Royal News 2007

News Royal News

Last modified: 6 January 2008

Archived royal news from my old website for the year 2007.

January 1st

Countess Bettina Bernadotte af Wisborg and her husband Philipp Haug had a daughter, Linnea, in Konstanz at 2.30am on December 31. The couple is very happy with their second child and mother and daughter are doing fine. Linnea is 52 cm tall and weighs 3620 gramms. From today Countess Bettina will be the only one leading Mainau GmbH. Her mother Countess Sonja has now retired.

The Duchess of Cornwall was the least hard-working senior royal of 2006. She undertook 216 engagements. The Countess of Wessex performed 237 duties. The Princess Royal was again the hardest working British royal with 595 official engagements, the Prince of Wales had 500 and Queen Elizabeth II 525.

In a New Year’s poem issued today Emperor Akihito of Japan celebrates the birth of his grandson Prince Hisahito. The poem says: “Rejoicing with us / on the birth of our grandson… The voices of the people — I am happy hearing them.” The waka of Empress Michiko tells about a conversation she had with her pregnant daughter-in-law Kiko before the birth: “Looking / as if carrying a baby / for the first time / she tells me of the fetal movement / while the moon shines in the window.”

In his New Year’s speech King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand said that all Thai people should join hands to solving the various problems confronting the country, such as political, economic and security. He thanked the people for organising a “beautiful and grand” celebration to honour the 60th anniversary of his accession to the throne. He also all well-wishers for their expressions of “genuine concern” while he was hospitalised. The King wished that everyone should give compassion, goodwill and encouragement to one another for the good of themselves and the Kingdom.

14-year-old Felix von Quistorp, son of Karl-Alexander von Quistorp and his wife Maria née Freiin von Fürstenberg is missing since 28 December while visiting his grandparents in Weihenstephan. Police is searching for him since, but so far without success.

January 2nd

The Japanese imperial family greeted people making a New Year’s visit to the Imperial Palace this morning. Emperor Akihito appeared on the veranda three times accompanied by Empress Michiko, Crown Prince Naruhito, Crown Princess Masako, Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko. The Emperor said: “I am happy to celebrate the New Year together. At the start of this year, I pray for happiness of the nation and world peace.” The imperial family also turned up on the veranda in the afternoon, apart from Crown Princess Masako and Princess Kiko. In total 68.000 people visited the palace.

January 3rd

The Japanese newspaper Sankei Shimbun reported today that Japan will drop plans to allow women to inherit the imperial throne. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to ditch recommendations by a government panel in 2005 that an emperor’s first child should accede the throne. Mr Abe now plans to encourage debate on other ways to make the imperial succession more stable, the paper said.

Felix von Quistorp was found death in a 15-meter-deep well at the grounds of the castle of his grandparents in Weihenstephan. Divers found his body this morning after a new search on the grounds. Results of the autopsy carried out this afternoon indicates an accidental death.

Historians have suspected for a long time that Francesco de’ Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany and his second wife Bianca Cappello were poisoned, possibly by the Grand Duke’s brother Ferdinand. In a new study published in the British Medical Journal forensic and toxicology experts at the University of Florence report evidence of arsenic poisoning. Scientists Donatella Lippi, Francesco Mari, Aldo Polettini and Elisabetta Bertol tested a fragment of femur and beard hairs with skin tissue still attached taken from Francesco’s tomb in the Medici Chapels in Florence. Bianca’s grave was never found. They also tested organ remains found in broken terra-cotta jars buried under the crypt in the Church of Santa Maria a Bonistallo. Mrs Lippi says that DNA tests showed it was “highly probable” that one set belonged to Francesco. The other, which also showed evidence of arsenic poisoning, was female. Tests showed the beard hair had a low concentration of arsenic inconsistent with chronic exposure. However, tests on liver samples taken from the jars showed acute arsenic poisoning.

January 4th

Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain is to be represented at the preliminary hearings of the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales at the High Court on Monday and Tuesday. Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith, has appointed Sir John Nutting to attend the hearings. The Attorney General’s Office said the Queen would not be represented at the full inquest, which could take place later this year.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan today said about the succession issue: “Stable imperial succession is a basic issue for our country. We want to discuss the stable succession issue calmly and deeply, taking into account the fact that Prince Hisahito was born last year.”

January 5th

Queen’s Day in the Netherlands will this year be celebrated in the Province of Noord-Brabant. The royal family will visit Woudrichem and ‘s-Hertogenbosch on 30 April.

Prince Laurent of Belgium has been summoned to appear in court as a witness in the case involving fraud with money from the Belgian navy. Today King Albert signed a special decree making it possible for the prince to appear in court. Several suspects have claimed that the prince was aware of the fraud and knew where the money for the renovation of Villa Clémentine came from.

King Gyanendra of Nepal and his family haven’t collected the $ 330.000 earmarked as their annual salary and allowances. A government official says that in previous instances the royal palace collected the money within two days after the announcement of the budget.

Prince Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia didn’t show up at a scheduled court appearance today after his lawyer applied for a delay to ensure other sacked members of the royalist Funcinpec Party could appear with him. The prince has filed a complaint with the Phnom Penh Municipal Court claiming the election of a new president of the Funcinpec party last October was unconstitutional and as such the party is illegal and therefore ineligible to compete in the April 2007 commune elections under its current leadership. The prince yesterday said that he will not flee the country despite of his former political party Funcipec urging the authorities to arrest him.

January 6th

Ten police officers were asked to protect Kate Middleton, the girlfriend of Prince William of Wales, from photographers when the couple was leaving a nightclub early yesterday. Kate Middleton will celebrate her 25th birthday on Tuesday.

January 7th

Mohamed al Fayed is to demand that the Prince of Wales and the Duke of Edinburgh are called as witnesses at the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales. He wants them to give evidence in person so that his lawyers get an opportunity to quiz them about Mr Al Fayed’s conviction that the princess and his son Dodi were murdered. He also wants to make public the statement the Prince of Wales gave to Lord Stevens during his investigation, although Lord Stevens apparently has promised the royal family that his evidence would remain confidential. However, it will be passed to acting coroner Dame Elizabeth Butler-Sloss together with correspondence between Lord Stevens and Prince William of Wales. Michael Cole, Mr al Fayed’s spokesman, said: “We would want Prince Charles and Prince Philip to be called as witnesses but this is at the discretion of the coroner. The only person who is above the law is the Queen but there’s nothing to prevent Prince Charles and the Duke of Edinburgh being called.” A preliminary inquest hearing will be held at the High Court today and tomorrow.

Princess Haya of Jordan was appointed a member of the honorary board of the International Paralympics Committee during a meeting with its President Sir Philip Craven in Dubai. Princess Haya said, “It is a great honor to be asked to join the IPC Honorary Board. I believe that the principles embodied by the Paralympics Movement – strength, spirit, absolute commitment and determination to achieve excellence – are key messages from which all of us can learn and take inspiration. I look forward to working with Sir Philip and my fellow IPC Honorary Board members in the service of Paralympics sport.”

January 8th

Prince William of Wales today started his first day with the Household Cavalry at Combermere Barracks in Windsor. He will spend several weeks at the barracks before starting a five months of training at Bovington Camp in Dorset in March. He will train to be a troop leader with an armoured reconnaissance unit.

The coroner Lady Butler-Sloss said in a preliminary High Court hearing that she wanted the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales in May 2007. She doesn’t want the jury at the inquest drawn from the Royal Household but from the public. Lady Butler-Sloss said she would hold a joint inquest if shown to have jurisdiction on the matter. She suggested it would be “unbelievably expensive” to hold separate inquests into the deaths and said that separate inquests would also be upsetting for the families. At least 40 witnesses are likely to be called. “I’d hope to give you my considered written answers by very early next week at the latest. Because I am anxious to get going with this I would like to hold the next part of this at the beginning of March,” Lady Butler-Sloss said. Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, private secretary to Princes William and Harry of Wales, said they hoped the inquest would “move swiftly to a conclusion”.

January 9th

Prince Laurent of Belgium arrived in court in Hasselt this morning together with his lawyer Fred Erdman. It remained unclear until the early afternoon if he would be allowed to testify in court. At 1.52pm a 16 minute hearing took place in which he was only questioned by the judge. In answer to most questions he referred to the statement he had made to the judicial police on Monday evening. Prince Laurent made it clear that he had always trusted his former chief advisor, lieutenant-colonel Noël Vaessen. He had had full confidence in Vaessen who had told him that the navy would take care of the cost of his home renovations and thought everything was legal. After the hearing he left the building.

Lawyers of the Prince of Wales are preparing a test case to protect the privacy of Kate Middleton, girlfriend of Prince William of Wales. Kate Middleton is constantly harassed by the paparazzi lately.

Shaikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi was named Crown Prince of Fujairah in a decree issued by Shaikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Fujairah.

Fürst Karl zu Schwarzenberg was inaugurated as the new Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic by Prime Minister Mirek Topolánek.

January 10th

In a television interview on the occasion of the 40th wedding anniversary of Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Pieter van Vollenhoven today the Prince of Orange has said that he sees the couple as his ‘second parents’. When he was at secondary school he spent almost all weekends with them in Apeldoorn. He discusses important decisions in his life most of the time first with Pieter van Vollenhoven. Princess Maxima says he played an important role for her in the time she came to the Netherlands. He is also the one always correcting the mistakes in her Dutch. The children of the couple say they are very happy with the way they were raised. Princess Margriet and Pieter van Vollenhoven say that each year they come together with their bridal staff. On the occasion they still wear their wedding clothes. The couple today was named freemen of Apeldoorn by the municipality.

Late 2006 the Habsburg family has put Bran Castle up for sale for $78 million. The castle, also known as Dracula’s Castle, is one of the most popular tourist sites in Romania. It was only returned to the family in 2006. Yesterday councillors in Brasov said they had secured a loan to buy the castle, but Adrian Iorgulescu, minister of culture, said his ministry had first refusal on the castle under terms agreed when it was returned. However they don’t want to buy back the castle for the price asked.

January 11th

The Royal Palace has confirmed that Prince Laurent of Belgium is to pay back the money used to furnish and decorate his home Villa Clementine that his former advisor Noël Vaessen is alleged to have fraudulently obtained from the Belgian Navy. He will also pay back money given to the Prince Laurent Foundation.

The Earl and Countess of Ulster expect their first child in Spring. The couple, who lives in Chelsea, married in 2002. The Earl is the only son of the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester. The baby will be their first grandchild.

January 11th

Countess Andrea zu Solms-Laubach died unexpectedly on 6 January 2007 in Laubach. She was buried today at the family cemetery in Laubach. She was born on 31 July 1941 as the youngest child of Count Georg Friedrich and Countess Johanna zu Solms-Laubach.

January 13th

A photo session with Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Pieter van Vollenhoven with children and grandchildren was held this morning at Bad Gastein, Austria. The family, excluding the youngest grandchildren Felicia and Emma, posed for pictures at the Hotel Grüner Baum and afterwards they went sleighing at a nearby playground.

The ‘ohashizome’ ceremony – the first feeding by chopsticks – for Prince Hisahito of Japan was held today at his parent’s residence in Tokyo, 130 days after his birth. Princess Kiko held her son while a maid of the royal court dipped chop-sticks in a bowl of red bean porridge and held them to the lips of the little prince. Apart from the bowl two blue rocks and a salted redwing sea robin were placed on the wooden table. They were used to wish for a healthy body and strong teeth. The ceremony is a plea to the gods for the child to grow up healthy and never have to worry about hunger. The Imperial Household Agency reported the little prince weighs 6658 grams and is 64,5 cm tall. He is in good health.

The Supreme Council of Antiquities has launced a new plan to preserve the royal tombs in the Valley of the Kings in Luxor. They plan to limit touring times and duration and tour revenues will be funneled into restoration projects of the tombs. The council has recently opened a visitors’ center at the Valley.

January 14th

This week Prince Harry of Wales and his Blues and Royals regiment will follow a two-day course with the Operational Training and Advisory Group. The course includes Arabic lessons and is exclusively for troops who are to serve in Iraq. The regiment is set to serve in Iraq from April.

A Kuwaiti court sentenced Sheikh Tala, member of the ruling Al Sabah family, to death for drugs trafficking. They also fined him for about $35,000. The rulings of the court can be challenged. The Kuwaiti police arrested him and a group in April last year. The others of the group were sentenced to life and to seven years in jail.

January 16th

Princess Mathilde of Belgium, Prince Jaime de Bourbon de Parme, Princess Kiko of Japan, Sheikh Mohammed bin Essa al Khalifa, Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum al Maktoum and Sheikha Hessa bint Khalifa al Khalifa were appointed Young Global Leaders of 2007. The list of 250 young leaders was released today by the World Economic Forum.

January 17th

The next preliminary hearing for the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wale will take place on March 5 at the High Court in London. As part of the proceedings, a 3D computer model of the crash site, created for the Metropolitan Police investigation, will be shown. Coroner Lady Butler-Sloss will decide on the scope of the inquests and choose which of the witnesses will be called.

January 19th

Fire broke out at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh this morning. Palace staff and visitors had to be evacuated. Firefighters found that a transformer unit in the fire alarm system had caught alight.

Archduke Simeon and Archduchess Maria of Austria had a fifth child, Philipp on 15 January.

January 20th

The Prince of Wales has cancelled a skiing trip to Klosters, Switzerland. It is an effort to reduce his “carbon footprint”. The trip is said to be cancelled before the prince was criticised last week over plans to fly to New York to collect the Global Environmental Citizen Prize later this month.

Birgitta Fouret née af Klercker died at Paris on 17 January. She was born on 1 April 1942 as daughter of Fredrik af Klercker and Birgitta Zätterström. The funeral will take place at Paris on 22 January. She is survived by her second husband Olivier Fouret, her children Sebastian, Natascha and Katarina, daughter-in-law Julie and grandchildren Ferdinand and Stella. She was previously married to Prince Robin zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg.

January 21st

Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway celebrated her 3rd birthday. On this occasion the Norwegian royal court published a few nice pictures and a video.

Alfonso de Borbón y Pérez del Pulgar died on 18 January 2007 at Sevilla. He was born at Valladolid on 4 June 1937 as third child of Alfonso de Borbón y Pinto, of the Dukes of Santa Elena, and Angustias Pérez del Pulgar Marchioness de Santa Fé de Guardiola. He is survived by his wife Inés Medina Atienza, sons Fernando and Jaime and four grandchildren. His eldest son Alfonso died in 2005.

January 22nd

Princess Beatrice of York is said to plan spending a year in the USA after completing her A-level exams at St. George’s school in Ascot this summer. She plans to work for the charity Springboard For Children. Her mother is already a patron for the organisation which helps children with dyslexia. Princess Beatrice is suffering from dyslexia herself.

January 23rd

Hereditary Prince Kraft and Hereditary Princess Carolin zu Hohenlohe-Oehringen had their first child, a son called Christian Kraft. He was born in a hospital in Heilbronn on 16 January 2007. He was 49 centimeters tall and weighed 3000 grammes.

The engagement of Princess Marie-Therese von Hohenberg, daughter of Prince Peter and Princess Christine von Hohenberg, and Anthony Bailey, son of Colin and Veronica Bailey, was announced today in the Daily Telegraph. Anthony Bailey is chairman of Eligo International, a company which he founded in 1997. Princess Marie-Therese is an architect based in Vienna. Anthony Bailey is a friend of Lord Nicholas Windsor who married last November. “Nicholas’s wedding was so perfect that it inspired me to ask Marie-Therese,” Anthony Bailey told the Daily Mail. “I proposed at tea-time on New Year’s Eve. We’ve known each other for 14 years but only started dating a year ago. At the moment she lives in Vienna, where she works as an architect, but she’s going to move to London.” The wedding is to take place later this year. The date is not set yet, but might take place in Salzburg, Austria.

January 24th

The Greek Ministry of Culture called the auction house Christie’s and threatened with immediate legal action yesterday if the house wouldn’t stop the sale of more than 850 items that once were owned by King George I of Greece. They want proof that the objects were exported legally. They also want to know the exact origin of the items and how they came to Christie’s for auction. The sale will be held in London today and tomorrow. Christie’s has declined to reveal where the items come from and who the owner is. Former King Constantine II of Greece has denied that he is the seller. They said yesterday that the sale will go ahead. A spokeswoman for the auction house added: “The sale was announced nearly eight weeks ago and the Greek Government were well aware of it.”

January 25th

During a New Year’s reception at the royal palace in Brussels last night Prince Philippe of Belgium openly reprimanded Yves Desmet, editor-in-chief of the newspaper De Morgen, and Pol Van Den Driessche, political editor-in-chief of the tv-channel VTM. Prince Philippe holds them responsible for negative news about himself. He told the two men that if they go on like now they wouldn’t be welcome at the palace anymore. Princess Mathilde reportedly tried to stop her husband, but she didn’t manage. Michel Malherbe, spokesman of the palace today said that the conversation between the prince and the two men may have become unpleasant but said they will remain welcome at the palace. Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt said that the attitude of the prince is not appropriate. He said to the palace that he is concerned about the way the prince deals with the press.

On the occasion of the 5th wedding anniversary of the Prince of Orange and Princess Maxima of the Netherlands Strengholt MultiMedia released a DVD in co-operation with the NOS and the Nederlands Instituut voor Beeld en Geluid. The DVD is called ‘Princes of Orange – Engagement and Wedding’. It shows summaries of royal engagements and weddings of Queens Wilhelmina, Juliana and Beatrix, Princesses Irene, Margriet and Christina, as well as the Princes Willem-Alexander, Friso, Constantijn, Maurits, Bernhard, Pieter-Christiaan and Floris.

Rear admiral Timothy Laurence, husband of the Princess Royal, has been appointed a vice admiral in the Royal Navy. He has also been made chief executive of defence estates. He will start in his new position in April. He currently is assistant chief of defence staff.

The auction of Greek royal items at Christie’s in London has raised $18.4 million in the past two days. The most expensive item was King Christian IX of Denmark’s silver wedding gift, a pair of massive Victorian silver pilgrim flasks, which were sold for $1.1 million. A gold Faberge egg sold for $546,680. Christie’s said much of the collection came from the former royal estate at Tatoi, but declined to identify the seller.

The central bank of Nepal is planning to remove all images of the King from future notes and coins. They already have submitted samples of alternative images to the government for approval.

Lawyer Corin Trandafir, representing the Habsburg family in Romania, said no sale transaction was completed in the case of Bran castle. He confirmed that his client withdrew the € 60 million offer made to Brasov County Council. The castle is not sold yet because of issues with the Romanian state that have to be solved. Mr Trandafir said there have been several offers from abroad for the castle between € 60 million and € 100 million. When an agreement is reached regarding the sum with one of the potential buyers, the Romanian state will receive the same offer as they have the first right to buy. President of the Brasov County Council, Aristotel Cancescu said today he had receivd a fax from Archduke Dominic of Austria saying that the castle had been sold for a higher price to a company across the ocean. He thinks that is sad news as it means that Brasov and Romania have lost an important tourist attraction.

