Henri d’Orléans, the man who could theoretically be King Henry VII of France, was buried this weekend. Several royal houses were represented.
Henri bore the title Duke of Paris and was head of the Orléans house. He was a direct descendant of France’s last king, Louis-Philippe, who had to abdicate in 1848.
171 years without a king
After a turbulent half-century of revolutions, Napoleon’s empire and temporary restoration of the monarchy, France has been a republic uninterrupted since Louis-Philippe’s departure. But the legacy is held, and both the first Albert of Monaco and Spain’s Queen Sofia – the mother of King Felipe – and the Crown Prince of Morocco were present when 85-year-old Henri was put to rest.
The burial took place in Dreux, west of Paris, where the Orleans family traditionally bury their dead.
– The king is dead, long live the king, disputed the royalist action française after the duke’s death. The group wants to restore the monarchy under an Orléans king.
Henri died on January 21, on the anniversary of the beheading of Louis XVI in 1793, under the terrorist ground that followed in the wake of the French Revolution. Louis belonged to the Bourbon House, which has very little left over for the Orleans branch and their claim to the throne. Louis-Philippe’s father and namesake supported the revolution at the beginning and under the name of Philippe Egalité – Philip Likheid, after one of the ideals of the revolution – voted for the execution of the king, who otherwise was his cousin.
While Henry’s son Jean is now the head of the Orléans family and patron – under the name Jean VI – Louis Alphonse, today’s Duke of Anjou, claims the throne on behalf of the Bourbon House. As king he would have been known as Louis (Louis) XX.