Queen Wilhelmina (1880-1962)


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Queen Wilhelmina, though was not a beauty, but I think she was pleasant looking, natrually-poised and elegant when she was in her youth.

When she was 15 years of age, she visted Queen Victoria in London with her mother the Queen-Regeant, Queen Victoria wrote in her diary about how nice the young queen looked and how elegant she was. Queen Victoria wrote that the young queen also looked very dignified but not snobbish and she had very pleasant manners, very ladylike.


When I saw her picture taken when she was fifteen, I really thought she, though not infatuating, but was extremely charming. From her pictures when she was still young, it seems to me that she got good taste in clothing.


When she was fifteen.
 

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As a young queen.
 

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As a young queen.
 

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Queen Wilhelmina when probably only 17.
 

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Effectionate photo

With mother, Queen Emma.
 

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On her pony. She loved this pony very much.
With her mother, Queen Emma.
She was truely a beautiful and elegant girl.
 

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could some post some facts or history about the queen?

well Josephine, I could post a lot...I have read the recent bio of Wilhelmina by prof. Fasseur (it is huge)...and to me she is one of the most interesting and great oranjes. So what is it you want to know?

she is the only daughter of her father, King Willem III. From his first (unhappy) marriage to his cousin Sophie of Wurttemberg he got 3 sons, who all died without issue & marriage. After the death of Sophie the King decided to marry again, to Princess Emma of Waldeck-Pyrmont (after his sister, the garnd-duchess of Saxe-Weimar, discretely told him that her daughters were out of the question, but there were some very sweet Princesses in Arolsen), sister of the duchess of Albany. He was old enough to be her father, the age-difference was over 40 years! Anyway, this marriage proved to be a happy union 9for the king at least), Emma knew how to handle him. In 1880 a girl was born. After the deaths of her uncle prince hendrik & her great uncle, prince frederik and her half-brother, in 1884 she became the heir to the throne. Her father simply adored her (which he did not do with his sons....they loathed their father)...but in 1890 the old king died. Emma became regent till Wilhelmina came of age. Emma knew she had to do something to make the monarchy popular again, and what is more adorable for the public than a wise widow and her innocent daughter? ..so she toured the country & abolished french ass court-language & introduced dutch etc etc...and the monarchy became strong & popular again.

Wilhelmina had a VERY strict upbrining. She was all alone in a class room, did not know any people of her age....only her dolls. After her 12th? birthday Emma decided that Wilhelmina was to old for dolls & she locked them up...Wilhelmina cried for a long time as they were her only 'friends'. She was tutored by mr. gediking & mrs Saxon-Winter...a lady to which she remained affectionate all her life long...she even visited her old nanny in england in the 20-ties or 30-ties. BTW this mrs Saxo-Winter is the same one who was later hired by Elisabeth of Roumania for her cousins, Missy's children. But after a while Missy got her fired because she thought her far to strict.

In 1898 Wilhelmina came of age and was inhaugurated as Queen of the Netherlands. At the wedding of her cousin Pauline of Wurttemberg 98daughter of Emma's eldest sister) it became clear that SHE was to be married soon as well. An english prince was out of the question, as the Boer-war was going on &^england put the Afrikaners, who were from dutch background, in concentrationcamps etc.
The Kaiser is quoted as saying 'nur ein deutscher darf sie bekommen'...and a german it was...after she turned down Friedrich-Wilhelm (I believe this was his name) of Prussia (related to her by her great-aunt , the rebel-princess Marianne of the Netherlands who married Albrecht of Prussia) she chose Duke Heinrich of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, who was unaffected by courtlife.....well....the marriage was good in the first years, but turned out to be a disaster. The Prince had nothing to do & was bored, made children everywhere etcx. On top of it all, Wilhelmina did not get any children!@!!! The country was becoming desperate & a couple of Princes of Reuss visited the Netherlands to 'get aquinted'....they would be the next in the line of the throne. On top of it all, Wilhelmina miscarried a couple of times, many say that Prince Hendriks sexual diseases were the cause of this. The coutry was relieved & thanked God (literally) when in 1909 Princess Juliana was born. Mother and daughter had a special relationship....W simply adored her daughter.

In 1914 the world was in for WWI......during the years of her goverment W had several fights with (prime)-ministers about the costs of the army etc. W thought that the army was neglected & kept on stressing the importance of it all again & again. After WWI things between Hendrik & Wilhelmina got worse. President Roosevelt (Teddy) of the US who visited the couple at Palace het Loo told a story about a red Queen Wilhelmina who was stamping on the floor while she was angry with her (dumb) husband for not hearing what she said. .....The queen (and her husband) eventually found each other in their religion...but that was just before Hendrik died...

