House of Romanov rules Britain

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by VVD0D95, Mar 15, 2019 at 7:44 AM.

  1. alexmilman Well-Known Member

    Apr 24, 2018
    Rurik or Rurikid? Rurik was well before the Norman conquest so you probably mean one of his descendants. Well, if Ivan marries <in Russian tradition “princess of Hastings”, I have no idea who she was> AND somehow their child ends on the throne of England Then there could be a number of the interesting situations including English claim to Tsardom’s throne after Ivan’s direct line is getting extinct. With the claims from Wasa (both Polish and Swedish) happening in OTL this one would have at least some legitimacy and could provide interesting political combinations.
    Of course, this looks as a complete fantasy because I assume that Stewards would have a stronger lobby.

    Edit: A presumptive bride was Mary Hastings, daughter of Earl of Huntington (descendent of the Duke of Buckingham) and Catherine Pole (descendent of the Duke of Clarence), which made her a ‘cousin’ to the Kingsof England. Would it be enough for a realistic claim to a throne even if all other members of that family died?
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019 at 1:06 PM
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  2. Shnurre Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2011
    Arguably Romanovs didn't exist in XIX century either. The last in line was Elizaveta Petrovna, after her death in 1762 Russia was ruled by the house of Holstein-Gottorp. So in order to really have Romanovs rule Britain, PoD has to be between 1613 (when Romanovs got Russian throne) and 1730 (when Peter II the last male Romanov died).

    Come to think about that Alexei Petrovich could potentially marry Sophia Dorothea of Hanover, daughter of future George I: they have age difference of 3 years IIRC.
    While OTL marriages of both Alexei Petrovich (who married other Welf Charlotte Christine Sophie of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel, a sister of future Holy Roman Empress) and Sophia Dorothea (who married Frederick William I of Prussia) make a lot of sense, a think their ship is also manageable. Peter would probably like closer ties with Britain not less than with HRE and if Frederick William is unavailable (for example because he marries Swedish princess as was originally planned for him), Alexei Petrovich is one of the most promising husbands for Sophia Dorothea.

    While it does not lead to Romanovs taking the throne of Britain, it creates a dynastic link between them and Hannover dynasty. Romanovs may well survive in such a scenario: IOTL death of Christine did pay some role in Alexei’s decision to flee. Even if Alexei’s death happens as it did IOTL, Sophia Dorothea would bring him other children that, unlike Peter II, may survive into adulthood.

    IOTL Sophia Dorothea wanted to marry her children to her English cousins (which her husband didn’t allow). If that happens ITTL, dynastic relationship between Hannover dynasty and Romanovs becomes stronger.

    Also a nice bonus that there is no Frederick II the Great (Sophia Dorothea is his mother) or even possibly *Russian Frederick the Great
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019 at 1:13 PM
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  3. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

    Dec 9, 2012
    @alexmilman @Valena others: how might the religious issue fare? Obviously the Russians would be against him converting (I could imagine that Anglicanism might be seen as just a bit too close to Catholicism), but how would the British see it? Conversion or no dice? Or would they be willing to let a Russian grand duke remain Orthodox so long as kids are raised CoE?

    Had Josef I's wife, Wilhelmine Amalie (George I's cousin) produced male issue (or Josef I had survived), then Sophie Dorothea would be perfect. Unfortunately, she didn't, and when Josef I died, Karl VI became king and he was married to a Welf from a different branch (Wolfenbuttel). Hence why Pyotr Velikiy went with Charlotte Christine of Brunswick (the sister of Karl VI's wife).
  4. alexmilman Well-Known Member

    Apr 24, 2018
    This is formally correct but in a country without the established rules of succession (did not happen until the reign of Paul I) succession by the female lines was OK and "Romanov" was a rather convenient way to underscore an uninterrupted legacy instead of using "Brunswick" and then "Holstein-Gottorp", which would sound distinctively non-Russian. Strictly speaking, the naming problems would start with Catherine I, one and only member of "Skawronsky dynasty". x'D

    Few considerations:

