Chapter Six: (Volume II)
LEGAL PROBLEMS AND THEIR SOLUTIONS
Chapter Table of Contents
Dynastic Renunciations and Potential Divisions
Following the War of the Spanish Succession, the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht brought a new rule within public international law. Specifically, a prince or princess that enjoyed rights of royal succession in his or her home country had to renounce these rights when marrying into a foreign royal family. The purpose of this international law was to prevent the union of crowns through dynastic marriages. History is rife with royal marital unions that eventually led to war and strife over dynastic rights. Because of the creeping effect of personal unions leading to the amalgamation of small principalities into huge empires that could upset the political equilibrium, customary public international law requires the renunciation of succession rights whenever a prince or princesses marries into another sovereign House.
. . . The inconvenience of such hereditary acquisitions of territorial sovereignty [through marriage] had already become obvious long ago, owing to the danger of the accumulation of power and the consequent disturbance of the existing political equilibrium. This has led to the express prohibition of concentrating two specific crowns on one head. . . .
Therefore, a royal comity exists among the royal Houses of Europe: when a prince or princess that has rights of succession in his or her own House marries into a foreign royal House, he or she fully renounces the rights of succession to his or her own House. This is so that he or she may enter the royal House of his or her spouse, receive and use the titles accorded him or her within that House, and become a subject of its sovereign. The effect is to prevent the possibility of a union of successions to different thrones under international law.
Thus a law of Russia, made at the beginning of the reign of Elizabeth, most wisely excludes from the possession of the crown every heir possessed of another monarchy; and thus the law of Portugal disqualifies every foreigner who lays claim to the crown by right of blood.
For some examples, here are 18 well-known historical events:
(1) When Princess Augusta of Hessel Cassel married the Duke of Cambridge, a son of H.M. George III, she renounced her rights of succession to the throne of Hesse Cassel by the marriage treaty of 7 May 1818.
(2) When Princess Adelaide of Saxe-Coburg-Meiningen married the Duke of Clarence, later H.M. William IV, she renounced her rights of succession to the Royal House of Saxe-Coburg-Meiningen in the marriage treaty of 9 July 1818.
(3) When Princess Mary Louisa Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saarfeld married the Duke of Kent, son of H.M. George III, she renounced her rights of potential succession within the House of Saxony by a marriage treaty of 29 July 1818.
(4) Princess Elizabeth of Bavaria had to renounce her rights to the Bavarian throne upon her 1853 marriage to Franz Joseph, Emperor of Austria.
(5) Princess Louise of Prussia had to renounce her right to the succession of Prussia in the marriage treaty of 26 February 1879 when she married Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught, son of H.M. Queen Victoria.
(6) When Grand Duchess Maria Alexandrovna married the second son of H.M. Queen Victoria, Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, she had to renounce her dynastic rights to the Russian throne in the marriage treaty of 22 January 1874.
(7) When Princess Helen of Waldeck and Pyrmont married Prince Leopold, Duke of Albany, son of H.M. Queen Victoria, Princess Helen renounced her rights of succession to the Principality of Pyrmont by marriage treaty of 20 April 1882.
(8) When Prince Christian of Denmark assumed the throne of Greece in 1863, he renounced his Danish rights.
(9) In 1864 when Prince Gaston d'Orleans married the heiress to the throne of Brazil, he renounced his rights to the throne of France. This occurred even though the royal House of Orleans had been dethroned and an empire of the French currently existed under Emperor Napoleon III. The marriage of a royal claimant to the throne of France to a dynastic heiress could have disturbed the international political equilibrium. This is because of the concern that Prince Gaston may have acquired the means through his wife's army and countrymen to pursue his own claim as a French king.
(10) Before Prince Ferdinand of Bavaria married Infanta Maria Theresa of Spain, the younger sister of King Alfonso XIII, Prince Ferdinand renounced his eventual rights to the Bavarian throne in 1905 and left Bavaria’s royal House. He was received into Spain’s royal House with the new title of "Infant Ferdinand of Spain" on the 20th of October in 1905. He married Infanta Maria Theresa on 12 January 1906. His descendants are today members of Spain’s royal House of Bourbon and Habsburg-Lorraine, not of the royal Bavarian House of Wittelsbach.
(11) The legitimacy of the dynastic title to the Spanish throne for King Juan Carlos (who recently abdicated in favor of his son) was through his father, Don Juan, Count of Barcelona. It was derived from (a) the dynastic renunciation of Don Juan's older brother, Don Jaime, Duke of Segovia (a deaf-mute), on 21 June 1933; (b) the exclusion of Don Jaime from the succession and the designation of Don Juan, Count of Barcelona, as the successor in King Alfonso XIII's will of 8 July 1937; and (c) the abdication of King Alfonso XIII in Don Juan's favour on 5 February 1941.
(12) The royal comity was used in 1947 when Prince Philip of Greece married Princess Elizabeth, eldest daughter of H.M. King George VI. Prince Philip renounced his potential rights of succession to Greece and Denmark through the royal House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg and joined Great Britain’s royal House of Windsor. He was granted the title of Duke of Edinburgh. Neither Prince Philip nor his descendants are members of the royal House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg.
(13) In 1962, when Princess Sophia of Greece, the eldest daughter of King Paul of Greece, married Prince Juan Carlos of Spain (later King Juan Carlos I), she renounced her rights of succession as a member of the royal House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg.
(14) In 1964, when Princess Anne Marie of Denmark, youngest daughter of King Frederick IX of Denmark, married King Constantine II of the Hellenes, King Frederick IX did not give his consent to this marriage in cabinet. Thus, in accordance with Article 5 of the Danish Law of Succession, Princess Anne-Marie and her children forfeited any rights of succession to the Danish throne.
(15) In 1964, when Princess Irene of the Netherlands, the second daughter of Queen Juliana of the Netherlands, married Prince Hugo-Carlos of Bourbon-Parma, the eldest son of the Carlist claimant Prince Xavier of Bourbon-Parma, the Dutch Estates General refused to grant the parliamentary assent to the marriage required by what was then Article 17 of the Dutch Constitution. Thus, she and her children forfeited all succession rights to the throne of Holland.
(16) To follow this customary rule of public international law against any union of crowns, Prince Carl of Denmark, second son of King Frederick VIII of Denmark, renounced his rights of succession as a member of the royal House of House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg upon being elected King of Norway in 1905.
(17) In 1861, when Archduke Maximilian of Austria assumed the throne of Mexico, he renounced his rights of eventual succession to the thrones of Austria and Hungary, etc., as a member of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine.
(18) On the 14th of December in 1900, Prince Carlo, second son of the Count of Caserta, the claimant to the throne of the Two Sicilies, married Infanta Mercedes, the eldest sister and heir of King Alfonso XIII of Spain. Prince Carlo renounced his dynastic rights to the succession of the Two Sicilies:
This renunciation was made to ensure that the children of his marriage with Infanta Mercedes would be members of the Spain’s royal House and therefore eligible for the Spanish succession. Otherwise, the prescriptions of the 1759 pragmatic would automatically operate to prevent the children from inheriting the Spanish throne through the princess.
On the 7th of February in 1900, Prince Carlo was nationalized as a Spaniard. He was received into the Spanish royal House of Bourbon and Habsburg-Lorraine with the title of Infante. He married Infanta Mercedes on 14 February 1900. The Spanish royal decrees of 29 January 1903, 15 October 1904, and 3 August 1908 explicitly declared all descendants of Prince Carlo to be eligible for succession within Spain. His grandson had the title of Infante of Spain and was appointed by his cousin, King Juan Carlos I, to superintend the medieval Spanish military orders of chivalry.
There are many examples of such renunciations in history. See in Marina, Book XIII, xviii, a notable instance in the case of Louis the Ninth, King of France, renouncing for himself and his children the right which he could have through his mother Blanche to the kingdom of Castile.
The history of Europe is filled with dynastic abdications, renunciations, and the transfer of thrones. For a person to claim that royal rights are irrenounceable, incapable of abdication, etc., is to demonstrate both ignorance of European history in general and dynastic law in particular.
Today, Crown Princes commonly marry outside of royal and noble lines. But, should a dynastic heir marry someone who possesses his or her own succession rights, the existing force of this customary rule of public international law against the union of crowns would still very likely require one to renounce his or her succession rights before marrying.
Renunciations are permanent and binding. They irrevocably remove all the rights to any eventual succession of the person who makes such a decree. They also remove all succession rights of any descendants of the declarer born after the declaration is made. This loss cannot later be unilaterally terminated or withdrawn. The principle of estoppel establishes that a ". . . person is prevented from arguing and rebutting a previously made (explicit or tacit) statement of fact or representation on [the] same issue." A modern example of estoppel in a court contest was in the 1933 Legal Status of Eastern Greenland case:
Norway reaffirmed that she recognized the whole of Greenland as Danish; and thereby she has debarred herself from contesting Danish sovereignty over the whole of Greenland.
In other words, ". . . the legal effect of . . . recognition is to create an estoppel." Estoppel is the aforementioned legal technique whereby states [or sovereigns] deemed to have consented to a state of affairs cannot afterwards alter their position." In other words, estoppel generally prevents retraction or revocation of past actions. The only way to change a renunciation is if all the parties involved mutually agree to revoke or alter the renunciation. That is, all the dynasts of a rightful royal sovereign House must use their supreme legal de jure rights to make a renunciation null and void. Less commonly, a court with competent jurisdiction could override a renunciation, but having a court with this kind of jurisdiction is exceptionally rare. Otherwise, a renunciation is forever, and the forfeiture is final with only one other exception. As Hugo Grotius explained, ". . . the act of the father [in a renunciation] cannot harm children already born, because they have by law gained their own right as soon as they have begun to exist. . . ." Hence, any living heirs of the declarant at the time of renunciation still have a hereditary or lawful right to the throne. It is ". . . an absolute and irrevocable right, of which they cannot be stripped without their consent." In other words, "The single will of a prince [in an abdication or renunciation] . . . cannot effectively exclude his [living] children from the crown. . . ."
. . . The Sovereign himself . . . may change his [situation by abdication or renunciation], as may his successor who has the same authority, and therefore the same power. . . .
. . . abdication, renunciation, or surrender [can] be valid [or impact the whole royal household] without the free [that is, not coerced] consent of the prince royal and the other princes of his family both in the direct and collateral branches.
This is true only if the collateral branches have succession rights. In many Houses, the collateral branches do not have succession rights. Therefore, these collateral lines do not have a right to a say in House succession matters.
If those who have dynastic rights acquiesce to a renunciation, either overtly or by silence (which is an act of implied consent), then the renunciation stands under the rules of extinctive prescription. In addition, the legal principle of estoppel would prevent a retraction of their acceptance of the renunciation at a later time. In other words, if no protest occurs shortly after a renunciation is declared, the renunciation is permanent and irrevocable.
Hugo Grotius, the father of international law, explained:
The Difference between the Children born before the Abdication [or renunciation], and those who were born after, is this, those who were born after had not then acquired their Right. . . .
". . . The fact must be recognised that a person who is not yet born has no rights, just as a thing which does not exist has no attributes." That is, there is no legal birthright or royal heritage when an ancestor renounces those regal rights before a child is either conceived or born. However, a lawful heir born before an abdication or renunciation, on the other hand, would have full succession rights either at birth or conception, contingent upon the traditions of the land.
If a lawful heir is born or conceived before an ancestor abdicates or renounces a royal claim, the heir has a full hereditary birthright in a hereditary monarchy. These rights cannot be extinguished by any person other than the heir. However, if the heir fails to publically or diplomatically protest against the ancestor’s renunciation or abdication, provided that the heir is of sufficient age to properly understand the need to protest, the heir will legally accept the renunciation or abdication and lose all succession rights. This becomes irrevocable under public international law and cannot be changed. That is, if such a living descendant "remains silent [when] a protest is necessary to preserve a claim," such as, when a renunciation of one’s father to the throne takes place, it results in an "expessis verbis" or irrevocable acceptance of the act of renunciation. This results in his or her legal "abandonment of rights." The abandonment includes the relinquishment of succession rights for any unborn or non-conceived children of the heir that failed to act.
Nor can there be any later questioning of such an international act by the descendants of the declarant if they were not conceived or born at the time of abdication or renunciation. They simply have no lawful succession rights, so they have no grounds from which to question.
The power of an act of renunciation was made clear by Emerich de Vattel. He declared, "These renunciations . . . are perfectly valid, since they are equivalent to a law that such persons and their posterity should be excluded from the throne." This perfectly ends all debate on the subject. Due to the executed legal nature of a dynastic renunciation involving subjects of public international law, the clause rebus sic stantibus (changed conditions) is completely inapplicable. Hence, "The legal effect of renunciations has been considered by international tribunals, which ascribes to them a binding character. . . ." In this case, legally binding means that certain actions are thereafter prohibited, and it is binding in perpetuity. A declarant of abdication or renunciation and any unborn or non-conceived heirs of the same declarant have no succession rights without end. This is fully and legally binding.
In international law, the only way one can get out of a renunciation, barring all parties involved officially agreeing to it as mentioned earlier, is if the legal and lawful declaration was coerced or signed under duress. But how would such legal duress be proven or substantiated? This must be answered with certainty lest confusion or House rifts result.
The general principle of international law for the invalidation of renunciations, treaties, and other international acts due to coercion was codified in Article 51 of the 1960 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties. The only way an international juridical act can be dismissed due to coercion is where "consent to be bound by a treaty which has been procured by the coercion of its representative through acts or threats directed against him." Personal distaste, reluctance, or disinclination does not and never has served as a basis for legal coercion or duress. One cannot irrevocably agree to something under legally binding authority and then simply disavow it years later. Renunciations should not be a byproduct of whim and caprice. They are definitive and binding acts. In fact, if dynastic renunciations did not cut off the rights of dynastic inheritance of all after-born children that the title to practically every European throne could be questioned.
The only precedent for invalidating dynastic renunciations on the legal grounds of coercion was established by the total nullity of the 1807 Treaty of Bayonne. Here, Napoleon Bonaparte threatened to execute Ferdinand VII of Spain before a firing squad unless he abdicated his throne within 12 hours in favour of Joseph Bonaparte. If there is not coercion, then an abdication or renunciation declaration of a reigning or non-reigning sovereign or a dynastic heir to the throne is final, and it cannot be abrogated or nullified barring circumstances seen earlier in this work.
However, this finality sometimes does not set well with some people, and serious conflicts can arise. When succession issues are not resolved early on in a dispute, a number of royal Houses have become permanently divided by rival claims. These claims can become so entrenched that they are never resolved. This is incredibly counterproductive to the cause of monarchy, especially for non-territorial de jure sovereigns. The following is a poignant example of a House divided against itself.
Succession Problems – The Kingdom of the Two Sicilies
The following sub-chapter is included, not to create controversy, but to illustrate international law as applied to both reigning and deposed royal houses and the succession of its lawful and rightful heirs. The following is condensed from a deep and penetrating investigation, into the controversy that had arisen in Europe concerning the succession to the Chiefship of the Royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies,  resulted in a three-hundred and forty-seven page analysis, which was completed in February of 1973 and a summation of the same was printed in the official journal of the Augustan Society. It revealed the following about the royal house formerly ruled the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies (which was annexed to Italy in 1860 during the Risorgimento) and the Grand Magistry of the Sacred Military Order of Constantine St. George as well as the Royal Order of St. Januarius (See Appendix III on these Orders of Chivalry):
The Two Sicilies succession dispute originated in the competition for the Spanish Crown by Princes of the Spanish Royal House after the 1947 restoration of the Monarchy by the dictator General Franco, who reserved the right to pick the future king. The political climate of Spain during this period was such that, "Monarchists . . . were played off against each other by Franco. . ." creating a tense rivalry between candidates. This issue was not resolved until 1969. The best-known claimant to the Spanish Crown, the Count of Barcelona, was the father of the HM Juan Carlos I and grandfather of present King, Felipe VI
Don Juan seized upon the provisions of a law guaranteed by international treaty, the Pragmatic of 6 October 1759, regulating the succession between the independent Bourbon Royal Houses of Spain and the Two Sicilies, absolutely prohibiting a union of crowns between the two Houses, and forbidding the interference of Spain in Italian affairs. (See Appendix IV for a translation of the Pragmatic Decree) He induced or convinced another Prince of the Royal House of Spain, the Infante Alfonso, to exclude himself unwittingly from any possible consideration for the Spanish Crown by denouncing his father's renunciation of Two Sicilies' dynastic rights and laying claim to the defunct Crown of the Two Sicilies.
Because the provisions of the Pragmatic forbid combining the affairs of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies with those of Spain, the sovereign claim made by Infante Alfonso made him ineligible or unacceptable for the Spanish throne. In other words, Infante Don Juan had a legally binding reason to convince Infante Alfonso to claim the Italian sovereignties, because the Pragmatic Decree made it clear that, ". . . If either the males or females of my descent inherit the Italian sovereignties [Alphonso claimed to inherit them] there is an express condition that none of them can be King of Spain or Prince of Asturias. . . ." (See "The Pragmatic Decree" in Appendix IV) (emphasis added) By declaring himself to have inherited the Italian sovereignties, Infante Alfonso legally forfeited the kingship of Spain, which is what Infante Don Juan wanted. Alfonso literally traded the potential to be the king of Spain, a standing functioning kingdom, for a highly refutable and dubious claim to be the head of a defunct, non-reigning kingdom or sovereign entity.
Infante Alfonso's father was born Prince Carlo of the Two Sicilies. Prince Carlo renounced the Throne of the Two Sicilies and the Rights of the Royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies for himself and for his descendants and heirs on 14 December 1900 in order to enter the Royal House of Spain, become an Infante of Spain, and marry the heiress to the Spanish Throne, Infanta Maria de la Mercedes, Princess of the Asturias. She was the eldest sister and then heir of King Alfonso XIII. Prince Carlo's renunciation was necessitated by the following important considerations:
1. The Pragmatic necessitated the renunciation in order to ensure that the children of his marriage with Infanta Maria de la Mercedes would definitely be members of the Royal House of Spain and be eligible for the Spanish throne. The prescriptions of the Pragmatic covenant would otherwise have prevented the children of a Spanish Princess, who married a Two Sicilies Prince from inheriting the Spanish Throne (See Appendix IV on the Pragmatic Agreement);
2. When a prince or princess (having succession rights in his or her own House) marries into a foreign Royal House, that person must renounces the rights of succession to his or her own House of birth. He or she may then enter the Royal House of his or her spouse, legally assume the titles of that House, and become a subject of its Sovereign. The purpose was to prevent the potential of a union of crowns spoiling the delicate balance of power in Europe.
The details of Prince Carlo's renunciation were the subject of an international agreement between H.M. Maria Cristina, the Queen Regent of Spain and mother of Infanta Maria de la Mercedes, and H.R.H. Prince Alfonso (I) of the Two Sicilies, Count of Caserta, Chief (de jure King) of the Royal House of Bourbon of the Two Sicilies and father of Prince Carlo. Pursuant to this agreement and the renunciation, on 7 February 1901, Prince Carlo was integrated into the Royal House of Spain, was created an Infante of Spain, and became a Spanish subject. He then married Infanta Maria de la Mercedes on 14 February 1900.
Interestingly enough, their son, Infante Alfonso, later became heir to the Carlist dynastic claims to the Spanish Throne following the extinction of the direct Carlist line in 1936. (See Appendix III number 2 on the Carlists) His mother was the heir presumptive to the throne all her life and held the title of Princess of Asturias. After her death, Infante Alfonso was recognized as the heir presumptive to the throne of Spain by his uncle Alfonso XIII by Royal Decree of 17 October 1904 (although he did not receive the title of Prince of Asturias). Three years later, Infante Alfonso ceased to be the heir presumptive on the birth of his cousin Alfonso (who was the son of King Alfonso XIII and Queen Victoria Eugenia). He was a prime candidate for the throne of Spain. Recognizing the fact that he was heir presumptive for three years and his special unique inheritance as holding the highest hereditary right to the Carlist dynastic claims as well as his very close proximity to the Spanish Throne under the "Liberal Monarchy" of his uncle King Alfonso XIII, the Infante Alfonso stood an excellent chance of being appointed as King Designate by General Franco, especially because he was far less liberal and less personally offensive to General Franco than Don Juan, Count of Barcelona, the son of Alfonso XIII. It was this strong Spanish claim that undoubtedly prompted Don Juan to entice Infante Alfonso to proclaim the termination of his father's renunciation and claim the Two Sicilies succession upon the death in 1960 of his father's older brother, Prince Ferdinand (III) Pius, Duke of Calabria, Chief of the Royal House of Bourbon of the Two Sicilies. Prince Carlo, Infante Alfonso’s father, had previously died in 1949.
However, by laying claim to the Two Sicilies succession, Infante Alfonso automatically excluded himself from consideration for the Spanish Throne by the operation of the Pragmatic. Thus, he could not legally accept a possible nomination for the Spanish Throne from General Franco due to the express prohibition in the legally binding Pragmatic Covenant against a union of crowns between Spain and the Two Sicilies. Although these actions seemingly defrauded the legitimate claimant to the Two Sicilies succession, one cannot, perhaps, too harshly condemn the ingenuity of the Count of Barcelona in eliminating a strong potential rival to the vacant Throne of Spain by enticing him to chase quixotically (foolishly) after the non-existent throne of an extinct kingdom -- a chateau en Espagne -- an imaginary castle in the sky.
The legitimate claimant, Prince Ranier of the Two Sicilies, the younger brother of both Prince Ferdinand (III) Pius and Prince Carlo, was entitled to the Two Sicilies succession due to the prescriptions of the Pragmatic as well as Prince Carlo's renunciation. (See Appendix IV number 3 on the renunciation) Prince Ranier made an appropriate and vigorous. He assumed the title of Duke of Castro, which was a small independent fief in Italy united with the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies in "real union" by the Pragmatic. King Francis II, the last reigning King of the Two Sicilies, had requested that this title be perpetuated, and it is now used by the Chief (de jure King) of the Royal House in exile.
Summary of the Legal Situation
1. A monarchical renunciation irrevocably cuts off the rights to succession of all descendants not living at the time that the monarch made the renunciation.
2. A renunciation is a unilateral international transaction subject to international law. It consists of the deliberate legally binding abandonment of rights. By its very nature, and by the exact language used therein, "His Royal Highness Prince don Carlo . . . [demonstrated that he] intend[ed] to renounce and solemnly revoke, by this present act, for himself and for his heirs and successors" all royal rights, privileges, and prerogatives to the throne of the Two Sicilies. Prince Carlo's renunciation was an executed international agreement that took effect immediately upon signature under the binding power of an international dynastic law. The vested legal rights established thereunder could not, under international law, be altered by Infante Alfonso's attempted termination of the same.
As seen previously, dynastic renunciations are of such grave magnitude that they and all other unilateral sovereignty concerns are subjects of international law. This includes wills, acts, laws of succession, designations of successors, etc., enacted by the head of a royal and sovereign House, whether that House currently reigns or else is a non-territorial sovereign.
3. Prince Ranier's father, Prince Alfonso, Count of Caserta, and Prince Ranier's oldest brother, Prince Ferdinand Pius, Duke of Calabria, both made wills (political testaments) designating Prince Ranier as their successor. His father's will specifically stated that Prince Carlo had lost his rights to the political succession and to the rights of the royal House. This constituted a disinheritance of Prince Carlo and his heirs, because sovereigns of patrimonial kingdoms hold the power to nominate their successors or adjudicate who holds the rightful claim in the event of a House dispute. Pufendorf makes it clear that there:
. . . belongs to kings who hold a kingdom in their patrimony, the right to depose of the succession as they chose, and when they have once expressly declared their will concerning the succession, it must be as closely adhered to as the last will and testament of the father of the [royal] family. . . . He may leave it [the throne] to an adopted son, and even to one who was in no way related to him.
