mad monarchy

The Madness of King George has been well documented but he wasn’t the craziest monarch by any means…

Georgie found here

King Charles VI of France believed he was made of glass and hated travelling by coach as he thought the vibrations would shatter him to pieces.

Maserati covered in shattered glass found here

Queen Juana of Spain so loved her husband Philip she had his body embalmed and took it travelling with her wherever she went.

Queen Juana found here

Princess Alexandra of Bavaria was convinced as a child that she had swallowed a grand piano. Her nephew King Otto once burst into a crowded church wearing a shooting jacket and a deerstalkers hat. He hurled himself face down at the altar, confessing to a long list of sexual misdemeanours involving pageboys. He also thought the best way to preserve sanity was to shoot a peasant a day. His servants would load his pistol with blanks and disguise themselves as peasants who, when fired upon, dutifully dropped to the ground and pretended to be dead.

image found here

Peter the Great of Russia established a Museum of Curiosities to display what he called freaks of nature. The museum’s caretaker was a dwarf with only two fingers on each hand and two toes on each foot. He knew only too well that when he died his own body would be stuffed and put on display with the bizarre collection. Peter was obsessed with dwarfs and held a lavish funeral ceremony with a tiny hearse and coffin drawn by miniature horses when one of his favourites died. For contrast the funeral procession of little people was flanked by 50 extra tall grenadiers. He also employed a French giant who was over 7’6″ tall, and dressed him up like a baby to participate in another dwarf parade. When the giant died, he too was stuffed and added to the museum.

Peter’s collection of teeth found here

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38 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Fess up, Myra, you made that bit up about the grand piano? I was terrified of dwarves (dwarfs?)when growing up …

  2. King Otto and his shoot-a-peasant-a-day scheme: he was clearly mad, but who’s to say he wouldn’t have got better had his cowardly staff not loaded his guns with blanks? You just can’t get good staff. As to his Aunt, perhaps she had swallowed a piano – ex-Mrs Affer 2 certainly swallowed many an organ in her time.

  3. I’m thinking that getting stuffed as a perk for working somewhere wouldn’t be one of those benefits I’d look for in a job.

  4. wow that maserati is pretty cool!

    • Yes it is. Welcome to the gimcrack tinkerbelle

  5. Otto Wins!!! I would want to make sure I was loading the gun if it was going to be pointed at me. Jealous husbands and all that…hahahah j/k

  6. Can you imagine the fights King Otto’s servants had? “Tis your turn to die, Fred” “No, no, My back is still screwed up from my death throes last time. It’s your turn.”

    • Perhaps they tossed a dwarf for it…. ;-)

  7. The story about the Princess swallowing a grand piano is going to erase the progress I’ve made in convincing my son he never swallowed an upright bass.

  8. Queen Juana of Spain so loved her husband Philip she had his body embalmed and took it travelling with her wherever she went.

    …now that’s quite sweet really…
    Sx

    • Young love is just so adorable

  9. I want that Maserati – and I am not mad!
    I haven’t shot (or plucked) a pheasant in years!

  10. Crazy things that ppl do !

  11. Swallowed a whole piano huh? I bet she was in great demand at parties.

  12. I love your love of freakish history.

  13. he’s m…m…m….mad, sir!

    • ….To pwove our fwiendship, it is customawy at this time to welease a wongdoer fwom our pwisons.

  14. Hmmm…
    didn’t Queen Juana star in ‘Weekend at Bernies’?! :)

    • No, that was Eloise DeJoria ;-)

  15. Sigh. I’m too late for the “swallowing an organ” reference.

  16. My mom was reading a book about the insanities of the titled classes. I can’t remember what the name was, though. There was a story in it about a lord of some kind who conducted Sunday services on his estate by entering on a unicycle and other bizarre things. He was eventually told by the church to discontinue his preaching. :)

    • Can you ask her what the name of the book is?

      • The Man Who Ate Bluebottles & Other Great British Eccentrics by Catherine Caufield & Peter Till. I think that’s it. She thought it was British Eccentrics, but I think I recognize the cover illustration for the Bluebottles one. :)

  17. Reminds me of our estate, the Queen is barking of course, sometimes I think I’m the only sane one left.

    The King

    • And sometimes I have a little niggling doubt about you Your Majesty. At crossword time for example…

  18. That Maserati would sure prevent middle aged women teenagers from dry-humping on the hood in parking lots….

  19. As riveting as all this malarkey is, I have to say there aren’t nearly enough pics of you with your kit off this weather Nursie. Sort it out.

    Angry of Tunbridge Wells

    • Dear Angry, you’ll need to persuade me in person

  20. How sad, I doubt if there’s anyone who loves me enough to embalm me and keep me on permanent display after I reach my best-by date. On the other hand, would I really want my corpse to be carted around the world for the next 50 years?

  21. Wearing a deerstalker’s hat is an early sign of madness.

  22. Hothouse flowers never quite smell right, do they? Fascinating trivia!

  23. This Peter sounds like he should have been stuffed and put on display. lol

  24. I’m thinking of stuffing my entire family before they die. It would make for a very relaxing household. And think of the grocery bills!

    • Stuffing them before they die might get you in a wee bit of trouble, though.

      • Ah, but think of the peeeeeesssss….

  25. I sincerely hope that someone loves me enough to take my embalmed corpse with them everywhere they go. Provided that she kept the body in the bedroom during coitus, I’d even let her remarry.


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