The Lost Prince (2003)

 

 

 

Director:     Stephen Poliakoff.

Starring:     Daniel Williams (Prince John, younger), Matthew James Thomas (Prince John, older), Brock Everitt-Elwick (Young Prince George), Rollo Weeks (Prince George), Gina McKee (Lalla), Tom Hollander (George V), Miranda Richardson (Queen Mary), Bill Nighy (Stamfordham), Bibi Andersson (Queen Alexandra), Ron Cook (Lloyd George), Frank Finlay (Asquith), David Westhead (Fred), John Sessions (Mr. Hansell), Michael Gambon (Edward VII), David Barrass (Kaiser Wilhelm).

Prince John, the youngest child of King George V and Queen Mary of Great Britain, who died of epilepsy at the age of 13 in 1919

 

 

Spoiler Warning:  below is a summary of the entire film.

 

Part One. 

 

Sandringham, December 1908. Edward VII is on the throne. He ruled from 1901 to 1910. His son will become George V, ruling from 1910 to 1936.

A little boy named Johnnie comes into the living room and turns on a light. King Edward VII sits in a big chair with the other grandchildren around him. Grandpa has the servant put four pats of butter on his knees. Each grandchild chooses a pat of butter as their own. Johnnie is told to pick one, but he waits too long, so the King picks one for Johnnie.

Sitting near the roaring fire it doesnít take long for the pats of butter to start running down grandpaís pant legs. Johnnie doesnít pay any attention to the race, but instead grabs some food off the food trays to eat.

Johnnieís governess starts cleaning butter off the boyís shirt. He is going to a party today and the governess wants him to promise her that he will manage at the party. Johnnieís mother comes into the room and barely acknowledges Johnnie.

Johnnie goes to the birthday party for the Queen, his grandmother. As part of the celebration, the grandchildren make poetry recitations for the party crowd. Brother Georgie has picked a French poem and recites the poem in French.

Tsar Nicholas II (ruled 1894 to 1917) and Tsarina plus their children go down to the beach with Edward VII and his family. Also at the house is Kaiser Wilhelm II (reigned from 1888 to 1918).

Georgie and Johnnie are tutored together in a classroom by the same man. The governess takes the boys to what they call the big house. There they have a couple of servants to get down their large box of toy soldiers. The governess tells George that they only have fifteen minutes to play with the toys. Then grandpa, followed by father, show up and they start playing soldiers with the boys.

On the way back back Johnnie starts having a medical situation. The governess picks Johnnie up and tries to find a room where they can be by themselves. Johnnie lays on the floor of a room. A male servant comes into the room and the governess tells him that the boy is upset and the servant will close the door and leave. The fellow leaves silently. Now the governess assures Johnnie that they will be left alone and no one will see anything. She also says that maybe there will not be another attack for a long time.

Mother calls for Lalla the governess and she and Johnnie come to see what mother wants. What mother wants to know is why are they so late? Lalla says the boy seems to be catching a cold and he was sneezing and coughing so much.

Grandpa and dad with a lot of other gentlemen are shooting at released pheasants. The King gets irritated because heís missing so many of his shots. The governess and Johnnie come out to the shooting field to have lunch.

Johnnie starts making remarks that are way too personal about the guests. It embarrasses the guests and the royal family. Johnnie tells his grandfather that maybe he didnít hit anything today is that he is too old. His mother and father are embarrassed by the remark. The King gives a slight chuckle and says: "The boyís right. That boy is always right."

At night while lots of people are watching for the comet, Johnnie sees mother and father getting into their limousine. Georgie thinks that it probably means that grandfather has physically gotten worse.

In the morning the boys are in bed. Georgie suddenly hears the church bells start ringing. He wakes up Johnnie. They see the flag at half mast. They think that it means that grandpa has died. Father and mother get into the appropriate outfits.