Countess Thierry de Limburg Stirum, born Princess Marie-Immaculée de Croÿ, died at Huldenberg, Belgium, on 23 January. She was born at Rumillies Castle, Belgium, on 16 OCtober 1905 as daughter of Prince Charles de Croÿ and Countess Mathilde de Robiano. The funeral will take place at Huldenberg on 27 January.

January 26th

Clive Goodman, journalist of News of the World, and private investigator Glenn Mulcaire, were sentenced to respectively four and six months in jail after admitting hacking into mobile phones messages belonging to aides of the British Royal Family. The judge also made a confiscation order for £12,300 on Mr Mulcaire, if not he will face a further year in prison. Judge Mr Justice Gross described their behaviour as “reprehensible in the extreme”. He said: “This was serious criminal conduct. It’s of very first importance to the fabric of our public life that such intrusive, sustained, criminal conduct should be marked by an immediate loss of liberty.” Andy Coulson, editor of the News of the World, today resigned over the scandal. He said he took the “ultimate responsibility” for the affair.

Queen Rania of Jordan today was named as UNICEF’s first-ever Eminent Advocate for Children. This was announced at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “Her Majesty Queen Rania has been a tireless champion for children,” said UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman. “This title recognizes her steadfast commitment to creating a better world for children.”

During the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum Princess Lolway al-Faisal of Saudi Arabia was asked what she would do if she would be Queen of Saudi Arabia for one day. She answered she would let women drive or else wanted a great transportation system.

January 27th

Mohamed Al Fayed is challenging the decision not to appoint a jury for the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales and his son Dodi Al Fayed. He said: “I firmly believe justice must be done and be seen to be done. I am certain that they were murdered. How can a coroner for the royal household instil confidence she will investigate all facts and reach impartial decisions?”

January 28th

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall are paying a three-day visit to the USA. Yesterday the couple visited Philadelphia where they visited the Liberty Bell, attended a reception by the governor of Pennsylvania and a concert at the Academy of Music. They then travelled to New York by private train. There the couple visited the Harlem Children’s Zone and saw social service, health and educational projects. The Prince of Wales today also received the Global Environmental Citizen Prize by Harvard Medical School’s Center for Health and the Global Environment. It was handed over to him by last year’s winner Al Gore.

Fürst Philipp and Fürstin Saskia zu Hohenlohe-Langenburg had a second son early this morning at 4:52am. Gustav was born at hospital in Bad Mergentheim. He weighed 4000 grammes and is 54 cm tall. Mother and son are doing fine.

Prince Hubertus von Hohenlohe broke a bone in his lower leg during the World Cup slalom race in Kitzbühel, Austria today. He was airlifted to hospital after his fall. It ends his plans to compete in a record 13th world championship in February. Although the almost 48-year-old, who is skiing for Mexico, usually took the last place in his world cup races, he nevertheless broke many records for longevity. He took part in 12 world championships and in four Olympic Games. Earlier this month Prince Hubertus told he was targeting a further Olympic appearance at the 2010 Games in Vancouver after missing the one of 2006.

January 30th

An intruder armed with a pitch-fork and carrying a sack managed to get near Highgrove, the house of the Prince of Wales, while the Prince and the Duchess of Cornwall were asleep at 4am this morning. He was caught by the police near the house. He was released on police bail. A major security review is under way. A former Royal Protection officer said: “It is concerning that at a time of unprecedented security concerns, an intruder was able to get so close to Highgrove House.”

February 1st

The Golden Palace of Nero in Rome will partly reopen to visitors on February 6 it was said yesterday. Guided tours contain no more than 20 people and visitors are required to wear helmets. Archaeologist Irene Pignatelli said: “The aim of this type of visit is to show how the residence can be assaulted (by weather), how to intervene and what happens after the restoration.”

February 2nd

Queen Margrethe II of Denmark will undergo surgery on her right knee on 8 February at Århus Hospital by Dr. Anders Odgaard. She had a surgery on her left knee there last June. She will thereafter return to Amalienborg. It is expected engagements in the next one to two months have to be cancelled or to be carried out by Prince Henrik or Crown Prince Frederik.

Archaeologists have uncovered Imperial Standards, lances, and glass spheres believed to be the lost treasure of the last pre-Christian emperor Maxentius at Palatine Hill in Rome.

February 3rd

Countess Zaria of Orange-Nassau, daughter of Prince Friso and Princess Mabel of Orange-Nassau was christened in private at Palace Huis ten Bosch in The Hague today. She was christened according to the order of service of the Amsterdam Student ecclesia by Huub Oosterhuis. Like her elder sister Luana she will not be registered at a church denomination as the parents will leave this important decision to Zaria. The godparents were the Prince of Orange, Prince Jaime de Bourbon de Parme, Ruben Abeling, Nicoline Wisse Smit and Maria Lux Luano.

February 4th

The Duchess of York, will become the American Cancer Society’s Mother of the Year this week. When she was asked whether she would like to receive the award, Ferguson said she first talked to her children, who told her that of course she should. “I can safely say one of the best things I’ve done is be a good mother,”the Duchess said.

Prince Hans Adam II and Princess Marie of Liechtenstein and their family were received by Pope Benedict XVI yesterday.

February 5th

Former King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia has called on members of the royal family not to oppose the ruling party in Cambodia and said that all members of the royal family should stay away from politics.

February 6th

Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain today marked the 55th anniversary of her accession to the throne in private on her Norfolk estate of Sandringham, where she arrived yesterday evening after having visited the Netherlands. The Queen visited the International Court of Justice in The Hague. Furthermore she and the Duke of Edinburgh, accompanied by Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, attended a special ceremony at the 400-year-old English Reformed Church at the Begijnhof in Amsterdam and afterwards visited an exhibition about the church at the Amsterdam Historical Museum.

Prince Constantijn of the Netherlands had surgery on his right knee this morning at the Haga Hospital in The Hague. The operation went well. The Prince left hospital this evening.

February 7th

Princess Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg will marry her 28-year-old boyfriend Martin Jørgensen on 3 March 2007, the Danish royal court confirmed today. The marriage will take place in private. Afterwards Alexandra won’t be a member of the Danish royal family any longer and will carry the name Alexandra Christina Countess af Frederiksborg. She will keep her apanage, but without tax and VAT exemptions. The couple will live with Alexandra’s sons Nikolai and Felix at the Villa of Alexandra in Østerbro.

Erika Ortiz Rocasolano, the 31-year-old youngest sister of the Princess of Asturias, died this morning at her house in Valdebernado, Madrid. Her body was transferred to the Forensic Institute for autopsy this afternoon. The family Ortiz has asked for prudence and respect. Nor the Spanish royal house nor the family wanted to say more about the circumstances in which she died. Newspaper El Pais says she took two days off from work at Globomedia production company and that she had been depressed for some time. Erika separated from her husband Antonio Vigo in May 2006. The couple had one daughter, Carla, who is six-years-old.

Clotilde, The Princess of Venice, this evening received the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres during a ceremony at the Ministry of Culture in Paris.

February 8th

Queen Margrethe II of Denmark underwent successfull surgery this morning at Århus Hospital. She received an artificial right knee. She was operated by Anders Odgaard and Frank Madsen.

The cremation of Erika Ortiz Rocasolano took place in private at the crematorium de La Paz in Madrid this afternoon. The ceremony was attended by members of the family as well as members of the Spanish royal family. Telma Ortiz, the other sister of the Princess of Asturias, and Queen Sofia of Spain weren’t able to attend as they had to travel home from Asia and couldn’t make it in time for the cremation. The Princess of Asturias is said to be “absolutely destroyed”. Today a very emotional Letizia talked to the media outside of the crematorium and thanked all people for expressing their sorrows upon the death of her sister.

February 9th

In the book ‘En helt vanlig dag på jobben’ former Se og Hør contributor Håvard Melnæs reveals how the weekly magazine got his news. He describes how informants within the police department, banks, credit card companies and the Royal Palace received payment for tips that resulted in stories. Mr Melnæs says he even was asked to buy hidden microphones and other equipment to be used for spying members of the royal family. The magazine editors deny that they did anything wrong and say they work the same way as other magazines.

February 10th

The funeral service took place this evening for Erika Ortiz Rocasolano at the Nuestra Señora la Anunciación Parish church in Madrid. The service was attended by members of the family. Telma Ortiz Rocasolano and Queen Sofia of Spain attended, as well as Princess Irene of Greece, Infanta Margarita of Spain and her husband and children and Bruno Gómez-Acebo.

Countess Sophie von Waldburg zu Wolfegg und Waldsee married Giovanni baron Malfatti di Montetretto at the St Gallus and Ulrich Church in Kisslegg today. Among the 250 guests were Fürst Hans Adam II and Fürstin Marie of Liechtenstein and their son Maximilian, the hereditary Countess of Waldburg-Zeil and the Duke and Duchess of Hohenberg.

February 11th

A photosession with Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, the Prince of Orange and Princess Maxima with their two daughters was held at Lech, Austria this morning. As big surprise also Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands and their three children took part. Princess Alexia stole the show after crying loudly when falling into the snow with bare hands. Princess Maxima is not going to ski this year she said, but will try to learn her eldest daughter Amalia how to ski. She also said she and her husband just hope for a healthy third child and that they don’t know yet if it will be a boy or a girl.

February 12th

The new book by Håvard Melnæs, a former reporter of the magazine, says royal bank account statements were leaked to Se og Hør magazine. Assistant information chief Rune Sjøhelle of the Nordea Bank said that if the story is correct the bank will launch an internal investigation immediately before going to the police. The royal palace says they have chosen not to comment on the revelations.

The Duchess of Cornwall is to have a hysterectomy – a (partial) removal of the womb for medical reasons – at the beginning of March. She will spend several days in hospital and afterwards recover at home for six weeks. Clarence House says the surgery is a routine and the Duchess doesn’t have cancer. The spokeswoman said: “It’s something that’s being done on advice of her doctor, but is something that’s very common for women of her age.” The surgery means she will have to cancel some planned engagegements during her recovery.

February 13th

Retired Colonel Noel Vaessen, former adviser of Prince Laurent of Belgium, was found guilty of forgery in the Navy corruption trial today. He received a 2 1/2 year sentence of which two years were suspended. The other six months don’t have to be served.

February 14th

In an email to the newspapers Dagnes Næringsliv and Dagbladet Ari Behn, husband of Princess Märtha Louise of Norway, says he was already aware in 2002 that his credit card use details were being leaked. He changed banks in 2004. He said that he and his wife went on their honeymoon with a suitcase full of money to keep their spending private. He claims that someone working at Defense leaked his military examination results, including physical tests, IQ tests and interviews, to the weekly magazine Se og Hør. A spokeswoman for Defense said they are trying to find out what has happened.

Duke Philipp and Duchess Marie Caroline von Württemberg had their fourth child and third daughter on February 1. She is named Anna.

February 15th

Queen Margrethe II of Denmark was discharged from hospital after her knee-replacement surgery. According to Ove Ullerup she is doing fine and has started with her rehabilitation program.

Former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond will join two royal genealogy experts in the prime-time ITV1 documentary Lost Royals. They hope to uncover details of the illegitimate children of British monarchs.

February 16th

Japanese publisher Kodansha Ltd. has decided not to publish a Japanese translation of the English-language book ‘Princess Masako: Prisoner of the Chrysanthemum Throne’ by Australian journalist Ben Hills. The book was released by Random House in December. In the past week the Japanese Imperial Household Agency and the Foreign Ministry demanded an apology from the author for ‘disrespectful descriptions, distortions of facts and judgmental assertations with audacious conjectures and coarse logic.’ Kodansha Ltd. denies it scraps the translation because of the protests, but says it was a response to the refusal of the author to acknowledge making factual errors during an interview with Japanese television on Friday. He had approved corrections in a translated draft by the publisher.

The motorcade of King Gyanendra of Nepal was stoned when the King was near the Pashupatinath Temple in Kathmandu to celebrate a Hindu festival. The crowd also shouted: “Gyanendra thief, leave the country”. The King remained unhurt and was driven back to the palace after having worshipped Shiva at the temple.

February 19th

For a new BBC TV-series called History Detectives archaeologists hope to find the missing French gold sent to Scotland to help fund a Jacobite Rebellion in 1746 buried under the beach at Arisaig. Mr Neil Oliver who is leading the hunt said that the original sum of money sent from France may today be worth £5m. History Detectives is to be broadcasted on BBC Two later this year.

In a speech on Democracy Day King Gyanendra of Nepal has defended his takeover on 1 February 2005. He says he was compelled to do so in accordance with the people’s aspiration and to reacivate elected bodies by maintaining law and order. Members of the cabinet and leaders of political parties in Nepal have said that the statement of the King is against the spirit of the people’s movement and the Interim Constitution. They say the message doesn’t represent the official views of the government. Student and youth organisations protested at Ratna Park in Kathmandu against the message.

February 20th

The Phnom Penh Municipal Court has issued a warrant on Friday to ask the national police of Cambodia to apprehend and escort Prince Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia to court for questioning upon his return to Cambodia. The prince currently is in France. He twice failed to attend court to be questioned about an accusation that he pocketed the money from selling the headquarters of the co-ruling Funcinpec Party.

February 21st

The 70th birthday of King Harald V of Norway was celebrated today with a church service at the Trinity Church in Oslo. During the service a children’s choir sang Happy Birthday for the King. A 21-gun salute was heard from the Akershus Fortress in Oslo. In the afternoon he unveiled a statue of his late mother, Crown Princess Märtha, at the palace park. In the evening the Norwegian government hosted a banquet at the Akershus Fortress for 160 guests. At the end of the banquet King Harald said that it is fun to be alive, at least most of the time. In an interview he recently said that he thought it was much more fun to turn 10, when he had his whole life ahead of him, than to turn 70. However he said he is highly satisfied with his life and has no plans to retire.

Screenwriter of the film The Queen Peter Morgan said in the American film magazine Fade In that he, director Stephen Frears and actress Dame Helen Mirren, who played the leading role in the film The Queen, have been invited by the private secretary of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain to have lunch at Buckingham Palace. Mr Morgan says he gathers that that means that the Queen might pop in.

The Nepalese Government wants to initiate action against King Gyanendra for his Democracy Day message in which he has defended his takeover of power on 1 February 2005. They are planning to take a decision after holding a meeting.

It is reported Princess Kalina of Bulgaria is to give birth to her first child at the private Japanese Tokuda Hospital in Sofia, Bulgaria, on 12 March most likely by a Caesarean section. The last royal baby being born in Bulgaria was Kalina’s father former King Simeon II. Princess Kalina and her husband Kitin Munoz have visited the hospital on 24 January. The hospital hasn’t confirmed the news.

February 22nd

Clarence House and the Ministry of Defence today confirmed that Prince Harry of Wales will be deployed to Iraq later this year in command of a troop from a squadron of the Household Cavalry Regiment. The decision to send him has been a military one made by the Chief of the General Staff, General Sir Richard Dannatt, in conjunction with Prince Harry’s commanding officer. They have also consulted the Royal Household. The statement says that they won’t precisely say where he will serve or what his exact role is and ask media to respect this matter of operational security in order that Prince Harry can undertake a normal tour of duty as he wishes.

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands today installed the new government of the Netherlands.

February 23rd

Royal guests for the birthday party of King Harald V of Norway have arrived in Oslo today. Among them were Prince Henrik, Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, King Carl XVI Gustaf, Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria and Princess Madeleine of Sweden, the Prince of Orange, Princess Maxima, Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands, Prince Friso and Princess Mabel of Oranje-Nassau, the Earl of Wessex, former King Constantin and Queen Anne-Marie of Greece. This evening there was a gala performance at the City Hall of Oslo hosted by Princess Märtha Louise of Norway.

In his birthday interview Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan asked people to be patient with his wife Crown Princess Masako as she recovers from a stress-related illness. He said her health is slowly improving, but that she needs to regain her confidence before resuming her official duties. He didn’t want to comment on the book about his wife written by Australian journalist Ben Hills, but only said he hadn’t read it. The Imperial Household Agency released several photos as well as a video of the Crown Prince and his family.

Devyani Rana married Aishwarya Singh in India in a grand two-day ceremony yesterday and today attended by 5000 guests, including the prime minister of India. Crown Prince Dipendra of Nepal shot several family members and himself in 2001. It is believed the reason was that his parents didn’t allow him to marry Devyani Rana.

February 24th

The guests for the 70th birthday party of King Harald V of Norway visited the Norwegian Museum of Cultural History today. They watched a cultural programme that included folk dance and crafts.They also joined outdoor activities. In the evening a ball was held at the Royal Palace in Oslo. Pictures were released of the attending heads of state and spouses, the crown princes and crown princesses and a all guests.

February 25th

The Norwegian royal family and the remaining guests made a sledge ride through the snow at Sollihøgda. The grandchildren of King Harald V and Queen Sonja stole the show. Several guests left Oslo early today and missed the ride.

February 26th

The Museum Gustavianum in Uppsala is celebrating the Tercentenary of the birth of Linnaeus by hosting the exhibition “A Glimpse of Paradise: Prince Carl Philip Interprets the Botanical Garden in Uppsala.” Prince Carl Philip of Sweden presents a photographic portrait of the Botanical Garden under the guidance of photographer Mattias Klum. The pictures also form the basis of a book about the Botanical Garden that Uppsala University has taken the initiative for ahead of the 2007 Linnaeus Tercentenary. The book and the exhibition have been designed by the artist Michel Östlund, together with Prince Carl Philip. The exhibition can be seen from 30 May to 15 October 2007.

Last night’s Academy Awards ceremony in Los Angeles had quite a royal/noble character. Dame Helen Mirren won the Oscar for best actress for her leading role in ‘The Queen’. Forest Whitaker won the Oscar for best actor for his leading role in ‘The Last King of Scotland’, a film about Idi Amin. The Oscar for the best foreign language film went to ‘The Lives of Others’ from Germany, by director Count Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck.

February 27th

The new business microsite dedicated to the role of the Duke of York as special representative for International Trade and Investment of Great Britain was launched at the website of the British royal family. The website aims to explain his role which he undertakes in addition to his other royal duties.

Princess Beatrice of York was named third most eligible bachelorette by FHM Magazine. Only Kimberly Stewart and Carmen Electra were ranked ahead of her.

Prince Zeid Ben Raad of Jordan, who recently was appointed ambassador of Jordan in the USA, presented his credentials to President George Bush today. The Prince has been the permanent representative of Jordan at the United Nations since 2000 and was one of the five candidates for the post of UN secretary general in 2006. The prince and his wife Sarah have a son and a daughter.

