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Elizabeth of Wied (1843–1916)

Elizabeth of Wied (1843–1916)

Queen of Rumania, painter, musician, writer, poet, and translator. Name variations: Elisabeth of Rumania or Romania; Elizabeth, Queen of Rumania; Elisabeth zu Wied; (pseudonyms) Carmen Sylva and Dito Und Idem. Born Pauline Elizabeth Ottilie Louise (or Luise) in Neuwied, Prussia, on December 29, 1843; died on March 3, 1916, in Curtea de Arges, Rumania; daughter of Prince Hermann of Neuwied; married Prince Karl von Hohenzollern also known as Carol I (1839–1914), king of Rumania (r. 1881–1914), on November 15, 1869; children: Marie (1870–1874).

Elizabeth of Wied, widely known for her cultural interests and voluminous writings, was the daughter of Prince Hermann of Neuwied. She met Prince Karl von Hohenzollern in Berlin and married him in 1869; 12 years later, in 1881, she became queen of Rumania and he became king as Carol I. During the Russo-Turkish War of 1877–78, Elizabeth tended the wounded, establishing the Order of Elizabeth (a gold cross on a blue ribbon), to reward others for similar service. She founded other charitable societies as well and helped foster the higher education of women in Rumania.

A talented musician and painter, as well as a writer, Elizabeth produced poems, plays, novels, short stories, essays, collections of adages, and

translations. In addition to her original works, many of which were written under the pen name of "Carmen Sylva," she also put into literary form much of the folklore of the Rumanian peasantry. Two of her earliest poetry collections, Sappho (1880) and Stuerme (1882), are notable, and in 1888, she received the Prix Botta, a prize awarded triennially by the French Academy, for her volume of prose aphorisms, Les Pensées d'une reine (1882), a German version of which is entitled Vom Amboss (1890). A volume of religious meditations in Rumanian, Cuvinte Su-fletesci (1888), was also translated into German in 1890 under the title of Seelen-Gespracke. Elizabeth also used the pseudonym "Dito Und Idem" to indicate the joint authorship of several works on which she collaborated with her lady-in-waiting Marie Kremnitz . They include Aus zwei Welten (1884), a novel, Anna Boleyn (1886), a tragedy, Inderlrre (1888), a collection of short stories, Edleen Vaughan; or Paths of Peril (1894), another novel, and Sweet Hours (1904), a collection of poems written in English. Among her translations are German versions of Pierre Loti's romance Pêcheur d'Islande, and Paul de St. Victor's dramatic criticisms Les Deux Masques. Particularly notable is The Bard of the Dimbovitza, an English version of Helene Vacarescu 's collection of Rumanian folksongs entitled Lieder aus dem Dimbovitzathal (1889), done in collaboration with Alma Strettell.

Kremnitz, Marie (1852–1916)

German writer. Name variations: Mite Kremnitz; (pseudonym) George Allan. Born Marie von Bardeleben in Greifswald, Germany, in 1852; died in 1916; married Dr Kremnitz of Bucharest.

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