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Pars about Notabilities., Auckland Star, Volume XL, Issue 74, 27 March 1909
Pars about Notabilities.
Kaiser Wilhelm'B latest daughter-in-law is a niece of, the KaJaenn, and a sister of the Duchess of Saxe-Coburg. She has all the making of the typical house "frau" of the Fatherland, being very domesticated, amiable, and capable. She is not particularly handsome, nor y«t especially "smart," but possesses in a high degree her Imperial aunt's love of home. The Princess August, moreover, has a strong preference for German fashions, German literature, music, and food. As a matter of fact, she has never been out of her native land, and' cannot speak English. It is the Kaiser's wish that all his sons should choose German wives, and so far they have done so.
The announcement that Lord Grey will shortly have a successor in Canada in the person of' Lord Northcote seems to be considered at least premature in Ottawa. Lord Grey was appointed in the September of 1904, and it might be considered tbat he was noaring the end of his term. But the Governor-General of Canada is appointed for six years, and not five; though, as a matter of fact, the present Viceroy of India is the only Gov-ernor-General of Canada who has served his full time there, with the exception of the late Lord Dufferin. Lord Northoote'g experience- as Governor-General of Australia would stand him in good stead, and his appointment would be none the less popular because he is the husband of a Canadian wife. Still, it is an appointment not likely to be made by the present Government, and may be deferred till Lord Grey would, in due course, vacate bis post.
Madame Creel is not only tbe richest woman of the Diplomatic Corps at Washington, but also one of the wealthiest in all the world. Her income Is £1,000,000 a year, yet her dresses never cost more than £3 each. From mines which her husband gave her years ago already more than £40,000,000 worth of precioue metal has been taken. Much oi this great sum, of course, was expended in conducting the mining operations. Her father is also enormously rich, and she is his only heiress. "They say I am very rich," Mme. Creel often remarks, with a deprecating gesture of her hands. "1 have cattle—6oo,ooo very good ones. I have 280,000 acres of very good land. At my table every day sit 400 gooa friends — all welcome. As to what a woman with a million a year should spend on her wardrobe, here is my list:—Three dresses at £3 a-piece; two bats, at £5 anplece; fourteen pairs of boots and shoes at about £4 a-piece; three hundred and fifty-six pairs silk stockings at £1 5/ apiece. Besides inexpensive Hngerie, handkerchiefs, opera cloaks, and other details.
The Emperor Francis Joseph is a man of the simplest tastes, in spite of the splendour of his court, and throughout his life has always found the greatest relief from his many sorrows and anxieties in his remote mountain shooting lodge of Muerzsteg, where his days were given up to stalking, in the bare-kneed garb of a Styrian peasant, the chamois along with the late King Albert of Saxony, or some other of his cronies. It is the same with the Kaiser. He is an entirely different man in' private to what he is in public. When he feels that he is the cynosure of the eyes of a throng, be it great or small, her instantly becomes self-conscious. When alone with one or two friends, or even mere congenial acquaintances, he is absolutely natural, and, with his almost boyish eagerness to please, becomes very human, very sympathetic, and even winning. But to see him thus, and to his greatest advantage, it is indispensable that there should be privacy; but that privacy he can find in a measure only at Potsdam, and in a still greater degree when off yachting, or when staying in England.
Rear-Admiral the Hon. Alexander Bebhell, the new Director of Navai Intelligence at the Admiralty in London, is a son of the second Baron Westbury, brother of the present holder of the title, and a grandson of the famous lawyer who was Lord Chancellor from 1861 to 1865. He is in his 54th year, •became a lieutenant of the Navy in 1878, and after going through the various grades, was appointed six years i>go Assistant Director of the department of which he now becomes director. He served in Somaliland in 1903-4, was mentioned in despatches, and) three years later was appointed an A.D.C. to His Majesty. He succeeds Rear-Admiral Edmond Slade, to whom, curiously enough, he is senior by seventeen places. Admiral Bethell is the first Rear-Admiral to be selected for this position, and it would seem that the naval authorities in Whitehall are at last attaching to the work of this department the importance it deserves.
