05 January 2018

Royal Lady Flashback: Kira Kirillovna

Kira Kirillovna (1909-1967)
Her Imperial Highness Princess Kira Kirillovna of Russia (1909-1922)
Her Imperial Highness Grand Duchess Kira Kirillovna of Russia (1922-1938)
Her Imperial & Royal Highness Princess Louis Ferdinand of Prussia (1938-1951)
Her Imperial & Royal Highness The Princess of Prussia (1951-1967)

The second daughter of an unapproved marriage between cousins, Princess Victoria Melita of Saxe Coburg and Gotha (who had scandalously divorced her first cousin-husband) and Grand Duke Cyril Vladimirovich of Russia, the beautiful little Kira was born in exile. The family was eventually reconciled to the Tsar. During the civil war, when Kira was eight, they were given permission to leave by the Provisional Government, hoping to return after the war ended.  They were at their home in Finland, thereby surviving when so many other Romanovs were murdered in the Revolution. Kira married the anti-Nazi Prussian Prince Louis Ferdinand, who eventually became head of the dethroned German imperial family. They remained in Germany after the war, raising seven children. She suffered a heart attack while visiting her younger brother (a leading claimant to the Russian throne) and died at the age of 58.

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  1. Cheryl, the family did not flee to Finland. In June of 1917, the Provisional Government allowed the family to leave for their estate in Finland. Kirill left first with his daughters by train. Ducky, who was 7 months pregnant, left a few days later, again by train. They stayed through the civil war & after the end of the first world war, they left Finland for Switzerland and Germany to see Ducky's mother and they settled in France. Kira and Louis Ferdinand were not arrested, not in Dachau, not liberated from any camp. In December 1941, Louis Ferdinand was discharged from the Luftwaffe. His father gave him control of a family estate, Cadinen, in what is now northern Poland. Louis Ferdinand may have had a role in the July 20-1944 plot. By that time, Louis Ferdinand moved his family to Golzow near Potsdam although they spent some time at Cadinen. As the Soviets moved west toward Berlin and Potsdam the family, joined by other family members, settled into a small home in Bad Kissingen. After the war, they moved into a home in Bremen. See Louis ferdinand's memoirs The Rebel Prince.

    1. Thank you so much, Marlene. There is certainly some poor information out there. We are fortunate to have someone with such extensive knowledge to help keep us on track. I appreciate it and have made revisions accordingly.

  2. Please also see The Grand Duchesses (Eurohistory.com). I wrote the chapter of Grand duchess kira