Wills and actions in this context are not private since they involve the transfer of sovereignty; thus, these are subject to international law as any treaty or other sovereign document would be.
The important point here is that these wills and codicils were sufficient to divert the succession away from Prince Carlo of Spain and his heirs and successors. The renunciation of 14 December 1900 was not necessary. The wills and codicils were fully legal, competent, and binding under international law to transfer the succession to Prince Ranier without the aid of the renunciation. Such wills may also be regarded as subsequent agreements or practices respecting the interpretation, application, and legal acknowledgement of the renunciation. They reconfirmed and validated an irrevocable act that eliminated the Spanish princes from the crown of the Two Sicilies in conformance with the Pragmatic Covenant.
4. From the date of his renunciation in 1900 to the day of his death in 1949, Prince Carlo never once questioned the legal effect of his renunciation in any manner whatsoever. In addition, on 14 June 1934, Prince Carlo unconditionally accepted his father's will; this transferred the succession rights to Prince Ranier and irrevocably disinherited Prince Carlo and his heirs and successors. His son, Infante Alfonso, likewise never protested against his father's renunciation or his grandfather's will until he was instigated to do so in 1960 (at age 60) by Don Juan, Count of Barcelona. Under these circumstances, a prescription thereby arose in international law that the renunciation was completely valid and legally effective. The prescription is a complete bar to Infante Alfonso's later attempted termination of the same in 1960. ". . . Acquiescence [in this case, for 60 years] . . . acts as a preclusion or estoppel . . . [in other words, it results in a permanent] waiver of rights. . ." even if there were any rights left, which there weren’t. This is because Infante Alfonso did not have any right to the Two Sicilies to begin with since he was born after the rights to the Two Sicilies were already renounced by his father.
5. As seen above, inasmuch as Infante Alfonso was not born or even conceived at the time of the renunciation, according to international law, he had no right or claim by birth to the titles and honors his father had already given away before he was born. ". . . Descent [right by birth] cannot entitle [posterity] to [a] claim . . . their ancestors . . . did not possess." One cannot obtain from one’s forefathers an inheritance that the forefathers no longer own and are in a position to distribute. Nor did he, nor any other man, have the legal right or prerogative to vacate an already executed official renunciation of all that HRH don Carlo once possessed pertaining to the non-territorial succession rights of the de jure Kingdom of the Two Sicilies.
6. A span of 60 years before taking action is far beyond the realm of due diligence. Alfonso grew up, reached the age of majority, and only decades later did he protest the acts of his ancestors. This was neglectful and reflects a careless and indifferent attitude. Therefore, even if he had been born by the time of the renunciation, the important point is that Alfonso did not protest the actions of his ancestor within an appropriate time period. So, even if he had been born and had a right to succession rights originally (which he did not have), he acquiesced to his ancestor’s action. There is a legal maxim that "equity aids the vigilant, not those who sleep on their rights." In other words, the renunciation in and of itself constitutes an irrevocable conclusion, and the silence of both father and son solidifies and sanctifies the same.
Sovereign claims that are stale due to decades of abandonment are not acceptable, admissible, or just. "The rule of laches is well founded as a ‘general principle’ of international law" as a ". . . bar of claims by lapse of time." "Laches . . . rejects a claim simply because it is stale. . . ." In other words, ". . . a claim riddled with delay cannot be ‘valid. . . .’" Thus, ". . . the doctrine of laches was unquestionably a recognized principle of law – inclusive of international law – and applicable to sovereign states [and contests between sovereign individuals]."
In addition, note that Alfonso waited until after his father, don Carlos, and his uncle, King Alfonso XIII, who was the legitimate head of the royal House of the Two Sicilies, had both passed away before making his claim. That is, he waited until those who could demonstrate that his claim was without merit were gone. Without his father and uncle, there was no direct living witness who could contradict his pretensions or claims. This appears to be both dishonest and a deliberate obstruction of justice. Alfonso’s actions seem to be an attempt to manipulate the legal situation of his invalid claim; laches, since 1863, have been acknowledged as legally preventing such actions since they were recognized in international law. A delay in the pursuit of a legal claim until critical evidence or witnesses are destroyed by the passage of time is typical of criminal activity that is in violation of the "clean hands" doctrine. It would otherwise bring injustice and inequity into a legal analysis, which is why it is barred on both domestic and international levels.
Great lapses of time are known to produce certain inevitable results, among which are the destruction or the obscuration of evidence, by which equality of the parties is disturbed or destroyed, and, as a consequence, renders the accomplishment of exact or even approximate justice impossible.
Given the importance pursuit of justice, laches were adopted as an essential principle of law from ancient times, although the codification within international law has been more recent. The concept of laches is part of the enduring and fundamental "necessary law of nations," because it is part of the ageless, universal natural law. Alfonso’s wrongful act is also condemned by the implied principal of estoppel. That is:
If the person who . . . by means of a Will or other provision [such as a renunciation] has lost his or her hereditary right [to a throne] and has failed to protest against the Will or provision [at or near the time that they become aware of it], a prescription of public law [estoppel] sets in against every later questioning [or rejection] of such [a document or provision of loss or forfeiture]. . . . See Emerich Vattel, "Le droit des gens", book II, numbers 145-146 (compare the Vienna Convention from 1969 on the law of treaties, art. 31.3(a)).
Unreasonable delays of decades, as described above, validate the barring of legal claims, because "honest claims and honest defenses suffer [from delays]; only dishonest ones profit." In other words, delays of such magnitude taint a claim and make it unworthy of any consideration. Therefore, even if a rightful claim existed for Prince Alfonso, which it does not, the passage of time before his claim was exerted creates doubt about the worthiness of the claim.
7. Under the rules of prescription, 60 years of neglect qualifies as an act of abandonment and therefore a complete forfeiture of all rights under the provisions of ordinary prescription. But, because Alfonso had no right of birth to the succession of the Two Sicilies, there were no rights to forfeit since they were eliminated before he was born. Even in a hypothetical situation where he would have had a legal claim to the Two Sicilies, both he and his father violated the essential law of nations since they failed to use the royal titles and arms of the Two Sicilies for decades. Thus, even under this hypothetical scenario, they still lost all legal rights to the Two Sicilies under prescription. A principle doctrine of prescription is that:
. . . long lapse of time inevitably destroys or obscures the evidence of the facts and, consequently, delay in presenting the claim places the other party in a disadvantageous position [for justice to occur]. (See the sub-section "Prescriptive Examples and the Principle of ‘Ordinary Prescription’ in International Law" in Chapter II).
The above demonstrates that the Spanish claim to the Two Sicilies has no validity. It is legally flawed in every relevant and material consideration. This is additionally demonstrated in the following section.
Valid International Transactions
Dynastic renunciations and the wills created by the dynasts involved are of such grave unilateral legal magnitude that they are unequivocal subjects of international law. This includes all that is enacted by the Chief of the Royal and Sovereign House whether completed by a reigning or a non-reigning sovereign entity.
When a person duly authorized [speaks] in the name of the State his act binds the Nation itself and consequently all future rulers of the social body. Hence, when a prince has the power to [act] in the name of the State [or in the name of a non-territorial sovereign or supreme entity], he binds all of his successors, and they in their turn are not less bound than he to fulfill his contracts [or declarations].
Ex-regnant Sovereign Houses, according to the Article 14 of the Final Act of the Congress of Vienna and fully incorporated into the Final Act by Article 118 thereof, as well as Article 14(c) of Annex IX, the famous Bundus Pact, provided that deposed Sovereign Houses have the right under international law to maintain their family compacts, laws, rights and obligations as non-territorial monarchies fully intact without their territories and perpetuate the same into the future. As such, their sovereign documents, wills and renunciations are binding legal documents under international law. The following are examples of such international legal acts:
. . . unilateral grants of privileges made by temporal or ecclesiastical rulers to foreign merchants or cities; Papal Bulls intended to produce legal effects in the secular sphere; rules of dynastic houses, promulgated by their head, concerning succession and marriage; wills of princes disposing of territorial possessions, laying down the order of succession or designating a successor; declarations of independence, declarations of war; princely acts of renunciation, and so on. Nevertheless in all such unilateral documents the authority concerned acted as an international person [not as a private person when sovereignty is involved]. (emphasis added)
"The form of a particular instrument is not decisive of the question whether or not it constitutes an international agreement."
The decisive factor in ascertaining the legal nature of an instrument as a treaty [international agreement] is not its description [or name] . . . but whether it is intended to create legal rights and obligations between [sovereign] parties.
The sovereign wills, the renunciation, the Pragmatic Decree and the Declaration of the entire adult membership of the Royal House of the Two Sicilies designating that the Italian claimants are the only genuine and true heads of the Royal House were unilateral international proclamations or treaties, not private domestic legal documents. The International Law Commission states that the term "treaty" is a generic term (i.e., a general term) which is applicable to all transactions, acts, unilateral declarations, notifications, agreements, etc.
[An] international transaction is the term for every act on the part of a State in its intercourse with other States [as between Spain and the deposed and de jure or lawful Kingdom of the Two Sicilies]. . . . There are other kinds of international transactions which are of legal importance – namely, declaration, notification, protest and renunciation. (emphasis added)
In other words, both the renunciation and their legal wills were international agreements or treaties created by de jure sovereign entities. They represent not only a powerful witness testifying as to the legal realities, but have legal standing in international law. The renunciation, as a major pivotal act with the full legal power of an international treaty or act of law, identifies the obvious answer to the succession issue. The two others are the legal wills of the sovereigns and the internationally binding declaration of the Royal House. These documents were made under the supreme authority of the rightful and true de jure Kings of the Two Sicilies. It is important to understand that:
The agreements and contracts which [a] sovereign makes . . . in his character as sovereign and in the name of the State [or his Kingdom], follow the rules which we have given for public treaties.
Since treaties are international laws, the binding renunciation of all royal rights to the House of the Two Sicilies is inviolately upheld by law and the important principle of estoppel, which:
. . . Estoppel is a rule of international law that bars a party from going back on its previous representations [the renunciation and sovereign wills] when those representations have induced reliance [reliance on the deposed Kingdom of the Two Sicilies to continue without don Carlos and his descendants as dynasts] or some detriment on the part of others [it deprived all descendants of Carlos from holding dynastic rights of succession to the Royal House of the Two Sicilies].
Please see the sub-section on "The Immediate Loss of Sovereignty" in Chapter II for more information on how estoppels work to prevent retractions or denials.
The renunciation discussed earlier clearly indicates that the head of the royal Bourbon House with rights to the Two Sicilies was acting in his public capacity as the legitimate and rightful King of the Two Sicilies rather than as a private individual. (See Appendix IV No. 3.)
As seen above, a renunciation is a type of unilateral proclamation of international scope rather than merely a private contract. Thus, it must be interpreted according to the International Law of Treaties, which provides guidance on legal, sovereign actions. A renunciation, once declared, cannot be undone unless the original parties or their sovereign successors all unanimously decide to make the renunciation null and void. In other words, the legal principle of rebus sic stantibus or "changed conditions" does not apply, because this kind of binding unilateral sovereign covenant was an "executed" or completed decree rather than an international "executory" declaration.
An analogy might be useful to highlight this. If a man sold his house for $50,000 in 1969 through a valid and executed sales contract, could he later claim 26 years later that the contract for sale is null and void due to the house now being worth $300,000? The answer is obviously no, because the sales contract is an executed contract. All rights in the house were conveyed to the new owner after the sales contract was completed.
Even if a contact or renunciation was terminated, Article 70.1(b) of the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties states that a termination of a treaty "does not affect any right, obligation or legal situation of the parties created through the execution of the treaty prior to its termination." In sum:
. . . Termination cannot cancel, rescind, undo, reopen or jeopardize any executed clause of a treaty or any act performed thereunder, or revive or reinstate a previous condition of affairs, situation or status determined by the treaty. . . .
The renunciation in question was executed immediately upon signature. The purpose of an executed treaty is to create permanent rights or abdicate them (i.e., transfers of territory, boundary settlements, payments of money, recognitions and renunciations). This particular unilateral treaty was not an "executory" treaty meaning the agreement is still in a state of continuing performance (i.e., a trade agreement, a tariff declaration, an alliance), rather it was an "executed" or accomplished treaty.
. . . A demand [for the termination of a treaty or international transaction] can, of course, only be made with regard to executory [ongoing] treaties. Executed treaties are beyond the reach of such a demand.
Put another way:
Waiver (abandonment, renunciation) is an act whereby the State [or the holder of sovereign succession rights, such as a royal dynast] gives up its claim, right, competence or power which consequently ceases to exist. Once this effect has taken place, waiver [that is, a renunciation] becomes irrevocable.
The only way that the royal succession created by the executed renunciation decree could be restored to its pre-renunciation state would be if the present head of the royal Bourbon House with rights to the Two Sicilies formally transferred all regal honors, privileges, and sovereignty back to the Spanish claimants. This is highly unlikely, and it would not be in accord with the Pragmatic Sanction of King Charles III and the Treaty of Naples, which forbids such a union. The ultimate conclusion is that the renunciation stands on solid legal ground and is inviolable. But there is still even more on this subject.
Various historical letters were exchanged between HRH Prince Alfonso and the ruling Queen-Regent Maria Cristina of Spain, and the Infanta Isabella. These letters demonstrate that the renunciation of Prince Carlo was made pursuant to an agreement between the Spanish Government (acting through the Queen) and the rightful Bourbon claimants to the Two Sicilies. In other words, the unilateral renunciation decree was merely the outgrowth of an informal bilateral international agreement. In this context, the agreement may be characterized as a type of ". . . oral, informal treaties which the Convention on the Law of Treaties recognizes as being of a binding character [the equivalent of an unequivocal or recognized legal decree]."
Even if Prince Carlo was acting in a private capacity when he performed the renunciation, which he clearly was not, the renunciation would still be binding under international law. This is due to a provision in the law of nations that lends protection to agreements made between private individuals and sovereign heads of state. Vattel declared:
The agreements and contracts which the sovereign makes with private individuals, in his character as sovereign and in the name of the State, follow the rules which we have given for public treaties. In fact, when a sovereign contracts with persons who are not subjects of the State, whether it be with a private individual, or with a Nation, or with a sovereign, the rights of the parties are the same in each case. If the private individual who contracts with a sovereign is a subject of the latter the rights of the parties are still the same. . . .
That is, contracts between sovereign and private individuals have the same international legal status as a binding treaty or law. Therefore, the renunciation was an international agreement and not a private domestic contract.
A person may wonder whether the renunciation of the Spanish Bourbon claimants to the Two Sicilies impacts the ability of that family branch to have a valid order of chivalry of the Two Sicilies under its jurisdiction. A renunciation of a sovereign crown -- the right to be the head and chief of a royal House -- obviously includes everything within the purview of that royal dignity. This includes all orders of chivalry. Knowing that either a reigning or non-reigning sovereign is required for an order of chivalry to have a valid fons honorum, it is fanciful for a royal to renounce completely all sovereign rights but still believe that he or she thereafter retains the ability to have a valid order of chivalry. Simply put, a valid order of chivalry must have the support of a sovereign royal. Otherwise, the "order" is merely a private honour with no value whatsoever on a public, international level. When sovereignty is renounced, all regal rights are forfeited.
For example, Edward VIII's 1936 renunciation of the British Crown clearly included the headship of the royal House of Windsor, all of the minor associated titles of the royal House (e.g. the Duke of Lancaster), and all of the various Orders of Chivalry -- even though these Orders were not explicitly named in the text of the renunciation. In a similar manner, in the 28th of June of 1900 renunciation of the rights of his children by Archduke Franz Ferdinand to the crowns of Austria and Hungary, the document clearly included all of the minor associated titles of the Austrian Empire and the House of Habsburg. The renunciation also included the dynastic Order of the Golden Fleece that was attached to the inheritance of the Duke of Burgundy -- even though this was not explicitly mentioned in Franz Ferdinand's renunciation.
In short, the Spanish renunciation of the claim to the Two Sicilies was legally established and binding. The consequence of this fact is obvious. All rights to the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies were fully lost by the renunciation, and any claim to the contrary is in error.
Renunciation is another unilateral act . . . which has specific legal effects. Just as a State [or person holding legal internal sovereignty rights] may voluntarily assume unilateral obligations, so can it voluntarily renounce a law or a legal claim. . . . The legal effect of renunciations . . . [has a] binding character [which means it is irrevocable or cannot be unilaterally broken].
As seen earlier in this work, the only way a unilateral renunciation of this kind can be invalidated is if all the originally-involved States, individuals, or entities (or the subsequent heirs thereto) who hold de jure sovereignty unanimously agree to it. In this case, the Prince Carlo’s renunciation could only be undone if the Kingdom of Spain and all the dynasts of the deposed Kingdom of the Two Sicilies legally and officially consent to it. Since this has never taken place, and it is not likely to occur at any time in the future, the renunciation is an insurmountable legal fact, that is, in effect, indisputable.
Additional Laws Legalize and Bind the Renunciation
As stated some have argued that the renunciation was a private law agreement, therefore they insist that the laws of France, where the renunciation was signed, or where the deposed Kingdom was located, prevail. They quote two statutes, one from France and one from the Republic of Italy, Article 458 of the Italian Civil Code. The latter states that:
Any agreement by which one disposes of his own succession is void. Any act by which one dispose of the rights that belong to him by a succession not yet opened, or renounces such rights, is equally void.
This makes it appear that if it was a private agreement, the renunciation might be void, however, as stated this renunciation involved the reigning sovereign Kingdom of Spain, in order for Prince Carlo to marry a potential heir to the Spanish throne, and the legal, non-territorial sovereign Kingdom of the Two Sicilies.
But there are other laws that again make the renunciation indisputable and beyond question. Choice of law is one of them. A very common practice in private commercial law contracts and that is an internationally recognized right, is that agreements or juridical decree may choose the law which governs that action. For example, a grain supplier located in Argentina shipping wheat to a purchaser in Russia upon a Liberian ship will commonly contract that the law relating to the shipment of the wheat will be British law, because British shipping law has been so well-interpreted, certain and defined. This can take place even though neither the buyer, seller, nor the shipper has any connection with the United Kingdom. In all such cases, courts world-wide will apply the law of choice as the substantive law governing that contract. This has priority over the law of the place where the contract was signed, where the goods were delivered, or the nationality of the vessel making the delivery. Thus, neither the place where the contract was signed nor the nationalities of the participants matter. It is the choice of law that is chosen and specified that applies. All else is irrelevant and immaterial to the agreement.
The law of choice in the renunciation of Prince Carlo was written into the international agreement or renunciation itself. It was the "laws, constitutions, and customs of the Family" and the Pragmatic which, in turn, are incidents or parts of such dignities, estates, titles, etc. of the non-territorial sovereignty of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies. It further stated that ". . . all of the acts [stated above] relating to the Royal Family [of the Two Sicilies] remain fully in force." (See Appendix IV for a copy of the Renunciation)
But wasn’t this kingdom deposed in 1860? Then how could its laws have any legitimate binding impact on an agreement made 30 years after the fact? Again, the answer is simple. The international law of "private law rights" kicks in. This law requires a successor state, such as the Republic of Italy or France, to recognize, respect and honor the "private law rights" of a deposed kingdom (the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies in this case), even if these "private law rights" conflict with a subsequent statutory enactment of the new government or successor state.
The laws of France or Italy cannot be applied to Prince Carlo’s renunciation, because international law obligated nations to give priority to former laws which created vested rights, which rights are legally established as absolute and unconditional. To give just a few out of an abundance of examples from some different court systems, note:
(1) Supreme Court of the United States: ". . . in harmony with the rules of international law . . . the change of sovereignty should work no change in respect to rights and titles; that which was good before [the change in government] should be good after; that which the [municipal or domestic] law would enforce before [the change of sovereignty] should be enforceable after the cession."
(2) Texas State Court: ". . . the succeeding sovereign is bound to recognize, protect and uphold the lawful act of its predecessor [the deposed government]."
(3) Austrian Supreme Court: "Relations of private law are not affected as the result of extinction of States [or dispossessed kingdoms]."
(4) India State Court: "The general legislation of the former . . . [Princely] States ceased to have effect, but not the personal laws [the vested legal rights granted by the former sovereigns] relating to the rights, privileges and property of private individuals."
(5) Texas State Court: ". . . Even legislative authority cannot take it [private law rights] away."
(6) United States Supreme Court: affirmed the principles of international law relating to the retention of the municipal law system of the previous sovereign in territories which have been lost.
To hold that either French or Italian law would govern the succession to the sovereign Crown of the Two Sicilies would make as little sense as saying that Communist Revolutionary Soviet Law should govern and dominate the royal and imperial sovereignty succession conflict of the exiled Imperial Russian House of Romanov. Under the law of the Soviet Union, the claimants would be facing a firing squad or be sent to Siberia. The point is self-evident. Under international law, the "public law rights" of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies are legitimate and binding as long as the royal house maintains their non-territorial sovereignty by the rules and principles that preserve such, which is prescription.
The vested rights and rules of the de jure Kingdom of the Two Sicilies law allows for and supports alienations by its customs and the Pragmatic Decree on succession. Hence, the renunciation is again vindicated and affirmed by legal statute and practice of the only sovereign entity with legitimate jurisdiction over the renunciation. These private law rights being upheld by all civilized nations throughout the world as the law of all nations over the subsequent domestic laws including those of Italy or France. (See the sub-chapter on "Private Law Rights, Ownership, and Chivalry" in Chapter IV).
The problem with arguing against the facts is that it creates and perpetuates fictions, half-truths and falsehoods. One could continue to argue that the world is flat, but this would not change reality. What is blatantly wrong continues to be false. It is a binding truth that all the rights to the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies were lost to Prince Carlos and his heirs by the renunciation. Claiming otherwise cannot change this reality.
Even though what has been shown above in the last two sub-sections is conclusive, there is yet more to the story that also makes the Italian claim incontrovertible.
House Laws on Marriage and its Impact on the Issue Discussed
The following is part of the dynastic laws of succession of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies:
Article 1 de l'acte royal du 7 Avril 1829:
Les fils, filles du roi, les petits-fils et arriére-petits-fils, descendants les uns des autres de males en males, les fréres du roi, leurs fils, petits-fils, leurs filles et petites-filles, descendants de males, les soeurs, tantes, oncles du roi, doivent obtenir le consentement du roi pour se marier quel que soit leur age.
Le défaut du consentement du souverain rend le mariage sans effects politiques et civils.
Translated into English, this reads:
The sons, daughters of the king, the grandsons, and great-grandsons, and other descendants of the male line, the brothers of the king, their sons, grandsons, daughters, and granddaughters, and their male descendants, the sisters, aunts, and uncles of the king, must obtain the assent of the king to marry, whatever their age.
A failure to obtain assent from the sovereign renders the marriage without political and civil effect.
Art. 2 de l'acte royal du 12 mars 1836:
Les mariages des princes de la maison royale qui n'ont pas recu le consentement du roi ne peuvent avoir d'effets politiques et civils et ceux qui les contractent perdent tous leurs droits dynastiques, titres et prerogatives.
Translated into English, it is as follows:
The marriages of the princes of the royal House where there was not the assent of the king will cause the princes to lose all their dynastic rights, titles, and prerogatives. (emphasis added)
Infante Alfonso and Carlo's children were always universally regarded as members of the Spanish royal House of Bourbon. When these children married, they sought permission to do so from King Alfonso XIII as required by the House laws of the Spanish royal family (Pragmatic of 27 March 1776; Art. 56 of the 1876 Spanish Constitution; and the Royal Decision of 15 March 1895). At no time were any of these children regarded as members of the Sicilian royal House, nor did they obtain royal Sicilian permission for their marriages.
