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January’s calendar of historic royal moments


3 January 1981:

On this day in 1981, Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone died at Kensington Palace at the age of 97. The Princess was the daughter of Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany and the last surviving grandchild of Queen Victoria. She had three children with her husband, Alexander Cambridge, 1st Earl of Athlone.

4 January 4, 1931:

Princess Louise, Princess Royal and Duchess of Fife (1867-1931) died on this day. She was the third child and eldest daughter of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra.

6 January 1367:

On this day in 1367, King Richard II was born in Bordeaux, Duchy of Aquitaine to Edward, the Black Prince and Joan, 4th Countess of Kent. The future monarch was the grandson of King Edward III and succeeded his grandfather at the age of ten. The story of his reign and deposition are illustrated in William Shakespeare’s play ‘Richard II’. Richard died at Pontefract Castle in Yorkshire and was first buried in Kings Langley, Hertfordshire, before his body was moved to Westminster Abbey, London.

8 January 1864:

Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale was born on this day and was the eldest child of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra. The heir to the throne died before his accession in 1892, meaning his brother went on to become King George V after their father died in 1910. The Prince was once a key suspect in the Jack the Ripper murders.

9 January 1982:

On this day in history, Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge was born in 1982. The Duchess met Prince William, Duke of Cambridge in 2001 at St. Andrew’s University, and they married in 2011. The couple resides at Kensington Palace and Amner Hall with their three children.

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12 January 1974:

On this day, Princess Patricia of Connaught died. The Princess, later known as Lady Patricia Ramsey, was the daughter of Prince Arthur and a grandchild of Queen Victoria.

13 January 1883:

On this day in 1883, Prince Arthur of Connaught was born. He was the only son of Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught and Strathearn. The Prince had a military background, having graduated from Sandhurst Military Academy. The most senior position he held was a Governor-General of South Africa.

13 January 1932:

Sophia, Queen Consort of The Hellenes, died on this day in 1932. The Princess was the daughter of Queen Victoria’s eldest child, Princess Victoria, Princess Royal. The Princess was married to King Constantine I of Greece, ultimately having six children.

14 January 1972:

On this day, Crown Princess Margrethe became Queen Margrethe II of Denmark after the death of her father, King Frederick IX. She was the first female Danish sovereign under the new laws of succession that allowed females to ascend the throne.

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14 January 1892:

On this day in 1892, the heir to the throne, Prince Albert Victor died at the Sandringham Estate in Norfolk. The Duke of Clarence and Avondale died before he wed Princess Mary of Teck, who later married the Prince’s brother, the future King George V and later became Queen Mary.

15 January 1882:

Princess Margaret was the Crown Princess of Sweden after her marriage to Prince Gustaf Adolf. She was born on this day in 1882 at Bagshot Park in Surrey. The eldest daughter of Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught died thirty years before her husband’s accession to the Swedish throne.

16 January 1942:

On this day in history in 1942, Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught and Strathearn died. The Prince was the seventh child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert when he was born at Buckingham Palace in 1850. He had three children and died at Bagshot Park in Surrey.

17 January 2014:

On this day in history, Mia Tindall was born in Gloucestershire to Zara and Mike Tindall. Mia is the third granddaughter of Princess Anne and the fourth great-grandchild of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip.

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18 January 1919:

The youngest son of King George V and Queen Mary died on this day in history from epilepsy. Prince John is usually described as ‘The Lost Prince’ because his disability was viewed as a disgrace upon the Royal Family as it made them appear weaker.

20 January 1936:

King George V died at the Sandringham Estate, Norfolk surrounded by his family and heir, Prince Edward. His death triggered the abdication crisis, where King Edward VIII gave up the throne in order to marry the twice-divorced Wallis Simpson. The scandal resulted in his younger brother, Albert becoming King George VI and, after his death in 1952, his daughter became Queen Elizabeth II.

20 January 1965:

On this day in 1965, Sophie, the Countess of Wessex was born. Born as Sophie Rhys-Jones, the PR manager met Prince Edward, and they married at St George’s Chapel in 1999. They have two children and reside in Surrey at Bagshot Park.

22 January 1954:

Princess Margaret of Prussia died on this day in 1954. The youngest child of Princess Victoria, The Princess Royal and German Emperor Frederick III was the elected would-be Queen of Finland; however, her husband Prince Frederick Charles of Hesse rejected the opportunity to rule Finland. She had six children, three of whom died in both World Wars One and Two.

22 January 1901:

In 1901, Queen Victoria died. She was the longest-reigning British monarch until Queen Elizabeth overtook her in 2015. The Queen was born at Kensington Palace in 1819 and died on the Isle of Wight at Osbourne House. She had nine children, 42 grandchildren, 87 great-grandchildren, 142 great-great-grandchildren.

By Alexander Bassano – http://www.royalcollection.org.uk/collection/2105818/portrait-photograph-of-queen-victoria-1819-1901-dressed-for-the-wedding-of-the, Public Domain

23 January 1874:

On this day in 1874, Prince Alfred, Duke of Saxe Coburg and Gotha, married Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna of Russia at the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg, Russia. They were married until Prince Alfred’s death in 1900 and had five children.

28 January 1547:

On this day in 1547, King Henry VIII died at the age of 55 at the Palace of Whitehall, London; he was succeeded by his beloved son King Edward VI. Britain’s most famous King married six times and had a total of twelve children, most of whom were stillborn. Three of his children would become monarchs of England, with only one of his illegitimate children surviving to adulthood. The King was the son of King Henry VII and Elizabeth of York. He hadn’t expected to inherit the crown, but the shock death of his elder brother, Arthur, Prince of Wales resulted in Henry’s accession.

29 January 1820:

On this day in 1820, King George III died at Windsor Castle at the age of 81. Upon his death, he was the longest-reigning monarch in British history; this fact would be eclipsed by his granddaughter, Queen Victoria. King George was married to Queen Charlotte, and they had fifteen children, including King George IV and King William IV.

30 January 1968:

Infante Felipe of Spain was born on this day as the child of the Prince and Princess of Asturias (later King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofía). His father would become the King of Spain after the death of dictator Francisco Franco and be instrumental in bringing democracy to Spain. Felipe became King Felipe VI upon the abdication of his father in 2014.

© Casa de SM el Rey/Estela de Castro

30 January 1649:

On this day in 1649, King Charles I died when he was beheaded in Whitehall, London. The father of future King Charles II and son of King James VI of Scotland was born in Scotland, before moving to England – where he stayed for the rest of his life. He married Princess Henrietta Maria of France and had nine children. He was imprisoned by Oliver Cromwell and his Puritan army in 1645. He is buried at St George’s Chapel.