ROYAL MISTRESSES OF THE HOUSE OF HANOVER-WINDSOR

#The genuine love match between Prince William and Kate Middleton has rekindled enthusiasm for the monarchy. All these arranged loveless marriages between Princes of the House of Hanover-Windsor and German princesses or aristocrats ensured vacancies for royal mistresses.

HOUSE OF HANOVER: Perdita Robinson was enticed from the stage with promises of money to live with a fickle Prince George of Wales, who turned her and her child into the street. Perdita fought back, won a financial settlement and became a pioneer of women's writing. 'Prinny' became obsessed by Maria Fitzherbert, a beautiful virtuous Catholic widow. He made an illegal marriage to her as she refused to become his mistress unless he did so. George was forced into an arranged marriage by his father, George III as were his younger brothers Princes Frederick, William and Edward, all of whom lived with mistresses and were made to give them up once George III realised he had no legitimate grandchildren to inherit the crown. The lives of Dora Jordan, Mary Anne Clarke, Julie de St Laurent and Maria Fitzherbert were blighted by the fact that George III insisted choosing wives for his sons.

George IV reluctantly married Princess Caroline, hated his wife, tried unsuccessfully to divorce her and took many mistresses and sired several bastard children. As he lay dying, George IV's final mistress, Lady Elizabeth Conyngham stole valuable trinkets from Windsor Castle. George IV realised he had made a terrible mistake and insisted on being buried with a portrait of Maria, 'the only woman I have ever loved.' George IV left behind a macabre souvenir a collection of the golden curls of his many mistresses and samples of their pubic hair which together with his love letters the Duke of Wellington as his executor insisted were burned -yet another embarrassing secret of the House of Hanover.

'EDWARD THE CARESSER' SEX ADDICT AND HIS MISTRESSES. Edward Vll, son of Queen Victoria who had scant respect for her playboy heir, was a sex addict with over 200 extra-marital liaisons and frequent visits to a Paris brothel His most fascinating mistresses were the talented unconventional Lady Jennie Churchill, mother of Winston and the headstrong heiress, Daisy, Countess of Warwick. Beautiful shrewd Mrs Alice Keppel became the love of Edward's life and the great grandmother of Mrs Camilla Parker Bowles, now Duchess of Cornwall. Camilla's story and that of the semi-arranged marriage of Princess Diana are related as is that of her Aussie rival, Lady Dale Tryon.

The son of George V, Prince Edward (later Duke of Windsor) was handsome but in many ways a sad figure case having suffered an attack of mumps that ensured he remained physically and mentally immature and sexually dysfunctional and sterile. Edward implored his first married mistress, Freda Dudley Ward, to elope with him but she refused and found a more virile lover. One of his impassioned letters to Freda written from Melbourne's Government House is reproduced in facsimile in the book and his Australian love letters say how he wished to abandon the throne and elope with Freda.

Edward's second married mistress, Lady Thelma Furness, star of Hollywood's silent screen, introduced Edward to the domineering Wallis Simpson who ousted Thelma. Wallis had no intention of marrying the sexually challenged Edward but did love the jewels with which he lavished her. Wallis thought this was ONLY a temporary fling and the Prince of Wales would soon find someone else or settle down and marry a princess. Wallis preferred her amiable husband, Ernest Simpson to a juvenile prince who had never grown up. However Ernest was too broke to afford a holiday so Wallis went on holiday to France with the Prince of Wales and on a cruise worried Ernest's ship broking business might go broke in the recession of the 1930s. She and Ernest saw Edward as something of a joke. In private they called Edward 'the Peter Pan prince who never grew up.' Edward was now totally obsessed by Wallis who reminded him of his first love object, his old nanny. Wallis was kept so busy with the obsessed Edward she did not notice that Ernest had fallen for Wallis's school friend Mary Kirk who had introduced them. Mary had money and was prepared to help Ernest get back on his feet financially and wanted to have Ernest's children, something Wallis didn't want. Edward agreed to pay all costs of a divorce which was illegal and Wallis was virtually blackmailed into marrying the impotent Edward, now King Edward VIII. He told Wallis he was so desperate at the thought of living without her he would cut his throat unless she married him. Wallis insisted the impotent king with the strange sexual quirks sought psychiatric help in Harley Street. Edward defied Wallis's wishes and abdicated.

As Duchess of Windsor Wallis was denied royal status by George VI but so she could look like a queen the Duke of Windsor lavished her with jewels and forgave her infidelities with a duke and a bisexual American playboy in this intriguing story which is far from great love story and more one of sexual dysfunction and obsession.

ROYAL MISTRESSES OF THE HOUSE OF HANOVER-WINDSOR ILLUSTRATED BLACK AND WHITE AND COLOUR. 432 pages

Published by Pirgos Press, distributed by Dennis Jones Associates, obtainable in Australian bookshops or from the author via Paypal.

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Mrs Alice Keppel
Jennie Churchill
Maria Fitzherbert
Wallis Simpson


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