Isn't it kind of unbelievable that the British Royal Family is partly of German descent?
Given the well-documented conflict between the British and the Germans during World War I and especially World War II, you would think it completely impossible that the great-grandfather of the current Queen of England was a German Prince. And yet, there it is.
I found out about this rarely promoted historical fact while watching the film 'The Young Victoria' (2009, GK Films/Momentum Pictures/Sony Pictures), which centers on the story of Victoria falling in love with Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, a duchy in... Bavaria, Germany.
(Of all places in Germany, it had to be Bavaria, home of the official Führer Headquarters of Adolf Hitler, the infamous 'Kehlsteinhaus' aka 'Eagle's Nest'!)
When Queen Victoria passed and Edward VII became King of England in 1901, the Royal Family went from being representatives of the 'House of Hanover' to being representatives of the 'House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha'.
Only 16 years later, the name was changed to 'House of Windsor' because the name of one type of German bomber during World War I was the 'Gotha G.V'. Talk about a public relations disaster for the Royal Family!
"Wait so the last name of our current king is Gotha? That's the same name as the planes that are killing our children in air raids! WHAT IS GOING ON??"
Fair question. :D
Note the incredibly cool coat of arms of Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha:
- a lion (England)
- a unicorn (Scotland, where else?)
- a bunch of British flags and colors
and at the top a 6 figurines that can only come from Germany:
- a bull's head
- buffalo horns
- a Saxon castle tower
- a bearded man in the outfit i'll be wearing at my wedding
- a griffin
- peacock feathers
That's 6 animals, a third of which simply don't exist!