Friday, 27 May 2016

Prince Oscar of Sweden's christening

At noon today, Prince Oscar of Sweden, Duke of Scania was christened in the Palace Church in Stockholm. He was baptised by Antje Jackelén, the first female Archbishop in the history of the Church of Sweden, and his godparents were Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway, his aunt Princess Madeleine, his mother's first cousin Oscar Magnuson (Princess Christina's eldest son) and his father's first cousin Hans Åström. At the end of the ceremony, his grandfather King Carl XVI Gustaf invested him with the Order of the Seraphim, Sweden's highest honour.
Among the guests in the Palace Church were family members, friends of the family, courtiers, Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and other members of the cabinet, Speaker Urban Ahlin and other representatives of Parliament, some ambassadors and county governors as well as representatives of organisations and institutions.
Prince Oscar's parents, Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel, were joined by his sister Princess Estelle, his maternal grandparents King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia and his paternal grandparents Olle and Ewa Westling. Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark and Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit also attended. Princess Madeleine was accompanied by her husband Christopher O'Neill and their children, Princess Leonore and Prince Nicolas, while Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia did not bring their newborn son, Prince Alexander.
Of the King's four sisters, Princesses Margaretha and Christina attended, the latter accompanied by her husband Tord Magnuson, their three sons Oscar, Gustaf and Victor Magnuson, their daughters-in-law Vicky and Emma Magnuson and Victor's partner Frida Bergström. Princess Désirée's eldest daughter, Baroness Christina De Geer and her husband Hans also attended. Other members of the extended royal family present were Countess Marianne Bernadotte af Wisborg, the widow of the late former Prince Sigvard, Dagmar von Arbin, the 100-year-old granddaughter of Prince Oscar Bernadotte, and Count Bertil Bernadotte af Wisborg, a grandson of Prince Oscar Bernadotte, with his wife Jill.
Queen Silvia's two surviving brothers, Walther L. Sommerlath and Ralf de Toledo Sommerlath, were also present, the former accompanied by his wife Charlotte. The Queen's nephews Thomas de Toledo Sommerlath and his partner Bettina Aussems and Patrick Sommerlath and his wife Maline Sommerlath were joined by Patrick's three children, Leopold Lundén Sommerlath, Chloé Sommerlath and Anaïs Sommerlath.
Prince Daniel's sister, Anna Westling Söderström, brought her husband Mikael Westling Söderström, her daughters Hedvig and Vera Blom, the former's boyfriend Oliver Dackell, and her step-children Casper and Caisa Söderström. Other relatives of Prince Daniel present were Tommy Henriksson, Hans and Marika Henriksson, Nils and Ann-Catrin Westling, Sara Westling and Jesper Carlsson, Frida and Rickard Westling, Hasse and Anna-Britta Åström, Hans and Helena Åström, Anders Åström, Anna-Karin Åström and Christer Wigren, Erik and Birgitta Westling, Ove and Yvonne Westling, Bo and Carina Westling, and Per and Rose-Marie Westling.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

First great-grandchild for King Albert II

The former Belgian monarch King Albert II, who abdicated in 2013, and his wife Queen Paola became great-grandparents for the first time yesterday, when their grandson Prince Amedeo and his wife Elisabetta "Lilli" became the parents of a girl, who saw the light of day at St Peter's Hospital in Brussels at 3.30 a.m. She was 52 centimetres long and weighed 3.3 kg. Prince Amedeo is the eldest son of Princess Astrid and was, until his uncle Philippe's late marriage in 1999, often thought to be a future Belgian monarch but is now sixth in line to the Belgian throne.
He did not seek royal consent ahead of his marriage to Elisabetta Maria Rosboch von Wolkenstein in July 2014, but later received it retroactively. King Philippe's decision to restrict the title Prince(ss) of Belgium to children and grandchildren of the monarch and heir apparent means that the newborn will not be a Princess of Belgium. However, she may use those titles Prince Amedeo has got from his father, a grandson of the last Austro-Hungarian Emperor, i.e. Archduchess of Austria-Este and Princess of Austria, Hungary, Bohemia and Modena.
Postscript: It was announced the next day that the newborn's name will be Anna Astrid, the names of her two grandmothers.