How’s this for an introduction:
“The proliferation of inbreeding among royal families, as documented in Appendix II, spawned a tragic historical heritage of simpletons, “sad-heads,” and hideously deformed imbeciles, all laughingly given powers beyond their comprehension.”
Who *wouldn’t* get sucked into a book like that?!
A British gentleman I work with pulled my name for the Secret Santa exchange this past Christmas. Knowing my mania for all things British and royal, he bought me Mad Kings & Queens: History’s Most Famous Raving Royals by Alison Rattle & Allison Vale, a fantastic book about how the royal lineages of Europe and Britain have been genetically corrupt by centuries of inbreeding. This book isn’t a serious study but, rather, a scandalous look at the worst of the worst. I’ve treated myself to a few delicious morsels just before drifting off to sleep at night.
The most heinous ruler was Vlad “The Impaler” of Walachia (1431-1476). He’s reported to be the inspiration for Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Among other atrocities, he would impale his own subjects with wooden stakes, plunged from the anus to the mouth. To insure an agonizingly slow death, the stakes were smoothed and oiled so that no vital organs were damaged as they passed through the body. Gross!
Poor Ferdinand I of Austria (1793-1875) had a pleasant temperament but because he was “…a descendant of the inbred Hapsburg line, it was no surprise that he turned out to be a monstrous genetic mutation.” I know how he feels. His parents were kissing cousins. As a result, he was born with a huge swollen head, a vast nose, the famous Hapsburg drooping lower lip and a vacant expression. He was a simpleton and it is said that the only complete sentence he every spoke was, “I am the Emperor, and I want dumplings.” Yet, he was crowned! There were guys just like him in my shop class in high school, except that a crown did not sit upon their father’s head.
The common thread that seems to run through all this blue blood is that the majority of these Royals had insatiable sexual appetites. That goes for both the Kings AND Queens. But, think about it. If you had supreme Godlike power over a nation, wouldn’t you do a lot of experimenting in the bedroom? I doubt that their appetites were any different than anyone else; they just had better opportunities.
What exactly is a “sad-head,” anyway? Is that a British colloquialism?
Due to the voracity of their sexual appetites I reckon that we are all spawn of these blue bloodied devils… and in any case I look well in ermine.Sx
I suppose having “Godlike” rule over a nation or even an empire would do much to quench even the most prolific sexual appetite. Imagine having the power to just say “Who is next?” and having a wench or three delivered. The sad-heads seem to be the “Drip” like nature of royals in general, boring and ultra-vanilla at best. I think you yanks have done the world a favor with your democracy experiment, the last thing the world needs is another collectible dinner plate set adorned with the smiling mugs of some future king or queen.
SB: That would explain these odd thoughts pinging around my mind on a moment-by-moment basis. SF: What about the Kennedy’s? Weren’t they our royal couple for a bit? And don’t forget, we have Queen Latifah.
I think the more money and power you have, the more you’re allowed to “experiment” in the bedroom. Ppl are more willing to overlook your affairs/adulteries. Even your trophy wife might me willing to sacrifice her dignity. Well, that’s my opinion anyway … I think ppl or more than willing to sell their souls for a Prada handbag.
And what did Vlad do with those undamaged organs? That’s quite a graphic.
Sid: I’d like to think that if I were in that position I’d be able to exercise some self control. But you never know what you’re capable.Jayne: You should read the chapter! It’s disgusting! Needless to say, one look at all those impaled bodies and invading armies turned around at the boarder and went right back home.
At least the Kennedy’s were not boring, even the old ones were rippin’ and tearin’ all over the landand don’t forget:King James aka Lebron
If I were the emperor I’d want dumplings.I’ve never heard the term ‘sad head’ before, but it suits a number of people I’ve met.
Sadhead: I would have said was an Americanism. Unfamiliar to me.
SF: Excellent point! King James should marry Queen Latifah. Oh…waitaminute…Erly: I can look up from my desk right now and see some sad heads. Sometimes, I can look in the mirror and see a sad head.Pat: Just checked the colophon. The book WAS published in the U.S.! So I guess it’s ours. We made it up.
I have always been happy when getting..better leave that one alone.
I, too, want dumplings.
Bush = modern day Hapsburg. “i can haz prezdenci?”
I think Pt’s right…it’s not a known English term.I shall look for that in my library.And, Mr. SF…sorry, old chum, but it’s a dime to a dollar you’ll get a truckload of Wills n Kate plates.
kykn: But you’re no Emperor. Back of the line, please.Daisy: That’s true! He was crowned king, in a sense and is a moron. One in the same.MIT: I want a plate! I wonder if they’re sold here in the States? I’ll stop in at Macy’s and see. Just watched a wedding news segment on the BBC. Looks fabulous.
Nope – never heard the word “sad-head” before. Sounds like a great book though – may have to look it up when next in the UK.
So yeah, just learnt that I might be coming to New York! In June/July. Soooo excited!
Nutty: Nice to see you! I’m beginning to think that this book, and the expression, had nothing whatsoever to do with the UK.Sid: Ah, HA! Another victim! Erm–I men GUEST. I’ll begin preparations. That’s a great time of year to see NYC. Actually, ANYTIME is a great time of year to see NYC, IMHO.
the last bit about better opportunities says it all. I’m home with a sick kid, i might possibly be going insane.
sounds like my sort of reading
ooh, i totally want to read this now. excellent book review.yet more reasons i’m thrilled i have no connection to the royal bloodline (although the queen mum was my fave as a child). i have enough challenges in my genetics without lacking a chin, or being exceptionally vacant, or having my upper lip fall off (or whatever it was).
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