6. Princess Victoria Melita’s Royal Headaches Never Ended
Princess Victoria Melita, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria, was spared the worst effects of inbreeding that spread throughout Europe: hemophilia. However, she got plenty of legal and familial headaches due to her lineage and all of its interconnectedness throughout the continent.
England’s greatest monarch, Queen Victoria, wanted her grandson, the Grand Duke of Hesse, to marry her granddaughter, Princess Victoria. The cousins, once married, fought constantly; Victoria was known for being especially volatile during their arguments. The Grand Duke was known for infidelity and, on more than one occasion, was caught by Victoria in bed with others. Their daughter, Elisabeth of Hesse, died when she was only eight years old; they also had a son, who was stillborn. Following the death of Queen Victoria, the unhappy couple was free to divorce.
The princess went on to marry the love of her life, who also happened to be her cousin, Kirill Vladimirovich. Due to Queen Victoria’s descendants marrying into royal households all over Europe, Kirill was a cousin to both Tsar Nicholas II and his wife, Tsarina Alexandra. However, because he and Victoria got married without the permission of the tsar, they were banished from Russia. They were only allowed to return when a series of deaths in the royal family put Kirill in line for the throne.