hohenzollern sigmaringen

Marie of Romania

Queen Marie of Romania with her daughter in law, Princess Helen of Greece and Denmark and her grandson, Michael of Romania (later King Michael I of Romania)

House of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen 1/?

House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha 5/?


Representatives at the coronation of Nicholas II, Emperor of Russia

1) Representatives of Bavaria: They are arranged in a group with four seated and three standing behind them. Prince Louis of Bavaria (1845-1921), later King Ludwig III, is sitting at the centre of the group holding a hat with a feather plume on his lap. They are all wearing ceremonial military uniform and are holding swords.

2) Representatives of the Grand Duchy of Baden: They are arranged in a group with four seated and two standing behind them to the left. They are wearing ceremonial military uniform and are holding swords.

3) Representatives of Denmark: They are arranged in a group with three seated and three standing behind them. Crown Prince Frederik, later King Frederik VIII (1843-1912) is sitting at the centre of the group facing partly to the right. They are all wearing ceremonial military uniform.

4) Representatives of the Grand Duchy of Hesse and by Rhine: There are ten men arranged in a group with four seated and six standing in a row behind them. Ernst Ludwig, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine (1868-1937) is sitting second from the left. All are wearing ceremonial military uniform or formal dress.

5) Representatives of France: They are standing in a group on a stone staircase with an open door behind them. All are wearing ceremonial military uniform.

6) Representatives of Romania: They are arranged in a group with Prince Ferdinand of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen (1865-1927), later King Ferdinand I of Romania, sitting at the centre. All are wearing ceremonial military uniform.

7) Representatives of the United States of America: They are arranged in a group with three women at the centre wearing formal dresses. General McCook, the military envoy, is standing to the far left and there are two men to the far right. All are wearing ceremonial military uniform.

8) Representatives of the United States of America: Clifton Rodes Breckinridge (1846-1932), the Minister to Russia, is seated in the middle of the group. His wife is sitting beside him to the left and Mrs Peirce is sitting to the right. Five men are standing in a row behind them with Admiral Selfridge (1836-1924), the naval envoy, standing second from the right wearing naval uniform.

9) Representatives of the Netherlands: Seated at the centre of the group is a woman wearing a formal dress with a young girl standing beside her to the left. There is a man seated to the left and two men seated to the right. Six men are standing in a row behind. All of the men are wearing ceremonial military dress.

10) Representatives of Japan: There are nine men arranged in a group with five seated and four standing behind. Yamagata Aritomo (1838-1922), the Ambassador Extrodinary, is sitting at the centre of the group. All are wearing ceremonial military uniform or formal dress.

11) Representatives of Turkey: There are six men arranged in a group with four seated and two standing. Mr Zia-Pascha, the Ambassador Extrodinary, is sitting second from the right. They are all wearing military uniform or formal dress and several are wearing a fez.

12) Representatives of China: There are twenty-two men standing in a group with Li-Hung-Tchang (1823-1901), the Ambassador Extraordinary, seated at the front of the group to the right. They are wearing a mix of traditional Chinese costume and western military uniforms.

13) Representatives of Siam: Prince Shira of Siam is sitting to the left with a small table in front of him. There are two attendants beside him to the right, one seated and one standing. They are all wearing ceremonial military uniform. 

14) Representatives of Württemberg: There are five men arranged in a group with three seated and two standing behind. Albrecht, Duke of Württemberg (1865-1939) is sitting at the centre of the group. They are all wearing ceremonial military uniform. 

15) Representatives of Mexico: Don Manuel Iturbe, the Envoy Extraordinary, is sitting to the left wearing a heavily embroidered jacket and a sash. Two men are standing to the right, also wearing formal dress.

16) Representatives of the Emirate of Bukhara: There are six men arranged in a group with five sitting in a row and one standing behind. Emir Seid-Abdoul-Akhad-Khan (1859-1911) is sitting at the centre of the group. They are all wearing traditional costume or military uniform.

17) Representatives of the nobility: There is a large group of men gathered in front of a stone building which has three arches supported by columns, a balcony and windows in the gothic style. All are wearing military uniform. 

