RECENT MAJOR EUROPEAN ROYAL WEDDINGS
In the last ten years, royal aficionados and bridal fashionistas have been treated to the spectacle of royal weddings as Europe’s royal families have welcomed new members to their senior ranks. There has been much comment on Catherine Middleton’s commoner roots, but a cursory look at the family trees of today’s royals on the European continent shows that the last decade has seen a proliferation of commoners marrying royalty. Here are the major royal weddings of the last decade where the heir of a reigning European monarch married a commoner.
ROYAL WEDDING NUMBER TWO: NETHERLANDS
(2002) CROWN PRINCE WILLEM-ALEXANDER OF THE NETHERLANDS AND MAXIMA ZORREGUITA
In 2002, Prince Willem-Alexander, the eldest son and heir of Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, married Miss Maxima Zorreguieta. Willem-Alexander’s choice of a wife in the person of the well-educated Argentine-born Maxima, who enjoyed a career in banking and finance, was controversial largely because Maxima’s father, Jorge Zorreguieta, was a minister in the government of Jorge Rafael Videla. Videla’s regime was notorious for its human rights abuses. The Dutch government approved the marriage and Maxima and Willem-Alexander were married on February 2, 2002 in Amsterdam. Maxima’s elegant wedding three-quarter length sleeved gown was designed by the famed couturier, Valentino. Maxima’s gown withstood the rigors of the day, looking fresh and un-crumpled unlike Diana’s famed 1981 wedding gown which was marked by its wrinkled look. Maxima is the mother of three daughters, Princesses Catharina-Amalia, Alexia and Ariane.