Georgie, with Johnnie in tow, looks out a window that Mr. Stamfordham is looking out. The man uses the time to test Georgieís ability to spot whoís who in the courtyard. Georgie identifies: cousin Bill, Emperor of Germany; the King of Greece, fatherís uncle; Uncle Fritz, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg Strelitz; Grand Duke Mikhail Mikhailovich of Russia; and Serene Highness, the Duke of Teck.

Johnnie feels an attack coming on and rushes to find some place private. He runs right into cousin Bill of Germany. Cousin Bill tells Johnnie not to upset anyone today by something he says or does. Johnnie says he wonít.

Johnnie walks slowly now through the crowd waiting for the ceremony to start. He walks up the stairs, goes down by the rooms and turns into one of them. He suddenly falls on the floor and goes into an epileptic seizure with his whole body shaking.

When mother finds out about the incident, she tells Lalla that it is very important that Johnnie not be left alone at any time and especially so when there are other people around.

The next day doctors are brought in to see Johnnie. They give him a task of arranging animal cards in order of smallest to biggest animal. Johnnie canít perform the task. Later Lalla throws a ball to Johnnie, but he just doesnít react to it.

The doctors say to mother: "It is clear his brain has not continued to grow as it should, showing it must have suffered some damage at some stage. And the description of the fits clearly indicates epilepsy." Moreover, Johnís life may be cut short. And his brain probably will not develop any further.

The doctors recommend complete isolation of the boy but with round-the-clock supervision. Johnnie will continue to have fits and anyone seeing one or more of those fits will be a bit traumatized.

So Johnnie is moved upstairs to isolate him from others. His mother tells Lalla that the boy is not to be seen by any of the guests or visitors. Lalla takes a hard gulp because she is thinking that this is such a harsh measure to take, but she dare not speak out against the new policy.

Georgie sneaks in to visit Johnnie. He tells his brother: "Donít worry. I will always be here. . . . Iíll never let them send you away."

Johnnie takes his classes alone now. And this is hard on the teacher because Johnnie is just not retaining much of anything. This frustration leads to some harsh words from the tutor toward Johnnie. He complains: "I am locked up here, as much shut away as he is!" He gets mad and says nobody listens to him. Nobody knows and nobody cares.

Johnnie has to look out the windows to try and see his brothers and sister. Georgie turns to look towards Johnnieís window to see if Johnnie is watching.

Georgie visits with Johnnie for awhile outside. Johnnie is gardening. Georgie tells his brother that he has a lovely garden. Lalla tells Johnnie that they have to leave soon because the guests from the big house will come out and walk in the garden.

Lalla is called into the kitchen because a kitchen servant badly cut herself with a knife. The governess tells Georgie to bring Johnnie inside the house. But neither Georgie or Johnnie want to comply with the order. Johnnie takes his brother on a tour to see the best plants.

Out in the garden comes the Prime Minister, Mr. Asquith, along with two young people. He likes the garden. He stays briefly and then walks on. Georgie decides to follow after the trio and he tells Johnnie to go back inside. Johnnie, however, starts following after Georgie.

Johnnie walks over to the large gate. There he sees a pretty woman all dressed up. She notices him and asks him who is he? Heís Johnnie. She is very sweet to Johnnie and says that itís a perfect day in a perfect garden.

Johnnie takes a stroll through the garden. He sees father, mother and Georgie sitting outside having tea and cookies. Mother spots Johnnie over by one of the trees. Father asks why is the boy out of the cottage?  Johnnie comes over to the get-together and he grabs a couple of cookies.  He starts repeating what Asquith said to his two companions in the garden. He says to mother and father that they live in a "stupid" house which is an absolute disgrace. Everybody says so. The man with the big head, (Asquith) said so.

Dad tells Johnnie to be quiet at once! But Johnnie is not done yet, however, and he recites the gossip he heard earlier in the day.

