NOTES: Original name: Karl Eitel Friedrich; Reigh 1866-1914; A prince of
the house of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen, he was educated in Dresden and Bonn.
Carol was crowned as the first king of Romania in 1881. He established a
parliamentary form of government for the nation. During his reign, Romania took
part in the Balkan Wars. Succeded by his nephew Ferdinand I.
NOTES: Reign: 1909-34; Nephew of King Leopold II. Before his accession to
the throne he bore the title, Count of Flanders. His democratic manner made
him the most popular member of the reigning house. In 1898 and again in 1919 he
visited the U.S. On the death of Leopold II in 1909, Albert acceded to the
throne. While on a visit to Berlin in 1913, Albert was informed of Germany's plans
for war by Emperor William II. He immediately warned France and on July 31, 1914,
sent a personal letter to the German emperor informing him that Belgium would remain
neutral. When the letter was ignored and German troops poured into Belgium, Albert
assumed active command of his army and directed a successful delaying action against
invasion. In 1934 he was killed by a fall while mountain climbing. He was succeeded
by his eldest son as Leopold III.
NOTES: King Ludwig II, the "Dream King", has become his country's greatest
asset in the years since his death, doing more for Bavaria's tourist trade
than any other individual living or dead. He began his reign at nineteen, full
of promise, a young Adonis loved and adored by all his subjects. He had little
aptitude for governing and lived in a romantic fantasy world of his own. He had
become an ardent devotee of Wagner's music at the age of sixteen, and immediately
after his accession wrote to him offering his patronage. He built the theatre at
Bayreuth for Wagner and made huge sums of money available for the production of
operas. Ludwig is best remembered for the fantastic castles and palaces designed in
different tastes to suit his moods. The grandest is Neuschwanstein, a medieval castle
in Disneyland style; next the island palace of Herrenchiemsee, a Versailles in
miniature which was never finished; lastly the baroque pavilion of Linderhof. These
creations nearly bankrupted Bavaria but have proved a godsend today, being visited by
thousands of tourists annually. In 1886 Ludwig II was pronounced insane without an
examination and the King was taken into custody at Schloss Berg, 20 miles south of Munich.
The day after his arrival, the bodies of the Doctor who pronounced Ludwig insane and Ludwig
were found drowned in Lake Starnberg.
NOTES: The demented Prince Otto was proclaimed King in spite of his mental
derangement and his uncle Prince Luitpold was appointed Regent. Prince Otto
showed serious signs of madness on 27 May 1875 and not long afterwards was
deprived of his freedom.