Emperor Christian Victor I

Emperor Christian Victor I

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Fascinating Fridays (The Historic Development of the Tiara)

Another looong post. These ones do take time to finish and that does keep me from posting more regularly. I hope you enjoy this one, another lecture. 

Adorning the head is as old as mankind's desire to express himself. Our self actualization need is what separates us from animals. Humans seem to be aware of the inner self and have a desire to express it and one of the ways is to decorated the person in accordance with personality and communal appreciation.

Part of the "responsibilities" contemporary Royal families seem have just accepted, is to be living curators of history. This came naturally through their inheritance of vast historic collections spanning, sometimes, thousands of years. This has by default made them the prime candidates for preserving, maintaining and exhibiting these artifacts in perpetuity. 

There is a global collective message attached to jewellery in general. Archaeology has shown that this collective consciousness goes back to the earliest recorded history. Man started to adorn himself with rare desirable objects in an attempt to express his wealth, status, personality and cultural identity. Soon these communications, however blatant or subtle had to culminate in; the ultimate wealth, the highest status and the most unmistakable identity, that of the king wearing his crown. This would by extension then also manifest the greatest culture. It is interesting to note how intrinsic value and adornment, also get completely absorbed by the overriding message of a crown. All through man’s history there has never been, nor could there ever be, a higher aspiration in the field of jewellery, than the crown. This leads us to today's topic of the origin and history of the tiara. As a crown-like ornament its story is inextricably linked to the principle of the crown. It adorns the head, it bears a symbolic message of status and it has an intrinsic value that imbues the wearer with immediate wealth. To this day, to add halo-like radiance to the picture of the face, elevates the person to be seen, appreciated and noted. Let us now follow the path of the tiara as it began and where it finds itself today. 

The Egyptian culture was highly advanced in writing, technology, warfare and social organisation. They also excelled in gold mining and their ruling class was literally clothed in the symbolic metal that attached them to their patron deity, the sun. To wear the reflective gold was seen as the right of Royalty and priests only, as it identified them as the sun god's avatars on earth. 

Some of the earliest historic depictions of head ornamentation, crowns and tiara-like jewellery can be seen in the hieroglyphs of Ancient Egypt

Ancient Grekia and Romagna cultures were mixed together in the conquest of the known world by the Romagnian Empire. This culture was slightly austere but still showered their political leaders and war and sports celebrities with honour. The highest honour was the humble Laurel Wreath. It was worn by emperors and accomplished soldiers and athletes. The genuine leaves withered and was meant to display the transience of life and supposed honour. However, as the empire became more permanently established in glory this symbol was soon replaced by man-made golden wreaths linking to the wealth and permanent glory of the empire. 

This ancient statue shows one of the earliest recordings of what has become the universal symbol of a Victory Wreath of Laurel Leaves. 

The contemporary collection of Monagask Crown Jewels has an actual ancient golden wreath amongst its historic pieces of jewellery. An ancient cache of a Grekian treasures was found hidden in a cave in the early 20th century. This was immediately surrendered to the Prince of Monagask who declared it the official Crown Jewels. Historians believe the wreath to be the royal treasure of the first settlement of the Monagask bay by a renegade Phoenician Prince in 300BC

Most assuredly more ancient than Egyptian culture and definitely almost universal must be the Floral Nuptial Wreath. Simple flowers woven together and worn in the hair must be the oldest and earliest head adornment known to man. However as far as recorded history goes, Romagnian and early Byzantian depictions give us our first glimpse of this practice. To this day the floral motif continues in head ornaments made of gold and diamonds. 

This 5th century Mosaic shows a woman wearing flowers and other flora in her hair. 

As technology advanced so did man's ability to create more fanciful head ornamentation. During Medieval and Gothic Europa this took and interesting turn in the development of what we know as the crown. The 14th Century horned headdress was worn for many years by the middle and upper classes. It had its origin in Western Europa but reached its fashionable height in Franconia. The cones or horns which projected out at roughly a 45 degree angle were called templars and over the next few hundred years varied in shape and size according to regional fashions. The hair was concealed as decorum required. White veils were attached to the headpiece using pins creating a curtain effect covering the back of the head and sometimes dropping all the way to the ground.

