ROYAL CHRISTMAS CARD SIGNED BY THREE PRINCES, INCLUDING TWO FUTURE BRITISH KINGS. A Christmas card illustrated with a street scene signed by three sons of King George V: the princes EDWARD (1894-1972; future King Edward VIII, at age 13), ALBERT (1895-1952, future King Edward VIII, at age 12) and HENRY (1900-1974, future Duke of Gloucester and Governor-General of Australia, at age 7). (“Edward,” “Albert,” and “Henry”). 1p. Oblong 16mo. Sandringham, (December 21), 1907. The message printed on the paper insert (detached from the binding, but present) reads “With sincere wishes for a happy Christmas from” underneath which the three princes have signed their names. The stamped envelope is addressed to the Italian-born, British artist EDOARDO DE MARTINO (1838-1912), known for his maritime scenes.
At the time our card was signed Queen Victoria’s eldest son, Edward VII, had succeeded her to the throne. Our card was signed by three of his grandchildren, sons of the future King George V, who would succeed his own father in 1910. Upon George V’s death in 1936, Edward, Prince of Wales, became Edward VIII, the controversial monarch who abdicated the throne to marry American divorcee Wallis Warfield Simpson. Edward and his wife were made Duke and Duchess of Windsor but lived the rest of their lives in the Bahamas and France. It was not until the late 1960s that the royal family officially accepted Simpson and invited them to England. Edward’s reign is the second shortest in the history of the British monarchy and he is the only British monarch to have abdicated voluntarily.