Talk:Princess Irene of the Netherlands

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As far as I know, Irene is divorced in about 1980 from Carlos de Bourbon etc. -DePiep 18:10, 15 August 2007 (UTC)

"Princess Irene, Duchess of Parma"[edit]

If her husband is Carlos Hugo, Duke of Parma, isn't she Duchess of Parma? This article doesn't even mention this title. Surtsicna (talk) 15:02, 5 May 2008 (UTC)

Interesting idea. It could be, I don't know.... However this is not the case anymore, because they were divorced a long time ago. At the time they were married most of it he was only a prince.
They married in 1964 and he became Duke in 1977, and they divorced in 1981. So if you are right, she would be only dutchess "titre de Courtoisie" for 4 years. Demophon (talk) 20:01, 5 May 2008 (UTC)
Well, the ex-wife of the Duke of York is still styled Sarah, Duchess of York. Surtsicna (talk) 10:57, 7 May 2008 (UTC)
Interesting question. Since there was no annulment, in the eyes of the Catholic church Irene would be the dowager duchess of Parma. I believe even the late Count and Countess of Paris divorced while they were in their 80s (correct me if wrong) but she was still regarded as the Countess of Paris and titular Queen of the French. Seven Letters 15:10, 19 August 2010 (UTC)


Is the 'Prinses Irene' tulip named after her? (talk) 15:52, 23 September 2008 (UTC)

Marriage controversy[edit]

The part about the marriage controversy seems a bit too long when compared to all the other events that have taken place during her life. ADM (talk) 05:47, 18 July 2009 (UTC)

Duchess of Parma[edit]

I removed the title of Duchess of Bourbon-Parma. There was never such a title in existence. The title Duke (Duchess) of Parma was abolished in 1859 and was since then a title in pretense. It's not usual that former monarchical titles like these are used on Wikipedia for pretenders. We do not call the Duke of Castro King of the two Sicilies for example. In that sense we should also do something about Carlos, Duke of Parma. Gerard von Hebel (talk) 21:11, 13 September 2014 (UTC)

That is why I removed the entire list. It is unsourced and inaccurate. Per WP:BLP, unsourced and contested information should be removed immediately. On the other hand, Irene did use the title of Duchess of Parma and was referred to as such. The man who uses the title of Duke of Castro is known as such; he does not call himself king (at least not publicly) and is not normally referred to as such. The difference is obvious. Queen Latifah is definitely not a queen, for what that's worth. It is not our job to evaluate whether someone has the right to use the name she or he uses. We report facts, and the fact is that Irene was styled as Duchess of Parma. Not as [Carlist] Queen of Spain, not as Queen Etruria, but as Duchess of Parma. (talk) 21:27, 13 September 2014 (UTC)
Thanks Surtsicna for coming here. I don't think that she was ever generally well known as the Duchess of Parma. Her husband and her son (his successor in pretense) were very well known as Princes of Bourbon-Parma. Since 1998 they are known in Dutch nobility as Princes de Bourbon de Parme. The Ducal title was the title of a head of state. A state that stopped existing in 1859. There is no diplomatic or legal base for them or their spouses to be called Dukes or Duchesses of Parma (let alone of Bourbon-Parma, there has never been such a ting as a Duke or Duchess of Bourbon-Parma). Besides, what they call themselves is very good for the name of an article, when they are known by that name, but the section "titles and styles" deals with the official form of address for such a person. Not with titles of pretense. She is after all a Princess of the Netherlands. Gerard von Hebel (talk) 21:42, 13 September 2014 (UTC)
In other words, I have no qualms about calling her Duchess of Parma in any other section of the article, just not in a section that relates to the formal form of address of the Princess. Gerard von Hebel (talk) 21:44, 13 September 2014 (UTC)
Surtsicna, I may very well have misunderstood your argument. Thanks for removing the section with the disputed title. Gerard von Hebel (talk) 22:30, 13 September 2014 (UTC)

Duchess of Parma again[edit]