And now Lalla is in big trouble. Mother scolds her and says that if Lalla cannot control the boy, Johnnie will have to be put in an institution. Lalla is a bit shocked at this possibility.  So Lalla starts working with Johnnie on his school work. She too starts getting very frustrated with the boy.

Georgie looks out a window. He sees and hears the suffragettes demanding the right to vote for women. The women even chain themselves to the gate outside the big house. Mother says about the women: "It is quite beyond me how people can make such a spectacle of themselves."

Lalla and Johnnie take a ride to London. Itís time for him to be tested again by the doctors. Johnnie is way too sure that he will please the doctors with his improvement.

Once they get to London, they have to close all the blinds in the car so they wonít be seen, as per orders of mother. In the test with the doctors Johnnie goes around the room telling the doctors the capitals of European countries in which his various relatives live.

Back from London Johnnie gets to see Georgie. He rushes to Georgie and the boys hug each other.

Lalla goes in to see the Queen. She is very happy to report that Johnnie answered all the doctorsí questions. Lalla says the doctors were actually stunned by Johnnie answering all the questions. Mom acknowledges that is good, but then there is always the other problem Ė of epilepsy.

Johnnie gets to stay in the big house overnight. In the morning Johnnie is up bright and early. Georgie walks over to him saying that he knew his brother would already be up. He also tells Johnnie that they are going to try and listen in on the big banquet at the big house.

The Queen goes to the banquet and a suffragette throws herself down on the floor asking Her Majesty why does she torture the women? The Queen merely steps over the woman and continues on.

Johnnie and Georgie work their way into the balcony where the orchestra plays. Georgie is thrilled to see the seating arrangement of all the important people in the room. He tells his brother to keep out of sight of both mother and father. And if Johnnie starts to feel ill, he is immediately to tell this to Georgie.

Johnnie sees the pretty woman that was so nice to him by the gate that one day. He stares at her and she looks up and sees him. Johnnie gets a big smile on his face but does hide himself again. He canít, however, stay hidden because he wants the woman to see him. She blows Johnnie a kiss from the dining table. Mother sees the blown kiss, looks up and sees Johnnie in the balcony. Georgie is thinking maybe they should leave, but Johnnie doesnít want to go now that the music has started..

Asquith gets an important message and gets up from the table. He has Lloyd George get up with him. The two men bow to the King and Queen and then leave the banquet. And now everyone wants to know what was the message.

Lalla escorts the two sons to see the Queen. This time she is very nice to Johnnie telling him she is happy about his performance with the doctors and she hears that his garden is coming along marvelously. Johnnie is now send to see the King.

The King shows Johnnie his stamp collection with which he really has fun. Father is called away to answer a telephone call from Asquith. He foolishly leaves Johnnie unattended in the room with the stamps. He gets too close to the beautiful parrot and it takes off flying. Johnnie starts chasing after the bird and who soon is flying down the hall to the kitchen and the servants. The boy continues chasing the bird who takes refuge on top of the chefís hat. Johnnie is getting himself overexcited and thatís usually prelude to a fit.

A servant tells Lalla that nobody can find Johnnie. Lalla now has to alert the Queen. She receives the message calmly and she, Lalla and Georgie go looking for the boy.

Father is shocked to hear that Archduke Ferdinand has been assassinated. It happened on June 28, 1914 in Sarajevo.

When the trio find Johnnie they see he is in the midst of an epileptic fit. The Queen is very shocked never having seen an epileptic fit. Tears start rolling down the Queenís face. Lalla keeps telling her that itís not as bad as one might think.

The King is furious that most of the government knew about the assassination before he was informed. He says they deliberately kept the news from him.

And now Johnnie and Lalla are headed back to the countryside.

 

Part Two.

 

Stamfordham explains the trouble coming to Europe due to the Austrian loss of the heir apparent from assassination. So now Austria wants to punish those they deem responsible for the assassination. Therefore, Austria will attack Serbia. But this is all pretense because everyone is on holiday now and nothing is going to happen.  That is, of course, as long as Russia doesnít get jumpy and mobilize its army to come to the aid of Serbia. If Russia does mobilize, Germany will have to mobilize as a counter to the threatened Russian military move. But, none of this will actually happen because the Tsar can never make a decision.

