Alexis von Rosenberg, a.k.a. the Baron de Redé, moved to Paris shortly after the Second World War, encountered the luxury for which even his privileged childhood could not have prepared him and rarely strayed from its lap until his death in 2004. By that time he had completed his memoirs, edited by Hugo Vickers and issued the following year. From Vickers’ foreword:
His obituary, published in the Daily Telegraph on 10 July, 2004, brought to the attention of the world a man who led an eighteenth century life in the twenty-first century. Many who had never heard of him were fascinated by this extraordinary figure whose aspirations and ambitions were so aloof from the general fray of modern life. Through the writing of his memoirs, Alexis was nervous. ‘Will anyone be interested?’ he asked with customary modesty. ‘Hundreds of pages of nonsense?’ he wondered at a low moment.
And if you happen to find yourself in London tomorrow, Vickers – who has also authored numerous books on aristocratic and royal figures – will be lecturing on the subject of Redé and the fabulous nonsense that was his life.