In 1934 both Queen Emma & Prince Hendrik died, and the dutch royal family exsisted out of to women only, Wilhelmina & Juliana. It became evident that Juliana had to marry as soon as possible (especially after Wilhelmina knew about the tragic accident of Queen Astrid, W like Leopold & Astrid very much!)...well....the drama's of finding a husband for Juliana.....it almost seems like a comedy if you read it............and the dutrch ambassadors had night mairs.....the durch ambassador in England even had to remain in bed for a few days after Juliana visited the Kent-wedding & he hoped to link her with Karl of Sweden. Juliana behaved hostile towards him & showed more interest in Paul & Peter of Greece...Paul was out of the question as he was a crownprince & Peter because his great grandfather had a casino in Monte-Carlo & was greek-catholic. The ambassadot blamed Queen Maud for the failing union between Juliana & Karl btw & saw it as a greek-danish-norwegian conspiracy against the Bernadottes....well even more theories were heard...the belgians would have liked J to marry Karel of Sweden so discouraged Astrids brother Karl as well, etc etc.....after a long search, which lasted for years..Juliana met a certain Prince Bernhard zur Lippe-Biesterfeld during her winter-holiday in Switzerland...and got married!

When W celebrated her 40th aneversary of her reign she told her daughter she wanted to retire...Bernhard & Juliana could prevent that for they fought that the unstable situation in Europe was not the right time for a change of reign in the Netherlands (and they were just building a family). Already in the early 30-ties Wilhelmina showed her ministers the dangers of Mr. Hitler & the Nazi's...but they would not listen.....The Netherlands was in war from 1940-1945. W went to england and became the symbol of the nation & spoke to her people through the radio. Winston Churchill called her the only man in the dutch goverment. ....afterb returning she wanted a new netherlands, more united & was dissapointed. She retired in 1948 and declared that she was dead from no w on & reprimanded everybody who dared to call her queen. She lived quietly, wrote her memoirs (lonely but not alone) and busied herself with painting & religion. In 1962 she died ...with the honoury name, mother of the fatherland or mother of the resistance!...a great queen!!!!
 
...the belgians would have liked J to marry Karel of Sweden so discouraged Astrids brother Karl as well, etc etc...

the belgians were said to wanted Juliana to maarry Leopolds brother Karel of Belgium, instead of Astrids brother Karl of Sweden...very confusing, those Kar(e)ls.;)
 
Wilhemina and Henrik Wedding, February 7, 1901
 

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Help - Queen Wilhelmina

I live in Western Australia and we had a collector here (now deceased) who had a horse drawn vehicle which was known as "Queen Whilemena's coach". Unfortunately the history of the vehicle was held in the mans head and non of us know how it was connected with the dutch Queen. Can anyone shed any light on this or suggest anywhere I could find out? :) :)
 
I have discovered that the carriage was last used in Copenhagen in 1922 - Can anyone shed any light on what occasion took place in Denmark at this time?
 
Probably the state visit to Denmark (Wilhelmina went to Norway and Sweden as well that year). I wonder if she would bring her own coach to Denmark though, seems more logical to me if the danish would provide one :)
 
Marengo said:
Probably the state visit to Denmark (Wilhelmina went to Norway and Sweden as well that year). I wonder if she would bring her own coach to Denmark though, seems more logical to me if the danish would provide one :)

Thanks Marengo. Do you know if there are any pictures of this visit?
 
I just posted this information on the glittering royal events message board, so I thought, why not in this thread? A poster there wondered about the visits Queen Wilhelmina paid to the UK. I responded that she paid one in 1895 and one in 1923, and that the last visit was very strained:

I freely quote from the official biography of Wilhelmina, leaving out passages if I didn't find them necessary:

Wilhelmina hoped to merge the agreable (the holdidays in Scotland) with the usefull by meeting the british monarchs. Wilhelmina hadn't been in Great-Britain since 1895 and after Queen Victoria she never again met a reigning member of the british RF. The scars of the Boer war remained visible for a long time. After that heated effords to 'get' King George V to pay a statevisit to the Netherlands soon after WWI had failed. The Netherlands were 'non grata' in english eyes for lending their hospitality to the german ex-emperor Wilhelm II in Doorn.Even cousin Alice postponed her visits to The Netherlands after WWI, because the british press would undoubtably blame that 'I was going to see my abdominable cousin', as she described Wilhelmina ironically in 1919. Queen Emma tried to 'use'* her relatives at the swedish court to ease the tension with the british, as the swedish RF was related to the british.The dutch envoy in London, jhr. R. de Marees van Swinderen was pessimistic nontheless. Wilhelmina's suggestion that the british monarchs could pay her a visit at Windemere was a 'salva maxima reverentia illness of the mind'. Prince Hendrik could forget an invetation to a deerhunt in Scotland: 'the King (George V) will have none of it'. In the end all the diplomatic troubles led to a quick greeting by George and Mary on Victoria Station at Wilhelmina's arrival. 'I babbled with the power of desperation' wrote Wilhelmina to her mother on the 27th of june (1923). The meeting lasted 15 minutes, which was enough for Princes Alice to tell her cousin with a pityfull smile that she had shaken up this morning quite a bit. Two weeks later a quick counter-visit took place from Wilhelmina to the royal couple, this time in Carlisle where the royal train to Balmoral stopped for 10 minutes.