The above is a crucial test. Because the children of the Spanish claimants were not regarded as members of the Sicilian royal House of the Two Sicilies, none of them, not a single person, ever sought permission to marry from either the Count of Caserta or from Prince Ferdinand Pius, Duke of Calabria (during their respective times as the de jure King of the Two Sicilies). This permission was required by the Sicilian royal House rules (Art. I of the Royal Act of 7 April 1829 and Art. II of the Royal Act of 12 March 1836). These facts are certainly relevant as primary evidence demonstrating the heirs of Infante Carlo are not part of the Sicilian royal House. Since the heirs were members of Spain’s royal House, they could not possibly be eligible for succession to the Two Sicilies because of the Pragmatic Agreement that forbid such a union.
Therefore, pursuant to the House laws, the marriages of Infante Carlo’s children were without political and civil effect insofar as the Two Sicilies succession was concerned. Most importantly, by violating the House laws of the de jure Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, even if they had rights (which they did not), they would have forfeited permanently and forever any dynastic rights, titles, and prerogatives they had by this violation of the statues of the Sicilian royal House.
Indeed, it is immediately apparent that the Sicilian House laws themselves completely resolve this entire dispute. By his marriage of 16 April 1936 to Princess Alice of Bourbon-Parma, which happened without the consent of Prince Ferdinand Pius of the Two Sicilies, Infante Alfonso absolutely forfeited any possible dynastic rights to the succession of the royal House of the Two Sicilies. Apart from any other consideration, this alone completely eliminates any kind of legal or rightful claim to the Two Sicilies.
As a direct and necessary conclusion to this dispute, based exclusively on the House laws of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, the Spanish claimants are completely devoid of any right to succeed to either the de jure crown or the headship of the royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies. This is conclusive and final.
The titles pertaining to the head of the royal House, the lesser titles and dignities of the royal House, the sovereign prerogatives, honors, and rights thereof, including sovereignty over the Order of St. Januarius and the Sacred Military Order of Constantine of St. George, remain with the true claimants and their successors as long as they continue to maintain their rights by the rules and principles of prescription.
Proclamation of the Royal House
In order to permanently resolve this dispute, the entire membership of the royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies met in Naples on 6 June 1962, and pursuant to the provisions of international law for settling dynastic succession disputes, they issued a formal Dichiarazione (judicial decision) unanimously adjudicating the dispute in favor of Prince Ranier, Duke of Castro, as the chief of the royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies. This juridically-binding reconfirmation again demonstrated that Infante Alfonso and his posterity lack any validity or legitimacy in the Sicilian royal House. Both Infante Alfonso and his heirs are in the very awkward position of claiming to be the head of a royal House in which none of its other members recognize or accept their authority.
This proclamation resolved the controversy completely and in totum. The royal House had made it unmistakably clear that Prince Ranier was recognized as Duke of Castro, chief of the royal House of Bourbon of the Two Sicilies, and Grand Master of the royal orders of chivalry. The proclamation also was sent to the heads of the other Bourbon royal Houses: Prince Henry (VI), Count of Paris, head (de jure king) of the royal House of France; Prince Xavier (I), Duke of Parma, head (de jure duke) of the ducal House of Bourbon-Parma; and Dom Pedro Henrique de Orleans-Braganza, head (de jure emperor) of the Imperial House of Brazil. Prince Ranier was not only recognized by all the other members of the Bourbon-Two Sicilies royalty, but he was recognized by the Holy See, the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, and the heads of the royal Houses of Italy, Bavaria, Wurttemberg, Tuscany, and Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen. Upon his death in 1973, Prince Ranier was succeeded by his son, Prince Ferdinand (IV), Duke of Castro. After his death, his son, His Royal Highness Prince Carlo (born 1963) became the present de jure king and head of the royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, Duke of Castro, and Grand Master of all the royal orders of knighthood.
On January 5, 2014, the two families, the Spanish and the Italian claimants, met to work on overcoming the disagreements of the past. The following is the press release for what appears to be the beginning of better relations:
The 1700th anniversary of the Edict of Milan, celebrated in 2013, was not only the commemoration of a historical event of Christianity, but also the occasion on which the two branches of the Royal House of the Two Sicilies, divided over several decades, have united, and through so doing put an end to familial disputes and misunderstandings. On the common initiative of HRH Prince Don Carlo of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duke of Castro, and HRH Prince Don Pedro of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duke of Noto, also representing his august Father HRH Prince Don Carlos of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duke of Calabria and Infante of Spain, it was agreed to restore and develop in a spirit of familial and dynastic reconciliation those feelings of mutual respect, sincere cohesion and deep affection that have characterised the admirable history of the Royal Family of Bourbon Two Sicilies in the past centuries.
The agreement was signed by HRH Prince Don Carlo of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duke of Castro, and HRH Prince Don Pedro of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duke of Noto, on behalf of his father HRH the Infante Don Carlos of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duke of Calabria in Naples on 25 January 2014, the day of the Beatification of Queen Maria Cristina of the Two Sicilies. Their Royal Highnesses together with their respective families, HRH Princess Donna Camilla of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duchess of Castro and their daughters HRH Princess Maria Carolina of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duchess of Palermo and HRH Princess Maria Chiara of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duchess of Capri, together with HRH Princess Donna Sofia of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duchess of Noto, and her son HRH Prince Don Jaime of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duke of Capua, expressed their determination to conform forever more to the principles of the common religious faith as they have been continually reaffirmed by the Supreme Pontiffs and lastly by His Holiness Pope Francis, whose example of Christian charity and love of neighbour they intend to follow with devout and sensitive participation.
HRH The Duke of Castro and HRH The Duke of Noto are firmly determined to overcome all obstacles which might interfere with peace and familial harmony, of which the newly-signed agreement is the first clear step and, to congratulate the whole Royal Family of Two Sicilies. (emphasis added)
Some important items detailed in the Reconciliation are:
1. To stop the divisions and disputes between the two claimants,
2. To provide a good example of harmony instead of discord,
3. To add to the prestige of the royal House by joining forces,
4. To eliminate or discourage the division between the knights and dames of the Sacred Military Constantinian Order of St. George,
5. To put to an end the rivalries and misunderstandings between the two families and their supporters,
6. To renew the Constantinian and Catholic spirit of service to the Holy Church and the spreading of the faith,
7. To recognize each other’s titles, (although recognition cannot provide legitimacy to a falsehood; this is a courtesy only -- see the subsection "Recognition is Unnecessary: the Fact of Sovereignty is Not Determined by Outside Recognition" in Chapter IV), and
8. To act as a single family instead of a family divided.
However, there is one highly important subject that has not been solved. Both Houses published the following lest there be any misunderstanding of the Act of Reconciliation:
Their Royal Highnesses [both Houses] . . . reiterate the fact that in the Dynastic Family agreement signed in Naples on January 5th, 2014, there is no mentioning of any references to the Headship of the Royal House of Bourbon Two Sicilies and that all allegations and inferences to that respect are without any foundation. (emphasis added)
Note that they asked that the public not assume a changed, or united succession provision, as this has not been settled.
It is important to understand that a chief and head of a royal hereditary House cannot change succession arbitrarily as the heirs have rights to which they were born or given that cannot be legally or lawfully taken away. These rights are as legally profound, immutable, and unalterable as the law of sovereignty itself, which is the highest of all international laws. An unwilling rightful successor cannot be robbed or lawfully cheated out of his or her right to succeed without his or her deliberate and uncoerced permission. The legitimate heirs to the sovereignty of Two Sicilies after Don Carlo, Duke of Castro, are first HRH Prince Antoine of Bourbon-Two Sicilies and after him, his eldest son, Prince François. Neither of these heirs were recorded as attending the reconciliation meeting.
In other words, the royal succession has not changed at all. Furthermore, there remains a hard-and-fast division between the legitimate Italian and wrongful Spanish claimants to the Two Sicilies. Some Bourbon family members appear to be getting along better, and this may soften some past dissensions. However, the Act will likely never be able to create the unity desired unless the truth of the valid Italian claim is acknowledged, respected and honored by the Spanish family and dealt with according to international law. (See the sub-chapter "Legal and Lawful Solutions to Succession Conflicts Provided under International Public Law" in Chapter VI.)
Prince Carlo’s title to the de jure throne and headship of the royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies is clearly beyond a preponderance of evidence. It is not only compelling, but it is obvious and irrefutable. All the weight of law is on the side of the Italian claimants. The renunciation, public international law and practice, the succession House rules of the Two-Sicilies, the Pragmatic Sanction, the wills of the royal principle players recognizing the rights only of the Italian line, the failure of the Spanish family to get permission to marry from the recognized head of the de jure Kingdom of the Two-Sicilies, and most importantly, and the united juridical decision of the entire royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, demonstrate the clear and rightful claim of HRH Prince Carlo.
As a direct result of the immutable rule of law, the Holy See and the Sovereign Military Order of Malta have officially endorsed the Italian rights. In 1963 and further on 30 March 1973, the president of Italy recognized and honored the Italian claimant and signed an official decree granting the Italian Order of Constantine official recognition as an "ente Morale" or "Chartered Corporation". This is the Italian equivalent of incorporation by an Act of Congress of the United States (U.S. examples are the Red Cross and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) or similar to British royal patronage of an organization by the Crown. This is a significant honor, and it conveys a particularly high status.
However, sadly, some people tend to believe what they want to believe, even in spite of overwhelming proof to the contrary. Hence, the Spanish branch continues to make claims to the Two Sicilies, and they have some followers. Therefore, this creates strife within the Bourbon family and makes it more difficult for the legitimate Italian royals with a valid claim to the Two Sicilies. The recent reconciliation has not altered the succession rights, but it is at least a gesture towards better family relations.
Other royal Houses exist with similar unresolved succession issues. Examples are the Houses for Imperial Russia, Imperial Ethiopia, Imperial and Royal France, the Imperial and Royal House of Habsburg, and the Kingdom of Spain. There is even a succession issue to the Kingdom of Georgia, even though His Royal Highness Prince Nugzar Bagrationi-Gruzinski is the clearly the rightful claimant. While false pretenders have a right to do and think as they please, nevertheless, the law is clear, binding, and unequivocal. A person need only apply this law to derive the proper and correct heir in any succession contest.
The 2016 decree of the His Royal Highness Prince Carlo, the head of the Italian claim, about giving succession rights to females, has some serious potential problems connected with it. The section in this chapter entitled "Legal and Lawful Solutions to Succession Conflicts Provided under International Public Law" reveals what is needed to preserve the important rights of true royal houses, and to permanently solve the legal issues that exist. For example, rightful living heirs cannot legally be robbed of those rights without their consent.
Succession Problems – The Imperial and Royal House of Habsburg
The following is presented to explain how the author, as a special legal counsel, became acquainted with the details of the 1936 Settlement Agreement with the Austrian government and the provisions of 29 April 1936 FVF Statute. This also describes how they relate to succession within the Imperial and Royal House of Habsburg.
The late Archduke Rudolph (5 September 1919 to 15 May 2010) was the managing partner of a discrete private bank in Brussels, Belgium. He traveled to New York City four to five times a year to place investments, etc., for private clients. These trips to New York continued even after he had formally retired as a partner.
From 1981 until 1996, the author of this book met with the late Archduke Rudolph during these visits. The author would take the early train from Boston where he was working full-time on the Habsburg case at Harvard Law School’s international law library. After the noon Mass with the Archduke at Our Lady of Victory parish, they would often lunch at the India House and discuss progress on the case. This is why the author has a particularly large amount of information about the Imperial family.
Archduke Rudolph said that he was 16 or 17 at the time of the negotiations between the Imperial family and the Austrian government over the terms of the 1936 Settlement Agreement. Although the negotiations were handled by the Duke of Hohenberg on behalf of the Imperial family, the Duke took instructions upon the exact terms directly from Archduke Otto, then aged 24, who was living in exile in Brussels.
Archduke Rudolph said that the particular provisions of §6 FVF Statute severely restricted the class of "Fund beneficiaries and persons entitled to the fund" or "Fonds berechtigten und der Personen, die Fondsberechtigte wären". This also designates the class of persons eligible under §4(2) FVF Statute to succeed as the head of the family, known in the document as the "Fondschef". These were included in the FVF at the specific insistence of Archduke Otto himself during the 1935 to 1936 negotiations with the Austrian government.
Archduke Rudolph also explained the intense personal rivalry between his eldest brother, Archduke Otto, and Archduke Albrecht of the Teschen branch. The rift involved contestation regarding the possible nomination for the vacant Hungarian throne from the Hungarian regent, Admiral Horthy. Archduke Rudolph said that this rivalry caused Archduke Otto to include the very restrictive provisions in §6 of the 29 April 1936 FVF Statute.
Archduke Rudolph explained that an Archduke that enters into a non-dynastic marriage expels himself from the Imperial House upon the date of his marriage. No further action by the head of the family, or Chef de Familie, is required under Title III, § 17 Family Statute, because the expulsion is automatic by operation of law. Archduke Rudolph added that in late 1934, his eldest brother wrote to Archduke Albrecht stating that he was no longer a member of the Imperial House as a result of Albrecht's non-dynastic marriage.
Archduke Rudolph further explained to this author that:
The permanent loss of dynastic rights is instantaneous upon the date of such marriage under Title III, §17 of our Family Statute. There is no legal need for a formal expulsion although my eldest brother did so in late 1934 to Archduke Albrecht but only to emphasize the point.
Archduke Rudolph also relayed that Archduke Otto insisted upon the inclusion of all of the above provisions in §6 FVF Statute in order to bar Archduke Albrecht and his descendants from the succession to "Fondschef" and the right to any of the properties that might be transferred back to the Habsburg family under the 1936 Settlement Agreement. Archduke Rudolph further explained:
Ironically, 57 years ago, when my eldest brother insisted upon the inclusion of these particular provisions in the 1936 FVF Statute, he could not have envisioned that he, himself, would be making just such a formal renunciation of "membership" in our family in 1961 in order to enter Austria.
In light of my eldest brother's expulsion of Archduke Albrecht of the Teschen Branch in 1934 under §17 of our Family Statutes for making a non-qualifying marriage of "Standesgesmäßer" as defined in the 1900 Amendment to our Family Statute, it is, indeed, incongruous that this very January (31 January 1993), his [Otto’s] own son married a rich woman who clearly does not meet any of the genealogical requirements for a qualifying marriage into our family. This woman scarcely knew him, certainly not for any length of time. My surmise is that she married the penniless heir of the Habsburgs solely for his title. A person just doesn't buy one's way into our family. We are not for sale -- no matter what the amount! In my personal opinion, the proper term for this is mariage de convenance.
Archduke Rudolph was clearly irritated, and he gestured across the table to say the following:
After just chancing across this wealthy woman, he [Otto’s son] abjectly broke a long-standing engagement with a poor young cousin of the Tuscan branch who offered a morganatic marriage. Their engagement had gone so far that my eldest brother considered issuing a family law to give the offspring of such marriages the title of "Count" or "Countess". This was done specifically to give this young cousin a title to facilitate her future marriage with his eldest son – a marriage that never occurred. It was not precisely chivalrous conduct, in my opinion, for him to jilt so wretchedly this poor girl to whom he had given his plighted word. All of this non-chivalric conduct from one who has been a Knight of the Golden Fleece since his baptism! In my opinion, this was all so completely opportunistic and so utterly dishonourable -- what more can I say! All of us, my other brothers, sister, and all of our children did not attend his wedding to the wealthy woman in legal protest against this flagrant violation of our 1839 Family Statute and its 1900 Amendment concerning non-dynastically qualifying marriages.
The late Archduke Rudolph ultimately lived a life of cognizable sanctity and was the finest man that this author ever knew. The utmost credence must be placed in Archduke Rudolph’s considered opinion upon these Habsburg dynastic matters.
The author met the young, betrothed cousin in Salzburg in October 1988 en route to Vienna to work on the Habsburg case. She was a sweet and lovely petite blond in her early 20s who appeared to be very much in love. A person can only imagine how utterly devastated this poor girl must have been after being so capriciously abandoned.
The Archduke also remarked:
My other brothers and I are in full agreement that our eldest brother [Otto] lost all dynastic competence in such matters upon his 1961 renunciation. This non-dynastically qualifying marriage [the marriage of Otto’s son with the wealthy lady] clearly did not receive any dynastic consent from my brother, Felix, under his 1961 Power of Attorney, as required by §15 of our Family Statute.
When asked if the provisions of §6 FVF Statute also apply in the marriage of Otto’s son, Archduke Rudolph replied:
I do not see why not. Any other result would be inequitable, create a double standard, and be unfair to people such as the Hohenbergs, the Altenburgs, and the Merans. It [the marriage] also has created the public impression that the membership in our family is in commercio for purchase by the highest bidder. The penalty of §17 of our Family Statute that was applied by my eldest brother, himself, to Archduke Albrecht for the same failure of the latter's marriage to qualify dynastically is equally applicable [to Otto’s son]. Money should not make any difference. We are not for sale at any price! This is a matter of our family honor.
The Archduke was so emphatic about this point that he brought down his fist upon the table in the main dining room.
The Renunciation’s Permanent Legal Impact
Because of the 1961 legal renunciation of Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine, there was a Permanent loss of all Dynastic Competence on his part to act authoritatively in anything pertaining to the office of Chief and Head of House
Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine's 31 May 1961 dynastic renunciation of "the membership of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine and all accompanying rights to rule" acquired under the Pragmatic Sanction instituted a binding Civil Law juridical condition of hereditas jacens ("inheritance lying in abeyance"), in gremio legis ("in the bosom of the law"), in nubius ("in the clouds") or legal state of abeyance (common law) caused the entire dynastic heritage "vesting" in him as the indefeasible life holder of the Usufructuary Fideicommiss-for-the-time-being created by the Pragmatic Sanction to fall into a legal state of abeyance for the remainder of the natural life of Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine.
This dynastic heritage will remain in abeyance until a new holder qualifies as the rightful successor. Such a person must be officially acknowledged, recognized, and acclaimed by the other members of the Arch-House as fully qualifying under the terms of the Pragmatic Sanction, the regulations of the 1839 Family Statute and the 1900 Amendment pertaining to this dynastic heritage.
The late Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine (as he desired to be known after his 31 May 1961 dynastic renunciation) recognised fully that his forthcoming renunciation of the legal "membership" re Title I, §1 Family Statute, in the Arch-House would deprive him permanently of all dynastic competence as Chief of the Arch-House of Habsburg-Lorraine. (Logically, one cannot be Chief of a House whose membership one has renounced.)
Before executing his 1961 renunciation, Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine gave his third brother, Archduke Felix, a full Dynastic Power of Attorney to exercise all the functions of Chef de Familie and Familie-Oberhaupte under the 1839 Family Statue for the duration of this civil law condition of hereditas jacens ("inheritance lying in abeyance") or juridical state of abeyance instituted for the remainder of his natural life by his 31 May 1961 dynastic renunciation as First-Born "Member of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine" upon which is anchored the entire rights and status of Primogenitus and competence as Chief of the Arch-House.
The point is, upon the 31 May 1961 dynastic renunciation, of "the Membership of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine and all accompanying rights to rule" "vesting" under the Pragmatic Sanction, all dynastic competence were permanently forfeited and lost
All pretended "dynastic acts" attempted by the late Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine after his 31 May 1961 dynastic renunciation of "the Membership of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine and all accompanying right to rule" are ULTRA VIRES (beyond one’s power and authority) for lack of Dynastic Competence. Being void ab initio (having no legal or binding effect) for lack of dynastic competence such attempted "dynastic acts" were complete nullities, incapable of creating any enduring "legal effects" or permanent "legal consequences" for the House of Habsburg-Lorraine and all qualified legal Members under Title I, §1 Family Statute, thereof.
This is very important to understand. It means that all attempted "dynastic acts" made by Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine after his 31 May 1961 permanent renunciation are simulations having absolutely no binding legal effect. He lost all legal capacity and juridical competent at the time he abdicated his station as the First-Born "Member" of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine and his "right to rule." As a direct result, all of the following were done without lawful authority:
The attempted inclusion in the membership roll of the Imperial Family of his second son, born 16. December 1964 after his 31 May 1961 renunciation, which terminated his legal capacity to conceive children who might be "born into
" re Title I, §3 Family Statute, the House of Habsburg-Lorraine as a legal "member
" re Title I, §1 Family Statute.
The legal status of this second son is identical with that of the Hohenbergs and for the same reason. A dynastic renunciation cuts off irrevocably the legal capacity of the person so renouncing to thereafter conceive future children who possess dynastic rights of succession. Hugo Grotius declared:
Persons not yet born possess no rights which are taken away from them by a renunciation. This does no injustice to the unborn because as they are not yet in existence they are not capable of acquiring rights to any dynastic succession.
The late Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine was clearly aware of these doctrines of both Austrian and Public International Law when he caused the inclusion of §6(3)(a) into the 29 April 1936 FVF Statute which excludes as beneficiaries of the 1936 FVF all after-conceived children of an Archduke who renounces the "membership of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine;
The 1990 attempted issuance of "New Rules
" purporting to give the title of Countess/Count to the issue of morganatic marriages is also invalid;
The invalid, 1993 "dynastic consent
" to the 31 January 1993 marriage of Karl Habsburg-Lorraine, which was identical to Archduke Albrecht's 16 April 1930 marriage to Irene Dora Lelbach von Rudanay, lacked prima facia "Standesgemässe" re Title I, §1 Family Statute, as defined legally and genealogically in the 1900 Amendment;
The equally invalid 30 November 2000 attempted "transfer
" of the Chiefship and Sovereignty of the Order of the Golden Fleece to Karl Habsburg-Lorraine;
The null and void 1 January 2007 attempted "transfer
" of the dynastic position of Chef de Familie und Familien Oberhaupte to Karl Habsburg-Lorraine.
After the late Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine's 31 May 1961 dynastic renunciation of the legal "Membership of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine and all associated right to rule" that was acquired under the Pragmatic Sanction, Dr. Habsburg lost permanently all dynastic competence and legal capacity vesting under the Pragmatic Sanction. After that, he simply lost the authority to any of the above purported "dynastic acts." As an example of legal precedence, note the following:
All of the above attempted "dynastic acts" were ultra vires or beyond his dynastic power and ability after 31 May 1961. Such attempted "dynastic acts" are beyond the power of anyone who has renounced the legal "membership" regarding Title I, §1 Family Statute, of the House. These purported "dynastic acts" are complete nullities that have no valid binding effect upon any member of the Habsburg family. The breach of the supreme law of the House of Hapsburg-Larraine leaves the headship in abeyance.
A 1979 article stated:
[Otto] Von Habsburg says he has no regrets about giving up his imperial claims. . . . He never uses the title of "Archduke," which he once bore as a youth.
Regarding the possibility of a Habsburg restoration, Otto has observed: ". . . I have signed this declaration [renouncing Habsburg claims], and that ends that."
In other words, the deed is done and all rights were forfeited and lost. As an example of legal precedence for this end of rights, note the following. After Archduke Franz Ferdinand's 28 June 1900 dynastic renunciation because of his unequal marriage with Countess Sophie Chotek, his three subsequently born children Sophie, Max, and Ernest did not hold noble or imperial status. All rights were lost. Archduke Franz Ferdinand's 28 June 1900 renunciation is as follows:
We, Archduke Franz Ferdinand Carl Ludwig Joseph Maria von Austria-Este, by the Grace of God, Imperial Prince and Archduke of Austria, Royal Prince of Hungary, Bohemia, etc., etc.,
Our marriage with the noble but unequal Countess Chotek is not an eligible but a morganatic marriage, and is to be considered as such for now and all times; in consequence whereof neither our wife nor the issue to be hoped for with God’s blessing from this our marriage, nor their descendants, will possess or be entitled to claim those rights, titles, armorial bearings, privileges, etc., that belongs to the eligible wives and to the issue of Archdukes from eligible marriages. And in particular we again recognize and declare that inasmuch as the issue from our aforesaid marriage and their descendants are not members of the most high Arch-House, they possess no right to succeed to Throne”
SO HELP US GOD!
s/Archduke Franz Ferdinand
As shown in the sub-chapter "Dynastic Renunciations and Potential Divisions" in this chapter, a renunciation is an international law. It is binding and conclusive. Only a valid formal change in succession statutes and rules by a royal juridical council and the final and definitive approval of the Chief and Head of House could a family be restored to the dynasty. The way to legally do so is available to both regnant and non-reigning houses. (See the sub-chapter "Legal and Lawful Solutions to Succession Conflicts Provided under International Public Law" in this chapter.)
