Prince Alemayehu Tewodros

Prince Alemayehu Tewodros

Birth
Ethiopia
Death 14 Nov 1879 (aged 18)
Leeds, Metropolitan Borough of Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
Burial Windsor, Windsor and Maidenhead Royal Borough, Berkshire, England
Memorial ID 19829783 · View Source
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He was born a prince with a bloodline stretching back to King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, the son of an Ethiopian emperor and heir to the treasures of one of Africa's richest royal dynasties. But, taken as a boy to Victorian England by British soldiers who ransacked his father's mountain-top palace, Prince Alemayehu died alone aged 18 in Leeds, in November 1879. Now the Ethiopians want his body returned to mark their millennium, President Girma Wolde-Giorgis has written to the Queen, requesting that the prince's remains be exhumed from where they were buried in a crypt beside St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle."It really was such a tragic and short life," said Richard Pankhurst, 78, professor of Ethiopian studies at the University of Addis Ababa, and the son of universal suffrage campaigner Sylvia Pankhurst. "The boy saw his parents die, he was taken from his home, sent to India and then to the intense cold of England, but the government simply refused to listen to his requests to return home. "Britain sent a military force to the palace of Emperor Tewodros II at Maqdala, in the mountains of northern Ethiopia, to bargain for the release of diplomatic hostages. Denied an audience, the troops routed the emperor's army in a three-day battle over Easter 1868. The emperor committed suicide as his fortress fell to the British. The seven-year-old prince's mother succumbed to illness days later. In the care of the British, he was first handed to the Raj in India, which administered Abyssinia, and then sent to Britain. In London he was befriended by Queen Victoria, who enrolled him at Rugby School and later sent him to Sandhurst for officer training. But having grown up in a royal household he never settled into British public school life. After nine unhappy years at Rugby, and less than a term at Sandhurst, he died of pleurisy at the home of his private tutor, in Leeds, in November 1879. Queen Victoria was struck by the orphan prince's melancholy during audiences at her palace, writing in her journal at the time: "It is too sad! All alone in a strange country, without a single person or relative belonging to him...His was no happy life." There have also been requests for the return of Ethiopian artifacts, including illuminated manuscripts and altar slabs, which are now held at the British Museum and in private collections at Windsor Castle.


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: cookie
  • Added: 11 Jun 2007
  • Find A Grave Memorial 19829783
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Prince Alemayehu Tewodros (29 Apr 1861–14 Nov 1879), Find A Grave Memorial no. 19829783, citing St George's Chapel, Windsor, Windsor and Maidenhead Royal Borough, Berkshire, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave (contributor 8) .