Alexander (Greek: Βασιλεύς των Ελλήνων Αλέξανδρος A ', A ', Vasileús tōn Ellēnōn Alexandros) (Palace of Tatoi, Athens, 20 July 1893 – died 25 October 1920) was from 11 June 1917 until his death King of Greece. He died from a monkey bite.
The second son of Constantine I, Alexander, was born in the summer palace Tatoi, located in a suburb of Athens. He succeeded his father in 1917, at the time of the first world war, after the Triple Entente and the followers of Eleftherios Venizelos King Constantine I and his son George in exile had taken. Alexander had no political experience and was soon stripped of his power by the Venizelists. The King was practically locked up in his own Palace. Venizelos, then Prime Minister, became the leader and could count on the support of the Triple Entente. Despite Alexander's position was reduced to a puppet King, he remained committed to the troops who were deployed in the war against Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire. During his reign was the territory of Greece, due to the successes of the Triple Entente and the Greco-Turkish war(1919-1922), increases.
Alexander married the controversial Aspasia Manos in 1919. The marriage provoked a great scandal, which led to Alexander and his wife had to flee the country and stayed a few months not in Greece. Soon after his return to Greece was Alexander bitten by a Barbary Macaque and he died of blood poisoning. The sudden death of sovereign Alexander led to a crisis about the rescue of the monarchy and contributed to the fall of the Venizelists. After general elections and a referendum was the father of Alexander, Constantine I, again elevated to King of Greece.
- 2 military career
- 3 reign
- 4 Marriage
- 5 Death
- 6 Trivia
- 7 References
Alexander and his brothers and sisters in 1905. Clockwise: Helena,George, Alexander, Paul and Irene(Catherine wasn't born yet
Alexander was born on 1 August 1983 on the Palace of Tatoi as the second son of Crown Prince Constantine I of Greece and his wife, Princess Sophie of Prussia. He was related to several royal houses in Europe. His father was the eldest son and heir of George I of Greece and Olga Konstantinovna of Russia; his mother was the daughter of the German Emperor Frederick III of Germany and Victoria, Princess of England. Alexander was a grandson of the Greek King Christian IX of Denmark and a cousin of both King George V of the United Kingdom as the Russian Tsar Nicholas II. Sophia was the sister of the German Emperor Wilhelm II and was also a niece of the English KingGeorge V, via her grandmother Victoria of the United Kingdom.
The young life of Alexander played himself especially to the Royal Palace in Athens and on the Palace of Tatoi. With his parents Alexander undertook several foreign trips, including a visit to Schloss Friedrichshof, the lock of his grandmother Victoria, Princess Royal. Victoria had a great devotion for her Greek grandson Alexander.
Alexander had a good rapport with his younger sister Helen of Greece. The relationship with his older brother George II was less warm, almost because both had little in common. His older brother George was seriously and thoughtfully, while Alexander was extrovert and naughty. He smoked cigarettes by smoking paper, ontvlamde fire in the game room of the Palace and lost control of a reckless play cart, with which he and his younger brother Paul the way Hill.
As the second son of his father was Alexander the third in line of succession. His father and brother George were place one and two respectively. His education was carefully mapped out and was very expensive. In contrast to his brother George, who fulfilled a part of his military training in Germany. Alexander was educated in Greece. He studied at the prestigious Hellenic Military Academy, where he had sent several of his uncles and where, in particular, came to be known for his mechanical skills than for its intellectual can. He had a great passion for cars and motorcycles and was one of the first Greeks who had a private car.
He gained reputation in the front at the time of the Balkan wars of 1912-1913. As a young officer he and his older brother was stationed in the unity of his father. Alexander was also involved in the capture of Thessaloniki in 1912. King George I of Greece was assassinated and Alexander's father Constantine was elevated to King.
