Saturday, December 18, 2010

Betty and the Real World

The Mistletoe Kiss:

They go to the Battersea Dogs Home to pick out a pet when Emmy tells Ruerd that he needs a dog. Wiki tells us that it is the oldest and most famous home for dogs and cats in the U.K. and enjoys Royal patronage.The name was changed in 2002 to the Battersea Dogs and Cats Home but I like it's first name from 1860: Temporary Home for Lost and Starving Dogs. The Home receives no government funding and is run almost entirely on donations from the public.
Princess Alice, the grand-daughter of the Home's former patron,
Queen Victoria, with a terrier, Skippy, adopted by her father Prince Leopold.

The professor courts the favor of Emmy's father by showing him an edition of Herrick's Hesperides. Wiki gives us this tantalizing snippet: he was the seventh child and fourth son of Nicholas Herrick, a prosperous goldsmith, who fell out of a window when Robert was a year old (whether this was suicide remains unclear). It's funny how, given enough time, even the most grisly of things become merely curious or even amusing. It is time again to drag out my ancestor scalped by 'dastardly Tories'...

The family celebrate New Year's Eve by having a party and tuning into the BBC to watch Big Ben count down to midnight. It is the largest four-faced chiming clock and the third-tallest free-standing clock tower in the world. Not to quibble or anything but they don't hand around medals for being the third-tallest free-standing clock tower in the world. It reminds me of that competition Scott Hastings' mother hopes he wins in Strictly Ballroom...The Open Amateur Pan-Pacific Latin Five-Dance Championship. It was his year!

A Christmas Wish:

The boarding school program includes a song about a boat speeding to Skye and Google didn't fail me! The Skye Boat Song:

Speed, bonnie boat, like a bird on the wing,
Onward! the sailors cry;
Carry the lad that's born to be King
Over the sea to Skye.

Loud the winds howl, loud the waves roar,
Thunderclaps rend the air;
Baffled, our foes stand by the shore,
Follow they will not dare.


Though the waves leap, soft shall ye sleep,
Ocean's a royal bed.
Rocked in the deep, Flora will keep
Watch by your weary head.


Many's the lad fought on that day,
Well the Claymore could wield,
When the night came, silently lay
Dead in Culloden's field.


Burned are their homes, exile and death
Scatter the loyal men;
Yet ere the sword cool in the sheath
Charlie will come again.


  1. Is it just me, or does the young Princess Alice look like the young Betty Keira, below?

    (I would have put in the hyperlink, but I was too busy getting pelted by hand-santizer balls to be able to pay attention in Betty Magdalen's class.)

  2. Betty Barbara here--
    When I read the song's lyrics several days ago(See First Comment), I was struck by the irony of little English schoolgirls singing a song about Bonnie Prince Charlie!
    Aww, Princess Alice looks a perfect poppet.
    I am still bemused that Emmy wore high heels to go pick out a dog!

  3. Don't let the kiera cute face on that princess fool ya, I bet she's a regular ninja with that umbrella.
    Think 'You are an appendage. Now do my bidding.'

  4. Yeah, Betty Barbara, that Bonnie Prince Charlie thing never worked out too well for the Scots--claymores or not.

    And Betty Mary, weren't most of Queen Victoria's grandchildren terrors--several of whom started wars, against each other?

  5. Betty JoDee
    Well, Queen Victoria had 12 kids, and married most of them into the European royalty--
    The most famous of her grandchildren were Kaiser Wilhelm II, Tsar Nicholas II and King George V (Picture) And the War in question was WWI.
    Betty Barbara (history major)

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  7. Not to mention the rumors of grandson Eddy being the Jack the Ripper (although perhaps they should have considered Princess Alice instead--that's a wicked-looking umbrella).

  8. You might have something there, Betty JoDee. Check out the wicked scar on the front of the pooch. She could be the Ripper. Or is that a zipper in the dog suit with Prince Charlie in disguise.

  9. Speaking of Betty Keira's relative being scalped and looking at that lovely boat painting, brings to mind another bit of information to share about the recent relative discovery of BettyMary's distant relations.
    Wake up Betty JoDee, there will be a quiz.
    This one involves the first person in America with my maiden name.
    "The case of the captive boy and the widowed mother seems to have attracted notice in Boston, so much so that Winthrop gave it a place in his Journal, as did Hubbard also, (1621-1704) a contemporary historian.
    The Death of Captain John Luther (first Luther in America circa 1635) and capture of his 8 year old son Samuel.
    "A bark was sent out from Boston with seven men to trade at Delaware. They staid in the river near the English plantation all winter, and in the spring they fell down, and traded three weeks, and had gotten five hundred skins, and some otter, &c, and being ready to come away, fifteen Indians do come aboard, as if they would trade again, and suddenly drew forth hatchets from under their coats, and killed the master (Capt. John Luther) and three others, and rifled the bark, and carried away a boy" (Samuel Luther) grandpa 10 generations back.

