Market Mad House

In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche

Historical Insanity

Royal Lasts

When we think of royals, we often think of lasts because many royals were the last. Either the last of their line or the last monarch.

For example, they made a movie about The Last Emperor of China. Similarly, people love to talk about the last Emperor of Rome or some empire.

Some interesting Royal Lasts Include:

The Last Holy Roman Emperor

Francis II. In 1806, with Napoleon I ruling as Europe’s Emperor, Francis dissolved the Holy Roman Empire.

The Holy Roman Empire lasted for over 1,000 years. It began in 800 AD with the coronation of Charlemagne as emperor by Pope Leo III. Francis II became the Holy Roman Emperor in 1792.

On 6 August 1806, Ferdinand turned the duties of Holy Roman Emperor over to Napoleon and assumed the title of Archduke/Emperor of Austria as Francis I. Francis I ruled until his death in 1835.

The Last King of France

The last person to hold the title of King of France was Charles X, the younger brother of King Louis XVI and XVIII. Charles spent most of his adult life in exile because of the French Revolution.

On May 29, 1824, Charles X became King of France, after his brother’s death. Charles’ autocratic rule and efforts to restore the absolute monarchy led to the July Revolution of 1830. On 2 August 1830, Charles fled into exile. He died in exile in Slovenia in 1836.

The Last (and First) King of the French

Charles’ successor was his cousin Louis Philippe, the Duke of Chartres, who took the title King of the French.

The idea was that Louis Philippe was king and leader of the French people, not absolute ruler of the French nation, as Charles claimed. Louis Philippe had been a supporter of the French Revolution and the first French republic. Louis Philippe ruled as a citizen king until they overthrew him in the French Revolution of 1848.

The Last Czar (s) of Russia

Nicholas II. Tsar Nicholas II was forced to abdicate after Russian failures in World War I and political upheaval on 15 March 1917. Russia became a republic, led by Alexander Kerensky.

Theoretically, Nicholas’s bother and heir Grand Duke Mikhail was the last czar. However, Mikhail wisely declined the throne. In November 1917, the Bolsheviks (Communists) overthrew the Republic and created a dictatorship.

However, Nicholas and Mikhail survived until 17 July 1918, when Bolshevik dictator Vladimir Lenin ordered the murder of the entire Russian imperial family. The Bolsheviks tried to hide the murders by burning the bodies and pouring acid on them. They did not discover some Romanov remains until 2007.

However, the House of Romanov is far from dead. The heir to the Russian throne, Grand Duke George Mikhailovich Romanov, held Russia’s first Royal Wedding 127 years on 1 October 2021 in St. Petersburg, The Economic Times reports. Guests included Russian oligarch Konstantin Malofeev and Queen Sofia of Spain. Notably, Russian President Vladimir Putin was conspicuous with his absence.

The Last Emperor of India

Strangely, the Last Emperor of India was also the King of England. George VI became King-Emperor of India on the abdication of his brother, Edward VIII, in December 1936.

To explain, Queen Victoria assumed the title Empress of India on 1 May 1876 when she assumed the authority of the Mughal Emperors of India. George VI was King when India became Independent. On 22 June 1948, George VI proclaimed he was no longer the Emperor of India. George VI is the King featured in the popular movie The King’s Speech.

Instead, George VI was merely King of the Dominion of India. When India became an independent republic in 1950, all connections between the House of Windsor and the Indian Republic were severed.

George VI was the father of the present queen, Elizabeth II. So theoretically, the Queen is the heir to the Imperial Throne of India.

The Last Emperor of Mexico

The Last Emperor of Mexico was an Austrian Archduke named Ferdinand Maximilian Josef Maria von Habsburg-Lothringen, in Spanish: Fernando Maximiliano José María de Habsburgo-Lorena, or Maximilian I.

Maximilian was the younger brother of Austro-Hungarian Emperor Franz Joseph, who served as commander of the Imperial Austrian Navy between 1854 and 1864. In 1859, Mexican monarchists approached Maximilian about becoming emperor of Mexico.

The monarchists’ argument was as a Hapsburg. Maximilian was an heir to the Spanish Hapsburg Holy Roman emperors who ruled Mexico in the 16th and 17th centuries. In 1864, with French armies occupying Mexico; and the United States distracted by the American Civil War, Maximilian accepted the offer.

To establish himself as the heir to Mexico’s pre-Columbian Mexica, or Aztec, emperors Maximilian and his wife Charlotte or Carlota, moved into the Chapultepec Castle. The Chapultepec Castle was a former summer home of the Mexica Emperors. In an attempt to ingratiate themselves with the Mexican people, the Imperial couple adopted the son of an earlier Emperador de México, Augustin I, as their heir.

Maximilian’s Empire collapsed when the Union won the Civil War and began supporting Mexican President Benito Juarez’s Republican forces. In response, French Emperor Napoleon III pulled his armies out of Mexico avoid war with the United States and the British Empire.

Maximilian’s Empire collapsed when the Union won the Civil War and began supporting Mexican President Benito Juarez’s Republican forces. In response, French Emperor Napoleon III pulled his armies out of Mexico avoid war with the United States and the British Empire.