Gerard von Hebel has previously (see section above) and now again edited this and other articles in opposition to the attribution of non-Dutch titles to Irene, even when attributed to her by reliable sources. Yet that view continues to evoke as much dissent as support, therefore the article can't simply reflect that view or Gerard von Hebel's interpretation of the Dutch government's view in the matter. During the period when Irene was the wife of Carlos-Hugo she did not live in the The Netherlands -- indeed it was government policy to discourage her presence there -- so there is no compelling reason why Wikipedia should treat Dutch law as controlling her titulature when that nation had disassociated itself from her and she lived abroad actively campaigning in support of her husband's cause as a pretender. During that period her husband claimed to be the rightful Spanish heir ("Prince of Asturias") and later rightful king, yet neither this article nor any reputable source (outside his own Carlist Party) accorded him those titles, so this isn't about recognizing his non-legal title of pretence to the throne he claimed. However, the Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, an expert and reliable source on use of hereditary titulature, along with numerous other sources, did attribute to Carlos Hugo the title "Duke of Parma", as it did to his non-reigning ancestors. But that reflects neither original research nor monarchist sentiment, but prevalent international usage. You are correct that "Duke of Parma" was a sovereign title until 1859 and reliable sources do not usually attribute sovereign titles to pretenders. However there are two long accepted exceptions to that rule: 1. such titles as emperor, king, queen mother, crown prince, dauphin, grand duke (Grossherzog), etc. are no longer accorded to members of a dethroned dynasty once the monarchy is abolished, except that (outside that country) those who held those substantive titles at the time of deposition continue to be accorded that rank for their lifetimes unless they adopt another style, and 2. the titles of "duke" and "prince" (Fürst) may continue in use for the heirs in exile of the abolished monarchy. The first custom reflects historical usage dating back to the medieval era (e.g., Emperor Charles V, Queen Christina of Sweden, Emperor Napoleon I etc. and, in literature, King Lear) and is still largely adhered to. The second exception also dates back to deposed rulers of the princedoms erected in the Near East during the Crusades (John, Prince of Antioch, James, Prince of Achaea, Walter, Duke of Athens and, in literature, the same "Duke Walter" in the Decameron) because "duke" and "prince" have never been exclusively associated with sovereignty as have the other titles. So in modern times when a duke or prince's realm is terminated that does not, ipso facto, terminate the title: Duke of Parma is, legally, a papal title, and the Popes continue to be a lawful fount of honour. Thus the successors to the last reigning Duke of Parma have consistently been attributed that title by such international authoritative sources as Justus Perthes' Almanach de Gotha, Burke's Peerage and others. To further distance itself from Carlos Hugo as an active pretender, the Dutch court avoided attributing to him and his wife their traditional Italian titles, but that is an anomalous policy of The Netherlands which articles may make note of but which Wikipedia is not bound to enforce in deference to NPOV. FactStraight (talk) 22:42, 19 January 2015 (UTC)

Titles and styles[edit]

The section seems confusing now. First she is a Princess of the Netherlands and then not, and then she is mrs. Lippe-Biesterfeld and then a Princess of the Netherlands again (but since when?). It looks to me that the "Genealogisches Handbuch" reflects the preferences of the Princess through the years (which changed from time to time) rather than her official titulature. I suggest we go with what Dutch law (wet lidmaatschap koninklijk huis, notably article 10: "Those who carry titles and names enforced by the Royal orders of 26 october 1937 (Stb. 1937, no. 5) en 2 januari 1967 (Stb. 1967, no. 1)) retain these", and the site of the royal family say. She never stopped being a Princess of the Netherlands. Gerard von Hebel (talk) 09:18, 30 May 2015 (UTC).

