Behind every great man ...? by Coralie Kinahan

By Coralie Kinahan

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If von Bülow remained oblivious to the fact that his wife spent more time in her lover’s bedroom than his own, the baby’s name should have provided a hint: it was from the heroine of a Wagner opera. When babies Eva and Siegfried followed, there remained no doubt of paternity—and no dearth of scandal. Nevertheless, von Bülow kept on working with his rival, either in adulation of Wagner or fear of the controlling Cosima. ” In 1870, despite her Catholicism and her father’s disapproval, Cosima petitioned for a divorce.

Thankfully for Marx, Comrade Friedrich Engels obligingly claimed paternity and the boy, christened Freddy Demuth, was adopted by a working-class family. Engels did this both to save the Marxes’ marriage and because the news would have provided lethal ammunition to Marx’s enemies. When Jenny returned, she commiserated with Lenchen and admonished Engels. Freddy’s true paternity was buried for decades in the Marx mystique as Stalin desired to whitewash the unsavory tidbit and stuff it deep in the Soviet archives.

Saddened there was no reconciliation between father and son—or perhaps unable to bear it—Kasturba placed her head on her husband’s lap and breathed her last. A photograph shows Gandhi huddled in a corner, a shadow of himself. ” His only solace was that she had passed away in satyagraha, a woman who had spent her life turning the other cheek. After Gandhi was assassinated, his ashes were interred next to Kasturba’s in the prison courtyard. When Sir Richard Attenborough was producing his epic film Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru told him, “Do not deify him.

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