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Lord Leopold Mountbatten

Lord Leopold Mountbatten
Full name
Leopold Arthur Louis Mountbatten
BornPrince Leopold of Battenberg
21 May 1889
Windsor Castle, United Kingdom
Died23 April 1922(1922-04-23) (aged 32)
Kensington Palace, United Kingdom
Buried1 May 1922
Royal Vault, St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle
23 October 1928
Royal Burial Ground, Frogmore
Noble familyBattenberg (until 1917)
Mountbatten (from 1917)
FatherPrince Henry of Battenberg
MotherPrincess Beatrice of the United Kingdom
Military career
Allegiance United Kingdom
Service/branch British Army
Years of service1909–20
UnitIsle of Wight Rifles
King's Royal Rifle Corps
Battles/warsFirst World War

Lord Leopold Arthur Louis Mountbatten (21 May 1889 – 23 April 1922) was a British Army officer and a descendant of the Hessian princely Battenberg family and the British royal family. A grandson of Queen Victoria, he was known as Prince Leopold of Battenberg from his birth until 1917, when the British royal family relinquished their German titles during World War I, and the Battenberg family changed their name to Mountbatten.

Early life

Prince Leopold was born on 21 May 1889. His father was Prince Henry of Battenberg, the son of Prince Alexander of Hesse and by Rhine and Julia, Princess of Battenberg. His mother was Princess Beatrice of the United Kingdom, the fifth daughter and the youngest child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.

As he was the product of a morganatic marriage, Prince Henry of Battenberg took his style of Prince of Battenberg from his mother, Julia von Hauke, who was created Princess of Battenberg in her own right.

Winchester Cathedral, memorial to Leopold and his brother Maurice.

As such, Leopold was styled as His Serene Highness Prince Leopold of Battenberg from birth. In the United Kingdom, he was styled His Highness Prince Leopold of Battenberg under a royal warrant passed by Queen Victoria in 1886.[1] He was baptised at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on 29 June 1889. His godparents were Leopold II of Belgium (his first cousin twice removed, represented by the Prince of Wales, his maternal uncle), the Duke of Connaught and Strathearn (his maternal uncle, represented by Prince Albert of Schleswig-Holstein, his first cousin), Prince Louis of Battenberg (his paternal uncle, represented by the Marquess of Lorne, his maternal uncle), the Marchioness of Lorne (his maternal aunt), the Duchess of Albany (his maternal aunt) and Princess Marie of Erbach-Schönberg (his paternal aunt).[2] His father died of malaria in 1896.

Leopold was a haemophiliac, a condition he inherited through his mother. His maternal uncle of the same name, Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany, had died from the same condition.

Military career

Leopold was commissioned a lieutenant (supernumerary) on 16 October 1909 in the 8th Battalion of the Isle of Wight Rifles, a Territorial Force unit.[3] On 19 October 1912, he received a regular army commission in The King's Royal Rifle Corps.[4] During service in the First World War, he was promoted to temporary lieutenant on 15 November 1914,[5] to lieutenant on 30 April 1915[6] and finally to captain on 14 September 1916.[7]

On 7 April 1918, he was placed on the half-pay list "on account of ill-health contracted on active service."[8] From 23 July of that year until the following 6 January, he served as an extra aide-de-camp on the staff of the War Office.[9][10] He resigned his commission on 14 April 1920; at the special request of his cousin, George V, he was granted the honorary rank of major.[11]

Relinquishment of titles

During the First World War, anti-German feeling in the United Kingdom led Leopold's first cousin, George V to change the name of the royal house from the Germanic House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha to the more English-sounding House of Windsor. The King also renounced all his Germanic titles for himself and all members of the British royal family who were British citizens.

In response to this, Leopold renounced his title, through a royal warrant from the King, dated 14 July 1917, of a Prince of Battenberg and the style His Highness and became Sir Leopold Mountbatten, by virtue of his being a Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order.[12] Under a further warrant in September 1917 he was granted the style and precedence of the younger son of a marquess, and became Lord Leopold Mountbatten.[13]


Lord Leopold died on 23 April 1922(1922-04-23) (aged 32), during a hip operation.[14] After being initially interred in the Royal Vault at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, he was buried in the Royal Burial Ground, Frogmore.[15] A memorial tablet to him and his brother Maurice is in Winchester Cathedral. His will was sealed in London after his death in 1922. His estate was valued at £4,049 (or £160,600 in 2022 when adjusted for inflation).[16]





  1. ^ "No. 25655". The London Gazette. 14 December 1886. p. 6305.
  2. ^ Queen Victoria's Journals - Saturday 29 June 1889
  3. ^ "No. 28297". The London Gazette. 15 October 1909. p. 7567.
  4. ^ "No. 28654". The London Gazette. 18 October 1912. p. 7687.
  5. ^ "No. 29001". The London Gazette (Supplement). 8 December 1914. p. 10559.
  6. ^ "No. 29257". The London Gazette (Supplement). 6 August 1915. p. 7867.
  7. ^ "No. 29798". The London Gazette. 24 October 1916. p. 10287.
  8. ^ "No. 30639". The London Gazette (Supplement). 16 April 1918. p. 4722.
  9. ^ "No. 30837". The London Gazette (Supplement). 9 August 1918. p. 9418.
  10. ^ "No. 31268". The London Gazette (Supplement). 1 April 1919. p. 4350.
  11. ^ "No. 31862". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 April 1920. p. 4415.
  12. ^ "No. 30374". The London Gazette. 9 November 1917. p. 11592.
  13. ^ "No. 13217". The Edinburgh Gazette. 5 March 1918. p. 834.
  14. ^ Leopold Arthur Louis Mountbatten profile,; retrieved 5 June 2010.
  15. ^ "Royal Burials in the Chapel since 1805". College of St George - Windsor Castle. Retrieved 5 March 2023.
  16. ^ Evans, Rob; Pegg, David (18 July 2022). "£187m of Windsor family wealth hidden in secret royal wills". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 July 2022.
  17. ^ "No. 28505". The London Gazette (Supplement). 19 June 1911. p. 4595.
  18. ^ "No. 29024". The London Gazette (Supplement). 1 January 1915. p. 3.
  19. ^ "Real y distinguida orden de Carlos III", Guía Oficial de España (in Spanish), 1907, p. 155, retrieved 13 January 2021

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