Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Wednesday Weird: The Drowning Of Ludwig II

Ludwig II was the king of Bavaria in the mid 1800s (1845-1866 for anyone who wants the exact years (you know who you are)).

Good for him, right? Ludwig II loved being king. He loved it so, so much that he took all the money in Bavaria and used it to buy fun things like swan boats. And building an outrageous fairytale castle.

You thought I was kidding about the castle, didn't you? This is Neuschwanstein, the inspiration for Disney's Sleeping Beauty castle

He loved this castle SO MUCH that he thought, hell, why don't I build two more?

He was king, after all, and could do what he wanted. He had no intention of living in them, he just wanted to build them. And in fact would send servants out every day to check on them.

Ludwig II also suffered from OCD and schizophrenia, so after he built his castles and bankrupted the whole country, the nobles decided to finally do something. They stepped in, declared Ludwig II unfit to rule (even gave him a fun nickname: The Mad King (I didn't say it was overly unique or clever)) and took him off the throne.

The end.

And then things get weird.

Three days later, Ludwig II is found dead in a lake near Munich.

Okay, well, sometimes people drown. It happens.

But it doesn't often happen in lakes that are only waist deep.
Or to people (like Ludwig II) who are excellent swimmers.
Or when their royal physicians are in the water next to them.

Why didn't the physician just save him you ask? Oh, because he was dead, too. The good doctor had marks and bruises that looked like someone had strangled him, but Ludwig's body was unmarked.

So, what do you do with a mystery like this? Nothing. You say the former king drowned and wash your hands of it.

Except for the fact that Ludwig had no water in his lungs at all.
Complicating things even more (I know) Ludwig and the doctor had forbidden Ludwig's aides to follow them while they went off to do . . . something. Presumably whatever it was that got them killed. And Ludwig had been known to say, more than once, that he wished to become an eternal enigma to himself and others.

Thoughts or theories?


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Perhaps he took something before swimming? Or he died before entering the water and someone put his body there to look like a drowning?

mshatch said...

So no one knows what...errand he and his physician were on? And if he was removed from the throne without much fuss, why kill him after?

I always knew of that castle as Mad Luwig's Castle and only more recently discovered it's true name. What a place.

Maria Zannini said... mark on Ludwig, but plenty on the doc?

Maybe the doc injected him with a syringe full of air to create an embolism, but before it reached his heart, the ex-king put up a fight.

Matthew MacNish said...

Eternal enigma, eh? Check.

Rena said...

I had some pretty good wild theories, but most of them hinged on him dying the same year Rasputin was born, but then I looked it up and Rasputin was born in 1869 not 1866 (Curse you dyslexia, always ruining my wild theories!). Anyhow, I like to go with an idea that someone basically went to the trouble of killing him to MAKE sure they couldn't give him back the throne.

The real question though, was the physician really in on it, or just an unfortunate circumstance?? I like this one, so many good answers, but I'd love to get a leetle more information. (also, I totally blew most of an hour reading up on Rasputin, so bonus!)

Hart Johnson said...

Iocaine powder *nods* Seriously... guessing poison. And while crazy and bankrupting are bad, that is a COOL castle.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...