This Gothic engraving shows a typical horned headdress. 

The historic jewellery collection of the Lady Arcwhite includes an authentic 14th Century Horned Headdress. This is often seen as the Crown of Arcwhite even though technically no such "crown" is officiated in Arcwhite. 

16th Century Europa saw a fresh cultural awakening known as the Renaissance. Intellectual thought, artistic development and cultural advances reached the highest heights in history known to man at the time. Suffice it to say, fashions and jewellery also to a turn and explored territory of high ornamentation subdued by intellectual appreciation like never before.

Styles varied with fashion and countries and often one could be identified by what one wore.

This 16th Century headdress is in the History of Art Museum in Londinium in the Republic of Britania.

The Crown Jewels of Wallachia include this "tiara" made in the 16th Century for the Countess Bathoria. 

The Crown Jewels of Normandia also include a 16th Century headpiece. The style should be clearly visible.

The Rococo is a style that overran culture in the late 17th Century. This was a time of unfettered excesses and more was definitely more. Jewellery was sewn onto clothes shoes and hair. Hairstyles at first were agreeably small but became impractically large. There were even tales of ladies hair catching fire from hanging chandeliers. During this time it was also common place to wear a diadem or crown joined by strands of pearls or entire necklaces sewn to the coiffure. Often brooches were also added. 

In this period painting on the left we can see how strands of pearls are added to the hair and on the right we see a small diadem joined by a diamond drop pendant. 

The styles soon developed into grandiose ostentation. Here we see the last Queen of Franconia with an excessively large coiffure decorated by a necklace, a feather and surmounted by a coronet. 

This flexible diadem from the Rococo period was especially designed in order to be uses in a variety of ways. It is currently the property of Queen Gloria of Normandia who has to date only worn it as a regular tiara. 

Like most excessive indulgences, they soon come to an end due plainly to jaded boredom or in the case of the Rococco was quelled by the Franconian Revolution. Yet the period of sobriety that followed soon buit up into what was to be known in history as the Europan Golden Age of Royalty. Two great super powers emerged during this time and they were both Empires. The Ruskian Empire had already existed for a thousand years but economic growth and  conquest, albeit tense, led to a new Ruskian Renaissance. In the West the establishment of the Germanic Empire also led to Royal Courts across Europa trying to keep pace with the new grandeur. More sober than the Rococco and inspired by ancient classicism and local history, each court sought to be the preeminent display of national pride. Ruskiana came out on top and no Royal Court has ever matched its splendour or intrinsic value and display of national tradition. This led to the Ruskian peasant headdress known as the Kokoshnik to be emulated in the gold and diamonds and to become what many consider to be, the epitome of all tiara design.

Here two Ruskian girls can be seen wearing the traditional fabric, bead and lace ornamented headdress which lead to the jeweled Kokoshnik we often see. 

Here we see Her Imperial Highness The Grand Duchess Xenia of Ruskiana wearing the Grey Pearl and Aquamarine Kokoshnik of the Imperial Collection.

The Tzar Nikolas I Pink Diamond Kokoshnik tiara could be seen as the premier and symbolically the most Ruskian of all the jewellery that survived the Ruskian Revolution. The Pink Diamond was the central feature of the Imperial Crown Jewels.

The Ruskian Court's biggest rival was the Imperial Court of Germania and some jewellery from the period remain to this day. 

The Imperial Diamond Tiara set with the 6th largest diamond in the world currently belongs to the Crown Prince Imperial of the United Empire of Scot-Britania. The tiara was originally made for the Germanic Kaizer's wife who never wore it as that monarchy was toppled for starting the Great War before she had the opportunity. 

Large tiaras with central motives and strong cultural symbolism was at the order of the day like the Von Bismarck Family Tiara also from the Imperial Court of Germania.

