Showing posts with label 1 June. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 1 June. Show all posts

1 June 2019

1 June

Iolanda of Savoy - banished princess

Sister of Italy’s last monarch lived quiet life in seaside villa

Princess Iolanda of Savoy, eldest daughter of Italy’s wartime king Vittorio Emanuele III, was born on this day in 1901 in Rome.  Along with the other members of the Italian royal family, she left the country in 1946 after a the Italian public voted to turn Italy into a republic.  The new constitution specifically banned the male heirs of the House of Savoy from setting foot on Italian soil.  Her brother, Umberto II, who had been made king when his father abdicated in May 1946, shortly before the vote, had the crown for just 27 days. The decision to send male members of the family into exile was essentially the new republic’s punishment for Vittorio Emanuele having allowed the Fascist leader Benito Mussolini to run the country.  Unlike his male descendants, who would remain in exile until 2002, the female descendants were able to return to Italy.  There was no public role for Iolanda, but she and her husband were able to start a new life at a villa on the coast of Lazio. Read more…


Francesco Scipione – playwright

Erudite marquis revitalised Italian drama

Dramatist Francesco Scipione, marchese di Maffei, was born on this day in 1675 in Verona.  His most famous work was his verse tragedy, Merope, which attempted to introduce Greek and French classical simplicity into Italian drama. This prepared the way for the dramatic tragedies of Vittorio Alfieri and the librettos of Pietro Metastasio later in the 18th century.  After studying at Jesuit colleges in Parma and Rome, Scipione went to fight on the side of Bavaria in the War of the Spanish Succession. He saw action in 1704 at the Battle of Schellenberg, when his brother, Alessandro, was second in command. When Merope, was first performed in 1713, it met with astonishing success. It was based on Greek mythology and the French neoclassical period, signalling the way for the later reform of Italian tragedy. It was popular with the audience because of its rapid action and the elimination of the prologue and the chorus.  Read more…


Francis V – Duke of Modena

Jacobite claimant was forced to flee his own duchy

The last reigning Duke of Modena, Francis V, was born on this day in 1819 in Modena.  He was the son of Francis IV of Modena and Princess Maria Beatrice of Savoy.  After the death of his mother in 1840, Francis was considered by Jacobites to be the next legitimate heir to the thrones of England, Scotland and Ireland.  He succeeded as Duke of Modena in 1846 on the death of his father and also held the titles of Archduke of Austria and royal Prince of Hungary and Bohemia.  During the 1848 revolutions in Italy, Francis was forced to flee from Modena after an uprising, but he was restored to his duchy backed by Austrian troops the following year.  He had to flee again in 1859 after the duchy was invaded by the armies of France and Piedmont. In March 1860, the new King of Italy, Victor Emmanuel II, ordered Modena to be incorporated into his new kingdom.  Read more…