Happy Birthday to Gloria, the Princess von Thurn and Taxis, who turns 59 today! Born Countess Gloria von Schönburg-Glauchau, the second daughter of the Count of Schönburg-Glauchau and Countess Beatrix Széchenyi de Sárvár-Felsővidék, she grew up in Togo and Somalia, moving back to Germany in 1970, where the family lived in reduced circumstances because their ancestral home, Rochsburg Castle, had been seized in 1945, and wasn’t returned until 1991. Countess Gloria studied at the Konrad-Adenauer-Gymnasium and at Kloster Wald, working as a waitress at a ski resort in St Moritz, Switzerland. In 1980, she married Johannes, who became the 11th Prince of Thurn and Taxis two years later, in a lavish ceremony. The couple had three children, Princess Maria Theresa, Princess Elisabeth, and Prince Albert. Prince Johannes were said to to be worth around $3 billion, and enjoyed a lavish lifestyle in the 1980s. Princess Gloria came to be known as the ‘Punk Princess’ and ‘Princess TNT’ for her outrageous fashion and hairstyles. When Prince Johannes died in 1990, he left debts of $500 million, and Princess Gloria acted as the trustee for her underage son, selling off jewellery and other assets to preserve the family fortune. She studied finance, accounting, and estate management and also became a Roman Catholic activist and philanthropist and an artist, and has managed to become a hugely successful businesswoman. I wish HSH a very Happy Birthday and Many Happy Returns!