Dynastic Marital Statutes are Binding on Who is the True Successor
A person contracting a non-dynastic marriage not meeting the mandated criteria of the 1900 House Amendment automatically expels himself from the Arch-House under Title III, §17 of Family Statute in the same exact manner that Archduke Otto declared in November 1934 that Archduke Albrecht had expelled himself upon his non-dynastically qualifying 1930 Marriage.
The legal criteria of the 1900 Amendment applied by Archduke Otto, himself, to Archduke Albrecht’s 1930 marriage applies with equal force to the later marriage of every other Archduke -- without exception even the 1993 marriage of his eldest son, which was boycotted by all of the Uncles, Aunts, Nephews, Nieces, and Cousins in legal protest for violation of the 1900 Amendment to the Family Statute. This legal protest preserved the dynastic rights of the other members of the Arch-House and prevents prescription from ever running to legitimate this marriage by the passage of time.
Protest is a formal communication from one . . . to another that it objects to an act performed, or contemplated by the latter. A protest serves the purpose of preservation of rights or of making it known that the protesting [that is, the protestor] . . . does not acquiesce in, and does not recognize certain acts [as valid]. On the other hand, if a [state, exiled government or deposed monarchy] acquires knowledge of an act which it considers internationally illegal and in violation of its rights. . . . [However] It may further happen that a State [exiled government or deposed monarchy] at first protests, but afterwards either expressly or tacitly acquiesces in the act. . . . [Hence] a simple protest on the part of a State, without further action, is not in itself sufficient to preserve the rights in behalf of which the protest was made.
This protest of the most-closely related members of the Arch-House against the violation of the 1900 Amendment and "Standesgemässe" in Title I, §1 Family Statute, by the 31 January 1993 ceremony preserved fully the dynastic rights of the other more distant members of the Arch-House against extinctive prescription or loss of rights by the passage of time. Competent protests, such as this, under the principles of prescriptive law, are not a mere "expectation of a right," but are a definite claim of real, concrete substance under public international law. However, if the dynasts do not perpetuate their protest of Karl Hapsburg's illegal and unlawful marriage and therefore his false or contrary headship, eventually after a long period of time this unequal marriage and the violation of House laws will not matter.
Protest has as its primary purpose the preservation of the rights of the protesting State [or a deposed monarchy or government in exile]. . . . [However] it must be . . . continuously repeated [like the consistent use of sovereign royal titles and arms by a dispossessed monarch or his rightful heirs] against [the] continued illegal practice [of the usurper].
This validation of the wrong head may take 50 years under "ordinary" international prescriptive rules, but it is the only way, other than holding a royal juridical council and changing the rules to give Karl rightful standing under both international law and family statute.
Because of their boycott of the Karl's morganatic marriage, establishing a legally valid protest, the interested and most closely related members of the Arch-House may now vindicate their 31 January 1993 protest by issuance of a "Declaration of Accession" to acclaim the closest related person in the order of succession qualifying fully under the terms of the 1713 Pragmatic Sanction, the 1839 Family Statute, the 1900 Amendment, and the 29 April 1936 FVF Statute. (See Appendix V for a suggested Declaration) Such a document deriving from a former Imperial council of the Royal House could legally vindicate Karl, as not merely the de facto head of the family, but as the de jure, rightful and legal head. Otherwise, he remains in violation of the law of the Imperial and Royal House.
The past but still binding 12 June 1900 Amendment, or family statute, provides the criteria of who can qualify for a dynastically-qualifying, or approvable, marriage into the Arch-House:
Other legal Members of the Arch-House: i.e., an Archduchess
Members of other Christian Sovereign Royal Families: i.e., a Princess
Members of the German Princely Houses mediatised who were referenced in Article XIV of the Annex to the 1814 Bunds Pact of the Congress of Vienna and corresponding Austrian Princely Houses listed in the handwritten letter of 17 September 1825 by Emperor Franz I: Girls from antique Sovereign Princely Houses who would be generically considered to be Princesses
Members of ancient noble knightly families possessing noble fiefs which lack a family statute or house laws but who can prove 16 quarters of nobility of 300 years each qualifying such ancestors to participate in knightly tournaments. The mother of each particular ancestor 300 years ago must herself come from a noble family as the medieval requirement to participate in Knightly Tournaments was that both parents had to be noble in practice. This means 32 quarterings of authentic nobility. A girl so noble in all sixteen quarterings and of such antique lineage in each of her sixteen quarterings that she is the moral equivalent of a generic princess as such is commonly understood on the Continent of Europe.
"Marriages approved by the respective Chief of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine" -- the dynastic consent requirement in Title III, §15 Family Statute is that "marriages [must be] approved by the respective Chief of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine" as also mandated in the §6(2) FVF Statute. After the renunciation of Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine, the heir and successor to the House of Habsburg must receive dynastic consent as required in Title III, §15 of the Family Statutes presently from Archduke Felix. This is because since 31 May 1961, under the Dynastic Power of Attorney, given by Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine, to him before renouncing "the Membership of the House of Habsburg-Lorraine and all accompanying rights to rule" gave him the right to be acting head during the interim period.
It is important to understand that Title III, §15 of the Family Statute excludes any member of the Habsburg Family whose marriage did not receive dynastic consent as mandated in Family Statutes. Archduke Felix's consent cannot be presumed because he and his entire family boycotted deliberately the particular 31 January 1993 ceremony-in-question together with his other Brothers, Nephews, Nieces, and Cousins in a legal protest against violation of the legal criteria of the 1900 Amendment and Title I, §1 Family Statute. This prevents prescription from running to "legitimate" this violation of the 1900 Amendment and Title I, §1 Family Statute, by the passage of time. Therefore, legal non-territorial sovereignty rights are preserved.
The crux of the matter is that what most people consider to be the Head and Chief of House does not qualify under Family Constitutional Law. However, there is one who fully qualifies both genealogically and legally. HI&RH Archduke Lorenz, born on 16 December 1955, the eldest son of the second son of the late Emperor Charles and Empress Zita, fully qualifies under the Pragmatic Sanction, the 1839 Family Statutes, the 1900 Amendment and the 29 April 1936 FVF Statute, which reiterates all the former rules and regulations of the Imperial and Royal House. Archduke Lorenz of Austria-Este, married to HRH Princess Astrid of Belgium, meets all of the dynastic requirements of the House and is disqualified by none of them. The succession problem to the House of Habsburg can be easily fixed and could result in the success of a half a billion-dollar lawsuit to recover Nazi confiscated property.
Under the doctrines of Public International Law, all monarchies have supreme "jurisdiction" concerning the factual and legal issues surrounding "the right of succession" to a true reigning patrimonial kingdom or a legitimate, non-territorial monarchy. These rights have been legally "transferred" to the "royal family," itself, by international law. They now possess the sole or exclusive competence to resolve any and all "issues" regarding the succession. The next subchapter addresses the issue of how to legally and lawfully correct such a situation and place the proper person in the position of Head and Chief of House.
To rectify problems created since the binding 31 May 1961 renunciation of Dr. Otto von Habsburg-Lorraine and clear up the succession problem wherein an unqualified person is wrongfully at the head of the House against the rules of the Pragmatic, Family Statutes, and the Amendments thereof, certain actions are required by interested Members of the Arch-House. A circular letter issued by concerned legal "members" re Title I, §1 Family Statute, and sent to all other legal "members" of the Arch-House will be juridically and legally competent under Public International Law and the Family Statute to self-convoke a meeting of the Imperial Habsburg Family Council upon a set date in a particular city to rectify problems related to the succession and the potential return of confiscated properties worth over a half a billion US dollars.
Legal and Lawful Solutions to Succession Conflicts Provided under International Public Law
Most people do not realize that house succession rules became international public law, because so much pain and anguish was caused by faulty or unclear succession and the wars that followed them. Under the subtitle of "Dynastic Rules of Succession as Public International Law," the author of the book The Myth of 1648 states:
Given the vagaries of family dynastic relations, the fixation of rules of succession and inheritance became a matter of international concern; their internationally recognized codification was a form of preventative action. . . . In this context, 'private' family law [of a dynasty] became part and parcel of not only constitutional but also international public law.
Not only is international law important to regnant houses, especially in the days of many monarchs, but it is especially important to non-reigning houses. A number of deposed or non-territorial royal Houses are seriously divided by having several competing claimants to the throne. When this happens, it is often the result of not having clear and immutable House rules that govern the succession, or those rules are conveniently ignored by those who are making the succession claims. If a dispossessed royal House does not follow its own rules, then dynastic lawlessness will eventually occur in filling the vacuum with new, but unlawful and invalid pretenders. This splits the House and divides the important loyalties of its members. To prevent this, succession rules need to be locked in as immutable and unalterable as possible to keep sovereign rights from fragmentation or even elimination. International law provides a solution that is legal, effective, and binding.
[For both reigning and non-reigning Houses] there is a danger of royal pretenders [spurious claimants], which can be avoided only through the agency of a dynastic council [composed only of those who have succession rights] or some other recognized organ of government [for a regnant monarchy] capable of giving an authoritative interpretation to the law of succession in cases of disputed legitimacy. But the questions of law and fact involved in determining the course of hereditary succession are usually of comparatively minor complexity.
In other words, succession issues are often easily decided, and the decision of a dynastic council or rightfully authorized unit is final and unimpeachable until such a time that the royal council is again re-convened. The important point is that these issues must be resolved and not allowed to have a fragmenting impact on the unity and stability of the sovereign House involved.
In an absolute patrimonial regnant monarchy or a dispossessed imperial, royal, or princely House, all rights of jurisdiction belong exclusively to the royal family concerned. The House alone possesses the sole and immediate juridical competence to resolve any issues regarding succession.
. . . If the right of succession is disputed, those who claim the right will act in a correct and high-minded way if they will agree upon arbitrators. . . . The people, in truth, ha[ve] transferred all its rights of jurisdiction to the king and royal family, and it has no remnants of that power so long as the former are in existence: I am speaking of a true kingdom and not of the mere possession of supreme authority.
Put another way, in their juridical capacity as arbitrators, a reigning patrimonial or illegally deposed royal House itself possesses the full legal capacity under public international law to resolve all issues of both fact and law surrounding succession. This is accomplished by the means of a formal judicial decision within the House. Samuel Pufendorf declared:
In case a controversy should arise in regard to the succession in a patrimonial [and deposed] kingdom, it will be best to take the matter before arbitrators among the royal family.
Jean J. Burlamaqui confirmed this as the natural law for royal sovereign Houses:
If the kingdom is patrimonial, and some disputes arise after the death of the king, between the pretenders, the best method is to refer the cause to arbitrators who are of the royal family. The good and peace of the kingdom require this conduct.
Unless this right of arbitration has been delegated constitutionally, it is an accepted natural law principle that, under the doctrines of public international law, monarchical succession disputes are to be decided by members of the royal House concerned. These members who arbitrate within the House should be solely those who hold succession rights within the family. Therefore, it is highly recommended by the authors of this work that all legitimate royal Houses who have de jure kingdoms undertake efforts to ensure proper and clear House rules regarding succession. This will reduce the likelihood of competing claimants in the future. Counterfeits thrive amongst uncertainty, so the more certainty and stability that House rules provide, the greater probability of unity within the House over subsequent generations.
As seen above, the arbitrators or judges chosen by the royal House should be composed only of those who have hereditary entitlements to the throne. Such a group is unlikely to be created unless there is more than one claimant to the reigning or non-territorial throne. Common sense warrants that the majority rule of the arbitrators should prevail. This is so the authoritative declaration of the arbitrators can become the final word on the issue. A majority decision is also a fairly common practice in the highest courts of nations throughout the world, including international courts. It is also considered to be part of the "general principles of law recognized by civilized nations," which is one of the three major sources of international law. Majority decisions of the dynasts of a royal House provide not only a greater likelihood of reaching a firm decision, they are generally accepted as an authoritative and productive way to successfully resolve legal issues. Emerich de Vattel described such an event as part of the natural law of all nations:
As soon as the right of succession is found uncertain [for whatever reason], the sovereign authority returns for a time to the body of the state [or, if non-territorial, to the royal House and those in it who hold authentic succession rights], which is to exercise it, either by itself or by its representatives, till the true sovereign be known. The contest on this right suspending the functions in the person of the sovereign, the authority naturally returns to the subjects [or those who hold legitimate succession rights in a de jure non-territorial House], not for them to retain it, but to prove on which of the competitors it lawfully devolves, and then to commit it to his hands. It would not be difficult to support, by an infinite number of examples, a truth so evident by the light of reason.
Rightful non-territorial sovereigns, as the personification of a government-in-exile, ". . . are true governments. . . . They exercise [full] sovereign power. " Textor reminds us that ". . . an exiled monarch does not lose [his or her sovereignty] when the cause of his exile is unjust, as, for instance, insurrection [illegal plebiscite] or usurpation." Unjust dethronements leave the monarch and his or her successors with the full and complete right or entitlement to rule. Thus, these royals are fully vested with the sovereign right to do any or all of the following:
1. Becoming a party to a bilateral or international treaty;
2. Amending or revising the constitution of the territory over which the sovereign reigned;
3. Maintaining military forces;
4. Retaining diplomatic recognition by sovereign states;
5. Issuing identity cards;
6. Allowing the formation of new political parties;
7. Instituting democratic reforms;
8. Holding elections.
In other words:
Dispossessed governments remain the legitimate governments of territories, even if they take up residence in another land. With the consent of the territorial government of the land that they transfer to, dispossessed governments can exercise their sovereignty within the sheltering foreign country.
Just as a government-in-exile under public international law can create a new constitution or amend an old one as needed, a dispossessed monarch or his or her lawful successors can create and/or amend the constitutional statutes of the royal House. This is because a royal House is the embodiment of all sovereign power of the House’s ancient kingdom or principality. There is no higher secular authority. The dynastic heirs of a royal House have the full authority by a majority vote or arbitration to resolve all succession issues. (See Appendix IV no. 3 for an example of a legal juridical declaration and a proposed declaration in Appendix V for succession in the de jure non-territorial Kingdom of the Two Sicilies and the Imperial and Royal House of Habsburg respectively)
Under public international law, a House council has the important entitlement to create and amend House rules for succession, provided that the rules are thereafter sanctioned (and therefore validated) by the lawful head of the royal House, assuming such a person exists. These councils may take many different forms, including appointing one person to be the arbitrator, forming a special committee, or voting together after a debate. Wherever possible, the succession decisions must follow past House rules and precedence or official proclamations. Alternatively, the council may have to create a new supreme law to stop all potential pretenders and clearly and unequivocally designate who is the rightful and therefore lawful heir to the throne.
Even though a dispossessed monarchy has the right to unilaterally change the House laws of succession collectively as a supreme council, it cannot violate the lawful rights of any living dynast. To change these rights without the uncoerced and willing consent of the dynasts is to cheat such persons out of their lawful rights of royal birth. Such an action would therefore violate natural law that cannot condone theft of any kind, especially one of such high value and worth. To arbitrarily change succession would also invite division rather than unity and inner connectedness within a House.
Changes in the laws of succession are very serious matters as they impact sovereignty, the most important secular right on earth. There is a very real danger of creating serious family rifts. That is, instead of building and strengthening the family, it can hurt important relationships and illegally vacate lawful entitlements. For example, the idea of giving females full succession rights in a royal House may seem harmless, especially in our enlightened day and age, but it could destroy the vested rights of a living dynast who would have succeeded to the deposed throne had it not been that he had an older living sister who will take now take his place as the heir apparent. Unless such a prince freely and willingly consents to the succession change, it would rob or dispossess a rightful heir of his lawful entitlement to the throne.
. . . The dynastic right of succession . . . cannot be withdrawn; it cannot be validly rescinded, by the king, either alone or, as the case may be, together with the estates, through an act of sovereignty or a law -- of course excluding the case of incapacity to rule. For this right [of succession] is [not] . . . under state power [to change it], and is . . . inferior to its supreme power. . . . The rescinding of the agnate right of succession to the throne [is] unlawful and not legally valid. . . . [It is comparable to] the dethroning of the king. . . .
A dynast that is unjustly or wrongfully deposed could rightfully claim his or her rights and pass them intact to his or her posterity. The new line, being illegal in bypassing the rightful heir, would be void of full validity even if the council chose someone else as heir. However, succession can be changed for future unborn generations for the following reason, as expressed by Grotius:
Persons not yet born possess no rights which are taken away from them by a renunciation. This does no injustice to the unborn because as they are not yet in existence they are not capable of acquiring rights to any dynastic succession.
They do not hold any rights until they are born. If born under the new royal statute that females hold the same right as men, then that is their sovereign birthright and privilege in the House.
If the head of deposed sovereign house changes the succession right without the consent of the living heirs, he has violated their rights. However, if they do not protest, but acquiesce to it, then they can legally lose their entitlements by what is legally called "implied consent." For example:
. . . If a State [an exiled government, deposed monarchy, or heir to a throne] acquires knowledge of an act [like changing succession rules] which it considers internationally illegal, and against its rights, and nevertheless does not protest, this attitude implies a renunciation of such rights. . . .
Vattel declared that:
Every proprietor who does, or who expressly omits things which he cannot do, or omit, without renouncing his right, sufficiently indicates, by that means, that he would not preserve it at least, if he does not make an express reservation.
People have doubtless a right to consider as true what he sufficiently evinces [shows or indicates] on occasions where he ought to declare the truth; consequently, they lawfully presume, that, he has abandoned his right; and if he would afterwards resume it, they may oppose to him [the right of] prescription.
Although, the authority of a grand royal council cannot take the right of a living heir in most cases, this does not prevent them from stripping an heir from the succession if that individual was guilty of committing high crimes against the realm, was mentally ill, unsuitable, suffered from a major disability, or had no integrity or commitment to the ideals of the land. Such an heir would be grossly unfit and instead of enhancing the nation, would dishonor it.
To protect the lawful rights of the living, a grand juridical council of a royal House should be composed only of those with true and lawful dynastic rights normally presided over by the head and chief of the House. This group would have supreme judicial jurisdiction -- the right of jus gladii and jus imperii in regard to succession. However, as stated, it would be a breach of the council’s powers to disenfranchise a rightful successor of his or her birthright except for cause. Examples of actions that would be grounds for cause in this capacity are criminal behavior, severe violations of House rules, mental and/or physical incompetence, or treason and insurrection against the head and chief of the House or, in some cases, against the territory and people that were being ruled.
Disputes concerning succession have resulted in heart-breaking civil wars. Two examples are the Carlists of Spain and the Miguelist wars of Portugal. This resulted in great harm to the nations involved. Succession changes also can permanently divide a sovereign family. For this reason, all living dynasts that have succession rights in the royal House must be included or fully represented, if possible, in any royal juridical council. Hence, there is this important rule:
. . . Pretenders to the crown, if their claim is uncertain, should either negotiate or contract among themselves [that is with other dynasts of the royal House in a grand royal council], or choose arbiters, or even use a game of chance, or finally [the least desired route] settle their differences through armed force. . . .
In such a juridical council, ". . . subjects [that is, non-dynasts] of the realm in question are by no means entitled to decide [the order of succession]. . . ." The question of who is the rightful successor is a question solely for the dynasts of the whole House.
As established by international law, the final decision of a dynastic juridical council is legally binding on the whole House. That is, the whole purpose of such councils is to keep the royal House from becoming divided and place the rightful heir in the position of head and chief. This also builds bonds of cooperation and provides an enforcement mechanism as the council can speak with one voice to expose invalid royal claims.
Given the immense importance of dynastic council decisions, they must therefore be put into writing and have the signatures of all the dynasts and/or their authorized representatives that have full plenary power of attorney for the particular council meeting. Any uncoerced royal renunciations of full or partial dynastic rights must put into writing with clear and unmistakable language. They must also be properly subscribed and witnessed.
To leave any dynastic issues unresolved is to invite eventual anarchy or unrest within the House. When a royal House has multiple claimants, it can reduce or destroy the credibility of the House in the eyes of the world. In other words, if a royal House does ". . . not purge the foulness of [false succession]" -- ". . . we shall find at last [that] some of them [the royal claims are] dishonest and faulty, which will destroy and render useless all that depend on it. . . ." This is a serious matter.
Not only is there a loss of respect when a House has two or more claimants, the House may lose its sovereign rights altogether if the rightful heir is not upheld to legally and properly protest and maintain the monarchy under the rules of prescription. An illegal head can only produce an illegal or invalid protest. Only the rightful heir holds the supreme lawful right. The point is well-made in the Holy Scriptures. "A house divided against itself cannot stand." (Mark 3:25) "Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation. . . . He that gathereth not with [the kingdom or royal house] scattereth abroad" or creates divisions. (Matthew 12:25) In other words, as the old saying goes, "united we stand divided we fall." "We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided." Unity is essential to success and the preservation of the most important quality a deposed house can possesses -- legal, non-territorial sovereignty.
A metaphorical house built on sand, or anything unstable, will likely crumble and deteriorate in time. But a house built on a rock has a sturdy foundation that can long stand against the storms and adversities that can beset them. Similarly, a royal House that has a solid constitutional foundation and footing -- a unifying proclamation that is the supreme law of the house can endure the test of time and perpetuate their rights forever.
In summary, an official majority vote of all dynasts within a juridical legal body can clarify who is the rightful heir according to existing family statutes. A decision of this type, once validated by the head of the House, is final and binding. A deposed royal House can also change the succession rules by majority rule. However, such an action cannot legally rob any living dynast of his or her succession right unless that person freely consents to the change or else fails to properly protest it and maintain the otherwise inalienable right to succeed. In addition, all heirs must have reached the age of majority before they are eligible to vote. This is merely common sense and it protects the young and vulnerable, which is part of natural law.
A resolution to succession issues that is in full agreement with natural law and what is just and true is binding and final. In application, this is effective for de jure non-territorial royal Houses. Ruling monarchies, unless they are proprietary, involved the complexities of politics, statutes and constitutional provisions. This is because few modern ruling monarchies actually still have control over succession within the House. For example, in Great Britain, the Parliament historically has and can continue to determine royal succession provisions by national statute. Thus, the above natural law principles are generally most applicable to lawful, non-territorial royal Houses of sovereign status.
