Emperor Christian Victor I

Emperor Christian Victor I

Friday, 27 February 2015

Breaking News (Restoration Underway)

Enthusiasm for the history of the Scot-Britanian Isle has reached a fever pitch as the popularity of the Crown Prince Imperial soars with last week's discovery of the fragments of the Crown of St. Christian. A combined initiative of the governments of Scotney and Britania has been launched in conjunction with the Crown Prince Imperial's own funding 

His Imperial Highness has mounted this wave of public excitement by launching several restoration projects in tandem with the currently undergoing restoration of the Crown of St. Christian. These projects, in lieu of their historic value do receive government funding but are also privately funded by the Crown Prince Imperial's business partners. 

Let us take a look at the list of restorations currently underway outside of the Crown of St Chritian which  receive coverage of its own as it progresses. 

The Aldarian Palace survived the 1996 Revolution and was kept well maintained as government offices there after. It was given back to the Crown Prince Imperial in 2013.

The Palace received a complete makeover since then restoring it to its original glory. The gardens however is one of the projects currently being undertaken and once done will serve at scheduled times as a public park.

The Aldarian Palace has as part of its extended gardens a small house that was built for Empress Crytobel's privacy in the Empire's hey day. Here a commemorative statue for her mother was erected on what would have been her mother's 88th birthday. The number 8 signifying new beginnings, the Empress Crystobel was hoping for a turn-around of the growing discontent that eventually ended in the 1996 Bloody Revolution. The Royal Cottage, as it is know along with the famous statue is one of the projects currently underway.

The statue has been restored and has only yesterday seen its gilding completed making it ready for photographs. Here we see the Crown Prince Imperial on the manicured lawn ready to show us the completed work on the statue of his grandmother.

Not much was needed in restoring the sculpture as it was not damged in the revolution, only left to neglect. Slight touch ups and regilding is all that was required.

This close up shows the final outcome. A spectacular testament to history and awesome craftsmanship.

This archive photo of the Crown of St Christian can be compared with the replica crown on the statue of Queen Crystobel above which many thought was the only real two records of the supposed lost crown. It was found last week and is currently being restored to its former glory.

The small statue of King Edward VII of Britania, the Crown Prince Imperial's great great grandfather kept in the Cathedral of the Lionheart, also had some much need repairs done. It lost its left hand and the scepter and cross on top of the crown. These have all been remade and painstakingly replaced.

The original Imperial Mews still to this day houses the remains of the collection of horse drawn carriages and coaches used by the Royal and later Imperial House/s of Scotney and Britania. After the revolution the doors were merely locked and nothing saw th light of day until last week. 

The Imperial Coronation Coach as it is now known used to serve as the Coronation Coach of Scotney but was redone for use in the United Empire. Although these spectacular photos may seem impressive to the untrained eye, the coach is in need of some serious work due to its neglect over the past two decades. 

Reichenthalian craftsman are arriving in March to begin the painstaking restoration work under the management of the Crown Prince Imperial and the Grand Duke of Reichenthal who still possesses all the original plans and records for the coach.

We truly look forward to all of these spectacular and historic artifacts being brought back to life. Their stories are worth telling and remembering and their beauty can now be appreciated by all as they are all to be displayed to the public.

Monday, 23 February 2015

Tiaras and Trinkets on Tuesday (Jewellery worn by the Shahbahnou of Perlistan)

We have seen more and more of the pretender Shahbahnou of Perlistan and a few weekends ago we saw her wearing one of the spectacular parts of the Crown Kewels of Perlistan for an official photo representing her country and people's historic heritage. For this reason we wanted to feature the jewellery worn by Her Imperial Highness Shahnaz Farah Diba the Shahbahnou of Perlistan.

Here we can see one of the photos from the aforementioned photoshoot where the Shahbahnou wore the Empress Crown from the Imperial Perlistani Crown Jewel Collection.