18) The suite of Nicholas II: There are sixty-five men arranged in a long group with the front row seated. All are wearing ceremonial military uniform and many are carrying swords.

19) Correspondents and artists

Die Burg Hohenzollern is the ancestral seat of the imperial House of Hohenzollern. The third of 3 castles on the site, it is located atop a 234 m bluff rising above the towns of Hechingen & Bisingen in the foothills of the Swabian Alp in Baden-Württemberg, Southwestern Germany.

The House of Hohenzollern is a dynasty of former princes, electors, kings, and emperors of Hohenzollern, Brandenburg, Prussia, the German Empire, and Romania. The family arose during the 11th century. Their first ancestor was mentioned in 1061. They derived from the Burchardinger dynasty. The family split into 2 branches, the Catholic Swabian branch and the Protestant Franconian branch, which later became the Brandenburg-Prussian branch. The Swabian branch ruled Hohenzollern-Hechingen and Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen until 1849, and also ruled Romania (1866-1947). Members of the Franconian branch became Margrave of Brandenburg in 1415 and Duke of Prussia in 1525. The Kingdom of Prussia was created in 1701, eventually leading to the unification of Germany and the creation of the German Empire (1871),  with the Hohenzollerns as hereditary German Emperors and Kings of Prussia. Germany’s defeat in WW1 (1918) led to the German Revolution. The Hohenzollerns were overthrown and the Weimar Republic was established, thus bringing an end to the German Monarchy. Read more. 

Marie of Romania and her children (not including Princess Ileana or Prince Mircea), from left to right: Princess Maria (later Queen of Yugoslavia), Princess Elisabeth (later Queen of the Hellenes), Prince Nicolae and Prince Carol (later King Carol II of Romania). 


Gathering in Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen. Early 1910s

*1.- Crownprincess Marie of Romania, Princess Henriette, Duchesse d´Vendome and Princess Josephine of Hohenzollern Sigmaringen (both neé Princess of Belgium)

*2.-Princess Elisabeth of Romania (later Queen of Greece) with cousin Augusta Viktoria of Hohenzollern Sigmaringen (later Queen of Portugal) and uncle, Prince Wilhelm of Hohenzollern Sigmaringen

*3.-Prince Karl of Hohenzollern Sigmaringen (right) fooling around with brother, Crownprince Ferdinand of Romania.


24 April – Blessed Memorial of  St Fidelis of Sigmaringen O.F.M.Cap. (1577-1622) Religious Priest and MARTYR, lawyer/advocate, philosopher, teacher, apostle of Eucharistic Adoration and charity – Attributes – sword; palm of martyrdom; heretics; the Morning Star; trampling on the word “heresy”; with a club set with spikes; with a whirlbat; with an angel carrying a palm of martyrdom; with Saint Joseph of Leonessa.   Major Shrine at the Capuchin friary of Weltkirchen (Feldkirch), Austria

St Fidelis was born Mark Roy or Rey in 1577 in Sigmaringen, a town in modern-day Germany, then under the Principality of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen.    His father’s name was John Rey.    He studied law and philosophy at the University of Freiburg.   Roy subsequently taught philosophy at this university, ultimately earning the degree of Doctor of Law.    During his time as a student he did not drink wine and wore a hair-shirt.    He was known for his modesty, meekness and chastity.

In 1604, Roy accompanied, as preceptor (teacher-mentor), three young Swabian gentlemen on their travels through the principal parts of Europe.    During six years of travel, he attended Mass very frequently.    In every town they came to, he visited the hospitals and churches, passed several hours on his knees in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament and was generous to the poor, sometimes giving them the very clothes off his back.

Upon his return, he practiced law as a counselor or advocate, at Colmar, in Alsace where he came to be known as the ‘poor man’s lawyer’.    He scrupulously forbore all invectives, detractions and whatever might affect the reputation of any adversary.    Disenchanted with the evils associated with his profession, he was determined to enter the religious life as a member of the Capuchin friars.