The  Great War struck in the early part of the 20th Century and brought change on a scale never before seen to tradition, culture, and social politics. It also obviously adversely affected the economy and the arts. Suffice it to say, jewellery would also never be the same. We are thankful that the war did not manage to destroy everything and much of previous cultures remain even in the sphere of head ornamentation. We will now discuss what followed the war as far as tiaras are concerned. 

Designs remained cautious at first as far as cost was concerned due to post war austerity but conversely as attitudes relaxed became exceedingly bold in expressing experimental design exuberance. This was particularly evident in what became known as the "Flapper Culture". These tiaras were of a never before seen configuration. Lots of variety, bold colours and the use of asymmetry was taken to the extreme.

Sometimes jewellery of this era attempted to evoke older periods but often the designs were slightly more modest and new techniques in diamond cutting led to stones being utilized for their quality rather than just size.

The parure above is from the collection of the Empress Crystobel and typically evokes a Pre-war feel even though it was made after the war. 

Time went by and the great War was soon water under the bridge although not forgotten. New political systems of democracy became far more entrenched and new economies boomed. The common man had far more money, intellectual exposure and air travel made the world everybody's oyster. In jewellery the prevalent philosophy became more and more centered around the specific needs of the individual client. Basic trends were not political or religious as in days gone by but were dictated by personal taste and the new burgeoning trends of fashion as prescribed by international advertising. The time of Post Modern Pluralism had finally arrived.

The Queen of Hispania owns a relatively modern parure of diamonds and black pearls that was a gift to her from the Hispanian Colonies. It was designed in what is known as the Retro Style and given to her symbolically at her birth as a promise of a prosperous future. The tiara evokes old traditions hence what is termed as "retro" but the use of colours and materials is very clearly modern and almost futuristic. 

This contemporary piece is in the private ownership of the current lady Arcwhite. It was made from stones in her private collection and also combines an almost medieval feel with a futuristic off-worldly look. 

This brand new tiara was made a few years ago on the order of the Crown Prince Imperial for his wife Odeliah. This piece was governed by two specific needs of the wearer. It had to be practical in size and weight for regular wear and ease of travel and it had to display the rank and status of the new Crown Princess Imperial as the preeminent Royal lady on the world stage. The brief almost seems like a contradiction but modern jewellery design managed the requirements perfectly. 

The Crown Princess imperial displays the amazing qualities of her new tiara as a piece that is spectacular yet practical all at the same time. It can easily be worn in a chic short dress, steal the show at a coronation if necessary and be stashed away even in a handbag when traveling the world. A contemporary success of a jewel for a contemporary Princess. 

Finally, jewellers are constantly experimenting with designs and materials. This very modern yet fairy tale inspired creation is another amazing example of what the skilled craftsman can accomplish. It is made from sterling silver and set with synthetic diamond simulants. What makes this piece so amazing is that it is made in 1/6th scale and is to be worn by a doll of the same scale. Incredible! 

We hope you enjoyed our tour through history and "lecture" on our favourite topic, the tiara. 

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

What's Up Wednesday (Duke of Swann's State Visit to Hanoveria)

The Duke of Swann emabarked on a two day State Visit to the Grand Duchy of Hanoveria on Monday the 20th of May 2013. Due to the political importance of the State Visit, His Royal Highness could not attend the nuptials of the Duchess of Roswind in Muren 3 days prior. The State Visit was a short one intending to strengthen the friendly diplomatic relations between the two nations but especially to show Swanobian solidarity as far as the Hanoverian stance towards the bombing incident in Serbieski less than two months ago is concerned. The Duke of Swann is also to tour extensive building and restoration projects in the capital as many collaborative construction projects in Hanoveria are shared by Swanobian companies. 

The Duke of Swann also had personal reasons for visiting his cousin the Grand Duke of Hanoveria and managed to take some family time amidst his busy schedule. He was joined by his sister, Princess Marie-Elizabeth of Swann for the State Banquet hosted by their cousin in the Royal Palace of Hanoveria on the first night of the State visit..