Georgie calls Johnnie to tell him that thereís going to be a war. This, however, doesnít much affect Georgie because he canít really understand what war will mean. He just asks when will the foreigners be coming to England?

Surprise!  The Tsar quickly decides to mobilize. The English King anxiously awaits any news from the main players in the crisis. Regardless of what Stamfordham told Georgie, the young fellow can see and hear the worry and anxiety in the voices and movements of the politicians waiting for news from Austria.

The English King appears and tells the gentlemen to come in. Stamfordham tells Georgie that he was wrong.

Johnnie watches the trains filled with soldiers. He and Lalla get on another train. Johnnie looks out the window and sees Georgie on the station platform. Georgie is taking the train to a naval school on the train that Johnnie is sitting in and waiting for him. Georgie runs over the pedestrian bridge to get to his train. Lalla tells Georgie that they are moving into another house a bit farther from the big house. Georgie tells Johnnie that when he gets back home there will be a big surprise for him. Johnnie is excited.

Back at home Johnnie unwraps the present. Itís a gramophone. Then Johnnie goes out to the garden in the rain with Mr. Hansell who holds a large umbrella over both their heads. Johnnie wants to know why they are moving and Mr. Hansell says so "nobody need see us". They will be shut away from everyone and everything.

So the procession of three carriages moves out to the new place in the rain. When they arrive, inside the place looks shoddy. Mr. Hansell gives a big sigh and says: "What a place to end up in!"

Georgie lives in a barracks, but with more room to spare. Everyone rushes out of the room, while Georgie just lollygags his way along. All the boys have to jump into an small ice water pool. The cold water really gives Georgie a jolt.

One of the staff with Lalla has joined the army and will be going away. While the two talk, they notice that Johnnie is about to have a fit. They rush over to him. They give him mustard water as prescribed by the doctors, but Johnnie just throws it up. Lalla assures Johnnie that she will never make him take that treatment again.

The fellow going off to war apologizes to Lalla, but Lalla wonít have it. She tells him he was never interested in the war until they moved to this small house. But now he has gone and joined the army and will be leaving her and Johnnie in the lurch.

Lalla reviews her staff as they await the arrival of Johnnie. When Johnnie arrives he starts telling all the staff that they look very good. Johnnie gets on a horse and the horse is pulled along a path.

The staff and Johnnie gets a big surprise because in the woods they see a bunch of well-dressed women picking up chestnuts for the soldiers. And one of the women is the Queen herself.  Lalla goes down the hill to talk to the Queen. She says they are not only collecting chestnuts, but are also having a scrap metal drive. The Queen asks Lalla to search around her place and find some scrap metal for her. Lalla pleads with the Queen to at least say hello to Johnnie, but the Queen says that she will see Lalla at her place around 3 p.m. to pick up the scrap metal. (Ohhhh, thatís cold.)

At 3 p.m. the next day the Queen visits the little house. She says nothing to Johnnie, but just complains about Lalla allowing the ivy vines to grow on the walls of the buildings. At tea the Queen finally acknowledges Johnnie saying how big he has grown (In weight, heís twice as big as Georgie. Heís a big boy.)

Lalla asks Johnnie to play the piano for his mother, but she only wants to know why did Lalla not include in the collection of scrap of metal she sees in the other room. The item she is referring to is Johnnieís gramophone. The unfeeling bitch of a mother tells Lalla that everyone is sacrificing and so can Johnnie. She doesnít realize how much Johnnie loves that gramophone.

Lalla implores the Queen not to take the gramophone. She says it wonít change the war one bit and Johnnie really loves that machine. So, the Queen relents and Johnnie gets his gramophone back. She finally feels some compassion and says that she really never should have taken the gramophone.

