- My Letters from Ludwig: A Novel About King Ludwig Ii of Bavaria
- The Swan King: Ludwig II of Bavaria
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- The lost royal garden – on a roof: Ludwig II’s Wintergarten – Royal Central
It's gonna make it harder to build too if you have to row everything out to the island.
My Letters from Ludwig: A Novel About King Ludwig Ii of Bavaria
Katie Lambert: This castle is his downfall. Only 20 of the 70 rooms are finished.
It cost more to build than Neuschwanstein and Linderhof together. He only spends nine nights there.
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Multiple those candles by nine nights! This makes us come to the question. How did Ludwig pay for all of this? Initially, he financed these castles himself. He saw himself as a modern sun king. Accordingly, he thought he needed to celebrate this through the construction of castles, through the patronage of artists such as Wagner and others.
It's not that long before he runs out of money, obviously. He starts to borrow in his own pay way, way ahead. He even orders his cabinet to find loans and is very threatening and forceful when they're coming up short. By , he's being sued for debt, which is terribly embarrassing. He has this hair brain plan to rob a London bank. It doesn't work out. The government is starting to get seriously worried, "Is our king crazy or is he just spending way too much money? Either way, this has got to stop. Katie Lambert: He was certainly lonely.
He told an aid to camp, "Sometimes I call one of the domestic servants or pastillions and ask him to tell me about his home and his family. Otherwise, I would completely forget the art of speech. Sarah Dowdey: It's interesting. A lot of the stuff I read about these castles and about Ludwig, apparently the tour guides refrain from calling him the Mad King anymore, which has long been his nickname. It makes sense. It's not a very nice thing to call someone. Sorry for using it in our title, Ludwig. Eccentric is most often used today.
Katie Lambert: But his family definitely has some mental health issues. His brother, Otto, we mentioned at the beginning is schizophrenic and he's put into an asylum. His aunt Alexandra is put into a convent because she's positive she swallowed a glass grand piano.
But if Ludwig is crazy, he's very lucid at times too. He writes these eloquent letters. He studies French history and literature. He's even political astute when he actually tries, when he's not worrying about his castles or his opera and actually gets to work. Sarah Dowdey: His best friend I think says it best, Sissi.mamoreke.tk
The Swan King: Ludwig II of Bavaria
She said, "He's not mad enough to be locked up but too abnormal to manage comfortably in the world with reasonable people. Katie Lambert: Finally, the Wittelsbachs worried that Ludwig would bankrupt their family, go to the prime minister and say that, "We'd be okay if you deposed the king. It's kind of like the tabloids. The noted psychiatrist, Dr. Bernhard von Gudden is one of these. Ludwig is at Neuschwanstein when the delegation finally comes to arrest him.
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The soldiers and peasants try to stop them; try to save Ludwig but he's led away. He's taken to the Wittelsbach's castle burg, which is on Lake Sternberg. He's attended there by the doctor. That's when things start to get kind of weird. Sarah Dowdey: On June 13th, he asks to attend mass but is refused. Later in the day, after a huge meal, lots of wine, he gets Dr. Gudden to walk along the lake with him. They don't come back.
A search party finds that the king has drowned face up, which is strange because he was a very good swimmer and he was only in four feet of water. Gudden is also dead. Katie Lambert: What happened? There obviously a lot of theories about this. The main assumption for many years is that the king committed suicide because he had no future, he was essentially a prisoner and Dr. Gudden drowned trying to save him. Others have suggested that he was perhaps trying to cross the lake to meet people sent by Sissy and escaped to Austria and escaped to her.
Then others say he was murdered, maybe even that he was shot and not drowned at all. All of the Wittelsbachs are entered there.
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They have identical crypts. His stands out because it's always covered with flowers! He's still very popular despite the fact that he nearly bankrupted his family. His castles are today among the various main attractions. Who doesn't want to go see the Sleeping Beauty castle? Katie Lambert: Interestingly, they started to become these major attractions I think within weeks after his death, people were paying to go to them.
In the long run, it's been a pretty good investment for Bavaria, I'd say. Sarah Dowdey: Ludwig's own memorial is far simpler than any of these castles. It's across in the lake at the spot where he drowned. Sarah and I were talking about how it's always so strange for us to talk about these subjects who are supposedly so well loved. We keep reading, "The well loved so and so. Katie Lambert: Yeah, if you're in Bavaria, let us know what you think about Ludwig.
It always is a little funny saying, "Supposedly, you people love this guy. Sarah Dowdey: It's easy enough to see though why he would be so well loved. He's a gentle, passivist king. He's extremely eccentric. That only makes him more interesting. Katie Lambert: It's also always interesting like we talked about in our Emperor Norton podcast to try to diagnose people posthumously and figure out what sort of mental illness Ludwig was grappling with was in fact, anything at all.
That's one of the reasons, I think; people are so interested in him; that and his gorgeous castle and this mysterious fate that we simply do not have the answer to. Katie Lambert: Our first e-mail is from Derrick in California. He was, of course, writing about the Emperor Norton podcast.
He actually mentioned that he's seen Norton's grave at Woodlawn Cemetery before. His message was mostly about how his father is a part of the historical society, E Clampus Vitus. He said that they have gatherings that go on for a couple of days. They involve a fair amount of alcohol and that the society itself was formed during the Gold Rush.
The lost royal garden – on a roof: Ludwig II’s Wintergarten – Royal Central
Probably the most interesting part is he said that one of their slogans is, "No known cure," which means that after you complete your initiation ceremony, which is kept secret to everyone outside of the group. Then you were a member for life. He's hoping for a podcast on this group.
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Let us know what you guys think. Cool historical societies.
I don't know. Maybe we should form our own historical society.