Set in solid gold with large top quality sapphires and emeralds the Empress Crown dates back a mere half a century. The reason being that in Perlistani traditional culture women had no public authority and where kept (culturally not physically) within domestic confines. As such the monarchy and Shah had no role for a consort seen in public. However, the old traditions made way for women to be allowed more public freedoms and thus the wife of the Shah gained a title, Shahbahnou and a crown in her role as consort.

The Crown Emerald Parure of Perlistan is a matching set of platinum, gold, yellow diamond and emerald jewellery made for the wife of the last Shah to wear at their coronation in the late 70's. It is part of the Crown Jewels and has been worn very rarely by the current head of the Imperial claim to the Peacock Throne. 

This detail photo was taken for the Imperial Archive of Perlistan and shows the Crown Emeralds up close. 

Amethysts are very common in the Middle East and thus the Perlistani Imperial Jewels include among its ranks some of the largest and best quality specimens. This can be seen in the set of diamonds and amethyst made brand new for the first Shahbahnou, our current pretender's grandmother.

The Amethyst Parure has no earrings but does include two very large stones of extremely high quality. 

The current Shahbahnou's mother was a fortunate woman. She was the second ever to have a public role and for this reason received as a sequence of many jewellery gifts. This spectaculary valuable parure is made up from pink and yellow diamonds of very high quality and as such ranks it as one of the most valuable sets on earth. 

Here we can see the coloured diamonds in detail. Their quality belie the wealth of the Pahlavi Dynasty who had access to the Perlistani mines. 

In this photo, taken at the 2012 Christmas Ball in Arcwhite, Farah Diba made her first major public appearance as Shahbahnou in pretense. For the historical event she chose a spectacular tiara set with one of the world's largest diamonds and ruby earrings and necklace to compliment her dress.

The Perlistan Rubies and most of the Pahlavi Jewellery Collection survived the fall of the Imperial House of Perlistan. Some jewels remained in Perlistan as part of the National Treasure exhibited in the country's capital. Others like this set left with the Imperial family in exile. The rubies like the greatest part of the collection, was made for the current Shahbahnou's mother.

An ancient legend tells of how the great warrior Emperor Shah Ahurah killed a dragon in the year 989 and discovered a huge diamond in its belly. As the red hot stone cooled it was said to break into 4 parts that ended up being known to history as the Perlistan Diamonds. Today, three of those stones the Perlistan II, III and IV, weighing 65cts, 34cts and 31cts are set in the Pahlavi Tiara made for the last Shah's wife.

This set of antique jewellery is reputed to come from a hoard of jewels taken as spoil from a Hindi Maharaja in the early 1800's. They have languished in Perlistani government vaults until our current pretender chose to wear them in this modern era. It creates a very strong sense of historic continuity and reiterates the Shahbahnou's new official role as custodian of Perlistani Royal history.

The Imperial Red Peacock Parure is an official set of Rubies that remain as part of the Crown Jewels of Perlistan. They are on permanent display, and as from 2013, are available for the Shahbanou in pretense to wear with permission from the democratic government of Perlistan at official events representing her country. 

The Crown Collection of Perlistan includes, almost as if required, a demi parure of sapphires. It has been worn for the first time this year for the official visit of the Shahbahnou to Hanoveria. 

The necklace design of the Sapphire Demi Parure is very traditionally Perlistani in design, where the tiara tips its hat to its Middle Eastern heritage while also hinting strongly at a Europan look. When not worn, this set may be viewed as part of the Crown Jewel Display in Perlistan. 

Farah Diba inherited many business interests and some jewellery in her own right directly from her parents. Among this was a collection of unset diamonds which set has had made up in 2013 as a very distinctly Perlistani style necklace of spectacular proportions. We saw the necklace for the first time this year when the Shahbahnou visited the Queen of Hispania on an official tour.

The last part of the jewels we have seen Farah wear is this fringe necklace. It is reputed to have been a gift from a "friend" and as such would be her personal property. If more information comes to light we will be sure to share it here on the blog. 