February 28th

King Mohammed VI of Morocco and his wife Princess Lalla Salma had their second child today at 20.00 at Rabat. The baby is called Lalla Khadija, after the late mother of Princess Lalla Salma. Mother and daughter are doing fine. The baby weighs 4160 grammes and is 49 centimeters tall. A salute of 21 cannon shots sounded in Rabat shortly after the birth.

March 1st

Countess Marie-Adélaïde Henckel von Donnersmarck née Princess of Luxemburg died yesterday evening at the age of 82. She was born at Berg Castle on 21 May 1924 as third child of Grand Duchess Charlotte and Prince Felix of Luxemburg. She married Count Carl-Josepf Henckel von Donnersmarck with whom she had three sons and a daughter. She is survived by them and by six grandchildren. The grand-ducal court will be in mourning until the funeral.

Angela Lascelles née Dowding died at home yesterday. She was born in Hanwell on 20 April 1919 as daughter of Charles Dowding and Lilian Lawlor. She was the first wife of the Hon. Gerald Lascelles (1924-1998), son of the 6th Earl of Harewood and Princes Mary of Great Britain. The couple married in 1952 and divorced in 1978. The deceased is survived by their son and grandson.

The Duke of Savoy and the Duke of Aosta are heading to court to solve a quarrel between them. The Duke of Aostra contests the Duke of Savoy’s position as head of the royal family of Italy. The hearing will take place at a closed court in Arezzo, Italy, later this month.

The Romanian government has said it will return Peles Castle, Pelisor Castle, Foisor Castle and other confiscated property to former King Michael of Romania. “This is not just about returning a possession, but also an act of moral and historical reparation,” King Michael said in a statement. He added that the castles will remain a museum forever. The family wants to use Pelisor Castle partly as their headquarters. In principle the government has agreed to buy back Peles Castle from the King.

The Romanian Ministry of Culture has signed an agreement with the new owners of Bran Castle, which was recently sold by several Habsburg descendants, which says that Bran Castle will remain open to the public as a museum for the next three years.

Fürstin Benita zu Schaumburg-Lippe was hit by a car on Tuesday evening when crossing the street after leaving a hairdresser’s shop in Bückeburg. She has a fracture of the lower jaw and a fracture of the skull and is kept in an artificial coma in hospital. Her condition is said to be stable and not life-threatening.

March 2nd

Buckingham palace has been criticised for sending letters to companies in Wales warning them against the use of the three white feathers symbol of the Prince of Wales. The letter from the Lord Chamberlain’s office says that the badge is the personal property of the Prince and is protected from misuse by law. A spokeswoman for the Prince says it is important that the use of the insignia is not abused, but says the feathers are also a central part of Welshness. Permission to use the feathers is generally granted as long as it is not for commercial gain and the use represents Wales appropriately, the spokeswoman said. By many people the insignia is regarded as representing Wales itself and not merely its Prince.

The High Court has ruled that a jury should hear the inquests into the deaths of Diana Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed. Dodi’s father, Mohamed Al Fayed, won a ruling overturning the decision of Baroness Butler-Sloss, deputy royal coroner, that she would sit alone. The High Court also ruled that Baroness Butler-Sloss shouldn’t sit as coroner to the Royal Household. She will now hear the case as Westminster Assistant Deputy Coroner. The two inquests are scheduled to start in May. A pre-inquest hearing is to take place on March 5.

Martin Jørgensen, who will marry Princess Alexandra Countess of Frederiksborg, tomorrow, turned 29 today. A general rehearsal was held at Øster Egede Church this afternoon. Bride and groom were accompanied by the bride’s children Nikolai and Felix.

Queen Beatrix, Prince Willem-Alexander and Princess Máxima of the Netherlands have ended their state visit to Turkey. The royals visited Ankara and Istanbul, while Queen Beatrix also paid a visit to turkish-dutch remigrants in Kayseri. In Ankara they met President Sezer and Prime Minister Erdogan. In Istanbul they visited the Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque and the Grand Bazaar and made a boat tour on the Bosporus. Princess Máxima skipped a few parts of the visit because she is highly pregnant. She said that she wants to keep on working until April 2, if it is possible.

On the occasion of the birth of Princess Lalla Khadija of Morocco people can write down their best wishes in the public visitor’s book at the royal palace in Rabat and in other places in Morocco. Within the palace the royal family celebrates the birth and representatives from all over the country come to give their best wishes. On the seventh day the baby will be baptised. This day two rams will be sacrificed and there will be three days of celebrations. The ministry of justice today announced that on the occasion 8.836 prisoners will be released and 24.218 prisoners will have their sentences reduced.

From 14 to 23 March Prince Akishino of Japan will stay in Thailand for his academic research on poultry. He will attend an academic conference on the subject in Bangkok and will conduct research at animal sanctuaries and farming villages. He is to receive an honorary degree from King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang on March 22 for his contribution to marine studies in Thailand.

March 3rd

This afternoon Princess Alexandra Countess of Frederiksborg, former wife of Prince Joachim of Denmark, married Martin Jørgensen in a private ceremony at Øster Egede Church near Fakse. The bride entered church at 16:00 accompanied by her sons Nikolai and Felix. She wore a champagne coloured sleeveless dress designed by Henrik Hviid and a long white veil. The service was led by the Rev. Peter Parkov. Photographer Erik Refner was best man. The bridal couple shortly posed for the press when leaving church after about one hour, kissed in front of the cameras and answered some questions. Among the 90 guests were the parents and sisters of the bride and the groom’s parents Jacob and Jane Jørgensen, friends and Countess Marina af Rosenborg. No other members of the Danish royal family attended the wedding. 120 guests will attend tonights party at the estate Jomfruens Egede. With her marriage Alexandra has lost the title of Princess. She will keep a yearly apanage. However 52% of the Danes think she shouldn’t have this apanage anymore now she has remarried. A wedding special from TV2A wedding special from DR

Prince Ferfried von Hohenzollern and his third wife Maja Meinert were divorced at Berlin on 1 March.

March 5th

The Duchess of Cornwall had an operation this morning, which was performed by Michael Dooley and Marcus Setchell at King Edward II Hospital in London. The Duchess arrived at the hospital late on Sunday evening. She underwent a hysterectomy. She is recovering well, but will have to stay at hospital for the rest of the week. Afterwards she needs to rest up for up to six weeks. The Prince of Wales visited his wife this afternoon.

At a pre-inquest hearing today Baroness Butler-Sloss has told the legal team of Mohamed Al Fayed that she needs evidence that his son Dodi and Diana Princess of Wales were murdered as part of a secret plot by the British establishment if she were to present the allegiatons to the inquest jury. She said not to have received any shred of evidence that support Mr Al Fayed’s allegations. Mr Al Fayed’s representive, Michael Mansfield, told her that the evidence was already into the report by Lord Stevens. He also asked for a six months delay of the inquests to ensure adequate preparations. They want the Prince of Wales and Duke of Edinburgh to be called as witnesses.

The Civil List of King Albert II of the Belgians has decided to donate 185.000 Euros to the Belgian Defence Ministry. The money will be used to carry out renovation works in the homes of military staff who had an accident at work. The sum is equivalent to the money Prince Laurent of Belgium received from the Marine, according to an inquiry during the fraud process against among others his former advisor Colonel Noël Vaessen. The royal court says that the donation is no confession of guilt by the King or the Prince.

A team of Iranian and French archeologists have successfully located 2500 year old remains of a summer palace in the Province of Fars, Iran, which belonged to the ancient Iranian ruler Darius. So far parts of the eastern wing were unearthed.

March 6th

Luis Alfonso de Borbón Duke of Anjou and his wife Margarita had their first child, a daughter, yesterday at 18.02 at Mount Sinai Hospital in Miami, Florida, USA. The baby is called Eugenia, weighs 3700 grammes and is 52 centimeters tall. Mother and daughter are doing well.

The full inquests into the deaths of Diana Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed have been delayed until October after Mohammed Al Fayed requested last week for more time to allow his team to prepare. In a written decision Deputy royal coroner Baroness Butler-Sloss said the inquests will take place in or around 1 October. The hearings are expected to last between four and eight months.

A special police unit has been set up to investigate allegations that someone in their ranks has sold information to the magazine Se og Hør. The investigation is based on the claims in the book ‘En helt vanlig dag på jobben’ by Håvard Melnæs.

According to her doctors Empress Michiko of Japan has fallen ill with symptoms linked to psychological stress, the Imperial Household Agency said today. She suffers from mouth ulcers and nosebleeds and shown symptoms of intestinal bleeding. She caught a cold on 19 February and has not felt well since. She will take a five-day break from her duties and cancel some official duties in order to rest.

Princess Caroline of Monaco have won their case at German court today against publication of paparazzi photographs of them in the media. The new ban means that magazines will not be allowed anymore to print photos of the Princess in private on public places. Senior justice Gerda Mueller however said that Princess Caroline is ‘undisputably a personage of contemporary history’ and that the media is entitled to print photos of her if she and her husband are news.

March 8th

The Duchess of Cornwall has left hospital three days after undergoing a hysterectomy operation. She was collected at hospital by her husband the Prince of Wales. They returned to Clarence House where the Duchess will continue to recover. A spokeswoman of Clarence House said the Duchess was recovering well.

Danish gossip magazine Se og Hør reports this week that Alexandra Countess of Frederiksborg and her new husband Martin Jørgensen expect their first child together. They claim some Austrian family members of Alexandra confirmed the news to them.

Grand Steward Shingo Haketa of the Imperial Household Agency said today that a variety of issues involving the imperial family might behind the stress that caused the intestinal bleeding of Empress Michiko of Japan, rather than reports in weekly magazines. Mr Haketa didn’t specify the problems.

March 10th

In interviews today at the tv-programme Nova and in the newspaper De Volkskrant Princess Mabel of Oranje-Nassau says that to the media “it seems to me sometimes that quality is less important than viewing and circulation figures, that facts are less important than fun.” The interviews coincide with the publication of an essay by the princess based on a speech she gave in 2006. In the essay the Princess says that the media has a crucial role in the creation and maintenance of free and open societies.

March 11th

Prince Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia said today that he will not return to Cambodia to attend the court case over corruption charges against him on March 13 at Phnom Penh Municipal Court. He said the court is ‘biased, not independent, has irregularity in trial and is in the hand of an influential person’ and the lawsuit is ‘politically motivated’. He currently is staying in Malaysia.

March 13th

Sheikha Maitha Bint Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum of Dubai today was awarded the Arab World’s best female athlete award at the Shangri-La Hotel in Dubai. “To be frank I am honoured to receive such an award. I was taken by surprise when I was told about this news,” Shaikha Maitha said after receiving her award. “I hope to meet my potential now. For that I need to work hard. But even if I do not reach my potential, I would be happy to have opened the doors for the next generation,” She won a silver medal in karate at the Asian Games of 2006.

In his absence the court case against Prince Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia took place today at the Phnom Penh Municipal Court. He was sentenced to 18 months in jail, with $ 150,000 of compensation for the co-ruling Funcinpec Party which he headed before October 2006. The court found the prince guilty of breach of trust in selling Funcinpec’s old headquarters. He also put the land of the newly located party headquarters under his own title. The judge said he has to return the land to the party. The Prince himself has denied the accusations.

March 14th

Princess Kalina of Bulgaria, who is married to Kitín Muñoz, gave birth to her first child today at 7.07am at Lozenets Hospital in Sofia, Bulgaria. The boy was delivered by Caesarean section, is 49 centimeters tall and weighs 2626 grammes. Late today it was announced he will receive the name of Simeon, after his grandfather who in 1937 had been the last member of the royal family to be born in Bulgaria. When arriving at hospital with his wife to see their grandson former King Simeon said he has already prepared huge surprises for the mother and the public, but he prefers to keep them secret until the glorious day.

It was announced a memorial service marking the 10th death anniversary of Diana Princess of Wales is to be held at the Guard’s Chapel, Wellington Barracks, on 31 August. The memorial service will be attended by members of the royal family, including Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duchess of Cornwall, family and friends of the Princess and representatives from the charities the Princess supported. Padre Patrick Irwin, Chaplain to the Household Division, will lead the service and an address will be delivered by the Dean of the Chapels Royal, Dr Richard Chartres. The event will be televised by the BBC. On 7 March Earl Spencer announced that Althorp House and its grounds will open its doors for free on the tenth anniversary of the death of Princess Diana. However tickets have to be pre-booked.

March 15th

The government of Nepal has decided that King Gyanendra of Nepal has to cut back his staff of 750 people by at least half. It appears the government want to reassign half of them to ordinary government posts, while another quarter will be offered voluntary redundancy. All employees over 58 will be retired. Those leaving include cooks, waiters, the hairdressers of Queen Komal and servants who pluck flowers for use in religious ceremonies.

March 18th

Yesterday at 3.50pm Sarah Salleh, wife of Crown Prince Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah of Brunei Darussalam gave birth to a son at the Raja Isteri Pengiran Anak Saleha Hospital in Bandar Seri Begawan, the capital of the country. A 19-gun salute was fired after the birth. Both mother and baby are reported to be doing well.

Tom Parker Bowles, son of the Duchess of Cornwall, and his wife Sara expect their first child. Sara is three months pregnant with the couple’s first child. Tom Parker Bowles told the Mail on Sunday: “We have told our friends and family and they are delighted. Mummy is absolutely over the moon at the prospect of becoming a grandmother.” Tom is the godson and stepson of the Prince of Wales.

Prince Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia has been charged with adultery over his affair with a classical dancer. He is charged following a complaint filed in December by his estranged wife, Princess Norodom Marie Ranariddh. He was already charged in January, but it only became known today. The prince has publicly acknowledged his relationship with the classical dancer, with whom he has a three-year-old son. No date for the hearing has been set yet.

March 19th

Princess Kako, youngest daughter of Prince and Princess Akishino graduated from Gakushuin Primary School in Tokyo. Princess Akishino will attended the ceremony on Thursday. In April Princess Kako will enter Gakushuin Girls’ Junior High School.

Prince Ali bin Hussein of Jordan and his wife Rym had their second child, a son called, Abdullah, today the royal palace announced.

March 20th

Today the Romanian government has completed the legal procedures for the return of Peles estate to the former King Michael I of Romania. A document was signed by the secretary general of the Romanian government Radu Stroe and the chief of the Romanian Royal House Andrew Popper. With this King Michael I has officially regained the ownership right over the Peles and Pelisor castles. Peles Museum will become a state museum. The financial aspects are still to be discussed. The royal family is considering selling Peles Castle, the old wing of the Foisor Palace and the surrounding area before the end of the year.

March 21st

Sven Høiby, the father of Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway, died at home in his apartment in Vågsbygd, Kristiansand today after a long illness. He was diagnosed lung cancer in 2006. He was born on 14 November 1936. Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit have immediately travelled to Kristiansand to be with the family. The Norwegian royal court has asked the media for reservedness. It is not known yet when the funeral will take place.

At a preliminary hearing at High Court in London the lawyers of Mohamed Al Fayed have called for access to all material used to compile the report into the death of Diana Princess of Wales, including an interview with the Prince of Wales. They think it is crucial to see the material before the inquest. They also want to see the letter Princess Diana wrote to her butler Paul Burrell expressing safety fears.

The son of the Crown Prince of Brunei Darussalam and his wife Sarah Salleh has received the name and titles Yang Teramat Mulia Pengiran Muda’Abdul Muntaqim Ibni Duli Yang Teramat Mulia Paduka Seri Pengiran Muda Mahkota Pengiran Muda Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah. A picture was also released.

Princess Kalina of Bulgaria and her newborn son Simeon have left Lozenets University Hospital in Sofia this afternoon at 1.50pm. When the princess has fully recovered media will be invited to take pictures of the whole family with its newest member.

March 22nd

The Government Information Service announced this evening that Prince Floris and Princess Aimée van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven expect their first child somewhere in October.

Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxemburg ended a state visit to Belgium today. The visit started on Tuesday with military ceremony and the laying of a wreath at the grave of the unknown soldier. Grand Duke Henri received the Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt. Afterwards the couple was received at the town hall of Brussels. Also the luxemburg community in Belgium was received. In the evening the Belgian royal couple hosted a gala dinner at Laken Castle. On Wednesday Grand Duchess Maria Teresa and Queen Paola of Belgium visited Bruges, while Grand Duke Henri and King Albert II of the Belgians visited the harbours of Zeebrugge and Antwerpen and only paid a short visit to Bruges. In the evening a concert and reception took place at the Museum voor Schone Kunsten in Brussels. Today the couples visited Namen and Eupen.

On the occasion of the 60th wedding anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh in November the Royal Mint has unveiled gold and silver £5 commemorative coins. The coins feature a double portrait of the couple, while other designs were inspired by the stained-glass rose window in Westminster Abbey in London, where the couple got married.

March 23rd

The funeral service for Sven Høiby, father of Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway, will take place at Oddernes Church in Kristiansand on Monday according to a death announcement in Aftenposten. Crown Princess Mette-Marit has cancelled her engagements for the coming days. The Norwegian royal court today announced that King Harald V and Queen Sonja will attend the funeral.

Earl Spencer and his second wife Caroline were divorced today on grounds of his ‘unreasonable behaviour’. Countess Spencer’s decree nisi was granted by District Judge Kenneth White sitting at the Principal Registry of the Family Division in central London. The couple married in December 2001 and has two children, Edmund and Lara. The couple split last summer when Lara was just four months old.

Home Secretary John Reid today said that he has earmarked 16 ‘no-go’ areas for special protection. The buildings designated for the measure include Buckingham Palace, St James’s Palace, Highgrove House, Sandringham House, Windsor Castle and the Palace of Westminster. That means that trespassing the buildings now is a criminal offence. The measures are due to come into force from June.

During a photo session Princess Kalina of Bulgaria and her husband Kitín Muñoz announced that their son will carry the name Simeon Hassan. The name Hassan was added in honour to the late King Hassan of Morocco.

March 24th

Count Patrick and Countess Mariella von Faber-Castell had their first child together. Their daughter Lucia was born at 6.19 this morning at hospital in Berlin. Lucia is 50,5 centimeters tall and weighs 3500 gramms. Mother and daughter are doing well. Countess Mariella’s daughter Isabella is very happy with her new sister.

March 26th

Sven Høiby’s funeral service was held at Oddernes Church at Kristiansand this afternoon. The funeral was attended by Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway, her son Marius, as well as King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway. Also both ex-wifes of the deceased, Marit Tjessem and Renate Barsgård, attended the funeral, as well as other family members.

Prince Stefan of Liechtenstein has become the new ambassador of Liechtenstein in Germany. He handed over his credentials to federal president Horst Köhler today at Bellevue Castle in Berlin. Until this Summer Prince Stefan will also remain accredited in Switzerland, with residence in Bern.