Georgie marches with the other boys along the beach. He still is the last one to leave his barracks room.

Johnnie is going to the big house with Lalla. He doesnít recognize the area because there are soldiers everywhere. Some of them work on placing barbed wire around the big house. Johnnie comes to the house to visit his grandmother who has more compassion for Johnnie in her little finger than the parents have in their whole bodies.

Johnnie sees the friendly woman in the garden. He goes outside to speak with her. He follows her and hears her crying: "Oh, God, bring some news." Johnnie walks up to her and she remembers him. She says she has been fretting about somebody close to her and was hoping for some news. Johnnie says very confidently: "It will come, Iím sure."

Meanwhile, Lalla has been shouting out Johnnieís name as she looks for him in the large garden. She finally finds him. She virtually tears Johnnie away from the woman. When Johnny leaves the woman goes right back to her woeful situation and really does look very disturbed.

Georgie still suffers at military school. He says to himself: "Iíve just got to get out of here!"

The Queen visits one of the hospitals to see the soldiers. The driver is late in picking up the Queen and she has to wait. One of the soldiers starts harassing the Queen because he says to her "being German yourself". The doctor motions to the staff to get rid of the soldier. The doctor apologizes and says the man is not well, but the incident has shaken the Queen.

At home on a sofa, she repeatedly says to herself: "I am English, from tip to toe, from toe to tip" She keeps seeing the faces of the soldiers she visited who were terribly mutilated by the war. She is jarred out of this daymare by suddenly noticing someone standing very close to her. She jumps up startled. Itís Georgie on a break from school. He gives his mother a peck on the cheek.

Georgie walks through the halls listening to the complaints of the men about how cold the house is. He goes over to his friend Stamfordham and he tells Georgie that his cousin the Tsar has just abdicated.

At the royal dinner a woman repeats some gossip she heard that many citizens believe that the King and Queen must be very pro-German because they have a German name. The King gets a bit angry and asks if the people want him to change his name and drop the old German name? He asks Lloyd George about this. Lloyd George says if the war keeps on going as badly as it has been, there may come a time to considered changing the name. The King is disgusted and leaves the room.

Johnnie has another fit. This one is a particularly bad one. Fred asks Lalla later if she thinks anyone knows that they are here still?  Lalla says yes.

Georgie tries to speak to his father, who only gets terribly mad at him. He says he has no time available anymore. So Georgie says he will speak really fast. He says he doesnít want to study to be in the navy. His strengths are in art and music. Father shouts at him that he will be in the navy. In fact, Georgie will always be in the navy. He may even die in the navy.

Georgie is upset and tells his mother that the talk with his father was a disaster. Mother says: "We are in the middle of such a crisis, Georgie." And now they even have to change their name.

Stamfordham says he has a possible new name for the family: Windsor. It will now be the House of Windsor. The King doesnít like the name nor the whole idea .

Georgie goes to see Johnnie. The boys are happy to see each other. Georgie has some news. The new name of the royal family is the House of Windsor. And Georgie has even better news. He has permission from his mother to stay a few nights in Johnnieís house. The boys run in the fields around the property.

The King tells Stamfordham that his invitation for the Tsarís family to live in exile in England is not a popular idea among the people. This really upsets the King but he decides that he wants Stamdfordham to speak to the prime minister about rescinding the invitation.

Stamfordham speaks with Lloyd George and states the Kingís position very clearly. Lloyd George doesnít like the idea of rescinding the invitation, especially so since the Bolsheviks may even take over in Russia and the Tsar and his family will be even in a more precarious situation than they are now.