Alexander, came at a party In 1915 by Theodore Ypsilanti in Athens, in touch with his former childhood friend Aspasia Manos. She had just returned from training in France and Switzerland, and was described as beautiful by her acquaintances. She was the daughter of the paardenmeester of Constantine I, Colonel Petros Manos and his wife Maria Abbott. The éénentwintigjarige Alexander was in love with and determined to get her to settle down. Alexander decided to follow Aspasia to the island of Spetses, where she spent her vacation. Aspasia was resistant to the charm of Alexander. Alexander was known as a real womanizer. Finally, Alexander and Aspasia to gain the two in the secret fiancee. For Constantine and Sophia, but also for all the Royal houses of Europe, it was inconceivable that a Royal Prince would marry a girl from another social class.
At the time of World War I decided to pursue a policy of neutrality Constantine I. Yet he was openly sympathetic to the German Empire, which along with Austria, Bulgaria and the Ottoman Empire fought against theTriple Entente, consisting of Russia, France and Great Britain. Constantine was the brother in law of the German Emperor Wilhelm I and felt affection toward Germany because of its military training in Prussia. His overt support for Germany led to a breach between the King and the Greek Prime Minister Eleftherios Venizelos. Venizelos wanted to support the Entente, hoping to expand the Greek territory and the Greek minorities in the Ottoman Empire and instead to annex the Balkans again at the motherland. Under protection of the countries of the Entente, in particular France, Venizelos formed a Government that operated in parallel with those of the King.
Despite that parts of Greece were occupied by the Triple Entente, refused to change his politics and Constantine I to allow open opposition of the Entente and the Venizelists. In July 1916, an attack by means of arson, ruined the Palace of Tatoi and left the Greek Royal family barely escaped the fire. Alexander was not injured, but his mother saved her daughter Catherine of Greece and Denmark in the Nick. Sixteen people survived the fire did not.
Constantine I got on 10 June 1917 the command of Charles Jonnart, the High Commissioner of the Entente in Greece, to disregard its function. Under pressure from the Entente's units in Piraeus announced landings gave the King and decided to act themselves in exile. Constantine stressed that he not resigned. The allies did not want Greece would turn into a Republic and searched for a suitable successor within the family of Constantine. Like his father, George II was seen as pro-German. The brother of Constantine, George of Greece, refused the appointment. He did not want to act more in public life after difficult tenure as High Commissioner in Croatia from 1901 to 1905. In addition it wanted to remain loyal to his brother George. Alexander was chosen as the new monarch of Greece.
The resignation of Constantine I as King of Greece was not unanimously supported by the Triple Entente. Despite that France and Great Britain undertook no action against the actions of Jonnart, Russia signed protest in Paris. Saint Petersburg demanded that Alexander would get the title of King, but not that of the regent. She wanted the rights of Constantine and his successor George II retained. The protests of Russia were set aside and Alexander ascended the Greek Throne.
Alexander completed the oath of loyalty to the Greek Constitution on 11 June 1917 in the ballroom of the Royal Palace. In addition to the Archbishop of Athens were only Constantine I, George II and the Prime Minister of Constantine I, Alexandros Zaimis, attended the ceremony. There were no festivities. The 23-year-old had a broken voice and tears in his eyes when he made his declaration. He knew the Venizelists and the Entente would hold the real power and that both his father and brother had done to the Throne officially no distance. Constantine had his son that he only recognized him as regent, but not as a real King.
The evening after the swearing in of the Royal family decided to leave the Royal Palace in Athens and to retreat in the Palace of Tatoi. The inhabitants of Athens were against the exile of their sovereign and begged his family to Constantine I and not to leave the city. On June 12, Constantine and his family fled the city. On the Palace of Tatoi left Constantine Alexander once again know that Alexander kept in custody the Crown only. It would be the last time that Alexander would have physical contact with his family. The next day left Constantine, Sophia and all their other children after Oropos, where they would live in exile.
Alexander came in a isolation after his family was in exile entered into force. The Royal House remained unpopular with the Venizelists and representatives of the Entente advised the aunts and uncles of Alexander, including Prince Nicholas of Greece, in order to leave Greece. The family eventually followed the example of Constantine. The Royal household was replaced by enemies of the former King and the allies of Alexander were captured or were removed from him. Portraits of the Royal family were removed from public buildings and the new ministers of Alexander called Alexander the "son of a traitor".
