Politics

Prince Philip’s German relatives who named their son after Adolf Hitler

All three of Prince Philip’s nieces and nephews, the children of his sisters, were excluded from receiving invitations to the royal wedding in 1947 because of their strong Nazi connections.

Philip’s youngest sister, Princess Sophie of Hanover, had married Prince Christopher of Hesse-Cassel, an SS Colonel who was part of Heinrich Himmler’s personal staff.

Prince Christopher was even head of the sinister Forschungsamt – a security service under Hermann Goering’s command that carried out surveillance on people unsympathetic to the Nazi regime.

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Sophie and Christopher even named their eldest son Karl Adolf in Hitler’s honour.

Christopher’s brother, Prince Philip of Hesse-Cassel, had joined the National Socialist party in 1930, becoming the Nazi governor of Hesse in 1933, and later acted as the liaison between dictators Hitler and Mussolini.

The Netflix show, The Crown devotes an entire episode to Philip’s experiences at Gordonstoun, the intense school that he credits for his own personal growth.

When Philip was 16, tragedy struck after his sister, Cecilie, was killed with her husband and two children.

When Philip travelled to Germany for the funeral, his deceased sister’s Nazi associations became clear.

Cecilie had joined the party with her husband, George Donatous, earlier that year in 1937.

The 16-year-old Philip was pictured standing amid uniformed Nazi soldiers.

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It was for this reason that the Queen Mother had serious misgivings about Elizabeth marrying Philip in 1947.

After all, here was her daughter, who would one day be the monarch, proposing to marry – just two years after the war – a Prince of German blood, whose four sisters married men entrenched in the Third Reich.

In the end, the King and Queen gave their consent, and the marriage went ahead.

But Philip’s sisters and their husbands were excluded from the event.



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