Georgie talks with Lalla, but she irritates him with her belief that the royal family will pay them a visit soon and Johnnie will give a recital for them so they can see how good he is doing. Georgie says they will never have time given the war. Lalla dismisses that idea and Georgie goes a bit ballistic like his father. He is adamant that the family will not come and Lalla shouldnít be filling Johnnieís head with such ideas.   Lalla threatens to thrash Johnnie if he doesnít stop talking like this. Now Johnnie gets so mad that he goes after Lalla. She has spent her whole life working for the children at the cost of not being able to get married and have a family of her own. And where has it gotten her? Nowhere. So Lalla can just go ahead and try to thrash him! Just you try! He pushes Lalla and now she realizes just how much pain Georgie is in. She grabs the boy and hugs him and is obviously concerned about him.

Georgie tells her that he is absolutely going mad at the naval college. He also says that the people think he and his family are stupid, but itís they who are the idiots. This upsets Johnnie and he comes out to ask why canít Georgie stay with him?

The King is waiting for news about the possible breakthrough of the Germans into the Allied lines within the next 24 hours. And now he tells his wife how much she means to him.

Lalla gets a bit assertive and with her staff block the road so the Queen has to stop her car. Lalla is very insistent that Johnnie be allowed to show her some food he collected in the wilds for the soldiers. The Queen keeps saying she has to get to London quickly because she is expecting to get important news from there. But Lalla insists so the Queen gets out of the car and goes over to see Johnnieís collection of wild food stuffs. Lalla tries to hold her, but the Queen finally just tells Johnnie that she absolutely has to go now.

When she gets to her place in London she reads the note waiting for her and tells her staff that today the Germans have not broken through the Allied lines.

The King studies his stamp collection. Stamfordham brings the King some bad news from Russia.

Flashback. The royal family are virtual prisoners in the farmhouse. The family is woken up during the middle of the night. Somewhere in the house the family is gathered together around one spot.  They are then all shot down.  One man goes around and shoots in the head anyone not yet dead.

Back to the present. Stamfordham says ". . . and they were all shot." The King is shocked at the news. He remembers back to happier days when the royal families would go on picnics together.

Now Stamfordham has to tell the news to the Queen. She too is shocked. She says: "What an unimaginable cruelty." She asks Stamfordham to leave her in private.

Johnnie and the staff come walking up to the big house. The Queen canít believe what she sees. She says they are coming a day too early. She couldnít have gotten the dates mixed up. But in tramp the whole staff. So the Queen kind of has to let Johnnie do his recital.

The King and Queen, the other children, including Georgie, grandmother, Stanfordham and some others wait for Johnnie to present his recital. The King reminds Johnnie that they only have a short time here because he has a war to conduct.

And here come the members of the War Council all driving up. The King gets up to say the recital will end now. But this time, Johnnie tells them: "No! Certainly not! I have not finished!" So the King has to sit back down.

Johnnie plays the trumpet accompanied by Lalla on the piano. He does a very good job. Dad and mother are shocked at his performance and Georgie is all smiles. Grandmother cries at the presentation.

Georgie and Johnnie celebrate the end of World War I by running around in the meadow. The boys imagine that the exiled Kaiser and the Austrian emperor are visiting at Johnnieís house. The boys runs so much that Johnny has another fit. Georgie yells for Lalla.

Johnnie dies before his mother gets back from London. She does come to see his body laying in his bed. She kisses him on the forehead. Lalla breaks down crying telling the Queen: "I loved him. I loved him so very much." The boy made her feel not confined. The Queen says she too feels terrible about Johnnieís passing and she already misses him. She asks Lalla if this surprises her? Lalla says: "No."

Lalla goes to pick up a plate and knocks it over. She apologizes to the Queen and says: "Iím all to pieces today." The Queen, however, picks up the pieces of the plate for Lalla with not one word of criticism.

At the burial Lalla is there. Johnnieís staff stands off quite a ways from the cemetery. The Queen sees them there and motions for them to come over and be at the burial.

Georgie especially remembers his brother and gets a big smile on his face from the various images he thinks of.

After the service Lalla and Georgie walk back to Johnnieís house. Lalla says: "I donít think there will be a day that goes by for the rest of my life where I wonít be thinking about Johnnie." Georgie agrees.