March 27th

Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark took their son Christian to Queen Louise’s Nursery School in Fredensborg today for his first day there. They were greeted outside the school by staff. They briefly posed for photographers before entering the school which is surrounded by a playground. The couple want their son to have an ordinary childhood.

Photographer Annie Leibovitz will take the official photograph for Queen Elizabeth II’s state visit to the United States, Buckingham Palace said today. The photograph, that will be very formal and painterly will be shot at the palace in the next few days and will be released the day before Queen Elizabeth IIleaves for the United States in early May.

March 28th

Prince Harry of Wales has become the first Royal Patron of three UK-based charities, Dolen Cymru, MapAction and WellChild. This is the first time Prince Harry has taken on the patronage of established charities and his association with each will begin immediately. The Prince is keen to support these charities which all offer essential assistance to communities across the UK and throughout the world.

Prince Nayef Bin Fawaz Al-Shaalan of Saudi Arabia is one of ten people facing charges relating to a shipment of two tonnes of cocaine in his private plane at Le Bourget airport near Paris eight years ago. He is accused of using his diplomatic immunity to smuggle drugs. The hearing starts today at court in Bobigny near Paris in his absence and in absence of the other people accused. Prince Nayef’s lawyer Jacques Verges is expected to argue that his client is the victim of a conspiracy hatched in the USA. A verdict is scheduled for a future date.

March 29th

Chancellor of the Exchequer Gordon Brown today said that a special commemorative coin will be struck next year to mark the 60th birthday of the Prince of Wales.

The girlfriend of Prince William of Wales, Kate Middleton, has lodged a formal complaint at the Press Complaints Commission against the Daily Mirror. The newspaper today published a picture of Kate outside her house when heading to work. A lawyer of Kate Middleton wrote to the PCC: “The intrusion into my client’s private life and the harassment that she has suffered are now amply evidenced by the events of the past seven days.” The lawyers have filmed incidents outside Kate’s home and office. A spokesman for the Daily Mirror said: “We will provide the necessary thoughts and comments to the PCC. We will not be commenting any further at this stage.”

The engagement between Dr. Klaus Runow and Maria Anna Duchess in Bavaria was announced today.

A 57-year-old Swiss man, who has been living in Thailand for more than 10 years, has been sencented to 10 years in jail. He was arrested last December after spray-painting posters of King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand in Chiang Mai. He was drunk. The man has pleaded guilty to five charges. He is believed to be the first foreigner ever imprisoned for the offence.

March 30th

The Daily Mirror has apologised for publishing a photo of Kate Middleton, the girlfriend of Prince William of Wales, after she made a formal complaint of harassment to the Press Complaints Commission. They say the picture was taken by a freelance photographer ‘in circumstances we were later told she felt harassed’. They admit they got it wrong and that they regret that.

March 31st

The Imperial Household Agency yesterday said that Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan has a benign polyp in his duodenum, part of the small intestines. The polyp is not large and was discovered during a periodic medical checkup. The polyp will be removed by endoscopic surgery at a convenient time.

April 2nd

Not only Prince Harry of Wales, but also the Earl of Ulster will head for Iraq this spring. The Earl, son of the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, serves in the King’s Royal Hussars and will go to Iraq in the same brigade as Prince Harry.

April 3rd

18-year-old Edith Delgado, who is accused of causing a car crash in July that killed three people including two members of the Tongan royal family, will stand trial in San Mateo County Superior Court on 29 May.

April 5th

In today’s Daily Telegraph the birth is announced of Xan Richard Anders baron Culloden, son of the Earl and Countess of Ulster. He was born on 12 March 2007.

April 6th

Prince William of Wales’s girlfriend Kate Middleton has settled her complaint against the Daily Mirror alleging press harassment. The Press Complaints Commission said it followed the paper’s “prompt public expression of regret and admission of error”.

One of four people killed in a roadside bomb blast near Basra, Iraq, was a close friend of Prince William of Wales from Sandhurst. A statement from Clarence House says the Prince is “deeply saddened” by the death of 24-year-old Second Lieutenant Joanna ‘Jo’ Yorke Dyer. The statement also said “he is very much thinking of her family and friends right now and they will remain in his thoughts and prayers.”

April 7th

Prince Hashem bin Hussein of Jordan and his wife Fahdah had a daughter yesterday. The baby was named Haalah.

April 8th

Former King Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia returned to Cambodia after having spent almost seven months outside the country, mainly in China for routine medical treatment. He was accompanied by his wife Norodom Monineath.

April 9th

Gustav, second son of Prince Philipp and Princess Saskia zu Hohenlohe-Langenburg was christened at Langenburg. His godparents are Count Johannes von Meran, Prince Philipp zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, Tina Döbler and Caroline Dinkel.

April 10th

Princess Maxima of the Netherlands was admitted to the Bronovo Hospital in The Hague at 15.45 this afternoon. Just before 22.30 the Government Information Service released the following statement: “Her Royal Highness Princess Maxima of the Netherlands this evening has, Tuesday 10 April 2007, at 22.00 at the Bronovo Hospital in The Hague, given birth to a daughter. ‘We are very thankful with the birth of this perfectly healthy baby’, according to the father, The Prince of Orange. The newborn daughter weighed at birth 4135 gramms. The length of the baby is 52 centimeters. Mrs M.J.G.H. Smeets, gynaecologist, and Mrs J.H. Kreijen-Meinesz, children’s doctor-neonatologist stood aside the Princess during the delivery.” Queen Beatrix and the mother of Princess Maxima already visited mother and daughter this evening. The Prince of Orange stayed in hospital during the night. You can congratulate the couple on the website of the Royal House.

Two water colours by Queen Margrethe II of Denmark have been sold today at auction at the online auction house Lauritz.com. They each were sold for $ 14.700. The paintings from 1990 were a present of the Queen to someone whose name hasn’t become known.

April 11th

This morning around 8.30 the Prince of Orange presented his newborn daughter to the press at the Bronovo Hospital. The baby stayed calm and was playing with her hands. She was born at 21.56 exactly. Gynaecologists Mrs Smeets told that the birth went very well. Mother and daughter are doing well. The Prince of Orange told that the baby had only been awake once during the night. The only thing the couple hoped for was a healthy baby and that is why they didn’t want to know before birth if it would be a girl or a boy. He thinks he will be handle a women-family quite well. He describes her as having big eyes and a small Orange-family nose. After the presentation the prince and princess left hospital with their daughter to present her to their elder daughters Amalia and Alexia. The name will become known when the prince will register the birth of his daughter later this week, but they already know the name themselves.

Prince Wilhelm Karl of Prussia died on Monday. He was born on 30 January 1922 at the Villa Quandt in Potsdam as youngest child of Prince Oskar and Ina-Marie Countess von Bassewitz-Levetzov. He married in 1952 Armgard von Veltheim. They had one daughter and two sons. They survive him as well as two grandsons and a granddaughter. A funeral service will be held at the Berliner Dom on 19 April 2007 at 14.00. Afterwards he will be buried in Potsdam. He was the last surviving grandchild of Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany.

April 12th

A Swiss man who was sentenced to 10 years in jail for spray-painting over images of King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand has been pardoned by the King. However the longtime Thailand resident will be deported back to Switzerland today.

Two Danish gossip magazines, Se og Hør and Billed Bladet, today predict that Prince Joachim of Denmark and his French girlfriend Marie Cavallier will soon become engaged. The couple spent Easter together with the royal family. The Danish royal court say that they have no knowledge of such an upcoming event, but confirmed that Marie Cavallier had spent Easter with the Danish royal family.

April 13th

The Prince of Orange registered the birth of his third daughter at the old town hall in The Hague. The baby was registered Ariane Wilhelmina Máxima Ines, and she will be called Ariane. The Prince and Princess Máxima thought it would be nice to give their daughter again a name starting with an A. She is named Wilhelmina and Máxima after great-grandmothers of Willem-Alexander and Máxima. Ines is after Máximas younger sister. Mother and daughter are doing fine.

Today the Dutch Railway Company NS renamed a train temporarily in the Princess Ariane Express on the occasion of the birth of the new Dutch princess Ariane. The train travelled between Groningen and The Hague starting at 13.42. During the first ride NS-staff dressed in orange handed out orange cakes with a stork on top.

April 14th

According to The Sun newspaper Prince William of Wales and Kate Middleton have split up after a four-year relationship. The split seems to have been caused by the huge pressures on the couple and the army life of Prince William. A “close friend” of the couple told the paper: “As far as Kate is concerned, William simply hasn’t been paying her enough attention. “She is stuck in London while he is living in an officer’s mess in Dorset. Kate feels hugely frustrated that their relationship just seems to be going backwards at a rate of knots.” According to sources close to the Royal Family the Prince of Wales encouraged his son to reach a “make or break” decision on whether to marry Kate. Newspapers say that the couple agreed at an Easter meeting that their affair was on the rocks. A Clarence House spokesman said: “We don’t comment on Prince William’s private life.” Also the Middleton family refuses to comment.

April 15th

Prime Minister Tony Blair of Great Britain has said on BBC One’s Politics Show that Prince William of Wales and Kate Middleton should be left alone. He said: “They should be left alone now without reams of stuff being written that I can assure you, from my experience of royal stories, most of which will be complete nonsense. I think, now it has been announced, they should be allowed to get on with their lives.” In the meantime the Mirror newspaper claims that Prince William ended the relationship in a mobile phone call on Wednesday.

King Mswati III of Swaziland has secretly married 19-year-old Phindile Nkambule as his 13th wife. A member of the royal family confirmed that the wedding had taken place in the early hours of Saturday morning.

April 16th

On the occasion of her 67th birthday Queen Margrethe II of Denmark appeared at the balcony of Amalienborg Palace in Copenhagen. She was accompanied by her husband Prince Henrik, Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary with their son Christian, Prince Joachim and his sons Nikolai and Felix.

April 17th

Prince El Hassan of Jordan’s 60th birthday was celebrated at the Royal Scientific Society in Amman. The surprise event for the prince was attended by hundreds of family members, friends and people who have worked with him over the years. Among the guests were King Abdullah II and Queen Rania of Jordan as well as Queen Noor. Princess Basma gave a moving and humorous speech about her childhood relation with her brother. Princess Sumaya said touching words about her father, and two grandchildren, Tariq and Zein al Sharaf Nasser Judeh expressed words of love and admiration. Other speakers were Prince Rashid, and Kuwaiti poet Sheikha Suad Al Sabah. The birthday boy himself held a short humorous speech. As a birthday gift King Abdullah launched the El Hassan Science City.

April 18th

Prince Hamzah bin Hussein and Princess Noor Hamzah of Jordan had a daughter, Haya. She was born today. Prince Abbas bin Ali bin Naief, grandson of a brother of King Talal, and Princess Sima Abbas of Jordan had a son on Tuesday, Hamzah.

April 19th

The Prince of Orange celebrates his 40th birthday on 27th April. A festive reception will be held at Palace Het Loo on September 1. Family, friends and members of royal and princely houses are invited. The birthday is celebrated late because of the birth of his daughter Ariane this month.

Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxemburg was named Eminent Advocate for Children by UNICEF today in a ceremony at the Palais des Nations in Genève, Switzerland. As a UNICEF eminent advocate for children the Grand Duchess will focus particularly on children affected by AIDS and children whose lives have been impacted by conflict.

Prince Wilhelm Karl of Prussia was buried in family circle at the cemetery of Bornstedt yesterday. He was buried next to his eldest brother Oskar who was killed in action in 1939 and was buried at Bornstedt half a century later. Today a commemoration service organised by the Order of St. John took place at the Berliner Dom. The service was led by Count Ruprecht zu Castell-Rüdenhausen, dean of the Order of St. John. At the altar was a huge oil painting of the deceased prince surrounded by lots of wreaths. Among the about 1100 guests were the closest family as well as Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia, the Duke of Bavaria, Prince Alexander zu Schaumburg-Lippe, Prince Ernst August of Hannover junior.

The relics of legendary czar Kaloyan (Ioanitsa) of Bulgaria, who ascended the throne in 1197 after the death of his brothers Assen and Petar were reburied today in the ancient capital of Veliko Tarnovo. The ceremony took place in the crypt of the regional historical museum. The burial took place exactly 800 years after he was killed in 1207 before the walls of Thessalonica. Yesterday the relics were moved into a pecial coffin, made of rustproof, nickel-plated steel, with the tzar’s personal coat of arms. The relics were anointed with chrism and wine by Metropolitan Bishop Grigoriy before the burial. He also said a forgiveness prayer and placed on the relics an icon of Saint Ivan Rilski. The relics were found by archaeologist Valo Valov in 1972.

April 20th

According to a poll by Eén Vandaag 73% of the Dutch support the monarchy. Princess Maxima (26%) is the most popular member of the Dutch royal family, followed by Queen Beatrix (16%) and Prince Willem-Alexander (15%). 60% has faith in Prince Willem-Alexander as a King, although one-third thinks he should only have a ceremonial function.

A poll by the SOM Institute at the University of Göteborg said that 45% of the 3336 people questioned think the Swedish monarchy is doing a good job, while 19% thinks it is doing a bad job. 36% remains neutral.

April 21st

Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark had a daughter. She was born at 16.02 at the Rigshospital in Copenhagen. Crown Prince Frederik was present at birth. The baby weighs 3350 gramms and is 50 centimeters tall. She is the first Danish princess born since Princess Anne-Marie in 1946. Mother and daughter are doing fine. Crown Princess Mary of Denmark was admitted at hospital this morning at 10.00. At 17.45 Crown Prince Frederik talked with the press. He told that the birth went pretty quick and well and took six hours. It was as phantastic as the first time and he again got tears in his eyes. He told that he wasn’t as scared as the first time when it felt like he had a piece of Flora Danica porcelain in his arms. Prince Christian will meet his little sister – who has lots of dark hair – tomorrow. Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark visited their first granddaughter yesterday evening.

According to the Imperial Household Agency Empress Michiko of Japan has recovered from recent health problems. The symptoms have disappeared some two weeks ago.

April 22nd

Crown Princess Mary and her newborn baby daughter will leave the Rigshospital in Copenhagen on Monday at 11.00am the Danish royal court announced today. They will be accompanied by Crown Prince Frederik. Today at noon 21 salutes were fired from the Sixtus Battery at Holmen in Copenhagen and from Kronborg Castle. Furthermore the Danish flag flew from official buildings and ferries today.

April 23rd

Crown Princess Mary of Denmark and her newborn daughter left hospital this morning accompanied by Crown Prince Frederik. Crown Princess Mary told the press that her daughter has “been very good for her mother. Only up once a night.” She is breastfeeding her daughter. “Christian has been very brotherly towards her,” Crown Princess Mary said. After coming home at Fredensborg, the family including Prince Christian posed shortly for the press.

April 24th

A few photographers and a camera team who had been invited to attend the visit of Prince Laurent of Belgium to an animal clinic in Hoboken today protested after they were told they were only allowed to photograph him when he left the clinic. In a protest they all put down their cameras on the street when the Prince came out of the clinic at the end of his visit.

Baroness Butler-Sloss has said she will step down in June as coroner for the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales. She said: “This was a decision I took in the interests of the inquests after a great deal of thought and reflection. These inquests now require a jury, and I do not have the degree of experience of jury cases that I feel is necessary and appropriate for presiding over inquests of this level of public interest.” . The new coroner will be Lord Justice Scott Baker. The inquests are expected to take over in October.

April 26th

The names of eigth new artists who are to appear at the Concert for Diana at the Wembley Stadium on July 1st were issued: Lily Allen, Kanye West, Rod Stewart, Natasha Bedingfield, The Feeling, James Morrison, orson and Status Quo. Already announced were Elton John. Duran Duran, Bryan Ferry, Joss Stone and Pharrell Williams, as well as the English National Ballet and a musical medley made by Andrew Lloyd Webber. The artists reflect both the late Diana Princess of Wales’s favourites as the favourites of her sons William and Harry. A Clarence House spokesman said today: “The concert is really for the younger generation to enjoy. William and Harry are organising the guestlist.” He said that the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall therefore will not attend the concert.

Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin of Terengganu, who was sworn in in December as King of Malaysia, was enthroned in a traditional ceremony at the palace in Kuala Lumpur. He was proclaimed King of Malaysia by Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. Afterwards he was presented with the long dapper, a symbol of power and authority, which he drew and kissed. After he pleeded to rule fairly a 21-gun salute was fired. The Sultan is the 13th King since the independency of Malaysia in 1957. Malaysia has a rotating system and each five years a sultan of one of the nine states of Malaysia is chosen as a King.

April 27th

As promised King Albert II of Belgium has paid back the fraud-money that was spent on the renovation and redecoration of the Villa of Prince Laurent. Defence received 185.000 euro via the civil list, the personal wallet of the King. The money will at first be used to renovate houses of defence staff wounded on duty.

The newborn princess of Denmark, who is called ‘lille pige’ by her parents will be christened at the palace church at Fredensborg on Sunday 1 July 2007 at 11.30am. Then also her name will become known.

10.000 extra tickets for the Concert for Diana were sold out within minutes on Friday morning. In December already 22.000 tickets were sold out in 17 minutes.

April 29th

The Prince and Princess of Asturias had a daughter. She was born at the Clínica Rúber International in Madrid at 16.50 by Caesarian section. The Princess of Asturias was admitted to hospital at 13.00. She was accompanied by the Prince of Asturias. At 20.00 the Prince of Asturias in a press conference said his daughter will be called Sofía after her paternal grandmother. Gyneacologist Dr Luis Ignacio Recasens told the baby is 50 cm tall and weighs 3310 grams. Mother and daughter are doing fine and are expected to stay in hospital for four or five days. According to the Prince Sofía looks quite a lot like her sister Leonor. “We are very happy. I truly didn’t know how I was going to react to the birth of another baby girl, but I think that one loves each child just the same.” As with Leonor Sofía’s stem cells from the umbilical cord are being saved to help counter potential illness in the future. Prince Felipe said: “It is something we have great confidence in and believe in.” Queen Sofía visited her new granddaughter in the evening after returning from Moscow where she attended the funeral of musician Mstislav Rostropovich.

April 30th

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and her family, except for the children in the family and Princess Maxima who gave birth to her third daughter some weeks ago, visited Woudrichem and ‘s-Hertogenbosch in the province of Noord-Brabant today on the occasion of Queen’s Day. It might have been the sunniest Queen’s Day ever, although the temperature was only around 20 degrees due to cold wind.

Queen Sofía of Spain visited her new granddaughter Sofía again today and told the press she had absolutely no idea that her son and daughter-in-law had plans to name their second daughter after her. Other visitors today included Infanta Elena of Spain, who told that Sofía has a healthy appetite, and Princess Letizia’s father Jesús Ortiz. King Juan Carlos of Spain hasn’t visited his new granddaughter yet. The royal palace says he is on a private journey and will visit her soon.