    1. Charlotte Christine was brought up at the court of August II of Poland, Peter's ally, and her elder sister was married to the emperor Charles VI (became an emperor in 1711). Alexei met her in 1709 and married in 1711. At that time George Louis was "simply" Elector of Brunswick-Lüneburg (Hanover).
    2. While the trade relations with Britain were important economically, the Hapsburgs were more important to Peter as a potential ally against the Ottomans (in 1711 Peter just managed to screw up the war against them with a loss of earlier conquests). As a military/naval ally Britain (not to mention Hanover) was pretty much useless to Peter and, as the future British operations on the Baltic Sea demonstrated, it would be an extremely reluctant enemy (due to the existing trade interests).
    3. In a long term (with a benefit of a hindsight) Peter's policy on the Baltics was in a contradiction with the British views on a subject: he was trying to convert Baltic Sea into the Russian lake by the strategic marriages of his daughter (Holstein-Gottorp) and nieces (Courland and Mecklenburg-Schwerin). George I did not like it and probably would not like it even if there was a link by marriage.
    4. While Alexei's flight happened soon after Charlotte's death, he was pretty much doomed much earlier due to the influence of Peter's 2nd wife and definitely after she gave in 1715 a birth to Peter Petrovich who did not die in infancy. With a combination of an alternative heir, ambitious wife and a powerful clique supporting her being arranged against him, Alexei simply did not have a chance to survive and in your schema the relations with Britain would be sourced by Alexei's execution.

    Well, while the Hapsburgs and Bourbons would be definite winners of not having Prussian Frederick II, I'm not sure that Russia would be better off with one more monarch with never-ending itch in his posteriors: Peter I pretty much run it into the ground and it did not quite recuperate even by the time of Elizabeth I. Can you imagine the results of having a capable bellicose egomaniac on its throne? :teary:
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  5. alexmilman Well-Known Member

    Apr 24, 2018
    Hard to tell: in a future the Russian Grand Dukes remained in Russia and their foreign wives had been converted into Orthodoxy. The Grand Duchesses marrying foreign royalties had been (AFAIK) retaining Orthodoxy on a condition that their children will be <whatever>. OTOH, in OTL wife of Tsarevich Alexei was allowed to remain Lutheran. This early in the "modern" Russian history we may assume pretty much anything for a case when Tsar's son (but not a heir) is marrying a heir to a foreign throne and goes abroad. Perhaps, as you proposed, he remains an Orthodox but the children are going CoE.
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  6. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

    Mar 15, 2015
    Birmingham, UK
    That does seem the most likely scenario, I think.
  7. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

    Dec 9, 2012
    IIRC, William III remained Calvinist - he only converted to shore up his popularity after Mary II died; George of Denmark remained Lutheran (as did Georges I and I think, II); and Albert also never became CoE although

  8. Shnurre Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2011
    Sure, this is all true and I mentioned Charlotte Christine's relation with future Emperor.

    However given precise enough timing I think marriage with Sophia Dorothea still can be arranged. The marriage probably has to happen before Poltava in 1709 (after it Peter shifts focus to Ottomans) and after Treaty of Altranstädt in 1706 (i. e. August II concludes separate peace with Sweden).
    By that time it is almost guaranteed that George would become King of Great Britain (Act of Settlement is 1701) and Peter might believe that alliance with Britain would help to crush his main enemy Sweden

    While marrying sister of future HRE Empress is prestigious, so is marrying daughter of future King of Britain. It should also be noted that Sophia Dorothea’s relation with British throne is much more direct than Charlotte Christine’s with HRE. After all, the first one is forth in line to inherit British throne (only after her grandmother, father and brother; thus had something happened to her brother she would eventually inherit Britain) and the second one is just future Emperors sister-in-law (which is prestigious but has less direct influence).

    Also allying with Britain in 1706-1709 is arguably much more useful against Sweden form military point of view and more important from economical POV.

    Obviously having dynastic links does not mean that relations between countries are always cordial. However, in XVIII century politics they still matter a lot.
    Consider Spain for example, which was fighting France for better part of two centuries before Burbons managed establish themselves in Madrid. After that, however, France and Spain were allied for better part of XVIII century for mostly dynastic reasons.

    It should also be noted that George personally had issues with Sweden: he wanted to grab Swedish Bremen and Verden. While IOTL he was able to gain them without bloodshed, allying himself with Russia might achieve the same goal in more direct and sure way
    Of course, Alexei's issues with Peter the Great were not caused by Charlotte's death and would not be butterflied away had she lived or had Alexei had other wife. These issues had very deep roots some of which you have mentioned.
    Alexei’s relationship with Peter was terrible by 1715 would almost certainly remain such even had Alexei chose not to flee. But having terrible relationship with son does not equal sentencing him to death even if you are Peter the Great. The flight gave Peter a good enough justification to sue Alexei (I mostly mean personal justification for Peter himself) and without such an excuse, it is a bit too much even for him.

