Prince Philip’s mother saved Jews in WWII, sisters married Nazis


[]).push(function () { viAPItag.display(“vi_1088641796”) }) || []).push(function () { viAPItag.display(“vi_1088641796”) })

If you think the royals have a drama, wait until you hear from Prince Philip’s clan side.

The late royal consort, who died on Friday at age 99, comes from a family of Greek aristocrats who led dramatic and colorful lives in the 20th century – including three sisters married to Nazis and a mother honored to have saved Jews during the Holocaust.

Philip was the fifth child and only son of Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark and his wife, Princess Alice of Battenberg. Her older sisters were Princesses Margarita, Théodora, Cécilie and Sophie.

The prince would remain close to his mother, who came to live at Buckingham Palace in her later years, when he had a complicated relationship with his sisters – who were not even invited to his wedding.

Here’s a look at Philip’s family tree:

Philip’s father: Prince Andrew (1903-1944)

Prince Andrew of Greece, brother of Constantine I and father of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, circa 1920.
Prince Andrew of Greece, brother of Constantine I and father of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, circa 1920.
Getty Images

Andrew was a prince by birth of both Demark and Greece and linked to the Romanov dynasty. He served in both the Balkan Wars and the Greco-Turkish War and was exiled from Greece with his family in 1922.

By 1930, Andrew’s marriage to Alice was effectively over, and although the couple never divorced, he decamped to the French Riviera with a mistress and died in 1944. Philip had not seen his father since. 1939.

Philip’s mother: Princess Alice (1885-1969)

Alice, Princess of Greece, wife of Prince Andrew of Greece and mother of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, circa 1910.
Alice, Princess of Greece, wife of Prince Andrew of Greece and mother of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, circa 1910.
Getty Images

Alice was a great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria, making long-standing connections between Philip and the Queen. She was born congenital deaf but could speak clearly.

When Philip was just 18 months old, the family were exiled from Greece and moved to Paris, where they relied on loved ones to distribute them. It was there that Alice became more and more religious, began to hear voices and asserted that she was receiving divine messages.

She was diagnosed with schizophrenia and, on the advice of Sigmund Freud, her uterus was X-rayed in an attempt to thwart her alleged sexual desires.

When Philip was nine, his mother was admitted to a Swiss sanatorium where she was held against her will for over two years.

After her release, Alice became largely homeless, residing in various German hostels. She will not see Philippe again until after the funeral of her daughter Cécilie, who died in a plane crash at the age of 26 in 1937.

Alice eventually settled in Athens, Greece, and during World War II hid a Jewish family on the top floor of their house, around the corner of a Gestapo headquarters.

His heroic actions have been recognized by the Yad Vashem Holocaust center in Israel. In 1993, the remembrance center awarded the title Righteous Among the Nations to Alice and a year later Philip visited Yad Vashem and planted a tree in her honor.

Alice sold her jewelry and founded her own religious order – the Christian Brotherhood of Martha and Mary – before building a convent and orphanage in a poor area of ​​Athens.

After a military coup in Greece in 1967, the increasingly fragile Alice was convinced to live in Buckingham Palace with her son and family. She died two years later, leaving no property after giving away all of her personal belongings.

Before she died she wrote a touching note to her youngest child, reading: “Dearest Philippe, be brave, and remember that I will never leave you, and you will always find me when you need me most. . All my devoted love, your old mother.

Philip’s sisters: Princess Margarita (1905-1981)

Prince Philip Sophie's sisters, Margarita, Cecilie and Theodora in 1922.
Prince Philip Sophie’s sisters, Margarita, Cecilie and Theodora in 1922.
Getty Images

Philip’s older sister married Gottfried, Prince of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, a German aristocrat who became a Nazi – although he ended up turning against Hitler.

Gottfried was among the officers involved in the “Operation Valkyrie” plot to assassinate Hitler in 1944, which was portrayed in the 2008 war film “Valkyrie”, starring Tom Cruise.

He managed to avoid being executed like many others linked to the plan and lived until 1960.

Margarita had six children – five of whom survived to adulthood – and has remained in touch with her brother, even visiting after Princess Anne’s birth.

Theodora (1906 – 1963)

Schuyler was the only one of Philip’s siblings who did not think the Nazis were a material husband, preferring to marry her second cousin Berthold, Margrave of Baden.

She had three children and died in 1969, a few weeks before her mother died.

Cecilia (1911-1937)

Philip is said to have had a close relationship with Cecilie, who married his cousin Georg Donatus, hereditary Grand Duke of Hesse and Rhine.

The couple joined the Nazi Party in May 1937.

Months later, the family came to a violent end when Cécilie, eight months pregnant with her third child, died in a plane crash alongside her two sons and her husband. Firefighters also found the remains of a baby.

At the funeral, family members were pictured wearing Nazi uniforms.

Sophie (1914-2001)

Sophie married her second cousin, Prince Christoph of Hesse, when she was just 16 years old.

Christoph was director of the Air Force Ministry of the Third Reich and held the rank of Oberführer in the SS. He also worked in the Luftwaffe research office.

Sophie was invited to Herman Goering’s wedding in 1936 and, after dining with Hitler, wrote that he was a “charming and apparently modest man.”

The couple named one of their five children, Karl Adolf, after Hitler.

Christoph died in a plane crash in 1943 and Sophie married Prince George William of Hanover three years later, to have three more children.

Sophie also kept in touch with her brother and was Prince Edward’s godmother.

[]).push(function () { viAPItag.display(“vi_1088641796”) }) || []).push(function () { viAPItag.display(“vi_1088641796”) })


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here