General Sir Richard Dannatt, head of the British army, has confirmed that Prince Harry of Wales will be deployed to Iraq with his regiment The Blues and Royals. He said to have taken the decision personally, but said also that he would keep it under review constantly. Recently there were concerns for the safety of Prince Harry and that of his soldiers. The General also called for an end to the “somewhat frenzied media speculation around this issue in the interests of all our people deployed in Iraq at this time.”

May 1st

Princess Leonor of Spain for the first time saw her baby sister Sofía this morning. She came to visit her mother and sister in hospital together with her father. Other visitors were King Juan Carlos, Queen Sofía, Princess Elena and Jaime de Marichalar with their children, Princess Christina and Iñaki Urdangarín with their children, as well as Princess Letizia’s mother Paloma Rocasolano and Letizia’s grandparents.

Hereditary Prince Vladimir Lobkowicz married Alix Paul-Cavallier at the Monastry Church of Strahov at the Hradschin in Prague, Czechia on 28 April. The wedding was celebrated by the Bishop of Ostrava, Frantisek Lobkowicz, assisted by among others Father Zdenko Filip Lobkowicz, both uncles of the groom. Among the 300 guests were Prince Karl von Schwarzenberg and Count Ferdinand Kinsky von Wchinitz und Tettau. In the evening a dinner took place in a hotel in Prague. Some wedding pictures

May 2nd

Three-weeks-old Princess Ariane of the Netherlands was taken to the Leids Universitair Medisch Centrum this morning with high fever. In hospital it turned out she has a bronchial tube infection. It is expected she will have to stay in hospital for one week to finish the treatment and to recover well. The condition of the princess is stable and it is understood the fever has gone.

May 3rd

Princess Ariane of the Netherlands left the children’s intensive care of the Leids Universitair Medisch Centrum and is at the high care unit now. She most likely has a viral infection. She is doing much better today and the tests didn’t lead to concerns.

The Duchess of Cornwall returned to her duties today for the first time after her hysterectomy operation two months ago. She will present an award and meet performers at the 2007 Classical Brit Awards at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

An army source said last night that the deployment of Prince Harry of Wales to Southern Iraq has been delayed due to security concerns. This would allow time for soldiers of his regiment to assess the potential dangers his unit will face. The Ministry of Defence didn’t want to confirm the reports.

IOC President Jacques Rogge and the executive board yesterday said that among others Princess Haya bint Al Hussein of Jordan has been nominated for membership of the International Olympic Committee. The election, considered a formality, will take place in July during the IOC session in Guatemala City.

May 4th

The Princess of Asturias and her newborn daughter Sofía left hospital in Madrid around 18.10. They were accompanied by the Prince of Asturias and the eldest daughter Leonor, who amused the onlookers by trying to grasp some media microphones. Sofía slept in the arms of her mother.

May 5th

Princess Ariane of the Netherlands left hospital this morning. She is doing much better and will further be treated at home for the bacterial and viral infection she has. The Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima of the Netherlands thanked the medical team.

May 7th

The Greek Royal House announced that Princess Alexia and her husband Carlos Morales Quintana expect their fourth child in November.

King Tomasi Kulimoetoke of Wallis, a French Pacific island, died today at the age of 88. He became king in 1959.

May 8th

Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh paid a state visit to the USA from 3 to 8 May. They visited Virginia on 3 and 4 May to commemorate the anniversary of the Jamestown settlement. On 5 May the couple attended the 133rd Kentucky Derby. From 6 to 8 May the Queen and the Duke were in Washington D.C. for a visit hosted by President George Bush and his wife. A white-tie state banquet took place on Monday evening at the White House with 134 selected guests. The dinner had five courses reflecting both nations. It was the fourth state visit of the Queen to the USA.

The Danish royal court today released pictures of Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark with their children, as well as pictures of the newborn daughter alone and with her brother Christian. Photographer Steen Brogaard told that Christian couldn’t wait to show the photographer his little sister.

The tomb of King Herod has been found at a compound on a hill at a site called Herodium in the Judean Desert near Jerusalem. That was announced last night by the Hebrew University. Israeli archaeologist Professor Ehud Netzer had been searching for the tomb in Herodium since 1972.

May 9th

Prince Nayef al-Shaalan bin Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia today was sentenced in absentia to 10 years in jail at court in Paris, France. He was convicted for illegally importing drugs, of complicity in the transport, detention and provision of drugs and of criminal conspiracy. He is accused of having used his diplomatic immunity to smuggle drugs to France with his private jet. Five others were also given 10 years in prison on the same charges. The Prince intends to appeal.

May 11th

A court in Moscow today rejected a plea by Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia to officially rehabilitate Tsar Nikolaj II of Russia and his family. The court however also asked the office of the Prosecutor General to reconsider an earlier ruling that the family of the Tsar doesn’t qualify for rehabilitation. Lawyer German Lukyanov says the family will lodge an appeal. “It’s Russia itself that needs this rehabilitation, because it will show that it really makes concrete steps to denounce that grisly murder of the tsar’s family,” he said.

May 13th

Malietoa Tanumafili II, head of state of Samoa died at the Tupua Tamasese Meaole II National Hospital at Moto’otua on Friday night at the age of 94. He was born on 4 January 1913. He succeeded the title Malietoa in 1940 after the death of his father. Malietoa Tanumafili II became joint head of state in 1962 when Samoa became an independent country, and sole head of state in 1963 when Tupua Tamasese Mea’ole died. His wife Lili Tunu died in 1986. He is survived by two sons and two daughters. His successor will be selected by the legislature for a five-year term.

May 14th

Today a procession on the occasion of the closing of the Octave of Our Lady was held at Luxemburg-City. Pictures show that Tessy de Nassau, wife of Prince Louis of Luxemburg, might be pregnant with the couple’s second child. This wasn’t confirmed by the grand-ducal court, but a family member of Tessy is said to have told the Tageblatt that she is indeed pregnant again.

May 15th

Between 28 July and 25 September an exhibition at Buckingham Palace will commemorate the 60th wedding anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh. The couple married on 20 November 1947 at Westminster Abbey in London. The exhibition will show archive films of the ceremony, the wedding dress, jewelry, gifts, as well as dresses worn by Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth during the wedding and the uniforms worn by King George VI and the Duke of Edinburgh.

May 16th

General Sir Richard Dannatt of the British Army announced today that Prince Harry of Wales will not be sent to Iraq because of the unacceptable risks. He said: “There have been a number of specific threats, some reported some not reported, which relate directly to Prince Harry as an individual. “These threats expose not only him but also those around him to a degree of risk that I now deem unacceptable.” He doesn’t rule out sending the prince to the region in the future. In a statement Clarence House says Prince Harry is very disappointed but understands and accepts the decision. He will not leave the army.

May 17th

Norway’s National Day was celebrated today. In the morning Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit with their children Marius, Ingrid Alexandra and Sverre Magnus greeted the school children of the Municipality of Asker who paraded past their home at Skaugum. Later thousands of school children paraded in front of the royal palace in Oslo, watched by the royal family standing on the balcony.

The marriage (akad nikah) between 50-year-old Crown Prince Raja Muda Nazrin Shah of Perak and Zara Salim Davidson was solemnised this morning at the royal palace Istana Iskandariah in Kuala Kangsar, Perak, Malaysia. The 34-year-old bride wore a dress sprinkled with sparkling crystals and beads. The bride is the only daughter of Salim Davidson and Sharifah Azaliah Tan Sri Syed Omar Shahabudin, as well as a great-granddaughter of the 24th Sultan of Kedah, Sultan Abdul Hamid Halim Shah. The ceremony was attended by about 300 guests.

May 18th

A bicycle which was ridden by Diana princess of Wales in her childhood was auctioned at Keys Auctioneers in Aylsham, Norfolk, for £ 1200. The lot also included a letter written in 1982 and a Christmas card from 1994, both signed by the Princess. The buyer is The House On The Hill Toy Museum in Stansted, Essex. The sellers were the family of a former housekeeper of the Princess’s family, Maudie Pendry, who bought the bike for £ 20.

The funeral of Malietoa Tanumafili II, head of state of Samoa, has taken place today at Samoa’s capital Apia and attracted a huge crowd. During the funeral service the coffin of Malietoa Tanumafili II was placed on a decorated dais, draped in the Samoan flag. At the end of the service the coffin was carried away by ceremonial police. Among the guests were the Kings of the Maori and of Tonga as well as Prime Minister Helen Clark of New Zealand and Governor-General Michael Jeffery of Australia. Malietoa Tanumafili II was buried at the royal cemetery at Tiafau. He lay in state on Friday at the Apia parliament.

Zara Salim Davidson was proclaimed Duli Yang Teramat Mulia Raja Puan Besar Perak at a ceremony at the Istana Iskandariah, Bukit Chandan, in Kuala Kangsar this morning. She will from now on be addressed as Duli Yang Teramat Mulia Raja Puan Besar Perak Darul Ridzuan, Tuanku Zara Salim. The ceremony was attended by close members of the Perak royal family and 150 dignitaries. The title had been vacant for the last two decades.

May 19th

The wedding between Crown Prince Raja Muda Nazrin Shah of Perak and Zara Salim Davidson was concluded on Saturday night with the bersanding ceremony at the Istana Iskandariah in Bukit Chandan, Kuala Kangsar, Perak, Malaysia. Bride and groom were dressed in yellow Terengganu songket Malay attire. The ceremony was attended by sultans, politicians and other VIPs. There were fireworks and an oil lamp festival. More than 10.000 people were out on the street to celebrate. More than 6500 guests attended a feast for the common folk at the Arena Square.

May 20th

The newspaper News of the World says that Prince Harry of Wales could be sent to Afghanistan to join the British troops there later this year. Some army bosses this weekend suggested he could be sent to Sierra Leone.

May 22nd

According to a poll by the Daily Express under thousands of their readers 90% of the people doesn’t want the Duchess of Cornwall to become a Queen when the Prince of Wales becomes King of Great Britain. The poll comes after a new documentary on Channel 4, Queen Camilla – which will be aired on 31 May – says that aides are launching a campaign to recognise the Duchess of Cornwall as his Queen, rather than the previously decided title of Princess Consort.

May 23rd

King Juan Carlos of Spain was voted the greatest Spaniard in a TV show at Antena 3 yesterday evening. In second place came author Miguel Cervantes followed by explorer Christopher Columbus in third place. On the fourth place was Queen Sofia, seventh the Prince of Asturias and fifteenth the Princess of Asturias. 3000 People were questioned by Antena 3.

May 24th

A 34-year-old man who possessed an axe was arrested by the police just yards from where Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain was to begin a walkabout 30 minutes later. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited Huddersfield in West Yorkshire. The man was charged with possessing an offensive weapon and released on bail.

May 28th

On June 6 Channel 4 is to broadcast a documentary called “Diana: The Witnesses in The Tunnel”. The programme features interviews with photographers and people who saw the crash in Paris on 31 August 1997 in which Diana Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed died together with chauffeur Henri Paul. Furthermore photos of the accident will be shown that will includes graphic images of Princess Diana receives oxygen, a passing student trying to help Trevor Rees-Jones, the Princess’s bodyguard, and of the inside of the car. Publishing such pictures in Great Britain is a highly sensitive subject. A spokesman for Clarence House said: “They [the princes William and Harry] have made their position on this very clear. They want their mother to be allowed to rest in peace.” Despite calls to cancel the programme, Channel 4 insists in broadcasting the documentary. They say that they have ‘carefully and sensitively’ chosen the photos for the documentary. They further say: “These photographs are an important and accurate eyewitness record of how events unfolded after the crash. We acknowledge there is great public sensitivity surrounding pictures of the victims and these have not been included.”

May 29th

The Dutch news programme NOVA this evening said that they had found confidential documents from the Queen’s Office in a garbage container behind the office’s building. The documents included preliminary dates for about 10 state visits up to 2010, telephonenumbers, memos, meetings and details of calendar dates. NOVA have handed over the documents to the Government Information Service. Measures will be taken to ensure that these kinds of confidential documents are not leaked again. Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende, responsible for the Queen’s Office, said tonight that ‘this should not have happened’.

May 30th

Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko of Japan arrived home on Wednesday evening. They made a 10-day European tour that took them to Sweden, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Great Britain. At Haneda airport the couple were greeted by Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako as well as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his wife Akie. On Tuesday the imperial couple had been guests of honour at an intimate dinner at Buckingham Palace with Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain, the Duke of Edinburgh and a few dignitaries. At the beginning of the European visit the imperial couple met with King Carl XVI Gustaf, Queen Silvia and Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden.

May 31st

In a letter to the Parliament Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende of the Netherlands today wrote that the Office of the Queen will destroy all documents and memos from now on that are not intended for the archive. He wrote in response to the leaking of confidential information the tv-programme NOVA found in a garbage bin. Mr. Balkenende said this should never have been allowed to happen and blamed the incident to a ‘human error’. There is no reason to think that the security of the members of the royal family were at stake at any point.

The Imperial Household Agency today announced that Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan will undergo surgery to remove a benign growth in his small intestine at the University of Tokyo Hospital on June 6. The polyp had been found during a regular health check in March. The Crown Prince is expected to stay in hospital for about one week and then recuperate at home for another week.

June 1st

This afternoon the Sultan of Brunei Darussalam approved and accepted the proposal made by Awangku Khairul Khalil Pengiran Syed Haji Jaafari for his daughter Pengiran Anak Puteri Hajah Majeedah Nuurul Bulqiah’s hand in marriage during the Istiadat Bersuruh Diraja ceremony at the Istana Nurul Iman. The bestowment of the Gendang Jaga-Jaga to the bridegroom’s family was announced also. Tomorrow the Istiadat Membuka Gendang Jaga-Jaga will commence simultaneously at the Lapau Building, the Istana and at the groom’s residence. The Istiadat Menghantar Tanda Diraja ceremony – bringing of the articles – will be held on June 3, followed by the official engagement – Istiadat Menghantar Pertunangan Diraja – on June 4. Today’s ceremony started the two-week long events of the royal wedding.

During an investigation of a bank robbery the Canadian police discovered the Kouchert Diamond Pearl of Star of Empress Elisabeth of Austria in a house in Winnipeg. The star had been stolen from an exhibition at Schönbrunn Castle in Vienna, Austria, in June 1998. Eight people have been arrested.

Prince Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia has appealed against his conviction for the illegal sale of the former headquarters of his political party Funcinpec. According to his lawyer the appeal was filed on Monday. A hearing date hasn’t been said yet.

June 2nd

Eugenia, daughter of Don Luis Alfonso de Borbón Duke of Anjou and his wife Margarita was christened today at the Embassy of the Holy See at Paris, France. She was christened by the apostolic nuncio in France, Fortunato Baldelli. The godparents were Victoria Vargas de D’Agostino and Jesús Quintanal Pigrée.

Crown Princess Masako of Japan attended a national greenery ceremony at the national park in Azumino near Nagano today together with her husband Crown Prince Naruhito. It was the Crown Princess’s first official duty outside Tokyo in seven months.

Archduke Carl Christian of Austria and Estelle de Saint-Romain married in a religious ceremony at the Église Saint Bruno de Voiron (Isère) in France. The wedding was followed by a lunch as well as a ball in the evening. Bridal children were Archduke Johannes of Austria, Céline Montagne, Victoire Meyssonnier, Pauline Faes, Archduchess Gabriella of Austria and Princess Anna-Maria von Auersperg-Trautson. Among the guests were the parents, brothers and sisters, almost all grandparents of bride and groom, Princess Astrid of Belgium and Prince Lorenz of Belgium Archduke of Austria-Este with children Amedeo and Maria-Laura, Prince Guillaume and Princess Sibilla of Luxemburg, Archduke Christian and Archduchess Marie Astrid of Austria, other members of the Austrian imperial family, as well as other royals and nobles. The civil wedding took place at Montgirod (Savoie) in France on 28 April.

June 5th

Princess Maria Gabriella of Savoy, daughter of King Umberto II and Queen Marie-José of Italy, is to sell 41 of her jewels at Christie’s in London next week. She says she needs to raise money to settle a tax bill. Among the items are a diamond tiara, called the Empress Joséphine Tiara, made by Fabergé in 1895. Further items include a double string of diamonds, a 10-string pearl necklace and a pink diamond.

The Berbedak ceremony for the wedding of Awangku Khairul Khalil Pengiran Syed Haji Jaafari and Pengiran Anak Puteri Hajah Majeedah Nuurul Bulqiah of Brunei Darussalam was held. First the berbedak ceremony for the bride took place at the Istana Nurul Iman. Then the ceremony for the groom took place at Darul Karamah. This ceremony was attended by the Sultan of Brunei Darussalam, his two wives, the Crown Prince and his wife and several other members of the royal family as well as members of the family of the groom. The ceremony is the seperate ceremonial powdering ritual on the royal bride and groom. The ceremony ended with the consent of the Sultan to close the ceremony. On June 7 the Akad Nikah ceremony – the solemnisation of the marriage vows – will be held at the Omar Ali Saifuddien Mosque in the capital. On June 9 the Birinai ceremony – henna tinting ceremony – will take place seperately for bride and groom at the Istana Nurul Iman and at Darul Karamah.

Vakafuhu Tu’ifau and Osaiasi Tu’ipulotu, the sons of Prince Tu’ipelehake and Princess Kaimana Aleamutu’a Tuku’aho of Tonga who were killed in a car accident in the USA last year, have sued Ford Motor Co. They claim that the company knew that the Ford Explorer their parents were driving in was unsafe. In the meantime Edith Delgado, driver of the car that caused the accident, is on trial in San Mateo County Superior Court. The lawsuit against Ford is filed at Santa Clara County Superior Court and says that Miss Delgado contributed to the crash events but didn’t kill the royal couple and their driver. It says the Ford Explorer is marketed as a forgiving, safe an stable vehicle although it was prone to rollovers, had an unsafe roof design and “was not equipped to properly handle emergency maneuvers at interstate highway speeds.” If they had been driving in another car they wouldn’t have died.

June 6th

Prince William and Prince Harry of Wales have made a public plea to Channel 4 not to broadcast graphic photographs of the crash that killed their mother in a documentary aired tonight. In a letter sent last Friday Mr Lowther-Pinkerton asked on their behalf to remove the pictures from the documentary. In the letter it was asked to respond before yesterday morning. Clarence House said they hadn’t received a response by then. The letter was published to make clear publicly that the princes believe the broadcast of these pictures being inappropriate, distressing and a gross disrespect to their mother’s memory. Channel 4 aired the documentary including the pictures after all and said that they had weighed the Princes’ concerns against the public interest of the documentary and in the still photography it includes.

