Margarita of Greece and Denmark – A displaced Princess (Part two)




margarita gottfried
akpool GmbH / Abteilung Arkivi / Alamy Stock Photo

Read part one here.

During the Second World War, Gottfried was an officer on the Eastern Front. He had become a member of the Nazi Party on 1 May 1937 with the number 4023070. He had considerable contact with Nazi leaders and served in the Wehrmacht. Margarita joined the party on the same date with the number 4453768. In 1942, Margarita and Theodora were together in Berlin when they were visited by their mother Alice, who had been able to obtain a visa to get out of Greece temporarily. Alice wrote to their brother Philip, “Living in the country makes such a difference, where one can get butter, eggs and milk etc. You can imagine what joy it was to see them for three days & to get news of their husbands and children. They were looking so pretty and chic in haus clothes.”1 Margarita was back at Langenburg in April 1944 when she gave birth to twin boys.

On 3 December 1944, Margarita’s father Andrew died suddenly in Monte Carlo, and Margarita was to receive 1/10th of his estate, but there wasn’t much left, and the debts were not resolved until 1947. Margarita and her surviving sisters came into some prominence when their younger brother Philip married the future Queen Elizabeth II. They had wanted to attend the wedding in 1947, but due to the anti-German sentiments at the time, it was decided that none of them would be invited to the wedding. Margarita, Sophie and Theodora went with Princess Elisabeth of Greece and Denmark (Countess of Törring-Jettenbach) – their first cousin – and the late Cecilie’s brother-in-law Louis and his wife Margaret to Marienburg where they celebrated the wedding together. Their mother Alice did attend the wedding, sitting on the north side of Westminster Abbey. She sent her daughters a 22-page description of the wedding.

In early 1948, Margarita took her three eldest children to visit her mother Alice in Athens. It was her first time there in ten years, and she was “radiantly happy.” Her mother declared her to be “expanded very much, her legs and arms very fat, but her face quite unchanged & very fresh.”2 When her sister-in-law succeeded as Queen in 1952, the sisters were invited to the coronation with their mother. On 2 June 1953, Margarita sat with her mother and sisters in the royal box behind the Queen Mother.

On 11 May 1960, Margarita was widowed when Gottfried died after a few months of ill-health. Her mother had travelled to meet them, but she arrived too late – he had passed away earlier that day. Alice stayed until after the funeral. The titular title of Prince of Hohenlohe-Langenburg now passed to their eldest son Kraft. In the early hours of 24 January 1963, there was a great fire at Langenburg Palace, and Margarita’s private rooms were completely destroyed. She lost almost every personal possession she had – save the pearls she had inherited from her grandmother, which she had been wearing.

Margarita’s mother moved to London in her final years, and Margarita was able to visit her at Buckingham Palace. Theodora had been unwell as well during these years, and she died suddenly in a sanatorium on 16 October 1969. Alice followed just two months later, and she died on 5 December 1969. Margarita, Sophie and Philip walked behind the coffin.

By then, Margarita was a grandmother herself. Three of her five children went on to marry and have children. The eldest, Kraft, married Princess Charlotte of Croÿ, and they had two daughters and a son before divorcing in 1990. He remarried to Irma Pospesch in 1992. Georg Andreas married Princess Luise of Schönburg-Waldenburg, and they had two daughters together. Albrecht married Maria Hildegard- Fischer, and they had one son together.

Margarita continued to attend family events, like the wedding of her niece and goddaughter Anne to Captain Mark Philips in 1973. Margarita died on 24 April 1981, and her funeral took place on 30 April. She was the third of Prince Philip’s sisters to die – Sophie would outlive her until 2001.

  1. Alice, Princess Andrew of Greece by Hugo Vickers p.295
  2. Alice, Princess Andrew of Greece by Hugo Vickers p.329






About Moniek 1908 Articles
My name is Moniek and I am from the Netherlands. I began this website in 2013 because I wanted to share these women's amazing stories.

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