Why Courts Findings are Unreliable and Invalid Sources for Determining the Authenticity of Deposed Claims
Some invalid royal claimants have "justified" their fantasy claims through a number of questionable court decrees made in the last century. These spurious verdicts can allow the fraudsters to maintain their falsehoods. The following are some of the more serious problems that have been identified in regard to how courts can be misused to promote falsehoods:
(1) Firstly, while judges are required to know the law, they may be (and generally are) completely ignorant of the science of genealogical research and nobiliary questions, and they seldom ask the advice of independent experts in these subjects,
(2) ". . . It's not clear which nobiliary law must be followed to consider the pretensions of the claimants (for example, would it be in Italy the laws of the Kingdom promulgated before 1922 as asserted by some students or the last Royal Decree of 1943 as suggested by others). Probably all these questions would change if we consider the "Nobiliary Law" of Constantine the Great that indicates that only the issue of a Byzantine Emperor had after his coronation (the "porfyrogenites") were eligible for election as Emperor!," and
(3) We could add a third argument against what the Italian courts did. The Italian State (as it appears from the 14th "disposizione transitoria e finale" of the Republican Constitution which states that "Nobility titles are not recognized") has a very limited interest in determining who is the Head of a formerly reigning House; and, when a judge is called to decide (directly or not) about these matters, he is to make the minimum of inquiries needed to solve the case; that is, he has neither the duty nor the time, the resources or the interest to do a complete and exhaustive historical, genealogical and nobiliary investigation. Two problems stand out:
. . . Firstly because it contradicts Italian law on titles, and second because these decisions are concerned with foreign titles, which are outside Italian jurisdiction. (emphasis added)
The important point here is these courts are not competent to address nobiliary succession problems, because they are not allowed to investigate claims to the degree needed to determine their actual truth. As a result, some of their decisions have been found upon investigation to be in great error, because they did not have all the facts. For example:
In 1955, an expert on noble pedigrees, Enrique Carlos Count Zeininger de Borja, recalled in the Madrid journal "Hidalguía" a number of other instances in which courts had approved historically impossible claims. (emphasis added)
The author of this quote noted that one of the biggest problems was ". . . there is no adversarial process and no hearing of the opinion of serious experts. . ." to establish the facts as authentic or falsified. Due process and due diligence was lacking and the courts were being used by presenting faulty evidence to validate claims that could not be true. In other words, they were being set up and used by the pretender to win without any opposition or opposing evidence being presented against the claim. He concluded that "Italian courts appear to excel in handing down such verdicts" – verdicts that were obviously flawed.
Guy Stair Sainty explains:
Judgments of the Italian Courts (whose total lack of worth has been well-proven in such cases as the MacCarthy Mor fantasy), are cited -- Tribunal of Avezzano, June 18, 1914, Pretura of Naples, August 7, 1929, Pretura of Naples, December 28, 1938, Tribunal of Rome, October 23, 1939, Pretura of Naples, July 11, 1941, Pretura of Naples, February 2, 1942, Pretura of Bari, June 26, 1945, Pretura of Casoria, June 5, 1945, Pretura of Bari, March 1, 1946, and the Pretura of Rome, September 10, 1948, but not one of these is actually of any relevance at all, since these courts neither had, nor claimed, any competence to determine the actual legitimacy of a claim to the throne of Greece or Byzantium, nor did they investigate any of the genealogical claims to which these "Princes" pretend.
Sainty further explains that in many of these hearings, the judges made nobiliary sentences "without actually applying nobiliary law." This shows how far the courts have veered from having any reasonable right to declare what is true or false in the world of royalty and nobility. (emphasis added) This is not to say that some of these cases may not have been judged fairly, but, all too often, the courts failed to do the investigatory work required and were given insufficient or defective evidence by the claimant. Some of these hearings were merely shams or legal mockery, which resulted in the courts supporting well-known self-styled impostors who were eventually exposed, including the infamous MacCarthy Mor debacle.
Terrance MacCarthy, the perpetrator of the MacCarthy Mor scam, used one of the more modern schemes to have the courts give him an air of legitimacy, that is, before he was universally found to be a fraud. First, he used arbitration to assert his claim against a planted "adversary" to get his claim adjudicated. He was then able to get a court of law to sanction and essentially launder his "victory" at arbitration as legitimate, without a meaningful inquiry into the validity of the evidence.
It needs to be recognized that:
Lawyers [and judges] are not legal experts [in areas outside of their scope of expertise], they are not trained in many areas of law: tax judges/lawyers know a fraction of tax law that CPAs and tax-preparers that come before them do; family law lawyers/judges are not social workers; juvenile law judges are not psychologists; technical subjects like patents, copyrights, trade secrets, medical malpractice and psychiatry are well beyond the competence of lawyer/judges [unless they specialize in them].
Nobiliary and international law were often ignored in these cases, because the judges were not familiar with it, probably never dealing with it before with any degree of depth except in trivial ways. They were, therefore, at a distinct disadvantage being at the mercy of those who knew how to weasel and maneuver the court into wrongful outcomes. In other words, "Bad decisions . . . are endemic to the system . . . ," and domestic judges acting outside of their personal knowledge are no exceptions to the rule.
In sum, if a court decision is manifestly absurd or the judges have been seduced, it is invalid even if it is called "legal." A court cannot make a blatant lie or falsehood into something true. If it is false, it is still false, no matter if a court says it is or not.
Court decisions, such as those in Italy, often rely on the lowest level of evidence possible, which is called the "preponderance of evidence" in the United States. This only assures that the victor may have only a slight advantage, the metaphorical 51 percent, against the opposing side.
The preponderance of evidence threshold is not conclusive, final, or sure. This is because reasonable doubt may still exist. Hence, such judgments must be taken with great skepticism as they do not establish anything beyond question.
Thus, it is alarming, but not surprising, that some of the Italian court verdicts on deposed sovereignty were investigated and found to be absurd. If one wants to trick an Italian court of arbitration into sustaining a dubious royal or noble claim, all that one has to do is find an unprincipled person willing to pretend that he or she has a serious disagreement over the validity of a false claim to an ancient kingdom, principality, or noble status. This planted accomplice then presents absurd "evidence" so that the arbitrator will rule in favor of the person claiming the false title, or else the accomplice just concedes the use of title during the arbitration. Either way, if the court official does not figure out this conspiracy, and a typical court is unwilling to pursue a matter such as this deeply, then the court ruling in favor of the false claimant will give the appearance that the claim has legal support. This essentially launders the claim. It’s that easy, and it has been done over and over by scammers.
We, as outsiders, do not know what evidence was presented to the judges and what was purposely withheld or hidden to slant or bias the findings. We do not know if the evidence itself was factual or if the documents were forged. History may be rewritten leaving out all the incriminating facts. Fortunately, some courts are wising up. In the Tribunal de Grande Instance de Nanterre’ of 14 May 1996 (case nr. B.O.: 9412916), it was declared:
. . . That the Court, called to decide the dispute with materials exclusively furnished by the parties, is neither qualified nor competent to judge history, that the Court, not having any power of inquisitorial research, did not receive [that is, accept] the task to decide how a certain period of history should be represented and characterized; that under these conditions it cannot impose [or decide upon] an historical thesis which would have the value of an official history, let alone even to indicate a preference in trying to decide the particulars of this or that thesis [in history]; etc. (emphasis added)
Simply put, the courts have no way of being absolutely assured that they are receiving accurate and factual information. They generally do not use expert witnesses in these situations and instead just rely on the information presented to them. Even after the 1988 so-called judicial reform in Italy, judges still allow hearsay evidence in these matters, which cannot be considered reliable in these circumstances. Additionally, evidence like genealogical pedigrees is not checked for accuracy. Rarely is there an investigation into whether prescription has impacted a claim, despite prescription being a critical part of international and dynastic succession law. For example, if a sovereign title, even if once legitimate, has not been consistently used or appropriate protests lodged for a 100-year period, then immemorial prescription causes the forfeiture of all dynastic royal rights for the whole family.
Ignoring prescriptive natural law, which is the only law that maintains royal rights internationally, is a sure sign that a jurist is not familiar with the most fundamental requirements that governs royalty and nobility. For an extreme example, one court in the Republic of San Marino ruled that the principles of international prescription do not even apply, thereby showing how far adrift domestic courts can go in ignoring nobiliary law. The author knows one well-known fraudster that has bragged that he got a San Marino court to declare him to be the legitimate duke of some extinct dynasty that he was not even remotely related to. This underscores that sloppy and irresponsible judicial rulings should not be considered strong evidence of the legitimacy of any de jure sovereign claim.
As a parallel for illegitimate de jure sovereign claims, in most countries, it is legal to purchase a worthless doctoral degree (Ph.D., D.Sci., etc.) from a diploma mill that merely awards the applicant a degree without the applicant providing any effort. But, even though these diploma mills are legal, a degree from such a place is not the equivalent of an authentic degree from an accredited university. Likewise, it is legal in many countries to buy and sell make-believe sovereign and/or noble titles. But such a fantasy title cannot be compared in any way to the quality or majesty of a true regnant or non-reigning sovereign or noble House.
Put another way, a practice can be legal still without being legitimate. Thus, a false claimant who misrepresents himself or herself as a royal or noble is simply dishonest and dishonorable or possibly highly gullible. Furthermore, false claims may indirectly harm legitimate and valid royals and nobles as they cast a shadow on the glorious field of royalty and nobility. This is why it is so important for the reader to have the tools to ascertain legitimate claims.
All in all, a thorough and careful investigation into claims, which is required for the truth to be discovered, verified and confirmed one way or the other, was never deemed important enough to occur, or even appropriate for a court of law to pursue. The courts simply ruled on the basis of whatever was introduced and seemed correct at the time.
Italian courts have a very bad reputation in general:
Foreignpolicy.com reports that many Italians are angered by the unreliability of their court system. According to a November 2009 poll by Euromedia research group, only sixteen percent of Italians fully trust the current justice system in Italy. Just two years ago, the figure was twenty-eight percent. Italian civil rights groups are intense in their criticism of what they view as kangaroo courts. (emphasis added)
They cite problems as serious as:
(1) ". . . Inquiries are conducted without any reliable methods."
(2) "The high court [Italy] does not rule on the evidence [the most important quality of justice or injustice] but rather [only] on the interpretation or application of the law." In other words, their only involvement is not if justice is done, but only ". . . had the responsibility of making sure the lower court followed proper legal procedure."
Evidence is extremely important. The only way findings or sentences that could have any credible meaning is if the facts were thoroughly investigated and authenticated at a high evidence level, which is beyond a reasonable doubt, to be definitive, final and conclusive. This, unfortunately, is never the case, for "all legal orders agree that courts have to decide under conditions of uncertainty." "The legal order tolerates a substantially higher error rate [if they only apply a ‘preponderance of evidence’ level rather than the higher ‘beyond reasonable doubt’ standard]." "Normally, decisions have to be taken on an incomplete factual basis." This, however, is intolerable went is comes to claims of deposed royal or republican sovereignty, which have to be proven conclusively to be no better than fairy tales or counterfeits, which is, again, why such courts are wholly inadequate for the job.
On the [European] continent, proof is understood as the strictly subjective impression in the judge's mind. By contrast, in US law, proof is an objective concept.
. . . The critics of the continental European approach claim: the European quest for "truth" is futile and obnoxious. It opens the door to mistakes, randomness, prejudice and outright abuse. They counsel turning judicial procedure into an exercise in objectivity. Legal decisions should be made as science-like as possible. . . . [Because] the subjectivist model of proof is built on "ethos [judge’s ideology or person view], experience, and intuition."
The danger of intuition is well-known and have been studied at great length:
. . . It partly relies on idiosyncratic memory, the outcome [of which] is not fully predictable. For instance, the members of mock juries differ in the strictness of standards; [the] inadmissible evidence and stereotypes [have an undue] influence [on] judgment. If jurors [or judges] believe in a [certain] outcome, this biases how they assess the evidence. Coherence shifts continuously, even if jurors [or the judges] are exhorted to withhold judgment until they have heard the entire evidence. This can be exploited by the parties. They can manipulate the order in which they present the evidence, in the interests of tilting . . . judgment.
The subjectivist standard of proof is far from perfect.
Perhaps the most damning aspect of a subjectionist court is that, "It is programmed to come up with an assessment even if the evidence is patently incomplete." Incomplete and faulty evidence is a major problem and completely negates any solid confidence in a just and objective outcome.
There is an old saying about Truth: "You can bend it and twist it. . . You can misuse and abuse it. . . But even God cannot change the Truth." A court of law, even if it was legally and lawfully qualified by international law to recognize royalty and royal succession, cannot make something true that is false, made up or fabricated.
In most countries it is legal to purchase a phony doctor’s degree (Ph.D., D.Sci., etc.) from a diploma mill that pumps out invalid fraudulent degrees. But even though they are legal, such a degree is not the equivalent, not even close in quality, to an authentic accredited or earned degree, which took years of intense study to complete. Likewise, it is legal, in many countries, to buy and sell make-believe sovereign and/or noble titles that are sold as though they were real and genuine. But such a fantasy title cannot be compared in any way to the honor, title, and majesty of a true regnant or non-reigning sovereign, or to be a member of an authentic noble house. It is important to be legal, but to be legal, without being legitimate, is still dishonest and dishonorable. Misrepresent oneself to the public, or impersonating nobility or royalty is a repugnant practice, whether one has deceived a court, legally bought an illegitimate title or deceitfully convinced another person that one is some kind of great person, when it was, in fact, all a lie,
A false prince can only create make-believe titles and imaginary orders of knighthood, even if an Italian or any other court has declared such a prince to be authentic. These court findings must not be taken at face value.
Furthermore, it is a well-known historical and legal certainty that what one country recognizes as authentic may be regarded by another country as illegal and unacceptable. In addition, it is common knowledge that the legal jurisdiction of a national court can only extend to its own borders. These are self-evident legal realities. However, some people have suggested that the 1959 New York Convention gives local and national Italian arbitration decrees international recognition and validity. But they fail to recognize that this treaty is limited by the defenses against it, and these are specifically spelled out. There is one defense that is particularly applicable and relevant to the recognition of nobility and deposed royal rights. It specifies that enforcement of the treaty is denied if a decree is against the "public policy" of the host nation. Most, if not all, nations do not officially recognize foreign royalty and nobility, especially deposed sovereign Houses. Therefore, to say that the New York Convention gives the Italian court findings international recognition is a legal fiction. It is a misrepresentation therefore to say that an arbitration decision is binding in 148 countries due to the Convention for the following reasons:
1. It is not automatically binding. A foreign arbitral decision must be brought before a domestic court of proper jurisdiction in the other country where enforcement is being sought. In other words, a foreign arbitral agreement is not automatically enforceable or binding anywhere other than in its own country.
2. Arbitral awards are subject to challenge in the enforcement hearings of another country’s court system. The two most common legal grounds for nullification are (1) that the tribunal did not have jurisdiction to make the award; such as, a domestic arbitrational court ruling on the sovereign rights of a foreign deposed kingdom or principality or on any sovereign entity, which is exclusively and jurisdictionally an international legal right, not a domestic one; and (2) serious irregularity on the part of the foreign tribunal’s handling of the case. According to treaty, there are eight general convention objections that can be used to reject any foreign arbitration agreement that comes before a nation’s court.
3. In addition to the eight defenses against enforcement, many nations have their own unique additional requirements that must complied with before a foreign arbitral award can be accepted as binding.
4. The treaty convention was expressly created for commercial transactions, not whether someone is the rightful heir of a deposed throne. This kind of award would be considered domestically unacceptable, irrelevant, and therefore inadmissible in virtually all nations for cross-border enforcement.
In conclusion, an arbitrational court award is not binding or obligatory in any other nation but its own unless a proper court of law in another country can be convinced to enforce it. In other words, each government can disallow and discard anything against its own public policy as a recognized inalienable and immutable right according to the terms of the treaty.
In other words, all court or arbitral awards (decisions) and verdicts not individually validated on a case-by-case basis by another nation’s court system have no validity or legal power beyond the borders of the originating country. Thus, the Italian verdicts are solely confined to Italy as no other countries have legally accepted any of their highly dubious and questionable validations. In conclusion, there is no automatic binding acceptance of any national legal decree worldwide by virtue of the 1959 New York Convention. Those who say there is, simply do not understand this treaty or are distorting it in order to promote fraudulent and unacceptable claims.
A significant factor touched on earlier needs elaboration. This factor, in and of itself, virtually eliminates all national court jurisdiction for any sovereign claim. That is, when state courts or domestic arbitration judges make determinations about the sovereignty of other governmental entities, such as foreign deposed dynastic Houses or governments-in-exile, they trespass on one of the highest laws of sovereignty -- the principle of non-interference. The sovereign prerogatives of these entities are simply outside of these courts’ jurisdiction, and it is a violation of international law to interfere. Sovereignty or the supreme right to rule is simply an international issue, not a domestic one. No country can properly take jurisdiction over another nation’s right to rule, including a deposed House’s right to rule, except in an international or world court. This is one of the most important international legal understandings:
There is no doubt [or cause to doubt] that the principle of non-intervention remains well-established in contemporary international law. It is part of customary international law, as the International Court of Justice has reaffirmed on a number of occasions.
The principle of non-interference is such a weighty and important law that it is reiterated and proclaimed in a number of world-binding treaties, including the United Nations charter. Thus, the major problem with domestic courts and arbitral awards ruling on sovereignty issues is the employment of illegal and/or incompetent proceedings. When it comes to sovereignty, it ". . . is not the province of these [municipal] courts to resolve such a dispute." Deposed monarchies and legitimate exiled governments cannot ". . . transfer their quarrels to the area of the jurisdiction of its municipal Courts." This is because of the fundamental legal principle of sovereign independence. Individual states are not at liberty to impose or meddle into the domestic affairs of other countries or other sovereign entities. Overstepping their bounds is a serious breach of the law. The U. S. Supreme Court, for example, described such legal ramifications when it declared:
Where a court has jurisdiction it has a right to decide every question which occurs in the cause, and whether its decision be correct or otherwise, its judgment, until reversed, is regarded as binding in every other court. But if it acts without authority, its judgments and orders are regarded as nullities. They are not voidable, but [are] simply void [that is, they are legally empty of any authority or enforceability]. . . .
Jurisdiction and standing are universally recognized requirements in court proceedings. The following are a few judgment examples of this important principle from the United States. When a court lacks subject matter jurisdiction, such as, a national court trying to determine the sovereign rights to a deposed regal entity, it lacks proper authority or legal competence. As a consequence, its decision in the matter is null or as though no decision had ever been made.
1. Alabama: Cadle Co. v. Shabani, 1070116, 2008 Ala. LEXIS 189 (2008):
When a party without standing purports to commence an action, the trial court acquires no subject-matter jurisdiction.
Any other action taken by a court lacking subject matter jurisdiction is null and void.
2. Hawaii: Hawai'i Med. Ass'n v. Hawai'i Med. Serv. Ass'n, 113 Hawai'i 77, 94, 148 P.3d 1179, 1196 (2006):
It is well-settled that courts must determine as a threshold matter whether they have jurisdiction to decide the issues presented.
If a party is found to lack standing, the court is without subject matter jurisdiction to determine the action. Thus, "[i]f a court lacks jurisdiction over the subject matter of a proceeding, any judgment rendered in that proceeding is invalid.
3. North Carolina: Tilley v. Diamond, NO. COA06-500, 2007 N.C. App. LEXIS 1591 (unpub.) (N.C. Ct. App., 2007):
· "A universal principle as old as the law is that the proceedings of a court without jurisdiction of the subject matter are a nullity." "Subject matter jurisdiction is the indispensable foundation upon which valid judicial decisions rest, and in its absence a court has no power to act: A judgment is void, when there is a want of jurisdiction by the court over the subject matter. . . ." "A void judgment is in legal effect no judgment. No rights are acquired or divested by it. It neither binds nor bars any one, and all proceedings founded upon it are worthless."
If a party does not have standing to bring a claim, a court has no subject matter jurisdiction to hear the claim.
4. North Carolina: Estate of Apple v. Commercial Courier Express, Inc., 168 N.C. App. 175, 177, 607 S.E.2d 14 (N.C. Ct. App. 2005):
If a party does not have standing to bring a claim, a court has no subject matter jurisdiction to hear the claim.
5. Ohio: State ex rel. Sautter v. Grey, CASE NO. 06-CA-6 , 2007 Ohio 1831; 2007 Ohio App. LEXIS 1673 (Ohio Ct. App. 5th Dist. Morrow County, April 18, 2007):
A void judgment is one rendered by a court lacking subject-matter jurisdiction or the authority to act.
6. Texas: In the Interest of CMC, 192 SW3d 866, 869 (Tex App., 2006):
Standing, as a necessary component of a court's subject-matter jurisdiction. If a party lacks standing, a court lacks subject-matter jurisdiction to hear a case.
7. Virginia: Porter v. Commonwealth, Record Nos. 071928 & 071929, 276 Va. 203; 661 S.E.2d 415; 2008 Va. LEXIS 78 (Va. 2008):
A defect in subject matter jurisdiction cannot be cured by reissuance of process, passage of time, or pleading amendment. While a court always has jurisdiction to determine whether it has subject matter jurisdiction, a judgment on the merits made without subject matter jurisdiction is null and void.
Likewise, any subsequent proceeding based on such a defective judgment is void or a nullity.
That is, "Judgment is a void . . . if [the] court that rendered [that] judgment lacked jurisdiction [like the Italian courts making decisions on foreign sovereignty situations]. . . ." Only an international court or international arbitration tribunal can have the proper jurisdiction in such a case. Yet, in spite of international law, even to the contrary thereof, domestic courts and arbitral award councils, being generally unaware or unconcerned with international law, have been convinced to hear such cases and make unlawful and illegal decisions regarding them.
However, in Italy, ". . . If a judgment is appealable [because of various possible acts of judicial or client misconduct] and no appeal is taken within the time fixed by law, any nullity of the judgment is cured." This includes jurisdictional problems. That is:
One of the consequences of this rule is that if the court lacked jurisdiction [or legal competence], failure to make the appropriate direct attack [failure to make an appeal during the time limits] will cure the absence of jurisdiction.
However, even though an absurd Italian Court decree was not challenged for lack of proper jurisdiction or otherwise, and therefore the illegality of its findings were, in effect, legally "cured" or healed, because the false finding was obtained fraudulently, wrongfully or by deception, the decree or finding cannot be enforced by another court in the future. That is, the truth about the court's lack of jurisdiction, their ignorance of and/or failure to apply the proper laws, or the deceitfulness of evidence would come out in a future hearing. Hence, the claim is, in effect, legally void, unenforceable and unrenewable. It is also a nullity, because it is based upon either legal misconduct and/or false conclusions.
This legal principle is expressed as follows:
Where there is no jurisdiction, there is no authority to pronounce judgment, and consequently a judgment so entered is so but in form and similitude, and has no [real] substance, force or authority.
No judgment of a court, no order of a Minister, can be allowed to stand if it has been obtained by fraud. Fraud unravels everything [into a blatant lie or falsehood].
The point is, you can’t magically (presto-chango) make something incorrect and false into something pure and undefiled like the "truth," especially when it was an act involving improper jurisdiction, legal manipulation, or judicial misconduct. No judge can rule that the world is flat or that a cartoon character is the true and rightful King of Israel. No one has this kind of authority. Courts cannot change false claims into rightful ones.
The Italian courts and/or arbitral award councils, however, are not the only ones that have been in violation of international law in hearing and making findings concerning the legitimacy of ancient royal claims. Charlatans have used the unsophisticated lenient courts in the Republic of San Marino, Germany, Switzerland, and even some minor courts in the United States to try to appear legitimate. Such court findings are simply unacceptable.
Some courts, however, have been wise enough to see through the con games and respect jurisdiction rights; therefore, they refrained from making any determination. In other words:
[Their] judgment[s] took into account the . . . international law . . . that a successor state could not interfere in dynastic law. [As an example] the German Supreme Court, in December 1998 [concerning the head of the Imperial and Royal House of Hohenzollern], confirmed that dynastic laws of succession and inheritance of a noble house could not be changed [by them]. . . . [That is] the Hohenzollern dynastic laws of succession were still applicable to claims made concerning the titles and ranks within that house and the State could not retrospectively alter them.
This view was recognized to be consistent with the principles of international law which deny any retrospective authority to successor states with regard to sovereign houses whose rule antedated [preceded] their own.
In other words, the sovereignty of a former de jure non-territorial House is free and independent from the meddling of others, just like any other sovereign entity. The second principle of the International Commission on Orders of Chivalry (ICOC) reiterates this by stating that, "It is . . . considered ultra vires [beyond the power, control, and authority] of any republican State to interfere, by legislation or administrative practice, with Princely Dynastic Family [rights] or House Orders." Therefore, it seems rather obvious that if a subsequent government cannot have legitimate jurisdiction over the affairs of a deposed government that once ruled their land, certainly their courts, or any state arbitration council, cannot assume authority that not even the ruling sovereign government has. All authority to do this kind of thing does not exist. Any judgment made on the sovereignty or authenticity of a former ruling house has no legal binding force. It is merely the expression of an opinion without any legal validity.