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Fascinating Fridays (State Ceremonials)

What is the actual job of Royalty? That being a very comprehensive topic we will aim to answer the most important aspect of that question today. A famous Renaissance quote says; "A King must be seen to be believed." Thus the "visibility" of the King becomes the very primary purpose of Kingship. This has, as we know, turned into what is known as the theater of monarchy, the Royal Ceremony. As the visible face of a nation, so the Royal Ceremonial is always looking its best, dressed up and shiny and putting the best foot forward. Let us look at these public and symbolic appearances Royalty fulfill in representing their countries at home and abroad.

There are many such public appearances, some may seem mundane and others important while other, taken out of context may even be construed as absurd. The more historic roles of a monarch are just that, historic and the ceremonials surrounding those events could seem irrelevant or archaic. However it is thopse very archaic ceremonies that lend a monarchy its fairy tale mystique. To categorize all ceremonies would be difficult but for the sake of making it more palatable for our blog will will mention some, There are obviously Royal Parades which are never a ceremony in their own right but part of a bigger and normally very formal event normally celebrated on a national scale. There are Royal announcements and commemorations that aim to focus attention on particular historic happenings or to remember past important events. Their are religious services, like weddings, christenings, thanksgivings and the most sacred coronation all of which include parades and the like. Finally, events of state, like parliament and diplomatic State Visits are all done as representing the nation. These events sometimes end with the famous appearance of Royals on a palace balcony signing off on a magnificent event.Very often, the event may be a state, religious and family event all tied in one giving the Royal Family the unique ability to truly unify the varied aspects of a nation into a coherent unity.

More often we see Royals opening buildings, inducting memorials, launching ships or visiting charities. These are all parts of putting a face forward of the State of the Nation. In the photo above, Empress Crystobel was holding out a hand of forgiveness by laying a wreath at a commemorative statue.

What ceremonial evokes more memories of a Royal Family than the balcony appearance. It could be guessed that more people have physically seen a Royal this way than any of their other public appearances.

Official attendance as representing a government is a requirement of Royals in office. They are obliged to take trips and be present at certain events to show face on behalf of and perhaps even speak on behalf of their people. 

In this photo, an offended Wallachia was contesting damage to its coastal environment by a Syldavian power station. A summit was held and attended by the Princess of Wallachia and the King of Syldavia.

To strengthen diplomatic relations with Arcwhite for the purpose of increased trade, the Kingdom of Ophiri sent  their Crown Prince and Crown Princess to visit Lady Arcwhite officially. The visit was on par with a State Visit with the intent on the glamour drawing media attention.

Royals are also required and often welcome the obligatory State Portrait. As the face of the nation it is obvious that face is shown to all regularly. A State Portrait serves this purpose on a very permanent and intimate level. These portraits are often distributed free of charge with the originals hanging in prominent government buildings.

Official attendance as representing a charity is a very common and also important role fulfilled publicly by Royals. Accompanying glamour and ceremonial appearances help to focus much needed media attention on relevant charities.

The Duke of Swann enjoys to visit charities of his choice even in far flung countries.

In this photo we see Royals celebrating the opening of a new Opera House in Swann partly funded by a charity for music and music education.

Official State Visits happen quite regularly with the main purpose of establishing or strengthening diplomatic ties. These do not just deal with trade but with far more weighty agreements like military treaties and the like.

The ceremonial surrounding a State Visit may even include the transport, like official aeroplanes and cars. Depending on the importance of the visitor and the level of the visit often the very arrival will be surrounded by a ceremonial welcome and press conference.

State Visits also include official and glamorously formal photo shoots especially when Royals wear regalia and tiaras.

State Banquets and receptions play a big role as part of the State Visit but may also be held for official reasons like celebrating a birthday or other landmark event.

This photo is of the 2013 Banquet held in honour of the State Visit of Lady Arcwhite to Swann.