    And Alexei's flight in my opinion is a result of nervous breakdown in which the death of his wife played an important role (the last straw that broke the camel’s back if you will).

    While one might argue that had Alexei stayed Peter would find another justification to kill him if isn’t guaranteed (and Alexei probably has to hold on just until 1719 when Petr Petrovich died). And as I mentioned in my last post, even if Alexei’s death happens as it did IOTL, Sophia Dorothea would bring him other children that, unlike Peter II, may survive into adulthood.
  9. Koprulu Mustafa Pasha Sadrazam of the Roman Empire

    Oct 24, 2017
    I have my problems with an devout Orthodox Christian Dynasty taking over the British Throne which requires the monarch to also be the head of the Church of England. Afaik, be Anglican.

    I think there is zero chance a Russian Prince will convert from churches.
  10. Shnurre Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2011
    Duke Peter of Oldenburg (aka Piotr Georgievich) and even his son Nicholas remained Lutheran despite spending their whole lives in Russia and despite the fact that both were considered a part of Russian Imperial Family and a very close part as that (a lot of Peter's decedents married other members of Russian Imperial Family).

    Converting from Orthodoxy though is of course a lot trickier.
  11. Shnurre Well-Known Member

    Jul 26, 2011
    Being able to inherit by female line does not mean that the dynasty name stays the same after such an inheritance.

    Am a firm believer that European dynasties should be called properly and not by some imaginary self-imposed names. After all we all know that Austro-Hungary was ruled by house of Lorraine and Britain by Saxe-Coburg-Gotha (which would in some time be replaced by Oldenburgs). [​IMG]x'D
    Sure I can. Russia has enough enemies that such talents would not be wasted (and you should not underestimate Fridrich’s administrative talents).

    But the important part is that Russia can potentially have a legitimate and competent male heirs that would not depend too much on guards (and nobility in general) like Anna, Elizaveta and even Catherine did.
  12. alexmilman Well-Known Member

    Apr 24, 2018

    Well, as far as the name of a dynasty was concerned, the Russians clearly had an idea different from yours and while formally they are Holstein Gottorp Romanovs, the official name of a dynasty was “Romanovs” because HG part is too foreign and may bring inconvenient questions regarding legitimacy: Michael Romanov was elected “by the people” but who elected Holsteins?

    As for Fritz and his talents, at his time the only Russian enemies were those of the Russian choice (mostly the Ottomans) and Russia did just fine with the ordinary generals instead of a royal adventurer. Of course, Fritz had administrative talents but so did Cartherine II and it is rather unclear if a legitimate Emperor (alt-Fritz) would adjust himself to the environment as well as absolutely illegitimate Empress. And if he would try to adjust environment to himself he could end up as Peter III or Paul I (both had been his great admirers and both hold an opinion that it is enough to be a legitimate monarch). And his sexual preferences almost inevitably would be a big problem.

    Then, of course, if we are talking Fritz being just transplanted to Russia,which heirs (plural) are you talking about? He would not leave any direct heir. :)
  13. alexmilman Well-Known Member

    Apr 24, 2018
    It was Ok for them to remain Lutheran (there were plenty of them in Russia) but they were not the Grand Dukes of Russia so this is not a very good example.
  14. Landmass Wave Well-Known Member

    Feb 1, 2017
    Landmass between New Orleans and Mobile
    Edward VIII marries Tatiana Romanov in 1915. George V dies shortly afterward. In 1917, Edward takes Tatiana's maiden name as the royal surname in order to disassociate the family from the Germans.
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  15. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

    Dec 9, 2012
    Theoretically yes. But that would require that somehow all the descendants of Henry VII were to be dead - not impossible if James VI dies in infancy, while his mother is still imprisoned. That leaves Charles Stewart of Lennox as last man standing of Margaret Tudor's line. Katherine Grey's kids were already bastardized, Mary Grey had no kids (and was probably unlikely to have, due to her health conditions); which leaves Lady Stanley as the last representative of Mary Tudor's line. - and then all other descendants of the countess of Salisbury, as well as all of Mary's brothers and sisters (and their kids - she was the youngest daughter of Lord Huntingdon) to die without issue, so while Henry VII can leave no surviving issue, I'm not sure it would be un-ASB to have all those with Plantagenets killed off in order to bring this about. Unless Ivan takes it into his head that he should invade England and set his wife on the throne.

