INTEGRAL! Interviul acordat de M.S. Regina Ana a Romaniei, revistei LIFE Magazine in februarie 1948 (EN)

 Februarie 1948, palatul ducal din Luxemburg. Tanara printesa (24 de ani) Anne-Antoinette-Francoise-Charlotte of Bourbon-Parma, nepoata a printului consort al Luxemburgului, le prezinta reporterilor LIFE Magazine inelul de logodna. In scurt timp urma nunta, iar tanara printesa avea  sa devina Regina Ana a Romaniei. 

Reporterii prestigioasei publicatii americane LIFE Magazine s-au deplasat in Europa pentru a-i lua un interviu tinerei printese. Il redam integral:


"I love him, I love him"

A pretty princess, Anne of Bourbon-Parma, tells a breathless story of her courtship by the recently retired  King of Romania


Last week Princess Anne of Bourbon-Parma was staying at the palace of her uncle, the prince consort of Luxembourg, waiting for ex-King Michael of Romania to send word for her to join him in Switzerland. There she was called on by LIFE Correspondent Bernard Frizell, who cabled the following interview.

The door burst open. As if catapulted, a pretty young girl dashed into the staid reception room of the royal palace of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. She advanced with rapid boyish stride, holding in her hand a newly lighted cigaret stuck into a black holder. She wore a simple black dress whose old-fashioned short hemline displayed a well-turned calf. Her face was oval-shaped, her cheeckbones high and her features delicate. A broad smile uncovered a row of even white theeth and illuminated her face with a blissful glow. Almost her first breathless words were: "I love him. ... I love him."

The pretty young girl was 24-year-old Princess Anne-Antoinette-Francoise-Charlotte of Bourbon-Parma, who belongs to one of the oldest royal houses of Europe. The man for whom she so candidly confessed her love was her cousin Michael Hohenzollern, 26-year-old ex-King of Romania, who last month abdicated his throne under communist pressure and went into exile in Switzerland.

Anne proceeded to give me a detailed account of her romance with Michael, which gradually took in shape and color until it seemed that even in these days of tumbling monarchies and Machiavellian politics the old stories of Graustark novels could still come true. It apeared that Anne's love for Michael was not at all a unilateral attachment.  When he was King, just a short while ago, Michael courted the young princess and asked for her hand in marriage. "I still can't believe it," she said with a happy smile. "It has all been so sudden and so accidental. Mummy phoned me one day when I was very bored in Paris and she was in London for the wedding. She asked me to come over for a party Johnny was giving." (Johnny is Crown Prince John of Luxembourg, Anne's cousin).

"I flew to London and went to the party. Late in  the evening my brother Michel, who is a real pal of mine, came in with Michael. I immediately went over to my brother, slapped him hard on the back, and cried, 'How are you?' But when i spoke to Michael I was very timid. That was on Nov. 20."

Anne brushed back her light-brown hair. She looked like an american coed gossiping about her latest crush. "From the moment I met Michael we began to see each other constantly," she continued. "We went to the movies very often. A detective was always with us and he would always push us in and out of places. We were always chaperoned. When the detective wasn't around my brother or mother would be with us. But one evening after we had gotten home from the movies Michael leaned over and kissed me goodnight on my cheek. I was suprised but I liked it."

After they had been together about a week in London, Michael and Anne left on the same plane for Lausanne, Switzerland. There, on Dec. 6, just 16 days after they had first met, Michael proposed to Anne.

"It was all quite simple," Anne said, "and not terribly romantic. He simply told me he wanted to marry me and I said, yes, i would." 

A week later Anne was sitting in her room listening to a new samba recording she had just bought when Michael entered and offered her an engagement ring he had had made. "I nearly collapsed when I saw how big it was," Anne gushed. "But Michael insisted that it was all right, despite my objections that all I wanted was a small, simple ring." On the fourth finger of Anne's delicate left hand, Michael's handsome gift looked conspicuous. A large square-cut diamond sparkled between two triangular ones. Looking fondly at the ring, Anne murmured, "All told, we have actually been together a little more than a month. But it seems to be a lot more than that. You must remember that this is the first time I have been engaged and the first time I have been in love."

"I don't know anything about politics or statemenship," she went on. "All that is quite beyond me. I don't want to do or say anything that will hurt Michael, but in terms of the way I feel about him, it makes no difference to me whether he is king or not." She took a deep breath and continued, "I don't care about his abdication. Of course, I don't know his country  and I would have liked to see it. But the important thing is that I want to make him happy. I wouldn't mind even if he were king. My role would be the same."

For a princess, Anne is a rare creature. She is direct, simple, unaffected, and the expressions she employs about royalty are casual. 

"I got along well with Michael from the beginning," she said "because for me there was nothing regal about him. He was like my brothers."

Asked wether she should be adressed as "Your Royal Highness," Anne made an impatient gesture and replied, "I was born that way, as a Royal Highness, but it's not my fault. Just call me 'Nan.' It's my nickname and that's okay with me."

When France was occupied in 1940, Nan went to the US where for nearly two years she attended Parsons School of Design on 57th Street in New York City. She was bad at lettering, however, and never was graduated. Then, because she needed the money, she took a job under the name Anne Parme at Lord & Taylor's department store. For the not very princely sum of 18$ a week, Nan conscientiously sold artificial flowers to all comers. Only two months later she was liberated from her job as a salesgirl when she enlisted in a French ambulance corps. 

"In those days," she said, I used to go to the nightclubs in New York. My favorite place was Cafe Society Downtown and i used to love to listen to Hazel Scott.I really don't go out very much or dance a great deal, even with Michael. But every once in a while I like to have one helluva good time."

After their short trip to Switzerland in december, Anne returned to Copenhagen while Michael went on to Bucharest to quit his throne. In Copenhagen Anne was hounded by newspapermen. Partly to escape them and partly to be on her way to rejoin Michael in Switzerland,  Nan went to Luxemborug. In spite of her refusal to see reporters, she is certainly not averse to publicity, and the manner in which she granted me an interview is an amusing reflection on her character.  No sooner had she seen the copy of LIFE that I had brought her with a picture of Michael in it than she phoned her fiance in Switzerland. "Your picture is in the magazine." she told Michael. "Now how about mine?" Michael's answer was  "okay."

Although she was happy in the expectation that she would see Michael soon, Anne was in no great hurry to hear the wedding bells chime. Wrinkling her little nose, she asserted, "It's too cold to get married now. I would like us to be married in the spring when leaves are on the trees and flowers are in the bloom." It began to seem as if 20th Century royalty, reduced from power to relative penury, could still bring a flimsy Lehar operetta to life.

I had heard about Nan's widely publiciez remark that when she met Michael it was love at first sight and I questioned her about it. Nan giggled. "I can only say," she smiled, "that love is wonderful. It isn't as though I fell in love with Michael at first sight. It's more than that. I don't even know the minute or the day I was aware I was in love with him. I feel as though I have always loved Michael."

"Did you know you loved him when he kissed you for the first time?" I asked.

"That was in London when he kissed me on the cheek."

"But surely, he has kissed you on the lips," I insisted.

Nan's innocent brown eyes gazed up into space. "Yes," she said, "He kissed me on the lips the first time in Switzerland." She stopped short for a moment. Then she grinned and cried out with a childlike air, "Oh, la-la, this lip-kissing is so new. It gets me all in a muddle."

photos and documentation: LIFE Magazine (US) | Zetu Harrys collection.

You Might Also Like