As soon as Fidelis finished his course of theology, he was immediately employed in preaching and in hearing confessions.    After becoming guardian of the Capuchin friary in Weltkirchen, Feldkirch (in present-day Austria), many residents of the town and neighbouring places were reformed by his zealous labours and several Calvinists were converted.   The Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith commissioned Fidelis to preach in the Graubünden region of eastern Switzerland.   Eight other Capuchin friars were to be his assistants and they laboured in this mission under his direction.

The Calvinists of that territory, being incensed at his success in converting their brethren, loudly threatened Fidelis’ life and he prepared himself for martyrdom.   Fidelis and his companions entered into Prättigau, a small district of Graubünden, in 1622, on the Feast of the Epiphany, January 6.    The effects of his ardent zeal, where the Bishop of Coire sent a lengthy and full account to the Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith, enraged the Calvinists in that province.

On April 24, 1622, Fidelis made his confession, celebrated Mass and then preached at Grüsch.    At the end of his sermon, which he had delivered with more than ordinary zeal, he stood silent all of a sudden, with his eyes fixed upon Heaven, in ecstasy.    He foretold his death to several persons in the clearest terms and began signing his letters, “P. Fidelis, prope diem esca vermium” (“Father Fidelis, in days ahead to become food for worms”).    After the service at Grüsch he and several companions traveled to Seewis.    His companions noted that he was particularly cheerful.

On April 24, in a campaign organised by the Habsburgs, Fidelis was preaching under protection of some Austrian imperial soldiers in the Church at Seewis with the aim to reconvert the people of Seewis to Catholicism.   During the sermon, his listeners were called “to arms” by the Calvinist agitators outside.    Some of the people went to face the Austrian troops outside the church.    Fidelis had been persuaded by the remaining Catholics to immediately flee with the Austrian troops out of Seewis, which he did but then returned alone to Grüsch.    On his way back he was confronted by 20 Calvinist soldiers who demanded unsuccessfully that he renounce the Catholic faith and when he refused, they subsequently murdered him.

A local account:

From Grüsch he went to preach at Seewis, where, with great energy, he exhorted the Catholics to constancy in the faith.    After a Calvinist had discharged his musket at him in the Church, the Catholics entreated him to leave the place.    He answered that death was his gain and his joy, and that he was ready to lay down his life in God’s cause.    On his road back to Grüsch, he met twenty Calvinist soldiers with a minister at their head. They called him a false prophet and urged him to embrace their sect.    He answered: “I am sent to you to confute, not to embrace your heresy. The Catholic religion is the faith of all ages, I fear not death.”    One of them beat him down to the ground by a stroke on the head with his backsword.    Fidelis rose again on his knees and stretching forth his arms in the form of a cross, said with a feeble voice “Pardon my enemies, O Lord: blinded by passion they know not what they do. Lord Jesus, have mercy on me. Mary, Mother of God, succour me!.”   Another sword stroke clove his skull and he fell to the ground and lay in a pool of his own blood.    The soldiers, not content with this, added many stab wounds to his body with their long knives and hacked-off his left leg, as they said, to punish him for his many journeys into those parts to preach to them.It is said that a Catholic woman lay concealed near the place of Fidelis’ martyrdom as the saint was slain.    After the soldiers had left, she came out to assess the incident and found the martyr’s eyes open, fixed on the heavens.    He was buried by Catholics the next day.

The rebels were soon after defeated by the imperial troops, an event which the martyr had foretold them.    The Protestant minister who had participated in Fidelis’ martyrdom, was converted by this circumstance, made a public abjuration of Calvinism and was received into the Catholic Church.

After six months, the martyr’s body was found to be incorrupt but his head and left arm were separated from his body.    The body parts were then placed into two reliquaries, one sent to the Cathedral of Coire, at the behest of the bishop and laid under the High Altar; the other was placed in the Capuchin church at Weltkirchen, Feldkirch, Austria.

St Fidelis was beatified on 24 March 1729 by Pope Benedict XIII and canonised on 29 June 1746, Rome by Pope Benedict XIV