Victoria Melita of Edinburgh was born on 25 November 1876, at the San Antonio Palace, in Malta. She was the daughter of Maria Alexandrovna of Russia (17 October 1853 - 24 October 1920) and Alfred, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (6 August 1844 - 31 July 1900). Her maternal grandparents were Maria Alexandrovna (8 August 1824 - 8 June 1880) and Alexander II, Emperor of Russia (29 April 1818 - 1 March 1881). Her paternal grandparents were Victoria, Queen of the United Kingdom (24 May 1819 - 22 January 1901) and Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (26 August 1819 - 14 December 1861). Victoria Melita's parents were married on 23 January 1874, at the Winter Palace, in St. Petersburg. Her siblings were: Alfred (15 October 1874 - 6 February 1899), Marie (29 October 1875 - 18 July 1938), Alexandra (1 September 1878 - 16 April 1942) and Beatrice (20 April 1884 - 13 July 1966). She was called Ducky by her family. Her sister, Marie of Edinburgh married Crown Prince Ferdinand of Romania on 10 January 1893, in Sigmaringen, Germany. Victoria Melita of Edinburgh married Ernst, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine (25 November 1868 - 9 October 1937) on 19 April 1894. He was the son of Princess Alice of the United Kingdom (25 April 1843 - 14 December 1878) and Ludwig IV, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine. The couple's first child, a daughter, Elisabeth Marie Alice Viktoria was born on 11 March 1895.
The Children of Victoria Melita of Edinburgh and Ernst of Hesse and by Rhine:
Stillborn Son (25 May 1900)
Her father, Alfred died of throat cancer on 30 July 1900, at Schloss Rosenau, in Coburg. He was buried at the Ducal family's cemetery outside Coburg. Victoria Melia and Ernst were divorced on 21 December 1901, by the Supreme Court of Hesse. According to Six Years at the Russian Court by Margaretta Eagar, the nanny for Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna (1895-1918), Grand Duchess Tatiana Nikolaevna (1897-1918), Grand Duchess Maria Nikolaevna (1899-1918) and Grand Duchess Anastasia Nikolaevna (1901-1918), "A sweet and pretty child, with wide grey-blue eyes and a profusion of dark hair. She was much like her mother, not only in face, but also in manner. Looking at her I used to wonder what those wide grey-blue eyes saw, to bring such a look of sadness to the childish face". Her daughter, Princess Elisabeth of Hesse died of typhoid on 6 November 1903, in Skierniewice, Poland. She was buried in Rosenhöhe, Darmstadt. Victoria Melita married her second husband, Grand Duke Cyril Vladimirovich of Russia (12 October 1876 - 12 October 1938) on 8 October 1905, in Tegernsee. He was the son of Maria Alexandrovna of Hesse and Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich of Russia. She became Grand Duchess Victoria Feodorovna of Russia. The couple's first child, a daughter Maria was born on 2 February 1907.
The Children of Victoria Melita of Edinburgh and Cyril Vladimirovich:
Maria Kirillovna of Russia (2 February 1907 - 27 October 1951) Married Friedrich Karl, Prince of Leiningen.
Kira Kirillovna of Russia (9 May 1909 - 8 September 1967) Married Louis Ferdinand, Prince of Prussia.
Vladimir Kirillovich of Russia (30 August 1917 - 21 April 1992)
Her mother, Maria Alexandrovna died on 24 October 1920, in Zürich, Switzerland. Victoria Melita died on 2 March 1936. She was interred at the family mausoleum in Coburg, Germany. Her remains were transferred on 7 March 1995, to the Peter and Paul Fortress.
Excerpts and Source: Six Years at the Russian Court by Margaretta Eagar.