When Queen Victoria’s second daughter Princess Alice married the Prince Louis of Hesse and Rhine in 1862 even her own mother described the ceremony as “more of a funeral than a wedding”, thanks to the fact that it took place shortly after the death of Alice’s beloved father Prince Albert.
Sadly, the young princess’ misfortunes didn’t end there and when she also died prematurely, her four motherless daughters were taken under the wing of their formidable grandmother, Victoria.
Alix, the youngest of Alice’s daughters and allegedly one of the most beautiful princesses in Europe, was a special favourite of the elderly queen, who hoped that she would marry her cousin Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and one day reign beside him as Queen.
However, the spirited and stubborn Alix had other ideas…
Empress Alexandra: The Special Relationship Between Russia’s Last Tsarina and Queen Victoria by Melanie Clegg is published on 30 September, 2020.
Read more about Victoria and Alix in Melanie Clegg’s Historia feature about the clash between these two strong-willed women.