Page 8, 2nd November 1951

2nd November 1951
Page 8
Page 8, 2nd November 1951 — QUEEN AMELIE

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Organisations: Church of St. Elizabeth
Locations: Lisbon, London, Paris


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The last of London's royal exiles from the French Revolution dies

OUEEN AMELIE of Portugal—" the forgotten the last of a long line of tragic royal exiles who by the Thames at Twickenham and peace in " the exile:" in Richmond, the Church of St. Elizabeth. Queen "—was found security church of the

Sunday after Sunday Queen Amelie, widow of

of Portual and her son King Manoel TI used to g King Carlos I drive together

across Richmond Bridge from Orleans House, Twickenham, to attend Mass in St. Elizabeth's.

The first church in Richmond was opened in 1793. just two years after the passing of the second Catholic Relief Act.

Twickenham and Richmond were " home" to the Queen. Her father. Louis Philippe. C unite de Paris, settled at Orleans House as an exile from the French Revolution, and she was born there.

Scores of emigre priests and laity made their homes there by the riverside, and right up to the last days of her residence Queen Amalie could look every day in the streets upon relics of French things and names.


In a confectionery shop—here in Richmond and nowhere else—she saw Maids-of-Honour cakes. named after the attendants of exiled French royalty. They are still a favourite in the 20th century shop. Some of the antique shops. too, still have. in odd corners, a French atmosphere and flavour.

And there is still the vine growing up a wall of a building in the High Street. If it does not owe its origin to a French vineyard. at least it was a reminder to the exiles of their own countryside.

Beyond the church is a cemetery with monuments hearing names foreign to the English residents of Richmond but familiar to the Queen and to the descendants of the exiles of the Revolution. Queen Amalie spent hei girlhood days and her young womanhood in Richmond and Twickenham. And she returned to Orleans House with her son Manuel after her great double tragedy, when her husband and her elder son were assassinated at her side in Lisbon in 1908, and. less than three years later. when revolution sent King Manoel into exile.

Right up to her death she retained the love of the Portuguese people: so great had been her devoted service to the poor of 1.isbon that her leaving Portugal. even when the republic had been set up, was a wholly voluntary act so that she could be with her son. Flags were flown at half-mast in Portugal in mourning throughout the week-end. Queen Amalie had a unique decoration for royalty. It was the medal of the Ros al Humane Society, awarded to her for bravery when she dived into the River Tagus to save a child.

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