I concur that Irene seems to have periodically declined to use titles stipulated for her by Dutch law. But many individuals, including royalty, use different ways of identifying themselves than legal or official sources impose. It is not clear that the fact she is entitled by law to be referred to in a specific way means that she must only be referred to that way, and it would be synthesis to apply the law to her ourselves and declare that is how she was referred to when reliable sources state otherwise: Look at controversy over whether Máxima Zorreguieta was or was not Princess of Orange, is or is not Queen of the Netherlands. Under Dutch law Irene's children should not have been able to become Princes & Princesses of Bourbon-Parma in the Dutch nobility -- but the Queen's wishes were accommodated, law notwithstanding. Ditto Irene. FactStraight (talk) 10:26, 30 May 2015 (UTC)
I see the edit I made has been reverted by you Factstraight. You say: "It's synthesis to apply Dutch law to her yourself to reject explicit sources which point out how & when the titulature Irene used differed from that of her sisters". The law maybe a primary source but it's straightforward enough. I don't think a synthesis was brewed here by me. Specially since the website of the Royal House (a legitimate secondary source) concurs. These sections in articles about Royalty however are generally not about what people use or prefer, but about what their titles actually are and that is the main point of my argument. Mostly the 'titles and style' sections give the official titles and further explains about how they are sometimes not used. If the website of the Royal House (a legitimate secondary source) says something different than the "Genealogisches Handbuch" it's also synthesis to conclude that something must have changed on a date unknown. It now looks like she was a royal Princess, then stopped being one and then on a date unknown and for reasons unknown became a royal Princess again... As I said, the law I quoted may be a primary source, but it's pretty straightforward and it is supported by the text on the website of the Royal House. Irene made a few confusing statements about what she wanted to be called from time to time. As far as I can see that's the only reason for this. I wonder what the "Genealogisches Handbuch" exactly says about her being HRH Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld (which she was never called even by herself) or plain Irene of Lippe Biesterfeld. I don't agree with you revert for now! On Maxima, she has titles in her own right and titles by courtesy. Of those, only Princess of Orange wasn't used in her style. The annexation of Irene's children into Dutch nobility took place before 1998 and so was perfectly legal. It was never suggested throughout all of this that Irene's titles had been changed or taken away from her. Certainly not by the Queen. The Netherlands is not the UK, where the fount of honor can just do about anything she likes. Gerard von Hebel (talk) 10:37, 30 May 2015 (UTC)
I've checked the GHDA, and what is said there isn't as clear cut as the article now states. Specially the "when" part but there also seems to be at least some disambiguity about the "what" part. Explicit it is certainly not. I'll come back to it when I have more time on my hands. Gerard von Hebel (talk) 09:14, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
The 1997 article's introduction, giving familial titles, doesn't exempt Irene (because that section never addresses differences for individuals), but the chapter's specific reference to Irene unambiguously distinguishes what she is called from the generic title for the monarch's daughters. That is not done with reference to the other younger daughters, so it can't be ignored. In citing a highly reputable source on royalty, the Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels (GHdA), which precisely distinguishes Irene's use of titulature from that of other Dutch princesses, I gave the exact English translation of what the source says is the title she used. I did not have "to conclude that something must have changed on a date unknown": Sequential editions of GHdA updated Irene's title as time went by, and it gave those titles, so there was no "conclusion" (and thus no "synthesis") to be made. Your comment that "these sections in articles about Royalty however are generally not about what people use or prefer, but about what their titles actually are" is a bit too broad a generalization: First, I have never regarded them as "official vs unofficial" so much as "Title normally attributed to the person on the date given", and we use sources to determine the usage at that time. I did. Secondly, I suspect that in some cases these sections reflect what the law says, in some cases they reflect what the government says, in some cases they reflect what the family says, in some cases they reflect what the individual says and in some cases they reflect conventions which do not exactly correlate with any of the above or that consist of a mixture of them. Although you argue that Dutch law and the government website should be considered authoritative sources, you also state as fact that, contrary to GHdA, Irene was never called "HRH Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld" by others or herself. Although you offer no source for that assertion other than your own opinion and/or recollection, you seem to think it should be treated as more accurate than GHdA. On what grounds? You also opine that "Irene made a few confusing statements about what she wanted to be called from time to time. As far as I can see that's the only reason for this." These royal titulature sections reflect different terms at different dates precisely because what royalty is known by changes over times, and so clarification is helpful. My understanding is that GHdA, like Justus Perthes' Almanach de Gotha before it, solicits confirmation of information in its entries from the most authoritative monarchical source; the sovereign's private secretary, head of house's secretariat or the individual royal -- relying upon the highest authority which responds to its inquiry. Since the Dutch Royal Family's titulature and succession rules are complicated, I expect that GHdA editors are particularly careful to seek verification from the Crown before going to print, relying upon generally available sources like Palace-published booklets and, now, websites only if they receive no response. I can also see that, in the early years after Irene's divorce, the Dutch Royal Court might have declined to respond about her, as they may have done when she forfeited her succession rights. Or they may have re-directed GHdA's inquiries to Irene's own household. But I don't claim to know for certain that any of that happened. Unless you know how GHdA's process for fact-checking was applied in this case, we are both speculating about what happened. But that doesn't invalidate GHdA as a reliable source whose dates for the applicability of the titles are updated in the next