On 26 June 1917, the King forced to the Republican Eleftherios Venizelos as head of Government. Despite the promises of the Entente that Prime Minister Zaimis was allowed to stay on, was appointed and Venizelos had to Zaimis resign. Alexander carried out direct opposition to the vision of Venizelos. President to replace Alexander and Venizelos threatened for his minor brother Paul. A special Council would operate in the name of Paul. The countries of the Entente handles in and asked to keep themselves in Venizelos. Alexander held the Crown in his possession. Under constant surveillance of the supporters of Venizelos was the monarch quickly a prisoner in his own Palace. His orders were ignored.
Alexander had no experience with Affairs of State. Despite the difficult situation Alexander tried to make the best of it and the responsibilities of his father as good as possible to observe. Because of the strained relations between the monarch and the Government did Alexander hardly bother to read through the official documents. Its features were limited within the Greek politics, but Alexander still got permission to visit the front in Macedonia . He tried to support the Greek and allied groups.
At the end of the first world war was Greece, compared with 1914, grown up in land area. The Treaty of Neuilly (1919) and the Treaty of Sèvres recognized the current limits of Greece. Most of Thrace (formerly divided between Bulgaria and Turkey) and several islands such as Imbros and Tenedos belonged to Greece. The region of Smyrna became a mandate territory. The Kingdom of Alexander was increased by about a third. Venizelos and amassed a fortune, which the most credits left for Paris for the peace negotiations with the Ottoman Empire and Bulgaria. Upon your return in August 1920 Venizelo received a Laurel Crown of the King for his work.
Despite their conquests was hoping the Greeks still to achieve their Megali Idea ]]. In addition, she wanted to Constantinople and annexing large parts of the Ottoman Empire.The Greeks invaded Anatolia in and wanted to conquer Ankara . Their goal was to the Turkish opposition to destroy under the leadership of Mustafa Kemal . This attack was the Greco-Turkish war (1919-1922) in. During the reign of Alexander the Greek army achieved success on success. However, the war was won in 1922 by the revolutionary units of Kemal.
On June 12, 1917, the day after the accession to the throne, Alexander revealed his relationship with Aspasia Manos to his father. Alexander asked permission to marry with her. Constantine was unwilling to let his son to marry someone without Royal background. It invited Alexander to wait until the war was over. Alexander agreed. In the months that would follow on the Alexander divorce was annoyed with his family. The letters he wrote to his parents were intercepted and confiscated. Alexander's only consolation was Aspasia and he decided, despite the promise made to his father, with her in the marriage.
The current dynasty of Greece was of German-Danish origin and Constantine and Sophia were seen as too German by the Venizelists. The marriage of the King with a Greek was seen as an opportunity for the Royal family to give a more Greek tint. Still, the Venizelists afraid that Alexander through his father-in-law, Colonel Manos, could communicate with his family in exile. Both the Venizelists and the supporters of Constantine I were not in favour of marriage. Prime Minister Venizelos warned Alexander that a marriage with Aspasia not good would fall into the eyes of the people.
In March 1918 brought the English Prince Arthur of Connaught and Strathearn a bezok to Athens to the King to hand over the order of the bath . Alexander was afraid about it a marriage between him and PrincessMary Windsor was discussed. The marriage would strengthen the links between England and Greece. To the relief of Alexander asked Arthur to meet with Aspasia. He suggested that he would marry with Aspasia as he had been even younger. For the foreign powers, particularly the British Ambassador, the marriage was seen as a positive development. The British authorities feared that Alexander would, in the years 1375–1377 if he does not marry with Aspasia was allowed. The British wanted to avoid Greece would turn into a Republic. A Republic would be a mean increase in French influence in the region.