On the Swedish National Day Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madeleine of Sweden opened the doors at the courtyard of the Royal Palace in Stockholm for the public at 10am. The opening ceremony was conducted to the rytm of the drum corps of the army. Earlier in the morning scouts had raised the flags at the palace. Crown Princess Victoria celebrated National Day in the town of Lundsbrunn. In the evening the traditional ceremony was held at Skansen in presence of King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madeleine.

Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan was successfully operated during a 70-minute operation at the University Hospital in Tokyo. A benign tumor was removed from his duodenum, a part of the small intestine. According to the Imperial Household Agency he has been able to walk around and talk with his wife after the operation. The Crown Prince had a two hours blood test and X-ray before the surgery. He entered hospital yesterday accompanied by his wife Crown Princess Masako.

June 7th

According to a probe by the BBC programme Panorama Prince Bandar bin Sultan of Saudi Arabia, former ambassador of Saudi Arabia to the USA, received secret payments for over a decade during negotiations about a £40bn arms deal between the biggest arms dealer of Great Britain, BAE Systems, and Saudi Arabia. The company paid hundreds of millions of pounds to the Prince with the full knowledge of the Ministry of Defence. Prince Bandar bin Sultan denies the accusations and says he has acted lawfully always. The BBC programme will be broadcasted on 11 June 2007 at BBC One at 20.30 BST.

June 8th

Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway and author Halfdan W. Freihow have decided to end their co-operation in writing an authorised biography of the Crown Princess. The Crown Princess and the author disagree on certain issues, so the book won’t be published.

June 9th

Johannes von Rudnay and Princess Caroline von Schönburg-Hartenstein married at the St Marien Dom in Zwickau today. More than 300 guests attended including members of the families of Schönburg, Saxony, Lippe, Oldenburg, Stolberg-Stolberg and Hohenlohe-Langenburg. After the wedding bride and groom were driven to Burg Stein in an open car and were welcomed at the castle by the Hartensteiner hunting-horn blowers. The party afterwards took place at Burg Stein.

June 10th

Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary today with family and friends at Fredensborg. In the evening they attended a memorial concert for Queen Ingrid of Denmark at Tivoli, Copenhagen. The concert was also attended by Crown Prince Frederik, Princess Benedikte and Prince Richard zu Sayn-Wittgenstein- Berleburg, Prince Gustav zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and his girlfriend Carina Axelson, King Constantine II and Queen Anne-Marie of Greece, Crown Prince Pavlos and Prince Nikolaos of Greece, Count Carl Johan and Countess Gunilla Bernadotte.

Princess Madeleine of Sweden celebrated her 25th birthday. Hundreds of well-wishers gathered at the courtyard of the royal palace in Stockholm this morning to greet the princess who got bouquets from members of the public. She was accompanied by her parents King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia, her sister Crown Princess Victoria and brother Prince Carl Philip. The army drum corps played. The palace said that the rest of the birthday celebrations will be private.

The actual marriage “bersanding” ceremony of Pengiran Anak Puteri Hajah Majeedah Nuurul Bulqiah of Brunei Darussalam and Yang Mulia Pengiran Khairul Khalil Bin Pengiran Syed Haji Jaafari took place this morning at the Balai Singgahsana Indera Buana, Istana Nurul Iman, and was followed by a procession around the town area. A night vigil and religious performance will take place this evening at the Istana Nurul Iman and Darul Karamah. In the meantime a cultural performance will take place in the capital of Brunei Darussalam. Tomorrow evening the wedding banquet will take place at the Istana Nurul Iman. On June 13th a ceremony will be held to celebrate the third day after the wedding. The thanksgiving prayer and the closing of the Gendang Jaga-Jaga will take place at Darul Karamah and Istana Nurul Iman.

June 11th

More than 60.000 pages on the 61-year-long reign of King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand will be put online in time for his 80th birthday on December 5th. The pages will be in Thai language, with some translations into English. The site will include speeches, photographs and official documents related to the King, Queen Sirikit and other family members from 1934 to 2007.

June 12th

In an interview to Matt Lauer of NBC Today, which is to be broadcasted on Monday, Prince William and Prince Harry have spoken about the death of their mother. The interview was recorded at Clarence House to publicise the Diana memorial concert at Wembley on 1 July. Prince Harry said: “You know, when people think about it, they think about her death. They think about how wrong it was. They think about whatever happened … whatever happened in that tunnel, you know, no one will ever know. I’ll never stop wondering about that.” He also said: “Over the last 10 years I personally feel as though she has been…she’s always there. She’s always been a constant reminder to both of us and everybody else…it’s weird because I think when she passed away there was never that time, there was never that sort of lull. There was never that sort of peace and quiet for any of us – the fact that her face was always splattered on the paper the whole time.” Prince William told: “There’s not a day goes by I don’t think about it once in the day. And so for us it is very slow and it’s a lot – it has been a long time.” Asked what they would like to do if they weren’t members of the royal family Prince William said he’d love to be an helicopter pilot or work for the United Nations or something like that. Prince Harry would probably be a safari guide in Africa.

Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan has left hospital after his successful operation of last week. Accompanied by his wife Crown Princess Masako he took his time to thank the staff and the surgeon who performed the operation.

Greece said today that it has plans to turn the Tatoi Palace, summer residence of the Greek royal family, into a museum. The palace will be renovated and its contents restored. Culture Minister George Voulgarakis said: “Whether we like it or not, these items and buildings are part of our history and they should be exhibited. This will become a museum and a large park, an area of recreation and environmental education for Athenians.”

June 13th

Madame Tussauds in London has announced that a wax figure of the Duchess of Cornwall will join the royal family in the museum later this year. The Duchess of Cornwall has agreed to sit for sculptors. The museum says that many visitors requested for her wax figure. She will be with the Prince of Wales, Prince William and Prince Harry.

Lord Justice Scott Baker formally took charge of the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales on Monday, replacing Baroness Butler-Sloss. He held his first preliminary hearing in the case today. In his opening statement he said wishes to set a timetable for witnesses in order to keep time and costs from escalating beyond what is absolutely necessary.

The Prince of Orange and Princess Maxima of the Netherlands have issued a letter to thank everybody for their heart-warming wishes after the birth of their daughter Ariane as well as the support they received during the recent illness of their daughter.

The Prince of Orange and Princess Maxima of the Netherlands will take legal action against the magazine Party for publishing pictures of Princess Maxima with her daughters Amalia and Alexia on the beach last week. The couple considers the publication to be a ‘serious violation of their privacy’. The pictures are a violation of the media code. The magazine was given a chance to avoid a court case by placing a rectification and donate 10.000 Euro to a charity. However they couldn’t agree on the amount of money. Party placed an apology this week.

The parliament of Nepal today has given itself the power to abolish the monarchy if King Gyanendra of Nepal interferes in constituent elections who are due in November. Officials say that there are no plans at the moment to depose the king. A decision about the future of the King will be made at a meeting of the special assembly after it is elected in November.

At the Important Jewellery sale today Christie’s at London has sold 41 pieces of jewellery for Princess Maria Gabriella of Savoy for $ 3.358.639. The Empress Josephine Tiara, made by Fabergé in 1895, fetched $ 2.071.388 and was bought by an anonymous buyer. It was a world record price for a tiara at auction. Also jewellery from the collection of Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia was sold. Her collection realised $ 1.189.657. Press announcement prior to the auction

June 14th

In a BBC interview Prince William and Prince Harry of Wales talked about their excitement ahead of the Princess Diana memorial concert at Wembley on 1 July. Prince William said he would like the concert to be a chance to remember all the “amazing things” his mother did. Prince William said they “wanted something that would really bring her whole spirit – her joy of life and everything that we thought she stood for – a bit more to the point and a concert of this magnitude balanced with the service will be a wonderful way to remember her.” Prince William told: “We used to catch her dancing to her music – we’d walk out the room rather embarrassed that our mother was just dancing around.” The full interview will be broadcasted by BBC One on 29 June.

Queen Sirikit of Thailand has undergone an operation to release fascia in the middle finger of her left hand at Phramonkutklao Hospital in Bangkok today. She has stiffness of the joints of the finger. She has to recuperate for two weeks.

Edith Delgado, who in July 2006 caused an accident in which Prince Tu’ipelehake and Princess Kaimana Aleamotu’a Tuku’aho of Tonga and their driver died, was convicted at court in California today of misdemeanor manslaughter. She was acquitted of more serious charges. The bail has been lowered and her family planned to pay the bail later this week. A sentencing hearing is set for 24 August. Miss Delgado now faces a maximum of three years in county jail.

Archaeologists searching Tatoi Palace in Greece have discovered more than 200 ancient items, 100 religious icons and vessels and 300 paintings of which the fate had been unknown since King Constantine II and his family fled the country in 1967. The items were found in sealed containers in the stables and the basement of Tatoi Palace. The team of archaeologists and restorers started working on catalogueing the contents of the palace three months ago.

June 17th

The Nepalese monarchie could continue if King Gyanendra and Crown Prince Paras abdicate the throne before the election of the Constituent Assembly, Prime Minister Girija Prasad Koirala said today. In that case the new king would be Crown Prince Paras’s son Hridayendra who is five years old, or under a new law the Queen would be his seven-year-old sister Purnika. A spokesman for the Maoist Party however said that they will not accept a monarchy in any form.

Elizabeth Duchess in Bavaria and her husband Daniel Terberger expect their second child. The Duchess is almost four months pregnant.

In the Finnish Hufvudstadsbladet of today it is announced that Count Fredrik Creutz and his wife Annunziata née Princess of Bourbon Two Sicilies had a daughter on 11 June 2007. She was born at the Portland Hospital in London and doesn’t have a name yet.

June 18th

Samoa has chosen a new head of state for the next five years on Friday. The new head of state is Tuiatua Tupua Tamasese Efi, a former prime minister and member of the Council of Deputies. He will replace the late Malietoa Tanumafili II who passed away last month. Tuiatua’s father Tupua Tamasese Meaole shared the title of head of state with the laste Malietoa Tanumafili II from 1962 till his death in 1963. The election was officially confirmed today.

June 19th

Infanta Sofía of Spain will be christened at the Zarzuela Palace on 15 July. Her godparents will be her grandmother Paloma Rocasolano and Prince Konstantin of Bulgaria.

June 20th

In an interview to the magazine Onze Wereld Princess Máxima of the Netherlands has told that she has become more emotional after she had children. ‘It is not that my concerns about poverty have become greater, but I am more emotional about it,’ the princess says. ‘Once you have children you are far more conscious of the future and your responsibilities.”

June 21st

Prince William of Wales celebrated his 25th birthday today. He is now entitled to a part of the inheritance left to him by his mother the late Diana Princess of Wales. His share is estimated to be £250,000 to £300,000 a year. It also means that Prince William from now on can marry without consent from his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain.

Prince Manuel of Bavaria and his wife Anna née Princess zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg had their first child. Their son Leopold was born on 13 June, is 57 centimeters tall and weighs 3950 grammes. He was most likely born in München, Germany.

June 22nd

Prince Pieter-Christiaan van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven was admitted to the Universitair Medisch Centrum in Utrecht today after a check up. He has a skin infection and needs a treatment with medication directly in the veins for about one week. It is not sure if he also has to stay in hospital that long. The christening of his daughter Emma, that was to take place this weekend, was postponed. A new date hasn’t been set yet.

Since today the Luxemburg Grand-Ducal House finally has its own website. It was launched on the occasion of National Day, which will be celebrated tomorrow. The website contains activities and news, press announcements, photos, information about the family and its history, as well as succession right. At the moment it is only in French. Cour grand-ducale de Luxembourg

The Imperial Household Agency today announced that Prince Tomihito of Japan will be treated for alcohol dependency at the Imperial Household Agency Hospital in Tokyo for about one month. The Prince is suffering from severe insomnia and has difficulties swallowing.

June 23rd

According to a death announcement in the Daily Telegraph Antonia Lambrino née Colville died on 13 June 2007. The funeral took place in private. Since 2006 she was the widow of the Carol Lambrino, who styled himself Prince of Romania. He was the son of King Carol II of Romania and Jeanne Marie Lambrino.

June 26th

The summer photo session of the Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima of the Netherlands and their three daughters was held at the royal stables in The Hague this morning. It accidentally coincided with the second birthday of their middle daughter Princess Alexia who got a birthday cake with two candles.

King Albert II of the Belgians was taken to the Sint-Jan Hospital in Brussels this afternoon after a fall at Laken Castle. He has a fracture to his right thighbone and had a successfull hip replacement operation late this afternoon. The King will remain in hospital the coming days.

June 27th

A mummy of a woman has been identified as the most powerful female Pharaoh Hatshepsut. The mummy had already been discovered in the valley of the Kings in Egypt in 1903, but was only brought to the Cairo Museum for tests two months ago, Zahi Hawass, antiquities chief of Egypt said. The mummy’s DNA was compared with the mummy of Hatshepsut’s grandmother Nefreteri. According to Mr Hawass the mummy shows an obese woman who died in her 50s, probably had diabetes and liver cancer. More tests are to be carried out.

June 28th

Fürst Alexander zu Schaumburg-Lippe and Dr. Nadja Anna Zsoeks married in a civil ceremony at the town hall at Bückeburg. Afterwards at the balcony of the town hall Fürst Alexander shortly thanked the few hundreds of people on the street for coming. A short photo session was held in front of the castle. A bridal soiree will be held at the castle tomorrow evening.

June 30th

The religious wedding of Fürst Alexander zu Schaumburg-Lippe and Dr. Nadja Anna Zsoeks took place at the Stadtkirche in Bückeburg. The wedding was attended by many royals. A wedding ball was held in the evening at Bückeburg Castle. At midnight a torch procession and short musical performance took place at the castle. A full report will follow in the coming weeks as I was in Bückeburg for the wedding.

July 1st

The daughter of Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark was christened by Erik Norman Svendsen, Bishop of Copenhagen, with the names Isabella Henrietta Ingrid Margrethe at Fredensborg today. The baby wore the christening robe that was first worn by King Christian X in 1870. Her godparents are Princess Mathilde of Belgium, Princess Alexia of Greece, Dr Nadine Johnston, Christian Buchwald, Peter Heering and Marie Louise Skeel. The intimate christening was attended by about 140 guests, mainly family and friends, among them Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway as well as Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden. Crown Princess Mary told that they had chosen the name of their daughter two weeks ago after having consulted the family tree of the royal family.

Today the memorial concert for the late Diana Princess of Wales was held at the Wembley Stadium in London on the day that would have been her 46th birthday. Prince William told the 63.000 strong crowd: “Thank you to all of you who have come here tonight to celebrate our mother’s life. For us this has been the most perfect way to remember her, and this is how she would want to be remembered.” The princes were joined by Harry’s girlfriend Chelsy Davy as well as William’s former girlfriend Kate Middleton with her parents and sister. Among the performers during the six-hour show that was broadcasted in 140 countries were Elton John, Duran Duran, Tom Jones, Rod Stewart, Status Quo, Take That (without Robbie Williams), Lily Allen, P Diddy, Will Young, Nelly Furtado, James Morrison, Natasha Bedingfield and Joss Stone as well as the English National Ballet. There was a video tribute by Nelson Mandela, Tony Blair and Bill Clinton and a musical medley by Andrew Lloyd Webber. The show was presented by among others Sienna Miller, David Beckham, Jamie Oliver, Cat Deeley and Kiefer Sutherland. Proceeds from the event go to charities favoured by the princess.

July 2nd

The Earl and Countess of Wessex are expecting their second child in December, Buckingham Palace announecd today. A palace spokeswoman said: “They’re over the moon… both thrilled and excited. The Countess will continue with engagements as normal and take doctors advice.” Daughter Louise was born in November 2003. The baby will be the eight grandchild of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh who are said to be ‘delighted’.

July 3rd

A letter from the later Emperor Napoleon to his future wife Joséphine de Beauharnais as fetched 409.000 Euros at an auction in London. In the love letter Napoleon apologises after a furious row. “I send you three kisses – one on your heart, one on your mouth and one on your eyes,” Napoleon wrote. The letter was part of a collection of Austrian banker Albin Schram who died two years ago. Among the letters were also ones of Tsar Peter the Great of Russia and Queen Elizabeth I of England.

July 4th

The 70th birthday celebrations of Queen Sonja of Norway started today. The royal yacht arrived in Stavanger this morning. Afterwards the royal family walked through the town to the cathedral for a special birthday service. Afterwards Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg presented the Queen with the gift of the government. A lunch was held at the restaurant Hall Toll. Today also royal guests arrived including Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark, Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden, Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, Princess Máxima of the Netherlands, Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxemburg, Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume of Luxemburg, Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde of Belgium. Together with the royal guests the Norwegian royal family later today sailed aboard of various vessels to an island for a gala birthday dinner. Then they set off on a cruise at the Norwegian and the Danish royal yachts around souther Norway, visiting Lindesnes, Gamle and Ny Hellesund in the coming days. On Saturday the party ends at the royal summer house at Tjøme.

July 5th

In an interview to news agency TT on the occasion of her 30th birthday Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden has said that she feels no pressure to “get a job and start a family”. About marrying she said: “It will happen when it happens. I’m not in a rush but I hope it will happen at some point.” She pointed out she is keen on getting more involved in environmental and climate issues.

Robert Brown, who claims he is the illegitimate son of Princess Margaret of Great Britain and Peter Townsend, has lost his bid at High Court to see her will and the will of the late Queen Mother. His claim was called “vexatious” and an ‘abuse of process” and based on “an imaginary and baseless claim” according to the judge.

The outside of the Berliner Schloss (Castle of Berlin) – residence of the Prussian kings and German emperors – will be rebuild. For the interior there will be an architectural contest. The project is to cost half a milliard of Euros. The castle was blown up in 1950 and replaced by the Republican Palace which now will be demolished.

July 6th

At a press conference held on the occasion of his week-long trip to Mongolia Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan said his wife Crown Princess Masako is still to weak to make official trips abroad. “She is still in the middle of recovery and I have heard she still needs time to be able to visit a foreign country.” He said: “Masako appreciates people’s expectations, but please watch her from a long-time viewpoint. Not only Masako, but also I, regret that she is unable to make the visit.”

July 7th

King Albert II of the Belgians was discharged from hospital late this morning. He was walking with two crutches, which he needs to use some more weeks. He will need daily knee exercises. About 100 well wishers met him with applause when he left the hospital.

Princess Haya bint Al Hussein of Jordan was elected member of the International Olympic Committee for the United Arab Emirats at the 119th IOC Session that was held in Guatemala City. She was elected with 78 out of 91 valid votes. Princess Haya said: “It is the greatest honour to be elected as an IOC Member. Since the age of six I have followed the spirit of Olympism and dreamt of serving the Olympic Family. Now I have been honoured by the trust of the IOC through their election of me to their membership. I thank the IOC members for the trust they have placed in me. I shall work to return that trust and, with their support, to serve the Olympic Movement to the very best of my abilities.” IOC President Jacques Rogge said: “I am convinced that the dedication to the Olympic ideal she has demonstrated as an Olympian and a President of a major International Federation will be a major asset for the further and better growth of our Movement.”

