Prince Francis of Teck : biography
Prince Francis of Teck, GCVO, DSO (9 January 1870 – 22 October 1910), was the second son of the Duke of Teck and brother of Queen Mary, queen consort to George V.
He attended the Royal Military College, Sandhurst and served in the Lancers and the Royal Rifel Corps before joining the Royal Dragoons in 1890. He rose to the rank of Major, before retiring in 1901.
- *1889.01.30 2nd Lieutenant, 9th (Queen's Royal) Lancers
- *1889.04.17 transferred to 1st Bn, The King's Royal Rifle Corps
- *1890.10.08 transferred to 1st Royal Dragoons
- *1891.08.26 Lieutenant, 1st Royal Dragoons
- *1894.07.25 Captain, 1st Royal Dragoons
- *1896.11.25 Aide de Camp to the General Officer Commanding, Quetta, India
- *1897.08.06 attached Egyptian Army
- *1897-1898 served in Nile Expedition (Atbara and Khartoum) (rcvd: MID twice, DSO, Medal with clasp)
- *1899.01.11 Aide de Camp to the General Officer Commanding, South Eastern District
- *1899.07.24 Staff Captain, Remount Establishment, Dublin
- *1899.05.29 DAAG, Remount Establishment, South Africa
- *1899-1900 served in the South African War in Transvaal operations (rcvd: MID, brevet Major, Queen's Medal with 3 clasps)
- *1900.11.29 Major
- *1901.11.16 retired and transferred to Reserve of Officers
Death and legacy
He died suddenly in 1910 at the age of thirty-nine, having caught pneumonia at Balmoral.
On his early death, shortly before his sister's coronation as queen of the United Kingdom, Francis of Teck's will set a legal precedent when it was sealed, to avoid potential scandal. The document remains unpublished, and subsequent royal wills have followed this tradition.
He is buried in the Royal Burial Ground, Frogmore.
Prince Francis was a gambler, whose debts led to him being sent to pursue his military career in India.
Prince Francis never married. According to Julia P. Gelardi's Born to Rule, Prince Francis was vigorously pursued by Maud of Wales, his sister's sister-in-law. The two exchanged letters, but it soon became clear that Frank was not interested in Maud. She went on to marry her first cousin Prince Carl of Denmark, becoming Queen of Norway.
Francis had an affair with society beauty Ellen Constance, wife of Francis Needham, 3rd Earl of Kilmorey, to whom he allegedly bequeathed the Cambridge emeralds, part of the Teck family jewels. In order to recover these family heirlooms, his sister May, by this time Queen Mary, had Francis's will sealed by a court, and subsequently negotiated with Lady Kilmorey to buy back the emeralds, reportedly paying her ₤10,000 for them.
The English actress Sarah Miles has claimed to be the great-granddaughter of Prince Francis, through her grandfather, allegedly an illegitimate son of the prince called Francis Remnant, born at Richmond, Surrey, in 1894.Sarah Miles, A right royal bastard (1993), p. 20: "Clarice... the eldest child of Francis (Frank) Remnant, bastard son of Prince Francis of Teck".
Francis Joseph Leopold Frederick, known as "Frank" was born at Kensington Palace and educated at Wellington College, Cheltenham College (Stone, 1912, p. xviii)Stone, E.D. (1912), Herbert Kynaston: a short memoir with selections from his occasional writings. London, Macmillan and Co., Ltd. Retrieved September 6, 2011 from http://www.archive.org/stream/herbertkynastons00kynauoft/herbertkynastons00kynauoft_djvu.txt and RMA Sandhurst.
His father was Prince Francis, Duke of Teck, the son of Duke Alexander of Württemberg and the Claudine Rhédey von Kis-Rhéde (created the Countess von Hohenstein). His mother was the Duchess of Teck (née Princess Mary Adelaide of Cambridge), the youngest daughter of HRH Prince Adolphus, Duke of Cambridge and a granddaughter of King George III. Frank was styled His Serene Highness Prince Francis of Teck at birth.
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