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  16. alexmilman Well-Known Member

    Apr 24, 2018
    To invade England with such a purpose he would need at least 4 components:
    1. Non zero local support
    2. Troops (well, he had a regular infantry with the firearms even if its battle qualities were questionable)
    3. Ships to get there from Archangelsk: with the only ships potentially available being those of the English merchants, this brings us back to #1
    4. Absence of other problems (which means a seriou change of the OTL).

    How about a reverse scenario? He gets married and At some point things went so bad that Ivan was asking for a potential asylum in England. So let’s assume that he is forced to flee with his household and personal treasure (he was a very rich ruler of a very poor country) and all these exterminations/accidents/deaths from the natural causes you mention are happening. His wife is a valid contender and he has plenty of finances to promote her candidacy and perhaps few hundred armed followers as well. Or, even better, he marries, she has a son, nd he dies before throne of England is vacant. The options: he is dying soon after arriving to England (before the locals are getting to knew him too well) or he is dying in Russia and she is forced to flee with a child, preferably with at least some treasure. Probably the last option is more romantic but in both cases you end up with the English Rurikid who has a valid claim to Tsardom’s throne. :)
  17. Kellan Sullivan Well-Known Member

    Dec 9, 2012
    Not to derail the thread, since the question is a Romanov rather than a Rurikid, but wouldn't said English monarch be in the same boat as Dmitri Ivanovich/False Dmitri? Actually, even worse, since Mary would be the 7th wife of Ivan.
  18. alexmilman Well-Known Member

    Apr 24, 2018
    Well, it is unlikely that a King of England would claim throne of Muscovy for himself by the obvious reasons (meaningful OTL claimants were Sigismund's son and brother of Gustav Adolph) of geography and faith. But if there is a younger brother or a son to spare then his position is better than one of False Dmitri on a number of accounts:

    1st, being a member of a legitimate royal family (brother or son of a ruling king) is a much more solid background than what False Dmitri had (rumors about his "true background" never ceased). As such, he would definitely "overweight" Shuiski even with an issue of the 7th marriage.

    2nd, there would be no "Polish factor": in OTL the the Polish/Lithuanian backers of False Dmitri by a complete absence of an elementary tact did everything humanly possible to compromise his regime and antagonize the locals and marriage to Maria Mnishek made things even worse, not to mention the rumors that not just he is a bad Orthodox (among many other things, skipping on a post-supper nap was a clear indication of him being a heretic) but is going to try to convert Russia into Catholicism. With England being far away similar fears would be much less likely (the English merchants already were a know commodity and they were not proselytizing on Tsardom territory; anyway, CoE was an unknown entity, unlike Catholicism which was considered a hostile religion).

    3rd, with the considerable English trade interests in Russia of that time (basically, they had a monopoly on a foreign trade and significant privileges on trade inside Russia) it is possible to put the whole enterprise on a solid financial foundation (regular payments to the streltsy would come handy). Even creation of the unit of personal English bodyguards, if done tactfully, would be possible, especially if these guards are created under umbrella of the English ducal title, don't infringe upon the existing Russian military and administrative structures and do not push their superiority down everybody's throats as was the case with the Poles.

    4th, having a close relative of a ruling king on Muscovite throne would mean a possibility of a military alliance, which was not something that False Dmitri could offer (and which was a serious reason for considering Polish and Swedish candidates).
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2019 at 2:10 PM
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  19. Everdarklegion Member

    Dec 15, 2018
    Dallas, TX

    Perhaps an Anglo-Russian Union? Instead of William of Orange?
  20. alexmilman Well-Known Member

    Apr 24, 2018
    Could not happen due to the conflicting religious requirements and obvious geographic problems. If we assume that Rurikid is on the throne of England (or a spouse of a queen) then a practical scenario is to have his brother or son as Tsar. Then an alliance is possible but in the late XVI practical value of such an alliance is limited: England is not yet a naval super power and Tsardom is still a minor military power.