Prince Tomohito of Japan today openly spoke about his alcoholism in a speech at a meeting on welfare services. “I have been drinking alcohol since my days in university and am dependent on it, so I find it rather surprising that I am seen to have been hit by it now,” he said. He told that started drinking more alcohol in the past years because of his anxiety over the imperial succession issue and problems within his own family. He said he is going through counselling and is trying to keep himself fit through exercise. “The Imperial Household Agency had told me not to say outright that I am dependent [on alcohol] but I hated being made a topic of talk based on speculation,” he said.

Countess Catharina Bernadotte af Wisborg married Romuald Ruffing today at the castle church St. Marien at the flower island Mainau. The bride wore a white satin dress with lace and pearls. The wedding was attended by 200 family members and friends and hundreds of onlookers. The oecumenical church service was led by evangelical dean Dieter Schunck and Father Ridil of the Heart-Jesus missionaries of Homburg. The couple met in 2004 when Romuald Ruffing started working at Mainau, and it was love at first sight. The civil wedding took place at Mainau on 30 June.

Count Patrick von Faber-Castell and Mariella Ahrens – who had already married civilly in December and had a daughter, Lucia, in March – married religiously at Stein, Germany, today. The bride wore a white dress by Roberto Cavalli. After the wedding there was a photosession and then they drove in an Oldtimer-Cabrio to Stein Castle for the reception for which about 250 people were invited. Afterwards a big party followed until far after midnight.

July 10th

According to a poll by the agency Demoskop for the newspaper Expressen a majority of the Swedes would love to see Crown Princess Victoria on the throne. 64% thinks King Carl XVI Gustaf should abdicate at the age of 65. 45% of the Swedes thinks that Crown Princess Victoria is best suited to represent Sweden as head of state.

July 11th

Princess Ariane of the Netherlands will be christened at the Kloosterkerk in The Hague on October 20 it was announced today.

Prince Albert II of Monaco opened an exhibition about his late mother Princess Grace of Monaco today at the Grimaldi Forum in Monaco. The exhibition marks the 25th anniversary of her tragic death in a car accident. The highlight of the exhibition is the Princess’s wedding dress. Also shown are photos, letters, magazine covers and trailers from her many movies. After 23 September the exhibition will move to London.

July 14th

Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden celebrated her 30th birthday today. The day started with a family service at the chapel at the royal palace and a reception with members of parliament and the cabinet, and as birthday gifts she received a silver lion and a flat-screen television for her office. At noon a gun salute was fired from Skeppsholmen. Afterwards the Crown Princess and her parents King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia came out at the palace courtyard for a military tribute by the Swedish Armed Forces Orchestra in front of hundreds of well-wishers. Also Prince Carl-Philip, Princess Madeleine and Princess Lilian were present. In the afternoon the Crown Princess was greeted by the public at Solliden at Öland Island. Afterwards a concert took place at Borgholm.

July 15th

Infanta Sofía de Todos los Santos of Spain was christened at a private ceremony in the gardens of the Zarzuela Palace in Madrid with water from the river Jordan by the Archbishop of Madrid, Rouco Varela. Her godparents were Prince Konstantin of Bulgaria and grandmother Paloma Rocasolano. The ceremony was attended by more than 100 guests.

July 16th

A photosession with Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde with their children Elisabeth, Gabriel and Emmanuel, was held at the Parc Chlorophylle at Dochamps.

Rebuilding of the wooden palace of Tsar Alexei Michailovitch of Russia has started in Moscow. The 17th century castle was demolished in 1767. Architects have made a detailed model of the palace by looking at paintings and drawings. The plan is to make the rebuild palace looks as much as possible like the old palace. It is planned to open in 2008.

July 17th

Two journalists from the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet have been reported to the police, after a confrontation with bodyguards. On Sunday their boat entered an exclusion zone outside Solliden at Öland, summer residence of the Swedish royal family. Aftonbladet denies its journalists were anywhere naer the exclusion zone. The case has been passed on to the police in Kalmar.

July 20th

The Spanish High Court has ordered the seizure of all copies of the satirical magazine El Jueves. The front page of the magazine has a cartoon showing the Prince and Princess of Asturias having sex and the Prince is saying: “Just imagine if you end up pregnant. This will be the closest thing to work I’ve ever done in my life”. The cartoon was published after the government announced it would pay couples nearly $3,500 for each new baby born. The high court judge Juan del Olmo ruled that the cartoon insulted the royal family and “struck at the honour and dignity of the people represented”. The magazine is also ordered to identify the author of the cartoon.

July 21st

The Duchess of Cornwall celebrated her 60th birthday with a big party at Highgrove tonight. The Duchess wore a diamond necklace that once belonged to the late Queen Mother. Among the guests were Prince William of Wales, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, Zara Phillips with her boyfriend Mike Tindall, Andrew Parker Bowles with his wife Rosemary, and Kate Middleton. The Duchess asked guests to donate to the National Osteoporosis Society instead of giving her gifts.

Archaeologists have traced the exact location of Scone Abbey by using sophisticated magnetic imaging technology. The abbey was founded in 1114 by King Alexander I of Scotland and burned down in 1559. It was the place where Scottish kings were crowned for four centuries and it is believed to have been the place where the Stone of Destiny was housed in the main altar. At the moment a major investigation is taking place in the grounds of Scone Palace. Oliver O’Grady of Glasgow University said: “We have been really surprised by the high quality of the survey results so far. For the first time in the modern age we can actually begin to get an emerging picture of the scale of the church here. We are amazed by what we’ve found.” The team believes the abbey complex could be up to 100 metres in length.

Belgium celebrated its National Day today. The day started with a traditional Te Deum at the Cathedral in Brussels attended by King Albert II and Queen Paola as well as Queen Fabiola. The other family members attended church services elsewhere in the country. In the afternoon the whole family attended the military parade in front of the royal palace. In the evening they attended various events in Brussels.

Prince Tomohito of Japan was discharged from the hospital where he was treated for alcohol dependency during the past month. The prince is expected to resume his duties as he works to improve his health the Imperial Household Agency said today.

Hereditary Prince Carl Ferdinand zu Bentheim und Steinfurt married Elna-Margret Rinn at the Grosse Evangelische Kirche in Burgsteinfurt.

July 23rd

Former King Mohammed Zahir Shah of Afghanistan died this morning at his residence in the presidential palace in Kabul aged 92 following a long illness. He was born in Kabul in 1914 and was educated in France. He abdicated in 1973 as result of a coup after having reigned since 1933 when his father was assassinated. He returned to Afghanistan in 2002 after having spent 29 years in exile, mainly in Italy. President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan has announced three days of mourning. He called the former king a symbol of national unity. His body is lying in state at a mosque in Kabul. The funeral will be held tomorrow. The former King’s wife Homaira died shortly before their return to Afghanistan. The couple had five sons and two daughters. One son, Shah Mahmoud Zahir died in 2002.

July 24th

Princess Märtha Louise of Norway and her friend Elisabeth Samnøy are launching an alternative school aimed at training students to contact angels. The school is called Astarte Education. According to the website the training program means “getting in touch with your own truths” through “readings, healing, crystals and hands-on treatment. Courses will be offered twice a week over three years, at a cost of NOK 12,000 per half-year. Princess Märtha Louise says she has seen the light in 2002 and has “always been interested in alternative treatment programs.” She said she started “taking contact with angels” when she worked with horses. “I have later learned the value of this enormous gift, and want to share it with others.”

In Kabul, Afghanistan, the funeral took place of former king Mohammed Zahir Shah of Afghanistan on a hill above Kabul next to his father and his wife. A guard of honour carried the coffin draped in the Afghan flag to a viewing stand under a shade of pine trees at the palace grounds in the capital. Members of the government passed and condoled the family. From the main mosque in Kabul the coffin was taken to the hilltop mausoleum where he was buried.

July 28th

Buckingham Palace announced the engagement between Peter Phillips, son of Mark Phillips and the Princess Royal, and Autumn Kelly, daughter of Brian and Kitty Kelly. A date for the marriage hasn’t been set yet. Autumn Kelly was born in Montreal, Canada, in 1975. She graduated from McGill University in Montreal in 2002 with a Bachelor of Arts degree and now is a management consultant. The couple met at the Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal in 2003. Autumn Kelly moved to Great Britain and the couple has been living in a cottage at Gatcombe Park. Peter Phillips since September 2005 works at the Royal Bank of Scotland in Edinburgh.

A British Airways flight from Linate airport in Milan, Italy, to Heathrow airport in London was delayed for almost four hours after the three wives of Sheikh Badr Bin Khalifa al- Thani of Qatar refused to take their seats because they objected sitting next to men they didn’t know. The captain of the flight returned to the terminal. Finally it was decided that the Qatari entourage had to leave the airplane. The Qatar royals had been on a shopping day-trip to Milan and finally returned to London in an Alitalia flight.

August 2nd

Nepal has chosen a new national anthem. The lyrics and music were approved yesterday morning in a cabinet meeting. The anthem was selected from 1272 songs and no longer mentions King Gyanendra. The previous national anthem praised and wished the king’s success.

August 3rd

The yearly summer photosession of the Danish royal family at Graasten Castle took place today.

Mexican archaeologists believe they have found the tomb of Aztec Emperor Ahuizotl at Mexico City. They have located an entryway into what they believe are underground chambers that could contain the remains of the Emperor. No tomb of an Aztec ruler has ever been found.

August 4th

Peter Phillips, son of the Princess Royal, might have to give up his place in the line of succession to the British throne unless his fiancee renounces her faith. It has emerged that his fiancee Autum Kelly was baptised as a Roman Catholic at the St John Fisher parish church in Pointe-Claire, Montreal, on 18 June 1978. Today one of the key advisors of Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Lord Lester, called for the law to be changed. He says that the 306-year-old ban on Roman Catholics marrying into the royal family is “certainly an injustice to a very small group of people and it’s an anomaly that ought to be removed at the appropriate time.”

August 5th

Newly released documents show that Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill advised the Duke of Windsor not to attend the coronation ceremony of his niece Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain in 1953. He was told to tell the press that he couldn’t attend the coronation being a former monarch of Great Britain.

August 6th

According to a poll for the Daily Mail 54% of the 1001 people (61% of the women) questioned think the Duchess of Cornwall shouldn’t attend the memorial service for the late Diana Princess of Wales on 31 August. Also 59% thinks she shouldn’t become the queen if the Prince of Wales becomes the king. 53% thinks the throne should go directly to Prince William of Wales.

August 7th

Philipp von Lattorff and his wife née Princess Tatjana of Liechtenstein had their fifth child. Anna Pia Theresia Maria was born on 3 August 2007 at Goldgeben/Hausleiten, Austria.

Count Alram zu Ortenburg, head of the house, died at Coburg yesterday at the age of 82. He is survived by his wife Agathe and their four children with partners as well as several grandchildren.

During the yearly photosession of Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark, Queen Margrethe told that Marie Cavallier, the girlfriend of her youngest son Prince Joachim, is really nice. Prince Henrik said that it is up to Joachim to decide about an engagement or wedding with Marie. The couple didn’t want to answer any further questions about the relationship.

August 9th

Earl Spencer, the brother of the late Diana Princess of Wales told the BBC today that he has considered writing a biography about his sister on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of her death. He said although many books about his sister were “very inaccurate”, he will not have a biography by him about her life published during his lifetime.

Pieter van Vollenhoven, husband of Princess Margriet of the Netherlands, was diagnosed with skin cancer for the fifth time in six years. The malignant tissue was removed today at the Antoni van Leeuwenhoek hospital in Amsterdam. He could leave hospital afterwards. Regular check-ups will be continued.

August 13th

Princess Haya bint Al Hussein of Jordan and her husband Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum of Dubai expect their first child together at the end of 2007 or early 2008. The princess says she doesn’t want to know beforehand if the baby is a boy or a girl.

August 17th

Princess Beatrice of York has achieved A-level results of an A in drama and a B in history and film studies. She is now going to take a gap year before going to university. She plans to spend time in America and Africa. Next year she’d like to undertake a creative degree at a Scottish university or at Goldsmiths in London. Her younger sister Princess Eugenie of York achieved three As in art, politics and history of art, as well as a B in English. She will continue with her A-level qualification.

August 18th

Olav Bjørshol and Marianne Solberg Behn remarried at Østre Fredrikstad Church in Fredrikstad, Norway. The parents of Ari Behn, husband of Princess Märtha Louise of Norway, first married in 1973 and divorced ten years later. They restarted their relationship around the time of the marriage of Ari and Märtha Louise in 2002. Granddaughters Maud Angelica and Leah Isadora Behn were flower girls. Among the about 100 guests was also Queen Sonja of Norway.

Thanks to a Swedish tourist a fire in a large garage behind the Kancellihuset at Fredensborg where the crown princely family of Denmark lives could be stopped soon. The tourist saw the fire yesterday afternoon and quickly raised the alarm. The fire was caused by a short circuit in an electric golf cart in the garage.

August 19th

Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al Sabah of Kuwait underwent a successfull urinary tract surgery in the USA.

August 21st

The coronation of King Tiheitia of the Maoris was completed at Turangawaewae Marae in Ngaruawahia with a waka royal salte and a rousing haka. The king held his first public speech in front of 4000 guests. He spoke about the importance of children’s education and lifelong learning. Last week was filled with ceremonies and sports events held to commemorate the first anniversary of his coronation. The ceremonies among others were attended by King George Tupou V of Tonga, the head of state of Samoa Tamasese Efi, and royalty from Hawaii, Tahiti and the Cook Islands. The celebrations also formed the end of a year of mourning for the King’s mother, Maori Queen Dame Te Atairangikahu.

August 23rd

The Nepalese government has decided to nationalise part of the inherited property of King Gyanendra of Nepal including Narayanhiti Royal Palace in Kathmandu and six other palaces in the country. The king is allowed to keep the property he already owned when he became the king. Also the bank accounts of King Gyanendra, Queen Komal and Crown Prince Paras were freezed to stop the transfer of money from the late King Birendra and the late Queen Aishwarya to their accounts.

Archeologists believe they might have found the missing remains of Grand Duke Alexei and his sister Grand Duchess Maria of Russia at Yekaterinburg. The excavations took place in the past two months in an area indicated in a document with a detailed account of the execution. The remains of Tsar Nikolai II, Tsarina Alexandra and three of their daughters were exhumed in 1991 and reburied at St. Petersburg in 1998.

August 24th

King Gyanendra of Nepal and his family moved today from Narayanhiti Palace to the summer residence Nagarjun Palace, one day after the government nationalised seven royal palaces. A palace source claims however that the move is only part of their already existing vacation plans and has nothing to do with the nationalisation.

19-year-old Edith Delgado was sentenced to two years in jail today for causing a crash that killed two members of the royal family of Tonga and their driver. She was also ordered to pay restitution of an undetermined amount to the families of the victims. She already spent the past year in jail and will likely be out of jail in four to six months.

August 25th

Emma Francisca Catharina van Vollenhoven, daughter of Prince Pieter-Christiaan and Princess Anita van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven, was christened in private by the Rev. E.C. Roos at the chapel of Palace Het Loo in Apeldoorn. Her godparents were Prince Bernhard van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven, Caroline van der Toorn-van Eijk, Evert-Jan Wamsteker and Countess Alexandra de Witt-Cavard.

The restoration of Kongsgården at Bygdøy near Oslo has been completed. It took six years to renovate the summer residence of the Norwegian royal family. The house was re- opened yesterday. King Harald said: “Now we will make it our own, and look forward to many wonderful days out here over the next years.” Queen Sonja told: “It will be nice to be able to live in a house where we may walk directly out into the garden.”

Hereditary Prince Leopold Fugger von Babenhausen married Annina Kammer somewhere in the Hessen area in Germany.

August 26th

Clarence House said today that the Duchess of Cornwall has decided not to attend the memorial service for the 10th anniversary of the death of Diana Princess of Wales on 31 August 2007. She had accepted the invitation of her stepsons but now has cancelled after discussions with her husband and stepsons. In a statement she says: “I accepted and wanted to support them. However, on reflection I believe my attendance could divert attention from the purpose of the occasion which is to focus on the life and service of Diana. I’m grateful to my husband, William and Harry for supporting my decision.” The memorial service will be held in the Guard’s Chapel at Wellington Barracks in London.

In the Svenska Dagbladet of today the engagement was announced between Justin Rosenørn-Lanng and Désirée Kogevinas. They became engaged at Corfu in this month. Désirée Kogevinas was born in 1977 as the daughter of Nicos Kogevinas and Countess Madeleine Bernadotte. The groom is a son of Oliver Charles Rosenørn-Lanng and Evelyn Margarita Astrid Kolbe Kamps. He descends in female line from the Danish noble family Rosenørn.

August 28th

Edith Delgado, who was sentenced to two years in jail on August 24 for causing a crash that killed two members of the Tongan royal family, is to appeal her sentence her lawyers said today. On Friday a judge will hear her request to remain free on bail pending the appeal.

August 29th

Via the RVD Princess Mabel and Prince Friso van Oranje-Nassau have confirmed they have changed an entry at the online encyclopedia Wikipedia early 2006. They changed the information given at the entry about Princess Mabel. The sentence saying that Princess Mabel had given ‘incomplete and false information’ to the government about her relationship with drugs baron Klaas Bruinsma was changed into she gave ‘incomplete information’. The entry was re-edited by another Wikipedia user very quickly. The IP address connected to the change could be tracked to Palace Huis ten Bosch.

August 30th

Forbes has published its yearly list of the world’s richest royals. Again the list is topped by the Sultan of Brunei Darussalam who is worth 22 Billion Dollars. They also provide a list of the world’s most eligible royals topped by Fürst Albert von Thurn und Taxis.

August 31st

A memorial service was held at Guard’s Chapel in London to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the death of Diana Princess of Wales. The service was led by the Reverend Patrick Irwin, Chaplain to the Household Division. The address was given by Richard Chartres, Bishop of London. He said it was now time to “let Diana rest in peace”. He said that her memory shouldn’t longer be used. In his reading Prince Harry of Wales said about his mother that she was “the best mother in the world. She made us and so many other people happy”. He also said: “We both think of her every day. We speak about her and laugh together at all the memories.” There were other readings by Prince William of Wales – who read from St Paul’s letter to the Ephesians – and Lady Sarah McCorquodale. The music played included the Princess’s favourite classical music and hymns. The prayers were written by Rowan Williams, Archbishop of Canterbury. More than 30 members of the British royal family attended the service including Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales. Among the guests were also members of the Spencer family, former members of the staff of the late princess, her bridesmaids and page boys as well as representatives of charities and organisations she was associated with. Thousands of people gathered outside the chapel.

