Tuesday, October 9, 2018

But never mind, … it was your misfortune and not your fault.

From the Guns of August by Barbara Tuchman.
Next morning, in the procession, where for once he could not talk, William’s behavior was exemplary. He kept his horse reined in, a head behind King George’s, and, to Conan Doyle, special correspondent for the occasion, looked so “noble that England has lost something of her old kindliness if she does not take him back into her heart today.” When the procession reached Westminster Hall he was the first to dismount and, as Queen Alexandra’s carriage drew up, “he ran to the door with such alacrity that he reached it before the royal servants, “only to find that the Queen was about to descend on the other side. William scampered nimbly around, still ahead of the servants, reached the door first, handed out the widow, and kissed her with the affection of a bereaved nephew. Fortunately, King George came up at this moment to rescue his mother and escort her himself, for she loathed the Kaiser, both personally and for the sake of Schleswig-Holstein. Though he had been but eight years old when Germany seized the duchies from Denmark, she had never forgiven him or his country. When her son on a visit to Berlin in 1890 was made honorary colonel of a Prussian regiment, she wrote to him: “And so my Georgie boy has become a real live filthy blue-coated Pickelhaube German soldier!!! Well, I never thought to have lived to see that! But never mind, … it was your misfortune and not your fault.

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