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Prince Vigo’s ghost reclaims Moldovan throne

March 6th, 2013

In Moldova, a coup d’état seems to have taken place. Behind the unexpected move is, apparently, prince Vigo von Homburg Deutschendorf, an aristocrat who already ruled the country once in the 16th century.

Vigo Von Homburg's credo: 'On a mountain of skulls, in the castle of pain, I sat on a throne of blood.'

Around noon, Moldovan press agencies Moldpres and Infotag each ran a breaking news story about a coup d’état taking place in the presidential palace. The coup was apparently well-prepared, but mystified many. The fate of president Nicolae Timofti is unknown at the time of writing.

‘The palace is surrounded by guards who answer only to the man behind the coup, prince Vigo von Homburg,’ says Sorin Păduraru, our associate reporter in capital of Chişinău. ‘The military has also declared its loyalty to the aristocrat.’

Moldpres reports there is a great deal of confusion, but no real resistance yet.

The return of von Homburg Deutschendorf to the highest office in Moldova might spell bad news. The prince already ruled the country with an iron fist from 1525 until 1610. ‘Variously dubbed “Scourge of Carpathia” and the “Sorrow of Moldavia”, he ended up dying a gruesome death at the hands of his own subjects, an exceptional feat for that time and region, where cruel rulers were the norm,’ volunteers Mr Păduraru.

Nicolae Ceaușescu, communist dictator of neighboring Romania, is widely thought to have derived the nickname ‘Genius of the Carpathians‘ from von Homburg to inspire awe and fear among his population. Romania and Moldova – formerly Moldavia – have a common history, and both languages are practically the same.

As a revenant spirit locked in a painting, von Homburg remained in obscurity until the fall of communism in 1991. After briefly dabbling in a career as a cult leader in the United States, he returned to Moldova where he gathered a small following among the politically disaffected and the far right.

Von Homburgs political programme is as obscure as it is unsettling. His credo reads: ‘On a mountain of skulls, in the castle of pain, I sat on a throne of blood. What was will be. What is will be no more.’

While surprising, the fresh coup d’état is not exceptional for what many would consider a failed state. Moldova is one of Europe’s poorest countries. Since its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, it has struggled with corruption, organised crime and the breakaway state of Transnistria.

‘The financial crisis has pushed Moldova into even deeper poverty, and that may explain why there is no major outcry. But frankly, we have no idea what happens next,’ admits Mr Păduraru.

Sorin Păduraru:
‘Vigo already ruled Moldova once and ended up dying a gruesome death at the hands of his own people’

World leaders have already expressed their concern and have called upon von Homburg Deutschendorf to respect the fragile democratic institutions of the Balkan country.


1 Comment | RSS

  1. Omg I wanna know more of prince Vigo!!!
    I had no clue he was real and I’m a history buff!!!

    Jonathan Price on 25 Apr 2015 at 03:49