A place, a memory
On 3 August 1894, the Prince and Princess Alice were invited for lunch at the Sintra National Palace – in the small town near Lisbon listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site – with King Dom Carlos of Portugal.
Prince Albert I and Princess Alice were travelling around the Mediterranean and to Portugal on the boat bearing the name of the Sovereign’s second wife. They had been invited by Maria Pia, Portugal’s Queen Mother and a longstanding friend of Princess Alice. The Prince was also keen to visit Portugal for diplomatic reasons. He wanted to discuss a project close to his heart, the Horta weather station, with his friend King Dom Carlos. In preparation for the meeting, the Prince had already contacted Captain Chaves, and he now wished to learn Portugal’s intentions.
The two sovereigns shared an interest in the sea, oceanography, outdoor sports, observing nature and photography.
They acceded to the throne in the same year (1889). Dom Carlos, who was born in 1863, was at 31 much younger at the time of their meeting than Albert, who was 46. Many discussions on their oceanographic research are recorded in the numerous letters that they exchanged.
For more details:
Carpine-Lancre, Jacqueline and Luiz Vieira Caldas Saldanha, Souverains Océanographes [Sovereign Oceanographers], published by Fondation Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon, 1992