edition. Monarchical websites, however, are current: they don't usually date the information they provide because the presumption is that it is accurate as of now. When something changes, they usually replace reference to the prior information, so I would not expect that today's website would tell us what was true in 1997 about Irene's style which, however, GHdA's 1997 edition does. With respect to my points that I don't perceive Dutch titulature as being as inflexible, unchanging or clear as you seem to do: you say that Maxima has and had both legal and courtesy titles. I agree, which means that the titles she used were not only those spelled out explicitly in law or by decree, but by custom -- which means by usage. And there has been disagreement about how law and custom should be described relative to the titles used for her. I wasn't alleging that the Princes of Bourbon-Parma were incorporated in Dutch nobility after that process was terminated, but that the criteria for doing so were criticized as being relaxed to accommodate Queen Beatrix's wishes: "HRH Prince of Bourbon-Parma" is not a title members of that family were recognized as bearing by grant of the legal authority of any jurisdiction in which they held citizenship -- not France, not Italy and not Spain. The title is not "noble" but "royal", and as such a matter of supra-national tradition that was allowed -- but never conferred -- by any extant nation with a nobility similar to that of the Netherlands. Scholars, jurists and journalists pointed this out at the time of the incorporation, and no satisfactory explanation was forthcoming. Conclusion: it was done at the Queen's pleasure. Ipso facto, perhaps, "HRH Princess Irene of Lippe-Biesterfeld" (and let's not forget that when Juliana married Bernhard, Germany was a republic which no longer recognized his royalty nor his title, as such. That didn't stop Queen Wilhelmina or the Netherlands -- like nearly all monarchs and monarchies -- from treating a title granted by an abolished monarchy as if its dynasty were still reigning. That, too, is custom). FactStraight (talk) 11:25, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
About the use of titles pertaining to abolished monarchies, these titles were still recognised when it came to diplomatic protocol by many countries in those days. The Lippe Biesterfeld titles were reconfered on the daughters of Bernhard and Juliana, and on Juliana by Royal command and by a House Treaty between the Houses of Lippe and Orange-Nassau. I have no problems with that.
It seems to me that both mentioned volumes of the GHDA mention full titles for the Queens sisters, Princess of the Netherlands, Orange-Nassau, Lippe-Biesterfeld and Royal Highness. The 1987 volume on pages 85 and 86 also states that the name “Przssin Emma Irene Elizabeth” uses is “Przssin v. Lippe-Biesterfeld”, failing to mention when this came about however (the article now mentions 1981 but I can’t find that in the source). It also doesn’t say that she used that title in combination with the predicate of Royal Highness, as the article now states. Which would have been peculiar since the titles of Lippian Princes and Princesses come with the predicate of “Serene Highness” rather than “Royal Highness". The 1997 volume also mentions full titles for the Queens sisters but now (on p. 75) mentions that “Przssin Irene Emma Elizabeth” uses the name “Frau van Lippe-Biesterfeld”. It never says however, that she did so from 1997 onwards, as the article now states. The volumes of the GHDA appear at regular intervals, so it would be an interpretation on our part to assume that the year on the cover is the year that this ‘change’ came about (this is where synthesis comes in).
Since the GHDA mentions what it mentions however, I agree the article should reflect that. It should however not assume that by using a certain name or title, her official titles changed. Mind again (as I said earlier) that the particular section of the article these texts are in, are usually also about what her official titles were at any given point. That’s also part of the information that this section is supposed to provide the reader.
I agree that all information given must be included as of the time it is current. If the website states the dates that its usage is in effect, we should mention that, otherwise we cannot assume that the title given Irene today on the website was what her title was in 1997, when we have a source that says otherwise. The "assumption" being made is that we know when the style listed on the website became effective, since no date is actually provided. The only dates I have seen are those of the GHdA editions, which indicate that those were the titles Irene used at those times. Also, let's keep in mind how GHdA reports information: the general section explaining titles applies unless the specific entry on the individual says otherwise. For instance, in GHdA's 2004 chapter on the Netherlands, both Irene and her (now deceased) nephew, Friso, are included. On page 54, the introduction says that "the children of Queen Beatrix bear pursuant to Royal Decree of 16 February 1966 the title and name Prince or Princess of the Netherlands, Prince or Princess of Orange-Nassau, Jonkheer or Jonkvrouwe van Amsberg". But in the specific entries on her two younger sons on page 56, no distinguishing information is given about "Prince Constantijn Christof Frederik Aschwin" (born 1969) -- so his titles conform to the generic info given on page 54, but in the entry on his older brother Friso, it describes him as ""Prince Johan Friso Bernhard Christian Danvid of Orange-Nassau". We know this is correct because Constantijn does keep all those dynastic titles while Friso ceased utilization of the title "Prince of the Netherlands" upon his non-dynastic marriage and forfeiture of his succession rights of 24 April 2004, and so we also know that the generic information given about him in the introduction is correctly superseded by the specific information that states he retained use of the "Orange-Nassau" princely title. That is exactly how GHdA also handles Irene's styles. There is no synthesis because the article doesn't state that her title "changed", it simply indicates what the sources say her title was in a given year, and that is what should be reflected. FactStraight (talk) 20:59, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
I suggest doing all the information justice and removing things from the body of the article that are not in the text of the GHDA or other sources (website, law) mentioned. I’m working on something and will let you know shortly! Gerard von Hebel (talk) 15:49, 13 June 2015 (UTC)
Well, in the case of Irene the GHDA says in both cases that she uses a certain name. Which (I haven't seen it mind you) might be different than how it is stated in the entry about Friso in 2004. However, I've come up with this in the meantime. I'll just past it here. It is redacted to fit in the article, so all the stuff with links may not work on this talkpage, but just to give you an idea.