Alexander's parents were not happy with the upcoming huweljk. Sophia accepted the marriage of her son with a girl from a lower class off. Constantine suggested postponement so he could bring his son to the altar.Alexander brought a visit to Paris at the end of 1918. The family was hoping to be able to make contact with the King now he stayed abroad. When Queen Sophia tried to get her son on the phone, the phone call was intercepted by a Minister and announced that the King could not react to the phone. Alexander has never knew that his mother called him.Aspasia and Alexander I
With the help of Aspasia's brother-in-law, Christo Zalocostas, after three failed attempts, managed to secretly marry for a Royal preacher, Archimandrite Zacharistas.Alexander and Aspasia gave each other the Yes on 17 november 1919. After the ceremony, the archimandrite swear absolute secrecy. However, he broke his pledge and confessed the marriage on to the Archbishop of Athens, Patriarch Meletius Metaxakis. According to the Greek Constitution, members of the Royal family had to ask permission to marry from both the sovereign as the head of the Greek Orthodox Church. By without the approval of the Archbishop to marry, caused a major scandal.
Despite the rejection of the Union, Venizelos accepted that Aspasia and her mother would take up residence in the Royal Palace. This was allowed only on the condition that the marriage would remain secret. The information leaked out had to flee Greece and Aspasia. Aspasia fled to Rome and later to Paris. Six months after the departure of Aspasia added Alexander joined his wife in Paris. Alexander and Aspasia were not allowed to appear together at official events. During their honeymoon in Paris Aspasia and Alexander were eye-witness of a crash near Fontainebleau. When the accident was the count of Kergariou involved. The King drove the wounded to the hospital with his own car. Aspasia, who was trained as a nurse in the first world war, first aid granted. The count was seriously injured and died not much later, after both of his legs were amputated.
The Government gave permission for the couple to be in the middle of 1920 to return to Greece. Aspasia was not recognized as a Queen, but was known as "Madame Manos". Aspasia stayed initially with her sister in the Greek capital Athens, but she took soon moves into the Tatoi Palace. During this period she was forecast by Alexander.
From the marriage with Aspasia Manos was (after Alexanders death) a daughter born:
On 2 October 1920 he was walking wounded when hit Alexander on the estate of Tatoi. A Barbary Macaque, which was owned by the administrator of the vines, was attacked by the German Shepherd of the King.Alexander tried to separate the two animals. During this intervention, was Alexander in his leg and chest bitten by another monkey. Not much later, the servants and hunted the monkeys away. The monkeys would later be killed. The wounds of the King were cleaned and connected, but not burnt out. Alexander took the incident seriously enough and did not want it would be published.
That same evening the wounds became infected. Alexander encountered a violent fever and later followed a blood poisoning. The doctors suggested that the leg had to be amputated, but no one wanted the responsibility for such a drastic measure. On 19 October 1920 hit Alexander in a confused state and he asked for his mother, but the Greek Government refused Sophia access to Greece. Sophia stayed inSwitzerland. Eventually got grandmother Olga, widow of King George I, permission to return to Athens to assist her grandson. Olga encountered problems along the way and Alexander was already died when his grandmother arrived. Alexander had died at 4 o'clock in the afternoon on October 25, 1920. The other members of the Royal family heard the news that night via a telegram.
Two days after the death of the King, he was interred in the Cathedral of Athens. The body stayed in the Cathedral until the funeral on 29 October. The Greek Royal family were not given permission to return to Greece. Queen Olga and Princess Aspasia were the only members of the family who attended the funeral. Foreign delegations were among other things Prince regent Alexander I of Yugoslavia, Helena Petrovna of Serbia, the Swedish Crown Prince Gustaf VI Adolf of Sweden and the Swedish Prince Eugene of Sweden.
After service in the Cathedral, Alexander's body was salvaged on the estate of Tatoi. The Greek Royal family, the reign of Alexander never seen as legitimate. On the Royal Cemetery is the grave of Alexander "Alexander, son of the King of Greece, Prince of Denmark", while the other monarchs the title "King of Denmark, Prince of Denmark" have on their graves. Alexander ruled as replacement for his father from 14 June 1917 to October 25, 1920.