On hearing the news that Prince William and Kate Middleton have officially announced their engagement I thought I'd take a look back over the 20th century's most famous royal weddings.
The first took place between the Duke of York, Prince Albert, and Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon on 26th April 1923. As the Prince of York, Albert could never have imagined he would have gone on to be George VI, but never the less the royal couple chose to wed in the grand Westminster Abbey, having a very public event. Elizabeth Bowes-Lyons wore a wedding dress typical of the time with a lace cap covering her dark finger waved hair.
Possibly the most scandalous royal wedding of the 20th century was that of Albert's older brother, Edward to an American socialite, divorcee, Wallis Simpson. The marriage famously led to King Edward VIII's abdication in 1936 due to resentment from the constitution, allowing him finally to marry the woman he loved. Awww, isn't that sweet?
In November 1947 Princess Elizabeth, later Elizabeth II, married Philip. It was a romantic engagement that had to be kept secret due to her age, but the two were obviously in love. Princess Elizabeth, as she still was, saved up her ration coupons (there was no escaping that, not even for the royals!) in order to afford the material for her wedding dress.
"Made of ivory duchesse satin woven from silk from Chinese silkworms at Lullingstone Castle, the dress was decorated with 10,000 white seed pearls, imported from America, silver thread, sparkling crystal and transparent appliqué tulle embroidery. Attached at the shoulders was a 15-foot star-patterned full court train, embroidered in pearl, crystal and appliqué duchesse satin. The ensemble was completed by a silk tulle veil held in place by a diamond fringe tiara, lent to the bride by her mother as 'something borrowed', and ivory duchesse satin high-heeled sandals, trimmed with silver and seed pearl buckles."
So, I think Wills and Kate have got quite a lot to live up to, don't you think?
When can I expect my invite?