were much better off than the average subject...The situation was also quite difficult because CP Rudolph commited suicide in 1889-he was the only male heir and it was not only a huge tragedy for his parents but the whole dynasty-when you add this to the assasination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand (which lead to WW1),the demise of Franz Joseph in 1916 and the frustration of the many different colonies/countries asking for more rights or independence it was just a matter of time till the sytem had to collapse....

However there is still a lot of interest in the Habsburg family in Austria and they are widely appreciated & respected - especially Otto von Habsburg -there are even some ppl who wish that the Danube monarchy is re-installed because they are disappointed by the politicians who are in power now and the believe that back in the old days everything was better...

There are a lot of articles about Austrian history and the Habsburg monarchy online,not only on Wikipedia :-)

I find it quite interesting to look at different royal families and see how they coped with modernity and change or why some dynasties had to end....
The Habsburg family had to leave the country,give up their regal prerogratives and parts of their wealth but they got away much better that the Iranian Royal family after the Islamic Revolution.I read a lot about Farah Diba,Soraya and the last Shah and they were treated so badly...I can understand the frustration and anger of the poor people who didnīt have enough to eat while the shahbanu was dressed in Dior and the RF travelled with a large private jet but still I donīt know why they were treated like criminals and most countries refused to give them refuge...Itīs really weird that some powerful leaders are welcomed and celebrated and kicked out the next day.Of course the public has reasons to critisise and demand justice but history has shown that violence and bloody revolutions donīt bring lasting peace or democracy.

Grandduchess24 10-27-2011 05:24 PM

When the royal parent marries a commoner or someone of a different religion (eg catholic) or just a child of the monarch just want to be HH and not HRH like princess Martha Louise of Norway whose daughters carry no title but are grandchildren if the king of Norway . Or the HRH princess marries a commoner and decides that all her decendents not carry the title HRH.

KeepMovingForward 02-11-2012 01:41 PM

In my view the legitimate use of royal or noble styles and titles can only be given by a legitimate state government. A "royal" or aristocrat ceases to be such when the State or legitimate government declares the monarchy abolished, strips them of their title, etc. For instance I find it laughable that Caroline de Monaco regards herself as HRH Princess of Hanover LOL. No Caroline, your husband is Mr. Ernst August von Hanover as the legitimate German (and British) government does not recognise his claimed German (and British) titles. Using HRH Princess of Hanover just makes you look delusional and pretencious :lol: I also found it laughable that the Duchess of Windsor claimed HRH after King George VI refused to grant her that style.

COUNTESS 02-11-2012 02:00 PM

Or how about King Constantine, who is certainly not a king, though his wife is a Danish princess. And Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirova, heir to the non-existent Russian throne. And a plethora o German princes, etc. Caroline is not any more pretentious than they.

Lumutqueen 02-11-2012 02:01 PM


Originally Posted by KeepMovingForward (Post 1369471)
Using HRH Princess of Hanover just makes you look delusional and pretencious :lol:

In 1919 royalty and nobility were mandated to lose their privileges in Germany, hereditary titles were to be legally borne thereafter only as part of the surname, according to Article 109 of the Weimar Constitution. He is allowed to call himself a prince therefore his wife is a Princess. Monaco recognizes her German royal titles and her style as a Royal Highness. In your thinking, all the non-reigning families who continue to call themselves, King, Queen, Prince and Princess etc are "delusional and pretentious".

Mirabel 02-11-2012 02:22 PM


Originally Posted by Lumutqueen (Post 1369478)
In your thinking, all the non-reigning families who continue to call themselves, King, Queen, Prince and Princess etc are "delusional and pretentious".

That's how I see it, as well.
What use a king without a kingdom?

Once the monarchy is abolished, I don't see the point of people continuing to call themselves King, Queen, Prince, or Princess.

DukeOfAster 02-11-2012 02:55 PM

Just wondering since she is the heir to the throne of Monaco should she not be recognized as Her Serene Highness Princess Caroline of Monaco. Since Albert has no children is she not next in line?

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