The European Convention on Human Rights, which 47 countries have accepted as treaty law, requires:
The enjoyment of the rights and freedoms set forth in this Convention shall be secured without discrimination on any ground such as sex, race, colour, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, association with a national minority, property, birth or other status. (Article 14)
This conceivably could impact monarchy, because hereditary succession is by design discriminatory and exclusive. Only one person at any time has the right to be the monarch, and the sole qualification required to hold the supreme office is birth into the royal House. However, this treaty does not include this type of office as a right of all people. It is only the right of the royal House. Therefore, the Convention generally does not apply. However, this international Convention may have an impact on illegitimacy for reigning royal Houses. Article 9 clearly states:
A child born out of wedlock shall have the same right of succession in the estate of its father and its mother and of a member of its father's or mother's family, as if it had been born in wedlock.
Royal succession has traditionally excluded illegitimate children, but this may become a problem for some reigning Houses in the future where the country is signatory to the Convention. But this would only apply to reigning Houses in an international forum as the subsequent republic of a country with a deposed House has no right to dictate or meddle in the business of the deposed Housed since it is a separate sovereign entity that is not signatory to the Convention.
The European Court of Human Rights (a permanent court created by the treaty specified above) tried some cases where discrimination was charged against male preference for titles of nobility in Spain. The court decided that it would be inappropriate to meddle or interfere with a historical, traditional system that was purely symbolic and had no particular legal significance in the land. Also, since noble status, like the monarchical succession, is not listed as a "human right" that people everywhere possess, discrimination or unfair practices therefore cannot apply to noble status or male preference to titles of honor in that system. In other words, deposed royalty situations, their rules, etc., are generally not touched by modern conventions.
As seen earlier in this work, international courts and arbitration tribunals require the voluntary cooperation of both parties in order to take jurisdiction or full authority over a case. However, no currently extant republican government is going to risk having a sovereignty challenge from a formerly reigning House be heard in an international setting when the possibility exists that the republic may be ruled against. Therefore, dispossessed sovereign claimants, since they cannot compel a republican government into an international court, have no real or dependable platform to resolve sovereign issues. Furthermore, if the international court ruled against the deposed sovereign House, since the House gave the court jurisdiction to decide the case, this would likely legally strip the House of its claim of sovereignty. If a case is never adjudicated, then, at least, the claim cannot be legally nullified or forfeited in this way. This is why sovereignty disputes between a deposed House and a subsequent republican government are generally not seen on the international stage.
In spite of the failure of the Italian and other national courts to have international authority and recognition for their rulings, some of the decisions have been reasonable despite the lack of jurisdiction. In various cases, the rulings have acknowledged that a true and legitimate deposed sovereign has a rightful authority to:
(1) bear the designation of Sovereign and Head of a royal House (including the style of Royal Highness) for the Head and his or her successors in perpetuity,
(2) to use all the qualities, attributes, styles, prerogatives, and designations that belong to the hereditary sovereign rights,
(3) the designation and style akin to ‘By the Grace of God and right as a legitimate Pretender to the Throne’ and to preside as a Grand Master and Head of all past orders and create new ones, and
(4) the ability and prerogative to confer nobiliary titles, with or without predicates, noble arms, honorific titles, medals of merit, and chivalric designations related to House royal rights.
This recognition, although outside of their domestic jurisdiction, is nonetheless appreciated. But it doesn't nullify the lack of jurisdiction that these courts have, nor does it fix some of the counterfeits and imposters that these courts have incorrectly "certified" as legitimate. Thus, it remains appropriate to treat the verdicts of these courts as null and void. To nullify these verdicts is consistent with the work of Vattel, as he said:
Every absurdity ought to be rejected: or, in other words, we should not give to any piece [court decree] a meaning from which any absurd consequences would follow, but must interpret it in such a manner as to avoid absurdity.
Saint Thomas Aquintas (roughly 1227-1274 A.D.) explained that, ". . . If in any point deflects from the law of nature, it is no longer a law but a perversion of law." In American jurisprudence, "An unconstitutional statute [or a false judicial decision] is an utter nullity, is void from the date of its enactment, and is incapable of creating any rights." In other words:
. . . The highest power on earth [is subject] subject to the rules of Natural Law. [This law] stood above . . . the whole Community of Mortals [or all mankind]. Neither statute nor act of government, neither resolution of the People nor custom [nor judicial decree] could break the bounds that thus were set. Whatever contradicted the eternal and immutable principles of Natural Law was utterly void and would bind no one. [Thus] . . . every act of the Sovereign which broke the bonds drawn by Natural Law was formally null and void.' . . . [Hence] . . . every judge and every other magistrate who had to apply the law was to treat, not only every unlawful executive act, but every unlawful statute, even though it were published by the Pope or Emperor as [empty of legal authority to enforce or be binding].
As demonstrated repeatedly in this work, natural law has supremacy over all the earth, in every nation, and in all ages. It is greater than any man-made law or court decree, especially one that is absurd. If a court proclaims that a fake prince is somehow genuine and authentic, such a finding is obviously void. This is because falsehoods are against the higher and greater natural laws of truth and justice.
In conclusion, sovereignty either exists in a situation or it does not. A domestic court verdict does not change the reality of this since the court lacks standing. ". . . Sovereignty is neither created by [outside] recognition nor destroyed by nonrecognition." Therefore, to determine whether a sovereign claim is valid, one must look to prescription and the true principles of natural law.
Substantial Proof is Required for Any Claim to be Considered Valid
". . . The proofs of prescriptive possession are simple and few." A powerful legal presumption supports the cause for the possessing government in the de facto control of the nation or territory in question. That is, in any contest between them as to sovereignty, the real burden in terms of evidence rests heavily on the dispossessed government, or deposed monarchy, that is making a sovereign claim upon a territory, kingdom or nation. A high standard of proof is required of them, one that is conclusive, and no proof or mere conjecture means a claim is legally empty with no teeth – it is legally dead or void of effect. This is especially true after a hundred years of acquiescence and neglect when immemorial prescription is involved. Vattel declared that the real truth in a case of over 100 years old is:
. . . so deeply involved in obscurity, as to allow no possibility of proving whether the possessor has really derived his right from the original proprietor, or received the possession from another.
Since no reasonable and just settlement of sovereign rights can be reached because of lost or missing evidence after the normal 50 to 100-year period, the rules and principles of prescription create a legal presumption that the actual de facto possessor of the land and its people has the most legitimate title.
On it [that is, prescription] depends the security of property [including title to sovereignty]; and, without it, one’s property might be exposed to a thousand aggressions; for cunning pretexts, and ancient titles, whose fractiousness the real possessor cannot, without the greatest difficulty, prove, are seldom wanting to crafty and malignant claimants. Therefore, it is in-accordance with the dictates of reason, that a person who, for a [long] length of time, has peacefully [without official protests from the former house] held bond fide possession of property [principality, nation, or kingdom], should, in virtue of such possession, acquire full dominion over it.
The most imposing array of evidence [supporting the former royal House or exiled government] means nothing, since it is quite probable that decisive counter evidence has been lost. It is for that reason [more than anything else] that prescription should be deemed conclusive.
No justice can come without an accurate picture of what really happened, and such is impossible when the most important evidence is tainted by time. Rights are forfeited where ". . . original validity . . . is impossible to prove . . . ."
No human transactions are unaffected by time. Its influence is seen on all things subject to change. And this is peculiarly the case in regard to matters which rest in memory, and which consequently fade with the lapse of time and fall with the lives of individuals.
In other words, beyond 100 years of neglect of a sovereign claim, there is no proof remaining that is acceptable or admissible. Justice cannot be served when evidence is missing or flawed. All that is left, after this time period, is supposition and conjecture, which is insufficient to base a viable sovereign claim. As quoted in an international arbitration case:
Courts of equity refuse to interfere to give relief where . . . the lapse of time has been so long as to afford a clear presumption that the witnesses to the original transaction are dead, and the other means of proof have disappeared.
Otherwise, a sovereign claim is ". . . beyond the power of recovery . . . since the origin of the possession is lost in the obscurity of time. . . ." Nothing can be done after 100 years because ". . . the means of proving it [are totally] destroyed by time."
The older a neglected sovereign claim is, the less likely it can be held up as valid and legitimate. This is because the claim is ". . . incapable of proof between nations after the lapse of centuries of adverse possession. . . ." That is, a"[l]apse of time . . . robs the parties of the means of proof. . . ." This is a legal reality that cannot be overcome, which we have already addressed in the context of immemorial prescription.
Alternatively, if a dispossessed royal House persistently uses its exalted regal titles as required by prescriptive law, the sovereign rights are protected. This has been demonstrated over and over in this work. The following is example of an official public record of ". . . Protestation, for baring [stopping] Prescription . . ." made by a deposed Prince in 1713:
[It was written to] . . . Courts, Judges, Magistrates, or Deputies . . . with regard to any proceedings . . . That, said Lord, his Principal, for himself and his Heirs, does not consent directly or indirectly, that said Principality should be given to any other Person, than himself, as being the true and lawful Successor to the same. . . . [He made this protest that no] Acquiescency or Prescription, nor any other Title, which may exclude him from his said Right; to signify . . . his Protestation; and declare, that he will renew it on all favorable and lawful Occasions. . . .
Therefore, a high degree of proof is absolutely necessary to sustain a royal de jure claim. This holds true even more so for cases outside of international courts and tribunals. The burden of proof is obligatory on the monarchy or government-in-exile that lost its territory. It is ". . . not he who possesses, but he who seeks a thing, is bound adequately to prove ownership." In court, "It is [also] a general principle of law . . . that a party which advances a point of fact in support of its claim must establish that fact." In other words, ". . . The burden of proof lies on him who asserts [a claim -- the deposed claimant], not on him who denies [the deposed]." This is a very difficult position to be in:
Those assigned the burden of proof in international law typically lose their cases. [That is] once you have to show that your opponent violated the law, you’re probably sunk.
This is because adequate proof to establish a fact is so difficult to accomplish. Nevertheless, the burden of proof is on the shoulders of the deposed government or royal House, and they must be able to provide valid and conclusive evidence that they made the proper legal protests regularly through time after being dispossessed of control of the territory. ". . . The [actual] form of objection is irrelevant, so long as the disposed state [whether a once-reigning monarchy or a dispossessed government] makes clear its opposition to the acquisition of title. . . ."
The central point is that the prescriptive transfer of internal sovereignty succeeds, unless the original government ". . . establishe[s] its own legitimate rights by conclusive proof" before immemorial prescription (after 100 years of neglect) occurs. (emphasis added)
As late as 1861, before any international court or tribunal existed, powerful substantive evidence was still obligatory. It was declared that ". . . legal demands are to be substantiated by clear and competent evidence; in other words, by proof of ancient and constant usage." (emphasis added) Clear evidence or proof ". . . is positive, precise and explicit, as opposed to ambiguous, equivocal [arguable], or contradictory. . . ." Competent evidence is relevant and admissible.
Even in modern times, where litigation evidence requirements for sovereign states has been reduced to preponderance of evidence in most cases, given the well-known shortcomings, unfairness and inaccuracies of hearsay evidence, ". . . the ICJ [the International Court of Justice] has also ascribed very little weight to hearsay." Hearsay is a statement offered as truth made by someone other than the declarant himself. The intrinsic problem with hearsay is that because the original declarant cannot be cross-examined due to absence, there is little legal value for its inclusion in a judicial decision, which is why it is given little gravitas – believability or credit.
The problem within the context of de jure sovereignty is that any person can invent any kind of claim they want. He or she could declare to the world, "I am the rightful legal king of some certain land. I should now be called His or Her Imperial and Royal Highness, the Prince of some remote place." He or she could even produce an impressive-looking fabricated genealogical line, like the MacCarthy Mor scandal.
This is why the burden of proof must be on the declarant and why that burden must be beyond a reasonable doubt rather than a preponderance of the evidence. With a high bar, these "royal" fantasist claims dissolve to nothing, which is only proper when dealing with international law and the majesty of de jure non-territorial sovereignty. Vattel reminds us that any claimant in these matters must:
. . . prove his right; for he ought to show a good foundation for demanding a thing which he does not possess [such as de facto sovereignty]. He must have a title [the evidence, showing the consistent public use of titles for thousands of years if need be, otherwise the] . . . people are not obliged to respect that title any farther than he shows its validity.
In practice, the older a sovereign claim is, the more substantial proof is mandatory to support it as real and authentic. For example, once deposed, did the House still use its titles and arms publically on a consistent basis over hundreds or even thousands of years of unreliable and refutable history? Sound reasoning suggests that it is far more likely that there have been long periods of total neglect, which results in the complete loss of sovereignty due to immemorial prescription. A claimant must prove otherwise, and that is a high bar to achieve. As Vattel declared, the past:
. . . is unknown, or so obscure that it cannot be proved whether the possessor had a real proprietary right, or whether he received the possession from another. . . . [In other words] the means of proving it is destroyed. . . ."
Historical evidence cannot change anything, because most of the factual information no longer exists. It is ruined and destroyed by time. History is not a regulated field. Most historians fill in large gaps of missing information with unreliable guesswork providing mere hunches as though they were substantiated realities. As a result, no two historians present exactly the same story. They record only what they know and assume -- each having different information available to them. The point is, history is elusive, not definitive. It can and is fabricated with forged documents for political purposes through the eyes of a conqueror or the hidden agenda of corrupt rulers. Thus contradictions abound, and history is distorted. As a direct result, history is incapable of accurate quantitative expression. It cannot provide the legal proof necessary to settle any claim. It can only occasionally fill the role of unreliable collaboratory evidence insufficient in and of itself to substantiate the right or entitlement of a non-territorial sovereign claim.
Because time extinguishes the evidence and obscures historical realities, there must be a way of bridging the gap and restoring the legal order. The law therefore logically and permanently supports the possessor as the legitimate ruler after 100 years of covert or overt negligence on the part of the dispossessed ruling house or exiled government. The result of immemorial prescription is that ". . . every [dynastic or secular] pretension contrary to his [the new ruler's] right. . ." is extinguished or terminated by this important rule of law. "Prescription is the exclusion [or forfeiture] of all pretensions to a [lost] right. . . ."
In conclusion, a lack of unquestionable proof (that a royal House did not abandon a sovereign claim) is equivalent to a total loss of all regal rights, because the claim simply cannot be authenticated, verified or confirmed. If there is no indisputable public record that the House lodged public protests over time at critical junctures, then the obvious answer is an automatic total dispossession of all legal deposed sovereign privileges. If an exiled government or royal House ". . . ‘slept upon its rights,’ it cannot be allowed to revive [them]. . . ." The loss has become an unalterable permanent legal fact.
Such proof, obviously, cannot be made by sophistry, stretching the truth or by an outright act of fraud, pretense or deception, yet this is not an uncommon practice that has taken place throughout the centuries. It is especially common in our day and age.
However, even before the centennial time or 100 years has passed without adequate evidence:
The possessor [the de facto monarchy or government] may . . . remain in possession till proof be adduced to convince him that his possession is unjust. As long as that remains undone, he has a right to maintain himself in it. . . .
If he maintains his de facto sovereignty for 100 years in the face of inadequate or unsubstantial evidence, then by immemorial prescription, the deposed claimant loses out and the law allows for no rebuttal or retrieval for what is lost. As quoted before, Vattel tells us:
. . . If [a deposed monarch or] nation . . . does not resist the encroachments . . . if it makes no opposition to them, -- if it preserves a profound silence, when it might and ought to speak, -- its patient acquiescence becomes in length of time a tacit consent that legitimates the rights of the usurper [or subsequent government].
In addition, the older a claim is, the more substantial proof is mandatory to support it as real and authentic. For example, were titles and arms actually used on a consistent basis over a hundreds or thousands of years of unreliable and refutable history? It is far more likely and probable that there have been long periods of total neglect and loss, if there is not consistent evidence to prove otherwise. As Vattel declared, the past ". . . is unknown, or so obscure that it cannot be proved whether the possessor had a real proprietary right, or whether he received the possession from another. . . . [In other words] the means of proving it [one way or the other is] destroyed. . . ." Hence, law naturally and logically supports the possessor after 100 years of negligence on the part of the former ruler. The result of immemorial prescription is that ". . . every pretension [every old dynastic claim to the throne] contrary to his [the possessor's or new ruling government’s] right. . ." are extinguished or terminated by this rule of law. "Prescription [then] is the exclusion [or loss] of all pretensions to a right [that is, after 100 years, the former ruling house can no longer rightfully claim to be royal or sovereign]. . . ."
Historical proof of the existence of a former ruler may be sure and unequivocal; however, as stated before, no one knows for sure if cession, abdication, regicide, debellatio, renunciation, sale, mortgage or some other form of forfeiture or transfer occurred. What really happened long ago is forever blurred. The real truth in such a case will probably never be known. Attorney-General Black declared on July 21, 1858:
. . . It is one of the rules of every civilized code that a certain length of time . . . shall be regarded as evidence that [an old] claim is either unjust or satisfied, and such lapse of time proves that fact as fully as if it had been attested by credible witnesses. . . .
The experience of all mankind has shown that the evidence thus furnished by time is true and reliable. The judge who disregards [this principle] would decide against [justice] . . . ninety-nine times in a hundred. . . . (emphasis added)
The operation of time [so central to prescription] is to destroy by natural and accidental decay all proofs which might be afforded by oral testimony or written documents. Men and women die [especially after 100 years]; papers and parchments rot and are devoured [or lost]. [Thus] it is most reasonable and most agreeable to the eternal principles of equity [and fairness], that the lapse of time [plus neglect and abandonment by the original royal house should give all sovereign rights to the new possessor of the land]. . . .
". . . It is almost impossible [even after 50 years] to prove . . . legality or illegality." Records become lost, stolen, fabricated, made up, ruined or destroyed. For example, historians readily admit that they often rely on unreliable clues and hearsay in an attempt to put pieces of the puzzle together and they do this by making many assumptions that cannot be proven.
Proof that is made up entirely of circumstantial evidence is not enough even for cases of little importance or significance. It is especially out of line to use such in a situation involving the highest of all secular honors and entitlements on earth. To ensure legitimacy and authenticity, the rules of evidence must be followed – the evidence must not be contaminated with faulty reasoning, or tainted by a string of conclusions that result in absurdities like making a falsehood into the truth.
The following are some techniques of how an invalid sovereign claimant may attempt to circumvent the natural law of prescription by inferring a sovereign claim where none actually exists. Each of the below techniques ultimately fails and demonstrates that the claimant is invalid, but these methods are still commonly employed and, unfortunately, persuade some persons not familiar with the legal doctrine of prescription and other laws that terminate dispossessed sovereignty. The techniques are:
(1) From the established fact that a minor kingdom or principality once existed, one could theorize that this political entity held sovereignty based only on the fact that it was called a kingdom or principality. This presumption might be made in spite of contradictory evidence; such as, the territory was likely under the supreme authority of a totalitarian imperial or royal suzerain, such as, Byzantium, who held absolute power over all the dependent kingdoms and principalities under its charge. This kind of presumptive inferential thinking based upon conjecture could be a fatal one -- leading to a number of other inaccurate and faulty conclusions.
The governmental division, in question, may have had no sovereignty at all or had permanently lost it through concession after concession until it was entirely forfeited over a long period of acquiescence and surrender. In other words, it may have been a puppet government under the thumb of an all-powerful emperor, who ruled the land through a titular non-sovereign king and other imperial officials who may have virtually controlled everything. The real truth for a situation so old, it is impossible to verify, and inference stacking is nothing less than a journey into a world of fantasy and imagination. There is nothing solid about it.
(2) One might assume by supposition that succession in a territory was hereditary. In many historical kingdoms, especially where the kingdom was actually subordinate to another throne, the true sovereign or suzerain determined the succession for the puppet or subordinate monarchs. Hence, sons did not always succeed to the puppet throne, and some were dethroned by imperial caprice or arbitrary whim. Yet the modern false claimant will try to re-write history and say that hereditary succession was the law within the kingdom or principality. They will, then, try to show that they descended from them and somehow magically hold the rights thereof. The morale to the story is that one must always look to the facts of history and a territory’s true practice rather than inferring that because many kingdoms and principalities had hereditary succession, this one must have as well. The point is guesswork and supposition is not proof or valid as such.
(3) Adding further to the above unwarranted assumption, one might make the incorrect connection that because one’s ancestors legitimately descended from the rulers of the above mentioned ancient land, that one is a "royal personage" even though as much as a million others are also descended from this same ancient family. From there, such a person could continue theorizing that he has authority to usurp all others and take the reins of dispossessed royalty for himself, because he is royal, even though the original assumption is still unproven and is therefore full of fabrication, which stretched the truth into a fables or myth.
(4) One could continue even further into this flight of assumptions and take upon oneself the title of "His Royal Highness" even though such a title never existed in the ancient world when this governmental entity was upon the earth. Obviously such a kingdom or principality could not confer a pronominal title it did not possess. But more important is the fact that the whole journey into this world of assumption is based on pure conjecture. That is, it is built on pure imagination and cannot hold up to any kind of objective scrutiny. The cold hard facts are missing; which facts are indispensable to finding out the real truth.
In summary, "Assumption is the mother of deception." It is beguiling to self and others, and it is the tool of impostors and myth makers. Therefore, if a claimant cannot provide proof, then the claim is either based on many unsubstantiated inferences, or it is an act of willful and purposeful deception. And:
In the inevitable absence of documentary proof concerning the original pact [title or right, etc.], prescription was to be the guide [or criteria for what happens]. . . .
Prescription, of course, would destroy an unsubstantiated claim that was not maintained or could not be proven by solid evidence.
In addition, to make the false assumption that a treaty of cession, a renunciation, an abdication, or a prescription, doesn't count or doesn't matter – that no loss occurred as a result of such a severe and voluntary act, is to deny the validity of law and insist on an odd, or strange, new reality, where laws are only binding upon others. Or, likewise, there is the delusional thinking, sometimes called magical thinking that a claim built on a false premise can somehow be stretched into the truth magically when there is no foundation for it. This is equally absurd and it is also deceitful and dishonest.
The point is, "Second-hand accounts [as is typical in historical research] . . . are, by their very nature, secondary," and nothing more. ". . . What is required is an eye witness account [according to the jurists as pertaining to law]. . . . " But there are no living witnesses after 100 years and sometimes after 50, extremely old cases over a thousand years old do not have a chance at validation. This is the reason that 100 years, or from time immemorial, is so powerful to the point of creating a juris et de jure presumption of forfeiture – meaning negligence for this long period of time results in a conclusive and definitive legal presumption of ineradicable loss, which cannot be rebutted after this time period even by contrary evidence.
Immemorial Possession [over 100 years]: "By this term is understood that of which no man living has seen the beginning and the existence of which he has learned from his elders [but has no personal knowledge of]."
A person, who is not an eye witness, can only provide hearsay or secondary evidence, not the required conclusive proof needed to establish the validity of a royal claim that is over 100 years old. A stale, obsolete neglected claim that is over 100 years old is unprovable and therefore, unacceptable.
For this reason, royal houses are encouraged to make irrefutable and solid public and private records of their claims to ensure that their claims can be perpetuated. Considering the critical need for valid proof and living witnesses, no wonder all claims against a possessor after one hundred years are legally prohibited from consideration. At this point, the dye is cast and the possessor wins everything unless the deposed royal sovereign or exiled government can unmistakably prove beyond doubt or refutation that they have continually and consistently kept their claim alive and well in every generation by using their exalted titles and their national symbols of sovereign rulership.
