Queen Victoria and her son King Edward VII, when Prince of Wales, occasionally intervened in his career—the Queen thought that there was "a belief that the Admiralty are afraid of promoting Officerswho are Princes on account of the radical attacks of low papers and scurrilous ones". However, Louis welcomed battle assignments that provided opportunities for him to acquire the skills of war and to demonstrate to his superiors that he was serious about his naval career. Posts on royal yachts and tours arranged by the Queen and Edward actually impeded his progress, as his promotions wereperceived as royal favours rather than deserved.
He married a granddaughter of Queen Victoria, and was the father of Admiral of the Fleet Louis Mountbatten, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma, who also served as First Sea Lord from 1954 to 1959. Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, consort of Queen Elizabeth II, is his grandson.
1 Early life
2 Early naval career
3Marriage and family
7 Sea Lord
8 Adoption of the surname Mountbatten
9 Final years and death
10 Titles from birth to death
12 Notes and sources
14 External links
 Early life
Louis was born in Graz, Austria, the eldest son of Prince Alexander of Hesse and by Rhine by hismorganatic marriage to Countess Julia von Hauke. Because of his morganatic parentage, Louis was denied his father's rank in the Grand Duchy of Hesse, and from birth his style of Illustrious Highness and title of count of Battenberg instead derived from the rank given to his mother at the time of her marriage. On 26 December 1858, he automatically became His Serene Highness Prince Louis of Battenberg whenhis mother was elevated to Princess of Battenberg with the style of Serene Highness by decree of her husband's brother, Louis III, Grand Duke of Hesse.
Shortly after Louis's birth, his father was stationed with the Austro-Hungarian Army of occupation in Northern Italy during the Second Italian War of Independence. Louis's early years were spent either in the north of Italy or at PrinceAlexander's two houses in Hesse, the castle of Heiligenberg in Jugenheim and the Alexander Palace in Darmstadt. His mother spoke French to him but he had an English governess, and as a consequence grew up trilingual.
Amongst the visitors entertained at Heiligenberg were Prince Alexander's relations, the Russian Imperial family, and his cousin, Prince Louis of Hesse. Influenced by his cousin'swife, Princess Alice, a daughter of Queen Victoria, and by Prince Alfred, another of Queen Victoria's children, Battenberg joined the Royal Navy on 3 October 1868 at the age of fourteen and thus became a naturalised British subject. He was admitted by the Board of Admiralty without the production of a medical certificate, which was contrary to the usual regulation. He was enlisted as anaval cadet aboard HMS Victory, Nelson's old flagship, then used as a permanently moored training ship.
In January of the following year, the Prince and Princess of Wales cruised the Mediterranean and Black Seas in the frigate HMS Ariadne, and the Prince of Wales requested that Louis be appointed to the vessel, before his training was complete. As part of the same tour, Louis...