GRAND DUKE REIN-
THE HISTORY OF A ROMANTIC
The Grand Duke Michael Michaelo- vitch, who has hitherto held the rank of staff captain, and who since his marriage with Countess Sophie von Merenberg (Countess Torby) has resid- ed abroad in a private capacity, has, says a Reuter St. Petersburg telegram, been promoted to the rank of captain, his new commission being made to date back to 1900.
The Official Recognition
of the Grand Duke Michael by the Czar is in sill probility due to the influence of King Edward, the Grand Duke and .the Countess Torby being among his intimate younger friends. In 1891, when ho was thirty year« of age, the Grand Duke made a morganatic mar- riage with the beautiful Countess Sop-
hie Merenberg, herself the issue of a morganatic alliance of
Princo Nicholas of Nassau
and thc Countess Poushkine, a daugh- ter of the Russian poet. For this he was disgraced by tile late Czar, ban- ished from Russia, and deprived of his military rank. The Grand Duke's father also disowned him. The young couple were very devoted to each other, however
And Lived Happily
in Paris and on the Riviera, with oc- casionai visits to England, where the Grand Duke has a 'magnificent coun- try seat, Keele Hall, in Staffordshire. With the accession of the present Czar, he was summoned to Court, forgiven, and restored to his proper position.
He was also reconciled to his father. The Grand Duke and Countess Torby did not, however, take up their life in Russia again, preferring golf at Can- nes, hunting and shooting in England and Scotland. They visited Queen Victoria at Balmoral and the present
King at Sandringham.