Friday, August 19, 2016

Gerald Grosvenor, the sixth Duke...

...of Westminster, a multibillionaire and one of Britain’s richest residents, died at age 64. (I've already alluded to his death in a previous post.)

His obit in the Times is a classic example of a British aristocrat's (my emphasis):

Mr. Grosvenor (pronounced GROVE-nor) was chairman of the trustees of the Grosvenor Estate, which through subsidiaries manages assets of about $15 billion, with vast holdings in the Mayfair and Belgravia sections of London, adjacent to Buckingham Palace, where he hobnobbed with the royal family, and around the globe. 

In 1978 he married the former Natalia Phillips, who is descended from Czar Nicholas I of Russia and the author Alexander Pushkin and is the godmother to Prince William, second in line to the British throne. 

The Grosvenor family dates from the Norman Conquest. Its fortune is rooted in the 1677 marriage of Sir Thomas Grosvenor to 12-year-old Mary Davies, heiress to 430 acres of boggy marsh between what is now Knightsbridge and the Thames in London’s West End. 

Asked what advice he had for young entrepreneurs, Mr. Grosvenor told The Financial Times, “Make sure they have an ancestor who was a very close friend of William the Conqueror.”

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