The "Critical Date" is where the dispute can be said to have crystallized or finalized, and this is the point that ends all controversy.
The "critical date" has rightly been defined by one writer as "the date after which the acts or omissions of the parties cannot affect the legal situation." It is an assumption of law that at a certain moment in the past the situation which gave rise to the dispute between two rival parties became, so to speak, "frozen." It is the situation that prevailed at that given moment which serves as the legal criterion and yardstick by which the merits of the confliction parties’ alleged rights are being measured. Any subsequent change or modification, as a result of the parties’ acts or omission, will be deemed irrelevant form the legal point of view and will be unable to improve, impair or alter in anyway the rights of the parties.
The "Critical Date" for immemorial prescription is 100 years of unprotested sovereign possession. Evidence of events after this date have no legal significance. The result:
Immemorial possession . . . is an irrefragable title [for the possessor or usurper, it means ownership cannot be refuted. It is indisputable. It cannot be countered], and immemorial prescription admits of no exception: both are founded on a presumption which the law of nature directs us to receive as an incontestable truth [that is, truth that cannot be impeached] or annulled.
A neglected claim to non-territorial sovereignty after 100 years is a legal nullity – empty of any legal rights as they were automatically and permanently terminated. ". . . Sovereignty, like property, if once alienated, can never revert" or be reclaimed. What takes place at the time is final. Once a prescriptive transfer has been made:
. . . the title of nations in the actual enjoyment and peaceable possession of their territory, howsoever originally obtained, cannot be at any time questioned or disputed . . . [because it is final].
Thus, there is a "statute of limitations" built into prescription, because it is ". . . a necessary and just law. . . ." In other words, it is ". . . a sacred law, which nations and sovereigns are bound to respect and follow in all their actions . . . ,” because it is legally binding and built upon sound legal, ethical and moral reasoning.
"Prescriptive title is a phenomenon . . . whereby one title extinguishes another . . . whose origin cannot be proved. . . ." The point here is there must be proof -- proof that is based on unequivocal public, rather than private fact or oral history, not on conjecture, make-believe, circumstantial evidence or assumption. As quoted before in Volume I of this book, Vattel declared:
It is for the claimant to prove his right, for he must show the justice of his claim to a thing which he does not possess. He must have a title [proof of ownership], and his title need not be respected unless its validity is proved. (emphasis added)
In other words, to maintain rights, a deposed royal house or exiled government must be able to ". . . establish its own legitimate rights by conclusive proof." (emphasis added) This high level of evidence must exist for non-territorial sovereignty to have legal standing or be legally and lawfully acceptable. "Conclusive" evidence is nearly always associated with the highest recognized level of proof – "beyond reasonable doubt." Only beyond reasonable doubt is actually defined as conclusive. All lesser levels or standards of proof, such as, what is "clear and convincing" or a mere "preponderance of evidence" are insufficient and inadequate, because the proof requirement is not conclusive, morally certain or without major evidential defects, problems, doubts or questions. Only what is beyond reasonable doubt is acceptable and worthy of acknowledgement and support.
As stated, evidence levels required in international prescriptive transfers are very high – even at the conclusive or indisputable level. However, in ordinary prescription, which takes about 50 years rather than 100 years of neglect, for the transfer of rights, mandates a lesser level of proof to stop it from taking place. Vattel explains that ". . . the evidence to prove it [must] be very clear and convincing indeed."  (emphasis added) However, this level is no small feat as the following exacting definitions demonstrate:
Clear and convincing . . . is evidence so clear, direct, weighty in terms of quality, and convincing as to cause you to come to a clear conviction of the truth of the precise facts in issue.
It is to be "so clear as to leave no substantial doubt." In other words, claims are unsupportable if they are questionable or shaky.
Generally, the world courts and tribunals operate on a low "preponderance of evidence" confidence level, but outside of the international voluntary court system, as this system is not required for prescriptive cases nor generally friendly to deposed causes, the evidence requirement, at its lowest level, is "clear and convincing." At its highest, it requires conclusive or irrefutable evidence similar to "beyond reasonable doubt." With this in mind, as stated before, it becomes eminently obvious that deposed royal houses and exiled governments, if they are serious and really want to maintain their sovereign rights as non-territorial sovereignties in international law, they must make every effort to have irrefutable public and private proof that is incontrovertible as possible. Otherwise, their claims evaporate into nothing.
The bold and daring assertions made by scores of fake princes, especially in our day and age, are merely false portrayals. Their claims are empty, and it is truly sad how some people are taken in by them. The fact that society tolerates this kind of deceitfulness is not beneficial to mankind.
Some Unsupportable Claims
RECORDS, not fictional stories with a hidden agenda, HARD EVIDENCE, not manipulated opinions or assumptions, FACTS, not fairy tales or pretense. The TRUTH is the only thing that can be depended on.
A sovereign claim, in and of itself, is of no worth unless it can be substantiated by hard facts. The quality and veracity of the facts are, therefore, everything in such an investigation. It is the heart and soul of discovery.
Some royal claimants, of course, are very well-known and can be immediately accepted at face value. Examples of these are the non-territorial sovereignties of the Imperial and Royal House of Habsburg and the Imperial and Royal House of Hohenzollern. However, there are some "Houses" that are generally accepted as true, but the sovereign claims do not hold up under close inspection. The truth often must be unearthed since it is hidden under layers of historical assumptions.
The following examples are introduced to demonstrate that reliable evidence is necessary for any kind of conclusive determination. In some cases, the names will be provided. However, since there is not enough room to present a comprehensive, well-researched analysis of the relevant facts in each case, as was done for the rightful claims to the Italian House of the Two-Sicilies and the succession problems in the Imperial and Royal House of Habsburg, the false claimants will not be identified by name. That said, one does not need to research deeply in the modern field of royalty to understand who is being mentioned. Nonetheless, the important objective in each case below is to see how the invalid claim was crafted and used to deceive others. By perceiving some of the ways that others have counterfeited what is genuine and true, one can better learn how to discern the difference between what claims are authentic and genuine and what claims are false.
The following examples represent only a small fraction of literally hundreds of modern imposters that have and/or still do impersonated royalty and nobility:
(1) Michael Lafosse claimed to be a descendant of the Stewart Kings and the rightful heir to the throne of Scotland. But, after a few years, his certificates were finally investigated and found to be forgeries. In addition, his claim was inconsistent with historical records. His supposed Stewart ancestor actually sold all his royal sovereign rights to the English Crown in exchange for money. If these facts were investigated early on, it would have saved a lot of people from not only embarrassment but the loss of a lot of money. The moral is obviously not to accept any sovereign claim at face value. Only if one investigates a claim can one be safe and protected.
(2) Terrence Francis MacCarthy produced a very believable and impressive set of records showing that he was, by lineal descent, the MacCarthy Mór – the great MacCarthy, prince of Desmond, and rightful heir to the throne and kingdom of Munster. It was eventually discovered that his ancestral lines were forgeries, and he was finally exposed as a deceiver. But long before he had taken advantage of so many people, his claim could have been debunked and exposed for what it was. This is because his so-called ancestors had not kept their royal and sovereign entitlements alive through prescription. Their exalted titles and arms had not been used perpetually since their deposition. Hence, the royal rights that once existed were irretrievably lost through immemorial prescription long before MacCarthy was even born. Had the basic fundamental law of prescription simply been applied to the case, no one would have fallen for the scam. However, more people need to learn about this most important law. It governs, controls, and differentiates what is legally valid from what is fundamentally false.
Prescription is not the deciding factor in every case, but it impacts all claims on way or another, because it is the only ancient and modern law in existence that enables a deposed royal house or exiled government to preserve, maintain and perpetuate the highest secular right on earth -- the supreme right to rule and govern a territory. However, the kind of prescription that preserves rights, is not applicable to situations where de jure internal sovereignty has already been legally forfeited or lost through any of a dozen or more ways already elaborated in the second chapter. In other words, the legal principle of "Prior Claim" is null or useless, when there is no legitimate sovereignty leftover, because it was already lost. The legal principle of prior claim only applies when there are competing rights to consider.
(3) A well-known princely family of the high nobility in an eastern European nation, whose family was neither sovereign nor dynastic, has falsely claimed since the early 1900's to be the true royal House of an ancient land. Yet this noble House was subordinate to its royal overlords, the dynastic line of the various kings of the land, for about 400 years. The noble House did not exercise true sovereignty over any part of the land – not even a tiny little lordship. There were 13 other historical princely Houses in this kingdom that held higher noble status than this noble House did, yet this noble House is currently treated as dynastic by many people, even to the exclusion of the legitimate royal House that still exists and have maintained their rights. History will no doubt eventually vindicate the true royal House as more people are exposed to the truth, but the noble House has been remarkably successful thus far in falsely pretending to be royal.
(4) A "so-called" religious order falsely claims they achieved the full right of sovereignty over a few acres or less on the continent of Africa for a period of about one year ending in 1844. After this time, they were forced to leave. The major problem with this claim is that it is in direct violation of international law -- the law that protects each nation’s independence of each other. You can’t disobey the laws that create valid sovereignty and somehow magically obtain it in contradiction to that law. Sovereignty, the highest secular right on earth, can only be achieved by obeying the laws that govern its birth and creation. Understanding the basic fundamentals of sovereignty are an important means to ensure one is not beguiled by fictitious and erroneous claims.
(5) There are a number of false claimants who declare that they have regal rights despite historical gaps of 300 years or more of public neglect of their sovereign claims. Given that immemorial prescription has already happened, these claims are literally unsupportable and have no validity at all. Yet this kind of claim is not uncommon.
(6) There is one situation that has several competing claimants for the same territory in eastern Asia. But each claimant simply denies the historical and legal fact that their ancestors sold all their sovereign rights to various countries through binding international treaties. There is simply no possibility that any regal rights remain as this loss is an undeniable and legally settled fact.
(7) Sovereignty is the greatest and most priceless gift a nation has. No modern nation gives up their sovereign rights, especially to a former monarchy. Sometimes they will acknowledge the former royal house in some capacity as a leader, but not as having the right to rule the land. If the royal House has never yielded its sovereignty and kept it alive, then the new authorities granted by the modern nation simply are an addition to the House’s already existing and larger powers. But a mistake that many people make is presuming that a modern nation’s acknowledgement of former royal house is the same thing restoring their full de jure, non-territorial sovereignty. It is a certainty that this is not the case.
(8) Many false claimants incorrectly presume that since they had royal ancestors, they themselves must be royal. Virtually every person on Earth currently living descends from at least one royal, statistically speaking. But this hardly makes a modern descendant of that person a royal. To be royal, in a hereditary succession, you must be royal as defined by the laws applicable to that specific House. For example, there were hundreds of people who held a higher blood or hereditary right to the throne of the United Kingdom than Her Majesty Queen Victoria had in the 1800's. But Queen Victoria had the highest legal right within the laws of the United Kingdom applicable to her House, and this is why she was royal and the hundreds who had a stronger blood claim were not. The legal right to be royal within a House is the master key that determines legitimacy.
(9) A number of self-styled pretenders have claimed imperial rights from the early Byzantine or Holy Roman empires, but these offices were elective, not hereditary. Therefore, no imperial right, honor, or privilege could automatically be passed on. This is one of the major identifiers of falsehood – claiming regal rights from an elective, non-hereditary ancestor when such rights cannot be passed on.
(10) Many imitation "orders" of chivalry rewrite history in an attempt to be legitimate. This is a dishonest practice, but it nevertheless is one that has been practiced over and over again by various counterfeiters. A person should exercise extreme caution when considering joining orders to ensure that the fons honorum for the order is valid.
(11) Some people buy titles and honors through adoption, or a contrived marriage, from royal relatives of actual legal sovereign houses, but they do not realize that only the head of a legitimate reigning or deposed House can provide a legitimate title or honor. Without the approval of the head and chief of the House, a title or honor from that House cannot be legally or lawfully given. For example, there is a legitimate head of an ancient House in far western Europe. He has a younger brother who is a supporter of a confraternity that acts like an order in all but name. But the head of the House has publicly said that this confraternity is NOT recognized by the royal House, so this confraternity is not a valid royal organization since there is no proper fons honorum or legal, non-territorial sovereign entitlement behind it. Instead, it is the equivalent of a social club or religious organization similar to an Elks or Masonic Lodge.
(12) Another’s claim was built on assumption stacking, a well-known way to look good to the unwary, but is so logically flawed that it is nothing better than the proverbial story about the fabled big fish that got away. In other words, it is all make believe or no better than wishful thinking, but has the appearance of truth. A valid and legitimate claim cannot be built on conjecture.
(13) Several claims are so old that any substantive evidence that might have existed at one time in history has been destroyed, so there is nothing – no hard facts that can support the claim. Add to this the fact that there is contrary evidence, which has been purposely hidden or obscured. This makes such a claim, not only weak, but literally unsupportable. Yet this kind of claim is not uncommon. Even if a claim was authentic, if it cannot be proven, authenticated, verified or confirmed one way or the other in the here and now, it has no foundation in the real world of legal realities. A claim that has no factual basis or evidential base of support, cannot be upheld. All claims, built on assumptions, family fairy tales, speculation or guesswork, cannot be considered seriously, if they are built on nothing that is solid and sure. They are legal nullities or the equivalent of make believe.
(14) One claimant bypasses the Crown Prince or sovereign head of the House without authority and therefore claims rights he does not possess.
(15) Several claim high titles even though they, or their ancestors, became naturalized citizens of the United States. Naturalization law requires that they renounce such, which means they must permanently and legally end their rights to title to become citizens.
. . . While native citizens may accept titles of nobility from foreign potentates, foreigners must renounce their hereditary titles before becoming naturalized citizens of the United States. That provision of the Federal naturalization laws goes back 115 years. . . .
A petitioner or applicant for naturalization who has borne any hereditary title or has been of any of the orders of nobility in any foreign state shall, in addition to taking the oath of allegiance prescribed in paragraph (a) of this section, make under oath or affirmation in public an express renunciation of such title or order of nobility, in the following form:
(1) I further renounce the title of (give title or titles) which I have heretofore held; or
(2) I further renounce the order of nobility (give the order of nobility) to which I have heretofore belonged.
This provision does not impact a title that is "domestically" designated as a name in the land of its origin, such as, a regal or noble title from a former German principality or kingdom -- like "prinz von" so and so. But it would terminate a free standing title such as "prince" or "count" of such and such that is not merely a name, but an actual title. If a title or order of nobility is somehow missed or hidden during the naturalization process, the title, though unrenounced, becomes illegal and therefore unethical to use as a United States citizen. This is because all such titles were by law to be forfeited upon naturalization.
The following are a few more short examples of some additional claims that are false, but to the unwary appear to be genuine and authentic. It must be kept in mind that only the truth can make one free from some very costly and embarrassing mistakes as there are many con artists who imitate what is real. One of the major purposes of this book is to empower people with the knowledge and understanding to see through scams and fraudulent claims. The following illustrates a few more ways one can make claims that have no truth to them:
(a) There are several different men who falsely claim imperial and royal rights and privileges from the ancient dispossessed Byzantine Empire. They sometime tout Italian court decrees as proof of their authenticity. For this please see the sub-chapter "Why Courts Findings are Unreliable and Invalid Sources for Determining the Authenticity of Deposed Claims" in this chapter. The main reason such claims are impossible is because under Byzantine law regal rights terminated immediately upon dispossession of the imperial crown. Hence, their claim is legally bereft of any legitimacy. There was no hereditary entitlement to the imperial crown for rights to continue with family members after the death or dethronement of an emperor. Rights that do not exist in a family cannot be passed onto posterity.
(b) One man claimed honors from a self-styled government-in-exile. He then declared himself to be a "prince" and sells knighthoods and titles, despite the fact that the so-called "government-in-exile" never had sovereignty, authority or power to legitimately given him any lawful entitlements. This underscores the importance of being certain that there is a valid living fons honorum (a legitimate sovereign house) behind any organization that provides royal titles and honors.
(c) Another man, whose relatives had just as much or higher genealogical rights usurped the rights of the other family members. This, of course, was an act of theft and plunder. True justice in international law demands that, ". . . all men are to restore what they are possessed of, if another is proved to be the rightful owner." However, this man does not have the integrity to do what is right.
(d) An individual bought a non-sovereign princely title from an obviously fake "Patriarch" who presided over a non-existent "church." This individual then sold false knighthoods to others.
(e) Another man legally changed his name by deed poll in England to an imperial one with a title. He next began to impersonate imperial royalty. Sadly, this impersonator made a great deal of money by selling fake titles and honors sometimes to people who could ill afford it and were given empty titles that have no meaning.
The above examples demonstrate two things clearly. First, there are many people who desire titles and honors. Second, there are many scoundrels willing to peddle fake titles and honors to meet that demand. But it must never be forgotten that all true and rightful honors must spring from a genuine, authentic source, or fountain of honor, otherwise it must be rejected as a worthless pretense or a counterfeit.
The irony is that there are many legitimate de jure, non-territorial sovereigns -- true monarchs in every sense of the word that are delighted to extend honors to worthy applicants. However, it’s far too easy for the legitimate royals to be overlooked by the general public since the fraudsters are much more aggressive. This is why this work is so important, as it gives the reader the tools to identify legitimate de jure royal claims.
The principles to discern legitimate claimants from imposters are found earlier in this work. Specifically, they are in "The Basic Identifiers of False Claims
" in Chapter II
. The authors hope that this work is highly useful to professionals, scholars, and the general public in helping to identify the authentic. After all, only what is true really counts and there is no legal right as majestic as genuine and true sovereignty and all that it validly implies and exemplifies.
 J. H. W. Verzijl, International Law in Historical Perspective, vol. 3, 1970, p. 332.
 Charles de Secondat, baron de Montesquieu, The Spirit of Laws, vol. 2, Thomas Nugget, trans., book 26, chapter 23, 1878, p. 181.
 From the article "Dynastic Law" written by the author; 2016: http://www.nobility-royalty.com/id70.htm.
 Hugo Grotius, On the Law of War and Peace , Book 2, chapter 4, no. 40.
 Nuno Sergio Marques Antunes, "Estoppel, Acquiescence and Recognition in Territorial and Boundary Dispute, " Boundary and Territory Briefing, vol. 2, no. 8, 2000, p. 4.
 Permanent Court of International Justice, Series A/B, No. 53: Denmark v. Norway, Permanent Court of International Justice, 26th session, general list 43, judgment 20, 5 September 1933.
 Georg Schwarzenberger, International Law, 3rd ed., 1957, p. 253.
 Malcolm Nathan Shaw, International Law, 5th ed., 2003, p. 439.
 Hugo Grotius, On the Rights of War and Peace, Book II., chapter7, no. 1.
 Jean Jacques Burlamaqui, The Principles of Natural and Politic Law, vol. 2, part 2, chapter 4, no. 8(2).
 Ibid., no. 11(5).
 Willliam Whewell, Grotius on the Rights of War and Peace: an Abridged Translation, Book 1, chapter 3, no. 7, 1853, p. 37.
 George L. Craik & Charles MacFarlane, The Pictorial History of England During the Reign of George the Third, vol. 4, 1864, p. 522.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Rights of War and Peace, Book II, chapter 7, no. 26.
 Hugo Grotius, The Law of War and Peace, Book 2, chapter 4, No. 10.
 Lassa Oppenheim, International Law, A Treatise, vol. 1, 3rd ed., no. 490, 2005, p. 651.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 1, chapter 5, no. 62.
 Baron Arnold Duncan McNair, Law of Treaties, 1961, pp. 493-494, 531-533; and Lauterpacht Oppenheim, International Law, vol. 1, Nos. 538, 539, and footnote 1, 1920, p. 939 and Article 62 of the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.
 Yearbook of the International Law Commission 2002, vol. 2, part 1, chapter 2, no. 160, p. 112.
 The Chief of the Royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies is de jure King of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies was absorbed into united Italy by Garibaldi in 1860. Since that time the Neapolitan Bourbons have kept their claims alive through the rules and principles of prescriptive law by a series of diplomatic protests as well as the consistent use of their exalted titles and royal arms. The Royal House enjoys very close ties with the Roman Catholic Church, especially with the Holy See, which also lost its territorial sovereignty over the Papal States during the Risorgimento.
 Stephen P. Kerr y Baca, "Resolution of Monarchical Successions Under International Law," The Augustan, vol. 17, July 1975, 1977.
 Through the provisions of Article 6 of the 1947 Law of Succession, General Franco shrewdly retained the right to propose and to revoke the King-Designate. Don Juan Carlos was finally appointed Prince of Spain and King-Designate in July, 1969 under this provision, and succeed General Franco in November, 1975, becoming King of Spain.
 John Gibbons, Spanish Politics Today, 1999, p. 3.
 Don Juan's claim to the Spanish Throne as the third son of the late King Alfonso XIII is dependent upon (1) the renunciation of his older brother, Don Jaime, Duke of Segovia, on 21 June 1933; (2) the exclusion of Don Jaime from the succession and the designation of himself as the successor in King Alfonso XIII's will of 8 July 1937; and (3) the abdication of King Alfonso XIII in his favor on 5 February 1941.
 See the list of 18 well-known renunciations under public international law in the previous sub-chapter.
 Professor J. H. W. Verzijl in International Law in Historic Prespective, vol. 3, 1970, p. 332, observes that since the time of the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1714), customary international law forbids arrangements that might lead to a personal union of crowns "owing to the danger of the accumulation of power and the consequent disturbance of the existing political equilibrium. This has led to the express prohibition of concentrating two specific crowns on one head, . . . "
 This agreement, was contained in a letter dated 6 December 1900 from the Count of Caserta in his capacity as de jure King and Chief of the Royal House of Bourbon of the Two Sicilies to the Queen-Regent, was as follows: that before the marriage took place Carlo was to renounce his position as a Neapolitan Prince to permanently become a Spanish Prince and thus subject to the laws and constitutions of Spain and to the Royal House of Spain, and that all of his issue were to be Spanish in order that they might have a clear and definite status as the Spanish rather than Neapolitan Royal dynasts. This agreement was acknowledged in the Queen-Regent's response of 18 December 1900.
 In Spanish politics the term "Liberal Monarchy" is used to designate the rule of Isabella II and her heirs, Alfonso XII and Alfonso XIII, to distinguish them from the Carlist claimants.
 After the 1949 death of Prince Carlo (who had never questioned the validity and effect of his 14 December 1900 renunciation), Don Juan, Count of Barcelona, began a campaign to persuade the Infante Alfonso to claim the succession to the Two Sicilies.
At first Infante Alfonso was not very interested, but Don Juan was able to persuade him to write to Prince Ferdinand (III) Pius, Duke of Calabria, on 13 May 1950 and raise the issue. In this letter the Infant Alfonso states, "In Estorial Juan talked to me . . . because you were not passing on to me the titles of the House of Naples." Indeed, Infante Alfonso declares that he is not interested in challenging his father's renunciation for himself but is doing so only because of the urgings of the Count of Barcelona: "You will understand that for myself I am not interested. . . forgive my writing to you on this matter, but Juan charged me with it greatly."
Prince Ferdinand (III) Pius, Duke of Calabria, did not consider this inquiry worthy of reply, as he wrote to Prince Ranier on 8 December 1955, pointing out that Prince Ranier and Prince Ferdinand (Prince Ranier's son) would succeed him rather than Infante Alfonso due to the fact that Infante Alfonso's father (Prince Carlo) had renounced the Two Sicilies succession for himself as well as for his heirs and successors.
Before his death in 1960 Prince Ferdinand Pius made a formal will dated 15 February 1950 in which he specifically designated Prince Ranier to be his successor as Chief of the Royal House of the Two Sicilies in order to clear up any doubts on the matter. He also wrote numerous letters to persons in Europe, especially to those interested in chivalric and nobiliary matters, stating that his brother Prince Ranier, was to inherit all of his dynastic claims to the Two Sicilies after his death.