* =(they use another word in dutch which is less strong, but I do not know how to translate that one in english)
The quote comes from Wilhelmina, krijgshaftig in een vormeloze jas, by Prof. C. Fasseur.
---
Considering that King George V was quite pleased that his cousin Wilhelm was 'saved' from a public trial by the americans/english, I think this shows his opportunism, a bit in the same style as his refusal to give refuge to his Russian relatives.
 
Marengo said:
Wilhelmina hoped to merge the agreable (the holdidays in Scotland) with the usefull by meeting the british monarchs.

A lady once told me that she remembered Queen Wilhelmina staying in Crieff in Perthshire. She used to "go the messages" (Scots for do the shopping) for the house and one day she was in the butchers shop. A coach load of tourists from London where in town and found out that the Queen was in the shop. They were congregating outside trying to see her and the butcher took the Queen by the arm and said to her "come away my dear and I'll let you out the back door." The Queen managed to escape the crowd.

The lady told me that the Queen looked "just like any wee Scots wuman" and the Scots loved her for that. So much so that throughout Scotland the spelling of the name Williamina changed to Wilhelmina in her honour.
 
For some reason my last post (above) didn't register and it looks like Marengo was the last post. This is just to let you know that something else was posted.
 
Iain said:
Marengo said:
Wilhelmina hoped to merge the agreable (the holdidays in Scotland) with the usefull by meeting the british monarchs.

A lady once told me that she remembered Queen Wilhelmina staying in Crieff in Perthshire. She used to "go the messages" (Scots for do the shopping) for the house and one day she was in the butchers shop. A coach load of tourists from London where in town and found out that the Queen was in the shop. They were congregating outside trying to see her and the butcher took the Queen by the arm and said to her "come away my dear and I'll let you out the back door." The Queen managed to escape the crowd.

The lady told me that the Queen looked "just like any wee Scots wuman" and the Scots loved her for that. So much so that throughout Scotland the spelling of the name Williamina changed to Wilhelmina in her honour.

Great story Iain!! Sounds like the Queen made quite an impression on the Scots!
 
Iain said:
A lady once told me that she remembered Queen Wilhelmina staying in Crieff in Perthshire. She used to "go the messages" (Scots for do the shopping) for the house and one day she was in the butchers shop. A coach load of tourists from London where in town and found out that the Queen was in the shop. They were congregating outside trying to see her and the butcher took the Queen by the arm and said to her "come away my dear and I'll let you out the back door." The Queen managed to escape the crowd.

The lady told me that the Queen looked "just like any wee Scots wuman" and the Scots loved her for that. So much so that throughout Scotland the spelling of the name Williamina changed to Wilhelmina in her honour.

Thanks Iain!!! I never heard that story before and it would have been so nice to add in her biography! It made me laugh out loud, just imagening Wilhelmina escorted by the butcher. I am sure she must have enjoyed it thoroughly btw, she always longed for closer contact to 'normal' people and always tried to escape the 'golden cage'. During the war this lead to funny situations btw, she usually received all the brave dutchmen who escaped the country with a small boat (very risky) and went to England to fight the germans, for tea. As these men weren't pre-selected and as she insisted to meet all of them it happened more then once that a nervous secretairy had to explain words from dutch slang to the Queen. I even believe she used one of them. In her speeches she often furiously referred to germans as 'moffen', which gave her ministers some headachess.

Another anecdote about an english lady who gets a ride during WW2, from the Queen (everybody had to save gas/oil), and in the car, the lady goes on and on talking about the dutch Queen to Wilhelmina. Of course she doesn't know that it is the Queen herself who is sitting next to her. The lady had a shop in something and was telling Wilhelmina that she didn't suppose the dutch Queen would come over and buy something there, considering her reputation. Wilhelmina of course didn't move a muscle and only replied something like 'I don't suppose she would, she is known to be very frugal'. Only afterwards the lady realised her mistake!
 
Marengo said:
... a nervous secretairy had to explain words from dtch slang to the Queen. I even believe she used one of them. In her speeches she often furiously referred to germans as 'moffen', which gave her ministers some headachess.
Translation of "moffen" please. :)
 
Warren said:
Translation of "moffen" please. :)

I think it means "jerries" which i think means Germans or German soldiers in particular.
 
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Australian said:
I think it means "jerries" which i think means Germans or German soldiers in particular.
That's not too bad, she could have called them 'Huns'. This word was used in Britain and Australia and probably elsewhere until well after the War. It wasn't a term of affection.
 
Warren said:
That's not too bad, she could have called them 'Huns'. This word was used in Britain and Australia and probably elsewhere until well after the War. It wasn't a term of affection.

'Moffen' is much stronger than 'jerries'. I think 'Huns' (as you describe it, Warren) covers up the meaning of 'Moffen'. There wasn't any affection left for a German when he was called a 'Mof' by a Dutchman, you can be sure of that... :eek:
 
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