    His widowed mother petitioned the Swedish governor who after 6 weeks was able to ransom Samuel.
    'And so the chapter closes. Capt. John, victim of treachery and greed, finding a nameless grave among strangers; the unknown widow emerging for a brief moment into public notice and then disappearing into obscurity;
    and the two boys with little or no schooling beyond that of hard work, starting out to spread the name to practically
    every State in the Union that was to come. Their progeny furnish worthy members of every profession, and occupants of high positions in church, college, literature, the stage, and every walk of life.'

    From the Luther Family History in the BYU online archive.

  10. Betty Mary: I wonder if we're related...(beyond being sister Bettys)my great-grandmother was a Luther.

    I think she was from Pennsylvania, before settling in Idaho.

    Betty Keira posted a picture of her on the discussion thread for The Fifth Day of Christmas here.

  11. What, What, What? slapping herself I'm awake....Zzzzz

  12. This is very possible. Many Luthers were in PA. The clan started in Swansea/Taunton MA, and gradually moved west. If you could give me a name I could check this out for sure. Was she a Luther by birth or did she marry in?
    Related! Wouldn't that be cool!

  13. Her maiden name was Ida Bell Luther, born in 1889 in Corsica PA...her father's name was John Thomas Luther - from Callensburg PA(married to Florence Alberthia Slack), his father's name was Enoch Luther(married to Susanna Switzler). TMI?

  14. Ugh, sorry to be a know-it-all, but Queen Victoria had nine children and about 44 grandchildren. I say about because who knows about still borns, etc. Anyhow, Tsar Nicholas was married to QV's granddaugher, Alix of Hesse, who took the name Alexandra, but he was not a grandchild.

    The cute little critter in the photo was Princess Alice of Albany, Prince Leopold's daughter. Prince Leopold was QV's hemophiliac son who died in his early 30's in France (of all places). Princess Alice married Queen Mary's brother Alexander of Teck and in 1917 he became the Earl of Athlone. Alice lived until the 1970's (I think) and was as feisty as you probably can imagine from looking at her piccie. Her brother became Duke of Coburg (a title handed down from Prince Albert's older brother), and sadly, a good Nazi, and her only son also died from an accident exacerbated by his hemophilia.

    A history lesson if ever there was one, sorry!!!!

  15. Betty Barbara here--
    Betty Ilana is right--Victoria had 9 children who survived childbirth. (I suspect she had a miscarriage or two, but that's just my vague recollections from my Victorian Era history class. I wonder where I got the 12 kids from?). She is right--Tsar Nicholas II was not a true grandson of QV. But, he was a first cousin of George V, as their mothers were sisters. However, Kaiser Wilhelm II and George V were both blood grandsons of QV.
    Can we just say that the royal houses of Europe were so intertwined that it didn't really matter??

    Princess Alice reminds me of Teddy Roosevelt's daughter Alice(HERE)--as Alice Longworth, she was the grande doyenne of Washington, DC society for a goodly number of years.

    Our poppet, Princess Alice, died in 1981, age 97(thank you, Wikipedia)! You will note in the photo that she is holding that umbrella with one hand!!

    Betty JoDee--points for not quite snoozing through the Ripper Suspects course. For a brief while Prince Albert Victor, son of Prince
    Albert (Bertie, later King Edward VII), was put forward as a suspect. However, that theory was shot down rather conclusively, especially when the person who first floated the idea admitted it was a hoax!!

  16. Somewhere there's a photo with the Queen and the three reigning (or soon-to-be reigning) cousins--and their resemblance is uncanny. I think we can all agree a little commoner blood from the Middletons will not come amiss.

    Still the Eddy the Ripper is much more fun than Ye Old Sociopath Doctor the Ripper.

  17. Frankly, Jack the Ripper (as in, we don't know Jack) was a heck of a lot smarter than the royal family.

    Oh, sorry Betty Janet! (She's a huge royalist... Canadian, you know.)