Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Marriage of King Leopold III and Queen Astrid

On November 4, 1926, Prince Leopold of Belgium (1901-1983), eldest son and heir of King Albert I and Queen Elisabeth, married Princess Astrid of Sweden (1905-1935), niece of King Gustav V, in a civil ceremony in Stockholm. On November 10, the religious wedding would follow in Brussels. Both handsome, shy, sensitive, thoughtful, and noble people, Leopold and Astrid had fallen passionately in love. Since Astrid was still a Lutheran, however, a papal dispensation was required for the marriage. (Interestingly, it was the mirror image of the union of King Leopold I and Queen Louise-Marie, where the groom was Protestant and the bride Catholic). The princess also had to promise to raise her children in the Catholic Faith. Both her sons, Baudouin (1930-1993)  and Albert (1934-), would become Kings of the Belgians, while her daughter, Josephine-Charlotte (1927-2005), became Grand Duchess of Luxembourg.

Here is a beautiful video on the marriage of Leopold and Astrid, incorporating archival footage of the happy young couple:

Here are some related posts:

~ Photographs of the young couple
~Description of their civil wedding in Stockholm
~ A first-hand account of their idyll, by a friend of the royal family
~ Leopold's accession to the throne
~ Astrid's charity work
~Astrid's conversion to Catholicism, in 1930
~Astrid's death
~The legend of the tragically lost Queen


Theresa Bruno said...

The Belgium monarchy has the happiest of marriages, or so it seems to me. I love reading about happy marriages.

May said...

Most of them have seemed pretty happy.

I have an account of the civil wedding posted at my other blog, Sword and Sea. I don't know if you saw that but you might enjoy it.