Princess Marie-Elizabeth and the Duke of Swann arrive for the State Banquet held in their honour. 

Even though Hanoveria's monarchy could be seen as the most relaxed and down-to-earth in all of Europa, State Visits received in the Grand Duchy are afforded extreme protocol. As such dress code for these events are more formal than in other countries to the extent of full Court Dress. Ladies are required to wear ball gowns and tiaras with orders of Knighthood and men are expected to wear uniforms or court attire. 

Before the State Dinner and speeches, the main VIP's posed for a group photo as is standard at any State Visit. Here we see from left; Princess Marie-Elizabeth, the Duke of Swann, the Dowager Grand Duchess of Hanoveria, the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Hanoveria. 

Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrice, the Dowager Grand Duchess of Hanoveria is the sister of the Duke of Swann's deceased mother. She insisted on being present at the banquet even though she has suffered severe illness of late. We wish her good health and strength in this trying time.

On the Duke of Swann's State visit to Hanoveria he also had a personal matter to attend to. This surprise came unexpectedly when the Grand Duke of Hanoveria, took the Duke on a tour of a part of the capital city being extensively renewed. 

Weeks before the Swanobian State visit the Grand Duke of Hanoveria was made aware of  a strange container in one of his warehouses by the architectural team who was commissioned to rework the buildings into modern apartments. The container was clearly marked as the property of the Duke of Swann but was obviously meant for postage decades earlier but never left the country. This strange and gross oversight will be investigated for historical purposes once the current Duke of Swann takes ownership of the container and its contents. It is suspected that the container has been forgotten in the warehouse since the time of the Great War early in the 20th century. As such it's contents and indeed the reason for it being overlooked might be of extreme historic relevance.

The Hanoverian Royal family owns several historic buildings. The particular warehouse was built at the turn of the last century, originally to store necessary equipment and tools used during set-ups for major Royal events like parades and Royal tea parties. Goods like tents, scaffolding, carpets street decorations and the like were stored but decades later the buildings were left empty as their use became redundant due to modern requirements and technology.

This warehouse was set to be refurbished for new avante garde apartments. It was during the initial clean up that the crew discovered the basement containing the lost container.

This old period photo shows the Royal warehouse as it was used during the Great War to store war relief supplies.

The Grand Duke of Hanoveria guided his cousin the Duke of Swann to what is now accepted as his property.

The sealed container had clear marking indicating that it is the property of the Duke of Swann and that it was meant to be shipped to the principality more than 50 years ago.

The Grand Duke of Hanoveria officially handed over the container to the Duke of Swann.  It is to be moved to the Duke of Swann's Hanoverian Residence, Schloss Schwanstein, where it will be opened to the press. The very exiting event will be published here on the blog in the next Memory Monday blog post. What on earth could be inside???

So the Duke of Swann concluded his official and personal trip to Hanoveria. The next few days would be spent planning the great reveal in private as he relaxed at Schloss Schwanstein.

Monday, 27 May 2013

Tiaras and Trinkets on Tuesday (Reset Emeralds)

Earlier this year the Duke of Swann suffered the loss of  the historic Emerald Parure in the Swann Jewellery Collection after a daring heist. After the initial local police and Interpol investigations some of the lost jewels were recovered but the rest were confirmed broken up and sold on the black market to finance what was presumed to be the terrorist group responsible for many separatist activity within the Syldavian province of Serbieski. 

The original parure, now known to be destroyed after the theft in order to sell the gems on the black market was of historic importance, political value and extremely costly. The parure was recently featured in a documentary on the historic jewels in the Duke of Swann's collection but other than that has not seen the light of day for decades. 

The broken parts of the parure that were recovered by the police during their investigation and subsequent S.W.A.T. strike on the black market illegal trade. 

The good news however is that the Princess Marie Elizabeth of Swann, the reigning Duke's sister was seen wearing a new aigrette style tiara made from the recovered gems and paired with the surviving earrings to the Roof Wetting Party at Sorgenfrei Castle recently. The tiara is convertible into a necklace. It is sad that the original parure has been destroyed but it seems the best was made of a bad situation. The Duke of Swann apparently has bequeathed the set of jewellery in his will as is, to be sold after his death and the money raised to be given to orphanages in Serbieski. 

