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PRINCE OF BATTENBERG HENRY (1858-1896)

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Originally appearing in Volume V13, Page 295 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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PRINCE OF BATTENBERG HENRY (1858-1896), was the third son of Prince Alexander of Hesse and his morganatic wife, the beautiful Countess Julia von Hauke, to whom was granted in 188 the title of princess of Battenberg, which her children inherited. He was born at Milan on the 5th of October 1858, was educated with a special view to military service, and in due time became a lieutenant in the first regiment of Rhenish hussars. By their relationship to the grand dukes of Hesse the princes of Battenberg were brought into close contact with the English court, and Prince Henry paid several visits to England, where he soon became popular both in public and in private circles. It therefore created but little surprise when, towards the close of 1884, it was announced that Queen Victoria had sanctioned his engagement to the Princess Beatrice. The wedding took place at Whippingham on the 23rd of July 1885, and after the honeymoon the prince and princess settled down to a quiet home life with the queen, being seldom absent from the court, and accompanying her majesty in her annual visits to the continent. Three sons and a daughter were the issue of the marriage. On the 31st of July 188 a bill to naturalize Prince Henry was passed by the House of Lords, and he received the title of royal highness. He was made a Knight of the Garter and a member of the Privy Council, and also appointed a colonel in the army, and afterwards captain-general and governor of the Isle of Wight and governor of Carisbrooke Castle. He adapted himself very readily to English country life, for he was an excellent shot and an enthusiastic yachtsman. Coming of a martial race, the prince would gladly have embraced an active military career, and when the Ashanti expedition was organized in November 1895 he volunteered to join it. But when the expedition reached Prahsu, about 30 M. from Kumasi, he was struck down by fever, and being promptly conveyed back to the coast, was placed on board H.M.S. " Blonde." On the 17th of January he seemed to recover slightly, but a relapse occurred on the 19th, and he died on the evening of the loth off the coast of Sierra Leone.
End of Article: PRINCE OF BATTENBERG HENRY (1858-1896)
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