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NETHERLANDS: Hermine Calls

2 minute read

Whatever is royal and at the same time smart and sumptuous, in the Netherlands, will usually be found to appertain to that great lady, the Queen Mother Emma. Her daughter, Queen Wilhelmina, is undoubtedly more popular, more Dutch, more well-beloved; but the Queen Mother is Royal, as though by Right Divine—in the manner of Alexandra, late British Queen Mother. Therefore last week it was naturally Queen Emma who received at Castle Soest Dyk, her summer residence, a lady who is the consort of Wilhelm II and is known in the Netherlands as “Empress” Hermine.

Queen Emma and “Empress” Hermine communed in mutual audience for something over an hour. The call was of significance because it served to focus the world’s eye momentarily once again upon Queen Emma, the resolute onetime Princess of Waldeck.Pyrmont who, at 21, by a single bold stroke, secured for herself elevation to the dignity of Queen of the Netherlands beside 62-year-old King William III, justly known as the “Dutch Don Juan.”

His Majesty had been paying court to Emma’s sister, Princess Helen of Waldeck-Pyrmont who, despite the honor, absolutely refused to marry him because of his age and reputation. A well substantiated account tells that 21-year-old Princess Emma burst in upon the pair at the critical moment after His Majesty had been refused.

“Oh Helen!” said young blooming Princess Emma reproachfully to her sister, “I should never refuse to be a queen!”

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