Friday, April 30, 2010
Giving Wallis Simpson her day...
Sorry folks and loyal followers, that is has been so long since the last posting. I guess spring just got away from me... sitting and anticipating the warm weather kinda got me distracted. Plus, other distractions like the still circulating rumors that a royal engagement will be announced in June, and Her Majesties birthday last week... things that keep a royal blogger distracted. I hope everyone will forgive the lapse in blogging.
So, today we give The Duchess of Windsor, a.k.a., Wallis Simpson her due. Looking at this picture her wedding day didn't appear to be an especially happy day. But, she had her King, err, well her former King on her arm. What more could a girl want? How about to be Queen? The look on her face seems to say it all... "I should be the queen right now!" That is simply not what history had in store for Wallis and Edward VIII. From all I have read over the years, the abdication crisis in December of 1936, was the most serious event and potentially destructive event in the life of the British royal family for many years before and after. Abdication, almost unheard of. Normally, monarchs died and the next in line took up the crown as their duty. But, I realize, often making great personal sacrifices of happiness in order to fulfill their duties. Clearly King Edward VIII saw something truly wonderful in Wallis Simpson, in order to step aside and let his younger brother take the throne. It is a story for all the ages, as one of the most uncertain times in the great and long history of the British Empire.
Now, for the flowers. Clearly from the picture, the bride neither carried nor wore any flowers. The groom, by this time styled as the Duke of Windsor appears to be wearing a carnation boutonniere, classic and stylish in his morning suit. The flowers present to the right of Wallis seem to be peonies and delphinum. I think an appropriate combination that is quite fitting for the french chateau where they were married. The wedding location was Chateau de Cande, near Tours, France, and the wedding date was June 3, 1937, just six short months after the abdication on December 10, 1936. The Windsors were married first in a civil ceremony performed by the local mayor, then married again in a religious ceremony conducted by the Rev. Jardine... while being serenaded by the great organist Marcel Dupre in the music room/salon the the chateau.
What a scandal and what sadness, since the bride was an American and twice divorced, she was not at all deemed an appropriate wife for a king. Edward VIII, having not yet been crowned in a formal coronation ceremony, elected not to be king without the woman he loved. Edward's mother, Queen Mary refused ever to receive her daughter-in-law, and brother Albert, now King George VI paid a final insult to his brother's choice of bride by refusing Wallace the style of Her Royal Highness, she was simply The Duchess of Windsor.
Royal Tidbit of the day ... for years after the abdication crisis, Wallace and Edward were snubbed and ignored by the royal family. The Queen Mother reportedly held a heavy grudge agains Wallis, believing it was Wallis' fault that she and her family were forced into becoming King and Queen, the stresses of duty, leading to the premature death of King George VI at the age of 56.