Knighthood Investitures is an official way for a constitutional monarchy to honour people for service to the nation. These may extend to citizens and foreigners. The event is normally very ceremonial and symbolic held in auspicious venues and requiring formal dress. The media coverage of these events helps share the recipients of the knighthoods happy day with the public.

The 2014 knighthood of the Grand Duke of Reichenthal by the Crown Prince Imperial was the first such honour bestowed by the Britanian and Scotney governments in almost two decades.

Royal do get engaged and married. These very private affairs are also considered great opportunities to celebrate in public. So these events are covered in news media and the wedding ceremonies are considered Sate occasions.

The engagement is normally considered more private but some media coverage may be given to newspapers who publish photos of  receptions or parties surrounding the occasion. In the photo above, Princess Marie-Elizabeth of Swann posed with her fiance Arch Duke Otto of Fulco D'Este for an official press photo. As a member of a ruling Dynasty, Princess Marie-Elizabeth was required to share her happy moment with her country and the world.

Royal church services and thanksgivings, birthdays, weddings and funerals are more "private" affairs that gain public media coverage. Church services especially focused on national events have high governmental sanction and are seen as full State Events. These may include the funeral of a previously reigning monarch and landmark birthdays or a wedding of an heir to the throne.

With these events especially, birthdays and weddings, we most associate the balcony appearance. For Crown Princess Delarese of Reichenthal's birthday she took center stage for the first time on the palace balcony.

The wedding of Queen Gloria solidified her new role as Queen and thanks to media coverage her popularity soared higher than any monarch before her in Normandia. The event was joined by Heads of State from all over the world.

The wedding of Princess Marie-Elizabeth and Arch Duke Otto was the first Royal wedding in Swann for decades and brought a much needed glitzy State Ceremonial to the otherwise more corporate climate of the Principality.

Funerals are a far more serious and somber event but public mourning along with the close family is a reality for people who live in the public glare like Royals. When a Head of State dies it considered a full State Event and every part of it is covered by the media and scripted like a theater production.

The biggest State Funeral of the new millennium has been that of the assassinated Empress Crystobel in 2012.

Opening of Parliament and the like, as Syldavia's Elector Council Meeting are not just ceremonies but also serve a practical function. These events open and close financial years officially and serve to gather relevant officials at particular times to hear and make speeches and to vote on important matters. they are however laden with historic tradition like the wearing of robes and crowns and do also sometimes include parades and coaches.

Since the restoration of the Syldavian Monarchy we have seen that country rebuild on the old foundations of their Royal history. Once a year the 5 Electors who make up the ruling council gather to open the financial year and to discuss and vote on issues.

This year saw the restored throne room of Syldavia serve for the first time in this annual glamorous ceremony in Syldavia.

 Finally we come to the most formal and most spectacular State Ceremonial that Royal afford their constitutional monarchies, those of the Jubilees, Investitures and Coronations. Jubilees celebrate milestone anniversaries on the throne for a monarch. Investitures are ceremonies where a new monarch is enthroned and a coronation is the same except that an actual crown is used to crown or to bless the new monarch. 

For her 40th jubilee, Queen Crystobel of Scotney was paraded through the streets of the capital in the coronation coach, then attended a thanksgiving service in the Cathedral of the Lionheart followed by a State Banquet.

When Syldavia restored its monarchy, the new King, Nikolas III and his wife Maximaq was received in State at the airport. A thanksgiving service was held in church and a banquet. A few days later a grand Investiture Ceremony was held in full view of the world media and visiting Royals and political dignitaries.

A set of commemorative stamps was issued for the Syldavian Investiture.

No occasion can come close to the state formality and official glamour or glitzy spectacle of a coronation. In Swann, the Dukes are crowned following a paraded coach drive through the capital and followed by a banquet. 

This photo of the coronation of Queen Crystobel of Scotney captures the austere glamour of the spectacular coronations of the pre-revolution Scotney. We will count ourselves truly lucky if we see the like of those days ever again. 

So this has defined for us what is entailed by the public and state appearances of Royalty and also gives some insight into what they actually do.