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

"To be or not to be" Thursday (Empress Crystobel)

It has been a while since our last "To be or not to be" Thursday. This is due to today's post taking so long to finish. We will be profiling what we could consider one of the top 5 characters in our Royal story along with, the Crown Prince Imperial, the Duke of Swann, Lady Arcwhite and the Seeress of Muren. As such going into extreme detail was required and it has been taking a month to get this far.

This famous quote from Empress Crystobel best describes her life and her attitude: "...an old day always makes way for a new one..."

Born, Her Royal Highness the Princess Crystobel of Scotney, Duchess of Stirling, Marchioness of Inverness, Countess of Glamis, Vicountess Avonleigh and Baroness Crown Castle, this Princess was like many other in her shoes but also very different and destined to walk a road very few have travelled. Today we know her as the former Empress of a lost, almost fairytale Empire. This is the story of Her Imperial Majesty, Empress Crystobel of the United Empire of Scot-Britania, Co-Regent of the Empire and all her territories, Queen of Scotney and Most Honoured Defender of the Mithrandir. If our story had a "main character" one could consider her to be just that. She has lived through unimaginable glories and endured profound loss and her ultimate destiny is to pass the baton of responsibility to her son the Crown Prince Imperial. 

A recent and very intimate photo of Empress Crystobel taken by her nephew, the Duke of Swann.

 Life at the post war court of pre-Imperial Scotney was what one could consider a very typcal one for Royalty from the 1950's to 1980's. The Scotney Royal dynasty had been successfully reigning for over 1500 years. Its last two rulers, both queens, were extremely popular and served their nations well in their respective tenures. It was into this solid heritage that Crystobel succeeded her mother Queen Crystobel I as Queen of the Kingdom of Scotney in 1985. At that stage she was the eldest of three sisters and as yet the remaining bachelorette amongst them. Her marriage had been long arranged between her mother and the neighbouring King of Britania but due to her apprehension had not taken place. Now as Queen, years of planning could just be sent down river if she in her own right refused to marry as planned. The first year of her reign was imbued with this diplomatic tension but on advice of her cabinet she began to spend more time with her suitor. She did eventually, regardless of " duty", also fall in love with her betrothed the Crown Prince of Britania. 

The spectacular wedding was an event of unprecedented grandeur and set new standards for Royal protocol and International law. It was the first time in history that two countries were to join their sovereignty into one state due to the marriage of the separate heads of state. But the amalgamation of the two Kingdoms was only due to take place after the Crown Prince of Britania succeeded his father to the throne. The wedding ceremony itself has never been equaled in typical 80's style excess and also Royal dazzle. The event was attended by International Heads of State and Royal relations from all over Europa. It was presided over by the King of Britania, the groom's father.

This photo sees Queen Crystobel and the Crown Prince exchanging vows while the bride's sister, the Duchess of Swann looks on.

 In the interim before the Empire, Crystobel's married life had begun but was not just glamour and international red carpets. She was a working monarch with real duties and had to deal with the imminent deadline of the eventual foundation of the soon to be United Empire. As a wife and mother she was never happier than in those early years. Her son was born two years after the wedding in 1988. His birth was celebrated with great fan-fare in both, the still two separate Kingdoms of Scotney and Britania. Her life as Queen was a growing success and with the birth of a son and heir her family life had reached an all time high.

Then the inevitability of her husband's succession arrived with the death of his father King  George VI of Britania. The time had come for him to be King and for the couple to become Emperor and Empress.

Wearing the set of black pearls and rubies she received as a wedding present we see the young Queen Crystobel and her Prince charming still in the golden years before the Empire was established.

Within a year of the accession of King Christian, the neighbouring Kingdoms were joined together by an Act of Union. This established the United Empire of Scot-Britania as a new nation and country. It was considered to be the undeniable apex of what had been attempted many times in history, to have the "Britanian Island" under one Crown. The most spectacular coronation ceremony was held and the hard work  of ruling the new realm and to begin settling the initial state of flux began.

