As part of her diamond jubilee, Queen Elizabeth II of Britain hosted a lunch at Windsor Castle which saw a very impressive line-up of her fellow monarchs - indeed no fewer than eighteen of the world’s thirty monarchs were present. In addition, several lesser ranking royals represented some of those monarchs who were not present for the lunch and the British Queen had also invited some long-deposed monarchs, who were, rather bizzarely, included, and even given pride of place, in the official photo of the assembled monarchs.
The existing European monarchies were represented by the Queen and Prince Consort of Denmark, the King and Queen of Sweden, the Queen of the Netherlands, the Sovereign Prince of Liechtenstein, the King and Queen of Norway, the King and Queen of the Belgians, the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Luxembourg, and the Sovereign Prince and Princess of Monaco. The King of Spain was absent due to his recovery following his recent hunting accident, while the Queen of Spain, who had been due to attend, stayed away because of disagreements over Gibraltar. The monarchs of the Principality of Andorra and the Vatican were not present.
From the Middle East came the King of Bahrain and his wife Princess Sabeeka bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa, whose presence has been the cause of much controversy, the King and Queen of Jordan, Sheikh Nasser Mohamed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah of Kuwait, the Emir of Qatar and his wife Sheikha Mozah, the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Prince Mohammed Bin Nawaf Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia.
All three African monarchies were represented; Morocco by Princess Meryem, Lesotho by King Letsie III and Queen Masenate, and Swaziland by King Mswati III and the third of his thirteen wives, Inkhosikati LaMbikiza. From Asia came the Emperor and Empress of Japan, the Sultan of Brunei and his senior wife Queen Saleha, the King and Queen of Malaysia and the Crown Prince and Princess Srirasm of Thailand. Tonga, the only monarchy of Oceania which does not have Elizabeth II as its monarch, was represented by its new King, Tupou VI, and Queen Nanasipauʻu.
The ex-kings of Bulgaria, Greece and Romania were also in attendance, the former two accompanied by their wives, the latter by his daughter Margarita. The ex-Crown Prince of Yugoslavia/Serbia and his wife were also present.
Apart from Queen Elizabeth herself, the Duke of Edinburgh, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Henry, the Duke of York, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, the Duke of Kent, Prince and Princess Michael, and Princess Alexandra were the British royals present, which gives a total of 62 royals attending.
The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, as well as the Princess Royal, were absent due to other commitments, but the Prince of Wales and his wife will tonight host a dinner at Buckingham Palace, at which Queen Elizabeth herself will not be present. Tomorrow Lady Elizabeth Anson, a great-niece of the late Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother of Britain and stepdaughter of the late Prince Georg of Denmark, will host another lunch, where the monarchs and their representatives will be joined by several junior royals and relatives not present today.