Early personality traits

In her chronicle, Ludwig’s mother Queen Marie of Bavaria (1825-1889) joyfully reports on her son’s dispositions and developmental steps. For example, she already saw in the six-year-old a "joy of art, he especially liked to build churches, monasteries and the like". The prince enjoyed Bible stories and had the corresponding illustrations shown and explained to him with interest. He also expressed a general enthusiasm for theatre games and costumes.

The fact that his grandson already liked to play with building blocks as a child particularly pleased his grandfather Ludwig I, a passionate owner-builder himself, and so he reported full of pride to his son Otto (1786-1868) in Greece: "When the Christmas gifts were handed out in 1852, Ludwig received the Victory Arch (Siegestor) made of wooden bricks from me; he loves building; I saw excellent, surprisingly tasteful buildings made by him. I recognise striking similarities in the future Ludwig to the politically dead Ludwig the First."

The watercolour by Ernst Rietschel (1804-1861) was given to Queen Marie as a Christmas present in 1850. The portrait shows the five-year-old Crown Prince Ludwig with a drum, a mallet and a tower made of wooden bricks. The objects depicted are symbolic of the later Bavarian ruler’s royal duties. Ludwig II seems to be setting the pace here like a drummer in the army, in order to protect the "state building" of Bavaria from possible attacks.

Julia Misamer