If any woman was up to the task of being wife, mother and Empress, it was Crystobel. The time was right, her upbringing and education was right and it looked to be a certain tour-de-force. History was to record a different outcome however that was not to be the fairy tale "happily ever after".

Within a year of the establishment of the Empire, the original bliss of Crystobel's life gave way to nagging concern. No matter what she did in her capacity she was always respectfully rebuffed by the status quo. It had become clear to her that an undercurrent of discontent was beginning to permeate the general atmosphere of public opinion. There is nothing like gossip and under-the-table propaganda to destabilize a tenuous new venture on the verge of spreading its wings. Crystobel began making plans to fight the growing doubt along with her husband and to discover its source if there was any. However she also wisely began to formulate a contingency behind closed doors, if worse came to worst.

Empress Crystobel (in the center) with her two sisters, the Grand Duchess of Hanoveria (left) and the Duchess of Swann (right). This photo was taken only a couple of  months before the tragedy of the revolution struck.

In April growing discontent, political misunderstanding and military interference led to the full outbreak of what was to be known as the Bloody Revolution. This was probably the single biggest turning point in the already eventful life of Empress Crystobel.

The news report on SNN News of the 1996 Revolution shows the burning Castle of Roswind.

 Amongst the chaos that was the first week of the revolution, many died and Europa was almost dumped into another war. The Imperial Family was considered killed in the missile strike on Roswind Castle that did indeed cost the lives of many visiting Royals, dignitaries, staff and even some Heads of State. Miraculously and completely unknown to the public, Empress Crystobel and her son escaped. In the days preceding the final outbreak of the revolution, even though all effort and faith was channeled into saving the Empire, Empress Crystobel set in motion her plans with the help of the Mithrandir and the United States Secret Service to save at least her son if the Empire failed. On the night of the Roswind missile strike, with the knowledge of the Emperor who acted as a diversion in order to aid their escape, the Empress and the Crown Prince Imperial was lead to safety through an old war tunnel under the castle. Leaving her husband behind they were driven in unmarked cars to a United States air force base where the Empress faced the greatest agony of her life. Reports came in via SNN News of her husband's confirmed death and her status as "missing presumed dead". The worst was that her son, who was knocked out by a sleeping drug administered by his faithful nanny, was now for security reasons to be separated from her and that he would grow up in anonymity believing his mother to be dead.

She was taken to the United States and given a false identity under special refugee regulations. She lived and worked for her sister in law Princess Augusta who was already living in the United States and operated her Antique Jewellery business from there. For all intents and purposes the Empress was dead and Ginine Lancaster was the best personal assistant Princess Augusta ever had. The young Crown Prince Imperial was taken to become the adopted son of the Seeress of Muren in the Switzer Confederacy and due to his very young age soon forgot everything about his infancy.

Time passed and in 2009, a Royal Ball in the style of the old Imperial Court was held in Muren to celebrate the coming-of-age birthday and revelation that the Crown Prince Imperial was alive and well and grew up safe in Muren since the revolution. This was followed in December of that year at the Hanoverian Royal Family Christmas Dinner by the fact that Ginine Lancaster was Empress Crystobel, alive and well.

The 2009 Hanoverian Royal Family photo shows the revealed Empress at left with her close Hanoverian relation including her sister, the Dowager Grand Duchess of Hanoveria in yellow.

The NOW Magazine had the exclusive on the spectacular story.

To celebrate her return to public life the Empress released this photo to the press in 2010. The State Portrait style photo is overt in its official styling. The use of Imperial iconography like the crown and portrait in the back creates a powerful continuity between pre-revolution Imperial Scot-Britania and the present day.

After the unimaginable tragedy of the revolution and years of struggle in secrecy it seemed that a new day had indeed been afforded the lonely Empress. This was celebrated in joy and grand style at the 2010 wedding of her son also held in his "home town" of Muren.

