Saturday, June 25, 2022

Insight into the relationship of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent: The Queen’s cousin retiring from royal duties

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Prince Michael is the first cousin of Queen Elizabeth II, who is a “non-working” royal but still has over 200 public engagements each year

Prince and Princess Michael of Kent are reportedly set to step down from public duties soon. While no official announcement has been made yet, it is believed that Queen Elizabeth II’s first cousin and his wife will take the next step as he turns 80 on July 4. This comes months after he came under fire for business ties with the Kremlin after Russia invaded Ukraine in February.

Following the criticism, the 79-year-old British prince, who speaks fluent Russian and is related to Tsar Nicholas II, resigned as patron of the Russo-British Chamber of Commerce. He also renounced an Order of Friendship, one of Russia’s highest awards. But it has been said that he is still an ambassador and a shareholder in money transfer company RemitRadar, run by former KGB officer Sergey Markov.


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Insights into the royal relationship between Prince Michael of Kent and Marie-Christine

Prince Michael married Baroness Marie-Christine von Reibnitz in 1978, the daughter of the Silesian nobleman Baron Gunther von Reibnitz and his Austro-Hungarian wife Countess Maria Szapáry de Muraszombath. After marriage she became Her Royal Highness Princess Michael of Kent. The 77-year-old princess reportedly didn’t use her maiden name because “Anglo-Saxon tradition dictates that a woman take her husband’s surname on marriage,” according to Royal Central.

“The same principle applies to women who marry into the royal family – they take the feminine variant of their husband’s title. However, what makes Princess Michael’s title unique to The Royal Family is that she is currently the only woman married to a prince who is not a peer of the realm. Had Prince Andrew not been created Duke of York on marriage, Sarah Ferguson would have been formally styled HRH The Princess Andrew on marriage,” the Royal Central report said.

The marriage of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent was not easy, however, as Marie Christine von Reibnitz was both Roman Catholic and divorced at the time. Union also cost the prince his right to inherit, as “the Bill of Rights (1689) and Act of Settlement (1701) excluded from succession those who married Catholics,” as noted on his official website. But the site adds that “the Succession to the Crown Act (2013) repealed that provision and restored the Prince’s place in the succession.”

It has been reported that the prince proposed to his wife-to-be by gifting a two-stone sapphire and diamond ring made with precious stones belonging to his late mother, Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent. They exchanged their vows in a civil ceremony at Vienna City Hall in Austria, witnessed by his siblings – the Duke of Kent and Princess Alexandra along with Princess Anne and Lord Louis Mountbatten.

In June 1983, the newlyweds were blessed for their marriage in a Roman Catholic ceremony at the Archbishop’s House in London. They later became parents to a son and daughter – 43-year-old Lord Frederick Windsor and 41-year-old Lady Gabriella Windsor. Both are members of the Church of England and are also in the line of succession.

But like many royal marriages, Prince and Princess Michael of Kent’s marriage was reportedly not free from rumors of infidelity. According to royal expert Phil Dampier, who said in the documentary Princess Michael: The Controversial Royal: “Both Prince and Princess Michael were romantically involved with other people. Some other people were married, some were not married.”

“She was linked to Texas oil magnate John Ward Hunt. It was hinted that he wanted to marry her at some point. They met in Dallas at a trade conference and they were spotted together and she denied there was an affair, but she was once photographed wearing a red wig and dark glasses in the 1980s, apparently attempting to make love dress up, came out of his house. Remarkably, she was seen in Venice in 2006, very happy in the company of Russian furniture magnate Mikhail Kravchenko, were photographed together joking, laughing, holding hands, even kissing and floating around Venice in a gondola,” explained Dampier.

The pundit also spilled some beans on the prince as he said: “Prince Michael has also been linked to some girlfriends. Bryony Brind, who was a ballet dancer, had been in a relationship with him for quite some time and eventually called it quits, saying she didn’t want to jeopardize his marriage. He was also linked to an American woman, Lucy Weather, and she later gave interviews about their eight-year relationship. He was very interested in her sex life and liked her to dress up in white lingerie and get into very intimate details that probably got the Queen gossiping over her breakfast.”

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