From the time he emigrated to Canada, at the age of eighteen, until he was forty-eight, Lord Strathcona spent all his time at various posts of the Hudson Bay Company, newly located on the Labrador. In all those thirty years among the northern Indians and the Eskimos, Donald Smith, as he then was, held himself strictly to the niceties of life; so that when, as a man of middle age, he returned to civilized life and the highest office in the gift of the Hudson Bay Company, there were no rough edges of'either speech or manner to be overcome. Nothing shows this better than a story told on the Labrador while he was governor of the company. It is a rule of the Hudson Bay Company that no woman shall be allowed passage on its boats. One day, as a steamer of,the Company neared one of the northernmost ports, a string of white garments was seen stretched across deck. The watchers were amazed; for to them the washline suggested only the presence of a woman on board the boat. Comment was freely made of the scandal that would ensue and the shake-up that would follow. . When the boat docked, the line of washing had disappeared—still another proof of the scandal. Later, one of the landsmen said to the captain:
"Why, how did it happen that you carried a woman passenger this trip?"
"There was never a woman along the whole voyage," was the indignant answer. "What do you mean?"
"If there was no woman aboard, where did all that white wash come from?" was the triumphant reply.
The captain looked puzzled for a moment, and then he laughed. "Oh," he said, "and didn't we have the governor himself along with us on this trip? And every day doesn't he insist on having his clean white shirt, no matter how far north we are? That's the white wash you saw strung along the deck. And, what's more, doesn't his Lordship insist upon having his London Times' laid beside his plate every morning, no matter if it is a year old!"
Admiral Sir Cyprian Bridge has been tackled by the übiquitous interviewer on the subject of socialism in the navy. Sir Cyprian says:—"l have the utmost confidence in the loyalty and good spirit of our seamen, and it is my firm conviction that, whatever may be .their ■political opinions, it will not affect them as a fighting force, though there may be a few extreme oases. Besides, what is meant by socialism? Do the men know? Many of my friends in London declare that they are socialists, and yet do not know the meaning of the word. I remember that some thirty years ago a small sect arose known as the Jarmanites, and one of their ideas was that a man ought not to fight; in fact, a petty officer avowed that he would not fight. He was tried by courtmartial and dismissed his ship as useless, though he had been a capable man. Cases of that sort must happen from time to time, but the overwhelming body of men are thoughtful, loyal and in every way — physically, mentally, and morally — of a very high type."
Few people are aware that Britain rejoices in two Lord High Admirals, «hose naval tactics, if they indulge in them at all, are still confined to the nursery tub. These two distinguished officers are the Marquess of Donegal, aged five, the hereditary Lord High Admiral of Lough Neagh, and Master Ralph Bankes, aged six, the hereditary Lord High Admiral of Purbeck Seas. The elder of these Admirals had the honour of receiving the King and Queen at Kingston Lacy, when their Majesties visited his mother at this famous house during the time they were at Crichel as the guests of Lord and Lady Alington.
Miss Young, who has lately died in the fulness of years, was the daughter of the proprietor of the London "Sun" newspaper, a journal which flourished much before, and to a Jess extent perhaps in, the Victorian era. The London "Sun" was regularly supplied—or as regularly as circumstances would admit —to the great Duke of Wellington during his | campaigns; and ou one occasion it became historic. It was shortly before the ball was opened at Waterloo that the Duke, history goes, dismounted, and, stretching himself out as conveniently as might be, pulled up the collar of his cloak, put the copy of the "Sun" which he had just received over his face, and, while his staff looked silently on, took a five minutes' nap, and woke, as subse- ; quently appeared, like a giant refreshed.
Pars about Notabilities., Auckland Star, Volume XL, Issue 74, 27 March 1909
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