The wedding in 2010 of Empress Crystobel's son, the Crown Prince Imperial, to Odeliah Sorgenfrei was the eventual turning point that the Empress had been working toward for over a decade since the revolution.

A new season seems to have genuinely arrived for the Empress and her family. It also seems that in the contemporary international public eye that she has indelibly established herself as a public phenomenon and a solid fixture in her own right, regardless of having no actual Empire. However the past is not forgottennor entirely resolved and as we know the truth has a way to come out.

Setting foot for the first time on her native soil in 2012, this photo shows the Empress in mourning for her lost husband.

In 2012 the now Democratic Republic of Scotney invited their former Queen and Empress in lieu of the wave of popularity Royalty had been afforded in the media at that stage. A formal apology for the tragedies of the revolution was given in a speech by the president, Genl. George Campbell at a special wreath laying ceremony in memory of those who died. A small memorial statue was erected 2006 in the capital of Scotney on the 10th anniversary of the revolution to honour the innocent dead. The Empress stated in her speech: "Time does heal all wounds but forgiveness is a choice that like all others are made in an instant. " She then renewed her coronation pledge to serve her country and her people. Since then the Empress' media profile has grown and her charity work and celebrity status has just endeared her more to her former country and the international public. 

 Especially for this blog post Her Imperial Majesty granted permission for a State Portrait style photo to be taken. However a surprise papparazzi shot was taken of her arriving for the photo shoot at her Big Apple apartments. The two contrasting photos show the two sides of the modern Empress in waiting.

Here we see the Empress, caught unawares as she got out of her 1987 limousine. She keeps the car at her Big Apple apartments and has been quoted to say that she is very sentimental about it and would never be seen in any other car while in the United States.

Her Imperial Majesty posed for this State portrait style photo especially for this blog post. She seems to prefer wearing white more than any other colour and is seen here with the Imperial Consort Mantel made at the inception of the United Empire of Scot-Britania in 1993

If you think that the lives of Royalty are fairy tales, laced with wealth, love and privilege you would be right but as we know, where there is power and happiness, there will always be enemies. Whatever or whoever the enemy was that orchestrated the events leading to the 1996 Bloody Revolution did do what enemies do best, hurt. They however did not manage to quell the innate nobility of a woman who clearly knows who she is, what she stands for and what she is going to be remembered for.

On a lighter side, the Empress has used her wealth to pour a lot of effort into conserving history. Through her vast art and jewellery collections she has added to many art exhibits, history forums and serves as a curator in many capacities. She loves jewellery as an art form and owns what is probably the largest privately owned  jewellery collection on earth. She regularly wears her sparklers to the enjoyment of the public and her own pleasure.

The Empress is reputed to love rubies above all other gemstones. In this photo she wears some Imperial Rubies combined with the red sash and badge of  the Order of the Diamond Star.

This 2012 portrait shows her wearing jewellery received as a wedding present.

The Empress in her foresight sent most of her jewellery to her sister in law, Princess Augusta for "repairs and maintenance" mere weeks before the revolution struck. This secured their survival from the carnage.

The Imperial Family can be seen here in the foreground in 2011. From left, Princess Augusta, the Empress and the Crown Prince and Princess Imperial. 

The Empress is understandably close to her family after the traumas they had to face. She spends as much time with each member as she can and thus travels the world to be with them. She also counts among her intimate friends the Seeress of Muren who has been a bastion of support behind the scenes in her time of exile in secrecy. 

This has been one of the most difficult posts I have ever done, just due to the lengthy content that took hours to sort through and type but also due to the emotional aspect. I wanted to get this important story just right. I hope everybody that actually reads it enjoyed it and hopefully through this particular story, even recognize the Royal inside themselves.

If illicit gossip and murmuring brought the Empire down, then progressive marketing and good old fashion hard work has conversely established this women in history as the epitome of an Empress. To quote her Imperial Majesty one last time: "One is a Princess because, one's father is a King not because one marries a Prince and any good father is king to his children."

Long Live the Empress!!!