 Duke of Calabria is the normal title of the Heir to the Throne of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies; in exile the title Duke of Castro is used to designate the Chief (de jure King) of the House. However, since Prince Ferdinand Pius was practically an old man when his father died in 1934, he kept the title "Duke of Calabria" by which he had been known all of his life until his death in 1960.
 Documentation concerning Prince Ranier's successful contest of Infante Alfonso's attempted usurpation of his rights may be obtained from The Secretariat of the Royal House of the Two Sicilies, 113 Parco Margherita, 80121 Naples, Italy.
 Hugo Grotius, On the Law of War and Peace, Book 2, chapter 7, no. 26, and Book 2, chapter 4, no. 10 and also Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 1, chapter 5, no. 62.
 Lassa Oppenheim, International Law: A Treatise, vol. 1, nos. 486 and 488, 1905.
 Ibid., no. 490.
 See Articles 56 and 70.1(b) of the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties; see also Marjorie Millace Whiteman, Digest of International Law, vol. 14, 1963, pp. 413-415.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book I, chapters 5, no. 70.
 Samuel Pufendorf, On the Law of Nature and Nations, Book 7, chapter 7, no. 11.
 See no. 2 above, and J.H.W. Verzijl, International Law in Historical Perspective, Vol. 2, 1969, p. 17, and vol. 3, 1969, p. 322.
 Alienation of Sovereignty: Hugo Grotius, On the Law of War and Peace, Book 2, chapter 6, nos. 3 and 14; and Book 1, chapter 3, no. 12. Testamentary Transfer of Sovereignty: Samuel von Pufendorf, On the Duty of Man and Citizen according to the Natural Law, Book 2, chapter 10, no.6, p. 133; and Pufendorf, On the Law of Nature and of Nations, Book 7, chapter 7, no. 11; and Johann Wolfgang Textor, Synapses of the Law of Nations, chapter 9, nos. 26 and 27.
 Article 31.3 of the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 2, nos. 145 and 146.
 Elihu Lauterpacht, International Law Reports, vol. 33, 1967, p. 91; Note: "The principle of preclusion or estoppel . . . is a general principle of law whose validity in international law has been admitted, as illustrated by various judicial decisions, including that of the ICJ and the Arbitral Award made by the King of Spain and in the Temple of Preah Vihear case. . . ." (United Nations, Yearbook of the International Law Commission, vol. 2, part 1, 2000, p. 251).
 John Penford Thomas, A Treatise of Universal Jurisprudence, 2nd ed., 1829, p. 162.
 Ashraf Ray Ibrahim, "The Doctrine of Latches in International Law," Virginia Law Review, vol. 83, no. 3, April 1997, p. 647.
 Ibid., p. 650 and Lassa Oppenheim, International Law, a Treatise, vol. 1, 1955, p. 349.
 Ibid., p. 652.
 Ibid., p. 659.
 Ibid., p. 662; Note: "It is doubtless true that municipal statutes of limitation can not operate to bar an interntional claim. But the reason which lies at the foundation of such statutes, that ‘great principle of peace,’ is as obligatory in the administration of justice by an international tribunal as the statutes are binding upon municipal courts." (Ibid., p. 663 and Spader Case, United States v. Venezuela, 1903, at 162.
 Ibid., p. 691.
 United States and Venezuelan Claims Commission, United States and Venezuelan Claims Commission 1899-1890: Opinions Delivered by the Commissioners in the Principle Cases, 1890, p. 79.
 Ashraf Ray Ibrahim, "The Doctrine of Latches in International Law," Virginia Law Review, vol. 83, no. 3, April 1997, p. 658.
 Jacob W. F. Sundberg, Regarding dethroned princely Houses and their legal rights, 2012: http://www.mocterranordica.org/Sund_Eng.pdf.
 Reference unknown.
 Bin Cheng, General Principles of Law as Applied by International Courts and Tribunals, 2006, p. 380.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 14, nos. 214-215.
 J. H. W. Verzijl, International Law in Historical Prespective, vol. 2, 1969, p. 17.
 Lord Arnold Duncan McNair, The Law of Treaties, 1961, p. 11.
 Lassa Oppenheim, International Law: a Treatise, vol. 1, no. 508, 1955, p. 900.
 Yearbook of the International Law Commission, vol. 2, 1966, p. 188.
 Oppenheim and Sir Hersh Lauterpacht, International Law, 8th ed., vol. 1, no. 485, 1928, p. 696.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 14, nos. 214-215.
 Emmanuel Voyiakis, Oxford University Press Article -- Estoppel in International Law; 2013: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199796953-0058.
 Article 62 of the 1969 Vienna Convention.
 Sir Gerald Fitzmaurice, "Effects of Termination and of Reported," article 28 of the International Law Commission, p. 35 as quoted in Mohammed M. Gomaa, Suspension or Termination of Treaties on Grounds of Breach, 1996, p. 134.
 Lassa Oppenheim, International Law: a Treaties, vol. 1, Ronald F. Roxburgh, ed., 3rd ed., 1920, p. 689.
 Mohammed Bedjaoui, Manual of Public International Law: Achievements and Prospects, part 1, 1991, p. 229.
 International Court of Justice, Reports of Judgments, Advisory Opinions and Orders: 1999, March 1999, p. 649.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 14, nos. 214-215.
 Victor Rodriguez Cedeno, "Document A.CN.4/525: Fifth report on unilateral acts of States," Yearbook of the International Law Commission, vol. 2, part 1, 2002, p. 112.
 Ely v. the United States, 171 U.S. 220, 223.
 Harris et al. v. O’Conner, 185 SW2d 993 (Texas 1944).
 State Succession (Notorial Act) case before the Austrian Supreme Court in Civil Matters decided 13 May 1919, Entscheidungen des Obersteo Gerischtshofes in Zivilrechtssachen, vol. I (1919), No. 33, p. 115; Annual Digest, 1919-1922, Case No. 40.
 Mihan Singh v. The Sub-Division Canal Officer, Annual Digest, 1954, pp. 64-66.
 Pendery v. Panhandle Refining Co., 169 SW2d 766.
 (United States v. Perchman, 7 Pet. 51, 86-87 (1830).
 Samuel von Pufendorf, the classic publicist and jurist of inter national law, states the rule for the resolution of succession disputes in monarchies in his work On the Duty of Man and Citizen according to the Natural Law, Book 2, chapter 10, no. 12, p. 135 as follows: In case a controversy should arise in regard to the succession in a patrimonial kingdom, it will be best to take the matter before arbitrators among the royal family.
 L. Mendola, In Defence of (Real) History: Who is Head of the Royal House of Bourbon of the Two Sicilies and Grand Master of the Constantinian Order?, 2014: http://www.regalis.com/2sicilieshead.htm and Press Release, 2014: http://www.regalis.com/press-release.pdf.
 Ibid., 2014: http://www.regalis.com/dukes-statements.pdf.
 Hugo Grotius, De Jure Belli ac Pacis Libre Tres, Book II, Chapter VII, No. 26; and Book II, Chapter IV, No. 10; See also ABGB 22 of the Austrian Civil Code establishing that all legal rights begin at conception.
 Keith W. Stump, Otto von Hapsburg: "Europe’s Man of the Hour," The Plain Truth, vol. 44, No. 8, September 1979, pp. 8-9 and Last Chance Emperor; 2015: http://www.obitoftheday.com/post/7264283815/ottovonhabsburg)
 Lassa Oppenheim, International Law, A Treatise, vol. 1, 3rd ed., Ronald F. Roxbourg, editor, 1920, p. 650.
 Vladimir D. Degan, Sources of International Law, 1997, pp. 347-348.
 Professional Journal ALTAIR, 2014: (http://www.americanschoolofgenealogy.com/yahoo_site_admin/assets/docs/SPECIAL_ISSUE_-_SEPTEMBER.227182757.pdf)
 Benno Teschke, The Myth of 1648, 2003, p. 227.
 Edwin Robert Anderson Seligman and Alvin Saunders Johnson, Encyclopaedia of the Social Sciences, 1963, p. 442.
 Hugo Grotius, On the Law of War and Peace, Book II, chapter 7, no. 27(2).
 Samuel von Pufendorf, On the Duty of Man and Citizen, Book 2, chapter 10, No. 12, p. 135.
 Jean J. Burlamaqui, The Principles of Politic Law: being a Sequel to The Principles of Natural Law, Part 2, chapter 3, no. 42(1).
 Article 38(1) of the Statute of the International Court of Justice.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 1, chapter 5, no. 66.
 Case no. 96 as quoted in The Augustan, vol 18, no. 4, p. 128.
 Johann Wolfgang Textor, Synopsis of the Law of Nations, 1680, chapter 20, no. 18(4).
 U.S. Legal, Government-in-Exile Law & Legal Definition, 2011: http://definitions.uslegal.com/q/government-in-exile.
 Ian Brownlie, The Reality of International Law: Essays in Honour of Ian Brownlie, Guy S. Goodwin-Gill, Stefan Talmon, eds., 2003, p. 521.
 F. E. Oppenheim, "Goverments and Authorities in Exile," American Journal of International Law, vol. 36, 1942, pp. 568, 581-582.
 Friedrich Julius Stahl, The Doctrine of State and the Principles of State Law, Ruben Alvarado, trans. and ed., 2009, p. 183.
 Hugo Grotius, The Law of War and Peace, Book II, Chapter. IV, No. 10.
 Lassa Oppenheim, International Law: a Treatise, vol. 1, 3rd ed., Ronald F. Roxburgh, ed., 1920, pp. 650-651.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 11, no. 146.
 Vattel as quoted in James Q. Whitman, The Verdict of Battle: the Law of Victory and the making of Modern War, 2012, p. 117.
 Samuel Puffendorf, The Law of Nations and Nature, Book 4, chapter 12, no. 11, note 4 (2).
 J. K. Rowling, reference unknown.
 Slight changes in the wording from Sanchez Ramirez de Arellano, "JUS HONORUM AND THE "BEACH," edited by Guy Stair Sainty, 2011: http://www.chivalricorders.org/royalty/fantasy/vigo.htm.
 Derk Kinnane Roelofsma, The Emperor of Palm Beach; 2011: www.maineworldnewsservice.com/caltrap/The%20Emperor%20of%20Palm%20Beach.htm.
 The Pseudo Lascaris Princes and their Fantastic Claims; 2011: http://www.chivalricorders.org/royalty/fantasy/lascaris.htm.
 Legal and Judicial Reform; 2013: http://whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/pearl/www.geocities.com/Pentagon/6315/law/index.html.
 Bruce Fisher, "How do Italian feel about their current court system?," Injustice in Perugia: A Book Detailing the Wrongful Conviction of Amanda, 2011
 Christoph Engel, Preponderance of the Evidence versus Intime Conviction: A Behavioral Perspective on a Conflict Between American and Continental European Law, October 2008, p. 2, 2013: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1283503.
 Ibid., p. 19.
 Ibid., pp. 2, 10, 14.
 Ibid., pp. 19-20.
 Ibid., abstract.
 Michael Levy, reference unknown.
 Elwan Otto, "Article V(2)," Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards: A Global Commentary, Herbert Kronke, Patricia Nacimiento, Dirk Otto and Nicola Christine Port, eds. & authors, 2010, p. 365-372.
 Sir Michael Wood, "Non-interference in a state’s internal affairs used to be a rule of international law: is it still?," A summary of the Chatham House (The Royal Institute of International Affairs) discussion group meeting held on 28 February 2007, p. 3.
 Lord Denning quoted in J. A. Wade, "Executive and Judiciary in Foreign Affairs: Recognition of Foreign Lawmaking Entities," T. M. C. Asser Intituut, the Hague, Essays on International & Comparative Law in Honour of Judge Erades, note, 71, 1983, p. 252.
 Ibid., quote from Lord Atkin in Government of Republic of Spain v. S.S. Afantzazu Mendi in the above reference.
 Elliot v. Piersol, 1 Pet. 328, 340, 26 p U.S. 328, 340 (1828) found in William C. Hayward, How the West Was Lost, 2000, p. 394.
 State v. Property at 2018 Rainbow Drive, 740 So. 2d 1025, 1028 (Ala. 1999).
 Rainbow Drive, 740 So. 2d at 1029 (quoting Beach v. Director of Revenue, 934 S.W.2d 315, 318 (Mo. Ct. App. 1996)).
 Pub. Access Shoreline Hawai'i v. Hawai'i County Planning Comm'n, 79 Hawai'i 425, 431, 903 P.2d 1246, 1252 (1995).
 Pele Defense Fund v. Puna Geothermal Venture, 77 Hawai'i 64, 67, 881 P.2d 1210, 1213 (1994).
 Bush v. Hawaiian Homes Comm'n, 76 Hawai'i 128, 133, 870 P.2d 1272, 1277 (1994).
 In re T.R.P., 360 N.C. 588, 590, 636 S.E.2d 787, 789-90 (2006) (quoting Burgess v. Gibbs, 262 N.C. 462, 465, 137 S.E.2d 806, 808 (1964)), and Hart v. Thomasville Motors, Inc., 244 N.C. 84, 90, 92 S.E.2d 673, 678 (1956)) (internal citation omitted).
 Estate of Apple v. Commercial Courier Express, Inc., 168 N.C. App. 175, 177, 607 S.E.2d 14, 16, disc. review denied, 359 N.C. 632, 613 S.E.2d 688 (2005).
 Neuse River Found., Inc. v. Smithfield Foods, Inc., 155 N.C. App. 110, 113, 574 S.E.2d 48, 51 (2002).
 Pratts v. Hurley, 102 Ohio St.3d at 84; State v. Beasley (1984), 14 Ohio St.3d 74, 75, 14 Ohio B. 511, 471 N.E.2d 774.
 Tex. Ass'n of Bus. v. Tex. Air Control Bd., 852 S.W.2d 440, 444, 36 Tex. Sup. Ct. J. 607 (Tex. 1993).
 Barnes v. American Fert. Co., 144 Va. 692, 705, 130 S.E. 902, 906 (1925).
 Ferry Co. v. Commonwealth, 196 Va. 428, 432, 83 S.E.2d 782, 784 (1954).
 28 U.S.C.A.; U.S.C.A. Const Amend. 5. Klugh v. U.S., 620 F.Supp. 892 (D.S.C. 1985).
 Mauro Cappelletti, John Henry Merryman, Joseph M. Perillo,The Italian Legal System: An Introduction, 1967, p. 155.
 Miltimore v. Miltimore, 40 Pa. 151 as quoted in Pennsylvania Courts, Pennsylvania County Court Reports, vol. 49, 1929, p. 435.
 Lord Alfred Thompson Denning, Lazarus Estates Ltd v Beasley  1 QB 702, 712
 Peter Berresford Ellis, Erin's Blood Royal: the Gaelic Noble Dynasties of Ireland, 1999, pp. 104-105.
 Ibid., p. 104.
 The International Commission on Orders of Chivalry, Registry of Orders of Chivalry, 2011: http://www.icocregister.org/2007ICOCRegister.pdf.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 17, no. 282.
 St. Thomas Aquinas, "Treatise on Law," Summa Theologica I-Il, Q. 95, article 2, Objection 4.
 American Jurisprudence, a Modern Comprehensive Text Statement of American Law, State and Federal, vol. 16, 2nd ed., 1964, p. 404.
 Otto Gierke, Political Theories of the Middle Ages, F. W. Maitland trans., 1922, pp. 75, 84.
 The New Encyclopedia Britannica, 15th ed., part 3, vol. 17, 1981, p. 312.
 Robert Phillimore, Commentaries upon International Law, vol.1, no. 259, 1854, p. 221.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 11, no. 143.
 ". . . Immemorial prescription . . . means . . . especially with regard to sovereign rights . . . eighty to one hundred years . . . [of] uncontested [de facto rule] regardless of [the former governments] titular proof." (Dietrich Schindler, "The Administration of Justice in the Swiss Federal Court in Intercontonal Disputes," The American Journal of International Law, vol. 15, 1921, p. 169) That is, such proof, after the fact, becomes inadmissible after prescription takes place. That is, like any statute of limitation, the time comes when the loss is a done deal and cannot be altered.
 J. B. Austin, The Duties and the Rights of Man: a Treatise on Deontology, 1887, p. 399.
 Harvard Law Review Association, Harvard Law Review, vol. 17, no. 5, March 1903, p. 346.
 D. H. N. Johnson, "Acquisitive Prescription in International Law," British Yearbook of International Law, vol. 27, 1950, p. 332.
 United States Supreme Court Rhode Island v. Massachusetts, 37 U.S. 12 Pet. 657 657 (1838) or Rhode Island v. Massachusetts 37 U.S. (12 Pet.) 657 as quoted in Daniel Patrick O'Connel, International Law, p. 487.
 Case of John H. Williams v. Venezuela, decision of the Commissioner, Mr. Little, December 5, 1885, Reports of International Arbitral Awards, vol. 29, 2012, p. 289.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 11, no. 143.
 Sir Robert Phillimore, Commentaries upon International Law, vol. 1, 3rd ed., 1879, p. 367.
 Sir Travers Twiss, The Law of Nations Considered as Independent Political Communities, 1861, p. 178.
 The Compleat History of the Treaty of Utrecht as also that of Gertruydenberg, containing all the Acts, Memorials, Representations, etc. relating to the Negotiations there, vol. 2, 1715, p. 158.
 Freiherr von Christian Wolff, Jus Gentium Methodo Scientifica Pertractatum,  vol. 2, Joseph H. Drake, trans., no. 362, 1934, p. 186.
 Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro), Judgment, I.C.J. Reports 2007, p. 75, para. 204, citing Military and Paramilitary Activities in and against Nicaragua (Nicaragua v. United States of America), Jurisdiction and Admissibility, Judgment, I.C.J. Reports 1984, p. 437, para. 101.
 John McHugo, "How to Prove Title to Territory: A Brief Introduction to the Law and Evidence," Boundary & Territory Briefing, vol. 2, No. 4, 1998, p. 11.
 Weiler, International Law Outline, Spring 2009; 2012: http://www.law.nyu.edu/ecm_dlv2/groups/public/@nyu_law_website__students__student_bar_association/documents
 Martin Dixon, Textbook on International Law, 6th ed., 18.104.22.168, "Peaceful display, " 2007, p. 159.
 Pasquale Fiore, International Law Codified and its Legal Sanction: or, The Legal Sanction, 1919, p. 429.
 Travers Twiss, The Law of Nations considered as Independent Political Communities, 1861, p. 253.
 Henry Campbell Black, A Law Dictionary, 2nd ed., "Clear Evidence or Proof," 1910, p. 207.
 Anna Rideell and Brendan Plant, Evidence before the International Court of Justice, 2009, p. 196.
 Emerich de Vattell, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 18, no. 337.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 11, no. 143, 1805, Pomroy edition.
 Ibid., no. 140.
 S. K. Verma, An Introduction to Public International Law, 2004, p. 121; Note: "The former sovereign [deposed monarchy or dispossessed government] either may have renounced sovereignty expressly or by his or her behavior may have tolerated the continuing jurisdiction of the occupying state; over time that jurisdiction turns into sovereignty." (Werner Levi, Contemporary International Law: A Concise Introduction, 1991, p. 131).
 "In short, the legal effects of the principle [juris et de jure] are so fundamental [so basic and final] that they decide by themselves alone the matter in dispute. . . ." (Robert Yewdall Jennings, The Acquisition of Territory in International Law, note 3, 1963, p. 50).
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 1, chapter 16, no. 199; Note: A ". . . [long] period of the silence, or the passiveness (inertia), or the absence of any attempt to exercise proprietary rights, by the former possessor" gives to the usurper all the de jure sovereign and/or royal rights to the realm or territory in question. (Robert Phillimore, Commentaries upon International Law, vol. 1, no. 259, 1854, p. 221).
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 2, chapter 11, no. 143, 1805, Pomroy edition.
 Ibid., no. 140.
 Attorney-General Black official legal declaration letter of July 21,1858 as quoted in United States Congress, "Limitation and Prescription," The Miscellaneous Documents of the House of Representatives for the Second Session of the Fifty Third Congress, vol. 3267, issue 4, chapter 69, 1895, p. 4186.
 T. B. Howell, compiler, A Complete Collection of State Trials [Charles I through Charles II (1625)], vol. 4, 1816, p. 830.
 Surya Prakash Sharma, Territorial Acquisition, Disputes, and International Law, 1997, p. 108.
 reference unknown.
 Paul Harold Beik, The French Revolution Seen from the Right: Social Theories in Motion, 1789-1799, vol. 46, parts 1, 1956, p. 47.
 John McHugo, "How to Prove Title to Territory: A Brief, Practical Introduction to the Law and Evidence," Boundary and Territorial Briefing, vol. 2, no. 4, 1998, p. 10.
 Definition found in Civil Code of Louisiana, Art 762 as found in Stephen Potts, Falkland Islands – What the ICJ (International Courts of Justice) Might Say About Argentina’s Claims; 2015: https://falklandstimeline.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/falklands-at-the-icj2.pdf.
 D. H. N. Johnson, "The Minquiers and Ecrehos Case," International and Comparative Law Quarterly, vol. 3, 1954, 189.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book 1, chapter 11, no. 143; Note: ". . . peaceful and continuous possession raises a presumption that the original presumption of sovereignty was in conformity with international law and has the effect of consolidating [establishing or securing] the [the usurper’s] title." (Department of the Army, International Law, vol. 1: "Law of Peace," Pamphlet 27-161-1, chapter 4, September 1979, p. 5).
 David Hoffman, Legal Outlines, vol. 1, 1829, p. 197.
 Robert Phillimore, Contemporaries upon International Law, chapter 13, no. 255, 1854, p. 217.
 Luigi Taparelli D'Azeglio (1793–1862) quoted in United States Congress, "Limitation and Prescription," The Miscellaneous Documents of the House of Representatives for the Second Session of the Fifty Third Congress, vol. 3267, issue 4, chapter 69, 1895, p. 4186.
 See Vattel’s Law of Nature, Book. 2, chapter 11 and Upendra Nath Mitra, The Law of Limitation and Prescription (in British India), note 9, 1885, p. 38; Note: "Time itself is an unwritten statute of repose. Courts of equity constantly act upon this principle, which belongs to no code or system of municipal judicature, but is as wide and universal in its operation as the range of human controversy. . . . [In international sovereignty cases, a sovereignty] . . . can not escape the obligation of a universally recognized principle [such as a statute of limitations in prescription], simply because there happens to be no code of positive rules by which its action is to be governed." (Jackson Harvey Rolston, International Arbitral Law and Procedure, no. 566, 1910, p. 265).
 Daniel Patrick O'Connel, International Law, p. 487.
 Ibid., chapter 18, no. 337.
 Op.cit., Pasquele Fiore.
 Karen M. Hess and Christine Hess Orthmann, Introduction to Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice, 10th ed., 2012, p. 524.
 Emerich de Vattel, The Law of Nations, Book II, chapter 11, no. 150.
 Burden of Proof – Clear and Convincing Evidence; 2015: http://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/civil/charges/1.19.pdf.
 Robin Meadow, Clear and Convincing Evidence: How Much Is Enough?; 2013: http://www.gmsr.com/article/clear%20and%20convincing%20evidence%20-%20how%20much%20is%20enough.pdf.
 Ora Williams, Oriental America: Official and Authentic Records of the Dealings of the United States with Natives of Luzon and their Former Rulers, 1899, title page.
 EsoscienceNews's Comment: The Forgotten Monarchy Discovered; 2012: http://web.archive.org/web/20050309184318/http://www.sociologyesoscience.com/esoterica/michaell.html.
 Americana, vol. 6, part 1, January to July 1911, pp. 618-619.
 Code of Federal Regulations (8 CFR 337.1).
 Hugo Grotius, On the Law of War and Peace, Book 2, chapter 10: no. 1.
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