Friday, 29 April 2011
My latest article: The history of royal marriage policy
The Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet today dedicates no less than 25 pages to the wedding of Prince William of Britain and Catherine Middleton (now the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge), of which I am responsible for two. More precisely I have written a short historical overview of the development of royal marriage policy, from the days when such marriages were generally decided by dynastic and political concerns until today when marriages based on love have become the norm, thus making it possible for royals to marry non-royals. It was towards the end of World War I that King George V and Queen Mary of Britain decided that their children should be allowed to marry British subjects (which at first in reality meant British aristocrats) and indeed World War I seems to be the watershed, not only because it drove a wedge between the victors and the defeated and dramatically reduced the number of reigning dynasties, but also because the Great War dealt the death blow to the notion that matrimonial alliances between dynasties would be able to help prevent wars. The full version of the article is available at Dagbladet’s website: http://www.dagbladet.no/2011/04/29/kultur/kronikk/bryllup/prince_william_and_kate_middleton/monarkiet/16346506/.