Bariatinskaya was born into Russian nobility. At 18 she married one of the Tsar’s aides-de-camp and became Princess of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Sayn. During the 1840s she was painted by Franz Xaver Winterhalter, with one of these portraits now in the J. Paul Getty Museum.
Alfons was a member of the Royal House of Wittelsbach. His Grandfather was King of Bavaria. He reached the rank of General of Cavalry in the army. His wife, Louise D’Orleans was also born into a royal family, the French House of Orleans.