Georgie then says: "You know Lalla, I was thinking during the service. I was thinking he was the only one of us who was able to be himself."

They stop walking and look back in remembrance of Johnnie playing outside his house on the grounds.

 

 

 

Sad story about the son of George V being almost totally isolated from everyone and everything just because he had epilepsy and because he could never censor himself enough to behave properly among quests, some of them very important men and women. The boy Johnnie would embarrass his parents and their guests by innocently saying inappropriate things.

Totally isolating the boy except for his governess Lalla was very hard on Johnnie. He missed his parents and his siblings, especially his brother and good friend Georgie. Georgie would bend the rules to go see his ill brother, but he had to be very careful that he and Johnnie not be seen by any visitors.

The film just shows backwards psychiatry was in the early 20th century. They thought the epileptic should be put away somewhere he couldnít be seen in order not to traumatize other people. The psychiatrists couldnít see how bad almost total isolation was for Johnnie. Good illustration of our general mistrust of mental illness (which still is a problem to this day).

The news of the day is mostly of the suffragettes and then the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand of the Austrian Empire in 1914, starting World War I.

I think the four boys who played the parts of Johnnie and Georgie did very well in the film. Gina McKee was very good as the governess. Also good were Bill Nighy, Miranda Richardson and Michael Gambon.

My wife and I both liked the film.  When I was alone writing up the last part of the film, I suddenly started crying about how much the boy meant to Lalla and Georgie and about how sad that it had to come to this in days not so long past.  I kept playing the last scenet at the burial over and over again over and crying again.  I guess when you write down every little thing about the film, you really get to know the characters well and the sad ending just hit me so much harder than when I first saw the film. 

Patrick Louis Cooney, Ph. D.

 


Historical Background:

1865  --  the future George V is born, second son of the Prince and Princess of Wales, Albert Edward and Alexandra.

1891 -- George's elder brother Albert Victor is engaged to his second cousin once removed, Princess Victoria Mary of Teck (nicknamed May).  Six weeks later Albert Victor dies of pneumonia.  The death of his brother brings an end to George's naval career. 

1893  --  George marries May.  George and May have a total of five sons and one daughter.

1894  --  birth of the future King Edward VIII.  He was the eldest son of future King George V and Queen Mary.

1895  --  birth of the future King George VI, second son of the future King George V and Queen Mary. 

1897  -- birth of Mary, first daughter of the future King George V and Queen Mary.

1900  -- birth of Henry, third son of the future King George V and Queen Mary.

1901  --  death of Queen Victoria.  George's father is set to become the new king. 

1901-1910  --  reign of King Edward VII, father of King George V.

1902  --  birth of Prince George, Duke of Kent, fourth son of King George V and Queen Mary.  He dies in 1942.

1905  --  birth of Prince John, fifth son of King George V and Queen Mary.  He suffered from epilepsy and was kept out of sight of others.  He dies in 1919.

1910  -- death of King Edward VII.

1910-1936  --  reign of King George V. 

1917  --  at age 12, Prince John's condition deteriorated.  He was set up out of the way with his own household at Wood Farm on the Sandringham Estate.  His nanny was Charlotte Bill, known to the family as "Lalla". He had a companion named Winifred Thomas, a Yorkshire girl of similar age, who suffered from asthma.  She visited him almost everyday.  Winifred Thomas remembered Johnís mother as a loving and interested parent who spent a lot of time with her son. 

1919  --  death of Prince John, fifth and last son of King George V and Queen Mary.  He was buried at Sandringham Church (the Church of St. Mary Magdalene). 

1936  -- death of King George V.

1936  --  reign of King Edward VIII.  He resigned to be with the woman he loved, an American divorce named Wallis Simpson.

1936-1952  -- reign of King George VI.  He was the second son of King George V and the eldest surviving son. 

1942  --  in the Navy Prince George dies in an airplane crash. 

 

 

 

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