The Book, Cat, & Cat Book Lovers Almanac

of historical trivia regarding books, cats, and other animals. Actually this blog has evolved so that it is described better as a blog about cats in history and culture. And we take as a theme the advice of Aldous Huxley: If you want to be a writer, get some cats. Don't forget to see the archived articles linked at the bottom of the page.

January 15, 2017

January 15, 1945

Princess Michael of Kent (January 15, 1945) lives with the British Prince at Kensington Palace. Jilly Cooper, the British author, wrote an article on this royal in 1986, an article which ruined their friendship. Below Jilly Cooper recalls the events.

The rift began in 1986 when Mrs Cooper was sent by the Mail on Sunday to interview Marie Christine, wife of the Queen’s first cousin, Prince Michael of Kent.
Czech-born Marie Christine had previously spoken of the couple’s “poverty” and how they receive no funding from the Queen or state and was consequently in the process of publishing her first book. Mrs Cooper visited her at the pair’s Kensington Palace apartment – which was given to them as a wedding present - and later published a piece entitled ‘The Pushy Princess’. In it, she described the then 41-year-old princess as: “Five foot eleven, with strong Slav features, huge slanting sage-green eyes and thick streaked blonde hair curling to her shoulders like Charles I.”

The article was in the most part complimentary but Cooper did say Marie Christine had “never really fitted into the English royal mould” and accused her of being “manipulative”.
It was a very gentle piece but it was definitely flamed up. I can understand why she was upset. It was perfectly reasonable for her to be upset. But it’s sad, though, because she is lovely and fun and beautiful…but sadly it was the end of a beautiful friendship...

Jilly Cooper and Princess Michael are both cat lovers. The latter left her seat at the London Olympic Games to look for her lost cat. That bond has not been enough to rescue their friendship.

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