Titles, styles, and honours[edit]

See also List of honours of the Dutch Royal Family by country

Styles of
Princess Irene of The Netherlands
Coat of Arms of the children of Juliana of the Netherlands.svg
Reference style Her Royal Highness
Spoken style Your Royal Highness
Alternative style Ma'am
  • 5 August 1939 - 29 April 1964: Her Royal Highness Princess Irene of The Netherlands, Princess of Orange-Nassau, Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld
  • 29 April 1964 - 7 May 1977: Her Royal Highness Princess Irene of Bourbon-Parma, Princess of The Netherlands,[1] Princess of Orange-Nassau, Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld[2]
  • 7 May 1977 - 7 January 1981 : Her Royal Highness Princess Irene, Duchess of Parma, Princess of The Netherlands,[1] Princess of Orange-Nassau, Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld
  • 7 January 1981-present: Her Royal Highness Princess Irene of the Netherlands, Princess of Orange-Nassau, Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld[3][4]

The Princess used the following names since her divorce:

  • Princess Irene of Lippe-Biesterfeld[2]
  • Mrs (Mevrouw) van Lippe-Biesterfeld[5].

Gerard von Hebel (talk) 21:16, 13 June 2015 (UTC)

I think that the above is an excellent way of reflecting the information provided by the sources cited. Thanks for putting so much thought and effort into the clarification: Dutch royal succession rights and titulature are perilously complex and inconsistent, but this brings as much order to Irene's situation as one could hope for. I recommend upload to the appropriate section of the article. FactStraight (talk) 12:28, 15 June 2015 (UTC)
Thank you! Done! Gerard von Hebel (talk) 15:10, 16 June 2015 (UTC)
    • ^ a b Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Fürstliche Häuser XII. "Haus Bourbon". C.A. Starke Verlag, 1984, pp. 13-15.
    • ^ a b Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Fürstliche Häuser XIII. "Niederlande". C.A. Starke Verlag, 1987, pp. 85-86.
    • ^ Princess Irene - website of the Dutch Royal House
    • ^ Wet lidmaatschap Koninklijk Huis art. 10: "Those who carry titles and names enforced by the Royal orders of 26 october 1937 (Stb. 1937, no. 5) en 2 januari 1967 (Stb. 1967, no. 1)) retain these".
    • ^ Genealogisches Handbuch des Adels, Fürstliche Häuser XV. "Niederlande". C.A. Starke Verlag, 1997, p. 75.