September 1st

The Prince of Orange celebrated his 40th birthday at Palace Het Loo in Apeldoorn. Part of the guests already arrived yesterday for a surprise dinner and party at the royal stables with after dinner fireworks – also attended by thousands of onlookers. Today there were games to play. This evening the Prince, Princess Maxima of the Netherlands and their three daughters Amalia, Alexia and Ariane arrived at Palace Het Loo in an open carriage. The couple and their royal guests afterwards shortly posed for a group picture. About 200 guests, among them many royals, were invited for the belated birthday party which was delayed because of the birth of Princess Ariane in April. Among the guests were: Queen Beatrix, Prince Friso and Princess Mabel van Oranje-Nassau, Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands, Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Pieter van Vollenhoven with their four sons and daughters-in-law, Prince Carlos, Princess Margarita, Prince Jaime and Princess Carolina de Bourbon de Parme, Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde of Belgium, Prince El Hassan bin Talal and Princess Sarvath El Hassan of Jordan, their son Rashid and their daughter Badiya with husband Khalid Blair, Hereditary Prince Alois and Hereditary Princess Sophie of Liechtenstein, Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume of Luxemburg, Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway, the Prince and Princess of Asturias, Princess Cristina of Spain and Iñaki Urdangarín, Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, Prince Kardam and Princess Miriam of Tirnovo (Bulgaria), Prince Kyril and Princess Rosario of Preslav (Bulgaria), Archduke Carl Christian and Archduchess Marie-Astrid of Austria, Jorge and Maria del Carmen Zorreguieta as well as their son Martín Zorreguieta. Photos: Royal Portraits

September 3rd

The press was invited to Gut Skaugum near Oslo for a photosession with Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway with their children.

Princess Amalia of the Netherlands spent her first day at the play group Beregoed in Wassenaar.

A white tie pre-wedding party for Duchess Maria Anna in Bayern and her fiancé Klaus Runow was held this evening at Nymphenburg Castle in München. The wedding itself is to take place on Saturday.

September 4th

Two policemen, Ross Anders and Damon Goodman, have tried to sell an Order of Service from the thanksgiving service for Diana Princess of Wales on eBay only eight hours after the service had ended. The Order of Service had already attracted bids of more than $400 on Monday. Eight minutes after the policemen couple was found by the Daily Mail newspaper the document was withdrawn from Ebay. According to senior royal sources, every copy placed on a seat to be occupied in the chapel was taken home. The spares were taken back to Clarence House. A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “The matter has been brought to our attention and has been dealt with by senior management within the City of Westminster police today. “One of the officers involved has received words of advice about his actions and the other officer – who is not on duty – will be spoken to in due course. In addition steps will be taken in the form of guidance to officers in the borough of what is expected of them when policing public events.”

Princess Agnes of Liechtenstein née Archduchess of Austria died on 31 August 2007 in Vienna, Austria. She was born at Persenbeug, Austria, on 14 December 1928 as second child of Archduke Hubert Salvator and Archduchess Rosemary of Austria. In 1949 she married Prince Karl Alfred of Liechtenstein, a brother of Fürst Franz Josef II of Liechtenstein. The couple had four children. The funeral will take place in Vienna on 10 September.

Today the secretary-general of the Funcinpec party, Nhiek Bun Chhay, said in the newspaper Rasmei Kampuchea that Prince Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia could return as its president with a mandate lasting for five years, with the party’s current president Keo Puth Rasmey offering to step down to deputy if he agrees. “Although Prince Norodom Ranariddh side closes its door, we still don’t close our door. Our door remains open,” he said.

September 5th

The last preliminary hearing before the full inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales took place today. The inquest is to start on 2 October when the jury will be sworn in followed by the opening marks by the coroner. The inquest could last until late March 2008. Scene-setting evidence with maps and photos will be shown in the next two days. Jurors are expected to visit the Paris car crash scene shortly afterwards accompanied by coroner Lord Justice Scott Baker and interested parties. Video link evidence from France is expected to start about 10 October, involving witnesses who saw the Mercedes and the aftermath of the crash. Lawyers for Mohamed Al Fayed, Dodi’s father, have requested 68 witnesses, and the Ritz Hotel eight. The jury will sit for four days a week, with the fifth day taken up by legal discussion.

Tens of thousands of legal documents and photographs detailing the circumstances surrounding the death of Diana Princess of Wales, have gone missing, according to the French newspaper Le Figaro. Parisian Lawyer Jean-Louis Pelletier, who represents one of French paparazzi photographer Fabrice Chassery, was told by the French High court that the entire dossier with case files couldn’t be found. After the report in the newspaper officials denied that there was any problem and announced this afternoon that they had tracked down the original dossier. They state the lawyer’s request was misdirected.

In an interview with the Associated Press Prince Talal bin Abdul-Aziz of Saudi Arabia, an half-brother of King Abdullah, has said that he plans to form a political party, which is forbidden in the country. “I know this is not an easy thing to do, and we have a lot of obstacles ahead of us, but we have to start forming this party,” he said. He further criticised senior royals for monopolising power and blocking reform. He said he wants the party to challenge those who have been “holding executive power for some 70 years. This is a group which is not only blocking reform, but is also trying to eliminate others and take everything in its hand.”

September 6th

Prince Hisahito of Japan celebrated his first birthday today. In the morning he and his parents Prince and Princess Akishino visited Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko of Japan at the imperial palace. New photos and video footage were issued. The Imperial Household Agency said he weighs 9.285 grams and is 75 centimetres tall. He already has several teeth. “His Highness Prince Hisahito is walking with support and crawling on stairs and his activity has grown vigorous particularly in the past month,” the agency said, adding that he claps his hands to music and likes to play the piano, drums and harp. “He likes picture books and turns the pages himself. When he comes to the end of a book, he then looks at the front and back covers.”

This morning Crown Prince Paras of Nepal has been hospitalised at the Norvic Hospital in Thapathali after suffering a mild heart attack. Doctors say he successfully underwent ‘stent procedure’ to clear his blocked artery and is being kept at the hospital for five days until he fully recovers. It is said the Crown Prince is now without pain, after having complained of chest pains since three days. The Crown Prince was visited by his parents King Gyanendra and Queen Komal.

September 7th

Infanta Leonor of Spain went to school for the first time this morning, wearing a school uniform and a little school bag. Her parents took her to the Escuela Infantil de la Guardia Real in the grounds of El Pardo palace. The school is for children of members of the regiment which protects the royal family.

The engagement was announced today between Prince Charles-Philippe d’Orléans Duc d’Anjou and Diana Álvares Pereira de Melo 11th Duchess of Cadaval. The announcement was made at Eu Castle. The wedding is to take place in June 2008 at the church in Évora, Portugal. The couple met at a charitable gala-dinner of the Maltese Order in Lisbon, Portugal in the summer of 2005.

September 8th

Duchess Maria Anna in Bayern and Klaus Runow married religiously at the St. Quirinus Church in Tegernsee this morning. On Friday evening a reception took place at the Bräustüberl at Tegernsee. The bride was attended by four pages, the two bridesmaids were Princess Marie Caroline of Liechtenstein and Duchess Pauline of Württemberg. A reception took place afterwards at Tegernsee Castle. Among the guests were the Duke and Duchess in Bayern, Hermann and Gerda Runow, Duke of Bayern, Hereditary Prince Alois and Hereditary Princess Sophie of Liechtenstein, Prince Maximilian and Princess Angela of Liechtenstein with son Alfons, Prince Alexander and Princess Astrid of Liechtenstein, Duke Philipp and Duchess Marie of Württemberg, Duchess Helene in Bayern, Duchess Elisabeth in Bayern and Daniel Terberger, other members of the Bayern family, Duke Carl of Württemberg, Duke Friedrich and Duke Marie of Württemberg, Duke Michael and Duchess Julia of Württemberg, Duke Eberhard of Württemberg, Count Moritz and Countess Fleur von Goëss, Fürstin Benita zu Schaumburg-Lippe, and many others.

Princess Vanessa zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg this afternoon married Pieter Haitsma Mulier at the evangelische Stadtkirche in Bad Berleburg. It was the first princely wedding in town since 1958. The bride wore a silk and organza dress with lace and wide sleeves and a long lace veil. The bride was taken to the altar by her father, Prince Otto-Ludwig zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg. The ceremony was led in German and English by the Rev. Klaus Seidenstücker. Among the hundreds of guests were Prince Richard zu Sayn-Wittgenstein- Berleburg, Princess Benedikte of Denmark, Prince Gustav zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and Carina Axelsson, Prince Manuel and Princess Anna von Bayern, Hereditary Prince Heinrich XIV and Hereditary Princess Johanna Reuss, Fürst Albert II von Thurn und Taxis and his sisters Elisabeth and Maria Theresia, Fürst Alexander and Fürstin Nadja Anna zu Schaumburg- Lippe, Hereditary Prince and Hereditary Princess zu Bentheim-Tecklenburg, Count Carl-Eduard and Countess Nathalie von Bismarck, Countess Celia von Bismarck, many Dutch and German nobles, London celebrities and Netty Leistra. After the wedding a reception was held at Berleburg Castle with live music both inside and outside the castle. In the evening dinner and dance took place at Berleburg Castle and the Greek restaurant Poseidon. The couple had met during a hunting-party at Bückeburg castle in the autumn of 2005. They became engaged in February 2006. The civil marriage took place in London on 25 NOvember 2006. Daughter Selina was born at London on 23 April 2007.

The civil wedding of Prince Karl-Emich zu Leiningen and Countess Isabelle von und zu Egloffstein took place at the Old Townhall of Amorbach. The ceremony was led by mayor Peter Schmitt. 40 guests were present, including Fürst Andreas and Fürstin Alexandra zu Leiningen and the two daughters of the groom. A reception was held afterwards at an hotel in Amorbach.

After a year-long excavation and research in a tomb in Shaanxi Province, China, Chinese archaeologists have concluded that the tomb belonged to the grandmother of China’s first emperor Qinshihuang.

September 10th

This weekend Oscar Magnuson, son of Princess Christina Mrs Magnuson, and Fredrik af Klercker belated celebrated their 30th birthday with a big thousand-and-one night party at an hotel in Istanbul. Among the guests were Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden and Daniel Westling, Princess Madeleine of Sweden and Jonas Bergström.

The proces against Prince Ernst August von Hannover for attacking a German hotelowner in Kenia will be reopened at the Landgericht Hildesheim after complaints of the prince. The verdict has been liquidated by the Oberlandesgericht in Celle. In 2004 the prince was sentenced by the Landgericht Hannover for inflicting bodily harm and was fined for 445.000 Euro. The prince now says that two witnesses from Kenia have for giving false evidence against him. With the help of six witnesses he wants to proof that he gave the man only two boxes on the ear, which didn’t harm him. He can also show letters that show that his former lawyer has submitted to the court a quasi confession without the prince knowing this and without his permission.

September 11th

Today Crown Princess Mary of Denmark presented ‘The Mary Foundation-HRH Crown Princess Mary’s Foundation’ during the inaugural meeting at Amalienborg in Copenhagen with the Board of Trustees, the newly appointed management, the eight co-founders and the operating partner. With the foundation the crown princess wants to encourage tolerance of diversity and help those who are socially isolated. The goal is ‘to improve the lives of children, adults and families who as the result of their environment, heredity, illness or other circumstances find themselves socially isolated or excluded. The Foundation aims to fulfil its objective by creating opportunities for these individuals and giving them a sense of affiliation and of belonging to a community. The Foundation furthermore undertakes to encourage tolerance of diversity and the revival of hope.’ Crown Princess Mary said: “The Mary Foundation will be an exciting and rewarding addition to my current work as Crown Princess. In some ways, it will provide the opportunity to effectively bring together the social issues that I am already involved in. I strongly believe that every individual has the right to belong to a community and to know that there are people who understand them and are concerned for their wellbeing. And this belief is the basis for The Mary Foundation.” She also told: “I am so pleased and proud that we have managed to build a solid base for the work of the Foundation. A solid base is necessary if we are to achieve our objectives and secure the long-term impact of the foundation. It is inspiring to see so many dedicated people coming together to achieve a common goal. Particularly, as this is one of the principal ideals of The Mary Foundation – both through the way we work and through our projects.” The Foundation has secured a capital of DKK 73.6 million. The initial capital of 1.1 million kroner was donated by the people of Denmark and Greenland on the occasion of the wedding of Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary. The Crown Princess expects to be able to publicly present the Foundation’s opening initiatives in the beginning of 2008.

In name of Princess Annette van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven the Government Information Service today announced that the princess temporarily lost her driving license on 31 August 2007 after she was caught speeding in Uddel near Apeldoorn. She was on her way to the birthday party of the Prince of Orange. She drove 155 km per hour where only 80 km per hour is permitted. On Friday the case will be heard at court in Zutphen. Princess Annette said to regret the offense very much and is awaiting the hearing.

September 12th

Princess Helen Shah of Nepal passed away around 5.30 this morning at her Chhauni residence at the age of 75. She underwent treatment for cancer. She was the wife of Prince Basundhara, youngest brother of King Mahendra of Nepal. The funeral took place today at Pashupati Aryagaht. King Gyanendra of Nepal came to Chhauni to condole the family. The Princess is survived by three daughters.

Crown Prince Paras of Nepal left hospital today after recovering from a heart attack. He was accompanied by his wife and children. Doctor Yadav Bhatta said he is recovering well but has been advised to rest at home for the next three weeks. In a brief press statement, the Crown Prince thanked his supporters, the media and his doctors for their support.

September 13th

De Volkskrant newspaper today reports that Princess Mabel van Oranje-Nassau told about her changing her Wikipedia entry in a recent conversation in China with Jimbo Wales, founder of Wikipedia. He talks about the conversation with her in an interview at the website of Wikipedia. According to Mr Wales she said to regret her changes to her entry in Wikipedia. However she does think she had the right to alter the entry. She also said to be angry at the media response. Mr Wales says: “She hoped that the edit would give rise to a debate about the facts of the situation. But the media only focused on the fact of the editing. She also thinks they could have done a better job of it.”

Antoine Stevenson and his wife Kildine née de Sambucy de Sorgue had their first child, a son called Jean, at Monze, Zambia, on 9 september 2007. Kildine de Sambucy de Sorgue is the daughter of Baron François Xavier de Sambucy de Sorgue and Princess Chantal of France.

September 14th

The Government Information Service this afternoon announced that Prince Bernhard and Princess Annette van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven expect their third child medio March 2008. Shortly afterwards it became known that Princess Annette was fined for speeding by the court in Zutphen. She has to pay 780 Euro. She received her driving license back, but with a conditional sentence of three months and two weeks. The princess herself didn’t show up in court but was represented by her lawyer Mr E. Verster. In his plea he said: “Through the painfull publicity, also in infotainment programmes half of the Netherlands knows now that she has made an offense. Also her family-in-law came in view. She never wanted that. That she has a relationship with a member of the royal family doesn’t mean that she wishes to be an example.” He also said that because of her pregnancy the Princess can’t live without a drivers license because her midwife lives outside Amsterdam and she is not able to use public transport because of security reasons. Her husband can’t function as driver as he has his own company and is out of the country at least twice a month. Princess Annette admits she drove too fast as she had an important appointment. She had queued up for three hours. It was the Princess’s first traffic offense.

September 16th

Zara Phillips and her team won the gold medal at the European Eventing Championships this weekend. She was the defending European champion in the invidual races, and came third in the dressage event on Friday and second in the cross country on Saturday. However at the jumping today her horse Toytown refused. Zara Phillips therefore ended in sixth place overall.

September 17th

The Government Information Service today announced that Princess Amalia of the Netherlands will start kindergarten on Monday 10 December 2007. She will then enter group 1 of the Openbare Bloemcampschool in Wassenaar. On 7 December 2007 the princess will celebrate her fourth birthday. A small group of the press will be allowed to make video recordings and photos. The rest of the princess’s time at school will be private.

September 18th

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands held her yearly speech of the throne at the knight’s hall at The Hague. Herewith the new working year of the States General was opened. Also present were the Prince of Orange, Princess Maxima of the Netherlands, Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands, Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Pieter van Vollenhoven. The Queen, Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima drove to the knight’s hall in the golden carriage and drove back in it to Noordeinde Palace afterwards. The others drove in the glass carriage. After the return the whole family shortly appeared at the balcony of Noordeinde Palace.

In 2008 Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands will receive a personal income of 792.000 Euro. The Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima of the Netherlands both will receive 235.000 Euros. In total they become 6,1 million Euros, which also includes money for personal staff and other costs. Further costs in connection with the royal house are little more than 84 million Euros. These costs are among others for the cabinet of the Queen, the Government Information Service, security, state visits, airplanes and maintenance of the castles and palaces.

Today also King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden opened the parliamentary year at the Riksdag (Parliament) in Stockholm. He was accompanied by Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madeleine of Sweden. The family started the day with the traditional church service in the cathedral of Stockholm. Afterwards they travelled to the Parliament by open carriage.

September 19th

This morning Infanta Sofía of Spain was presented by her parents to the Virgin of Atocha at the Basilica of Atocha in Madrid. It is tradition in the Spanish royal family to present a newborn child to the Virgin of Atocha and to ask for her blessing and protection. The family was welcomed at the basilica by Cardinal Archbishop Antonio María Rouco Varela of Madrid.

Lawmakers have begun debating today whether Bran Castle was legally returned to Archduke Dominic of Austria and if he is allowed to sell the castle. The Romanian government was returned to the archduke in 2006. He offered to sell it to the local authorities for $ 80 million, but the offer was turned down. During a parliamentary debate opposition lawmaker Ioan Puchianu said that the return of the castle was illegal due to procedural errors and that the archduke is legally not allowed to sell it. In a letter released today the archduke’s lawyers say he will file a lawsuit for $210 million in damages if the parliament votes that the restitution and sale plans were illegal. The archduke said: “I live once more with the feeling of dread in which I once lived, as a child, when my family and I were forced out of our home and thrown out into the streets in midwinter.”

September 20th

At auction at Christies in Amsterdam 40 black-white drawings and a gouache by Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands – made when she was a child – were sold for 11.000 Euro. They were bought by Princess household goods. Another drawing showing a shining sun was sold for 2600 Euro. Furniture used by the late Prince Hendrik of the Netherlands in his function as chairman of the Red Cross were sold for 15.000 Euros.

The Swedish government today presented the budget for 2008. The annual grant to the royal family has risen by 10,6 million crowns. The extra money is supposed to cover improved security at the royal palace in Stockholm and an expected increase in costs of Crown Princess Victoria’s official duties. In total the royal family will receive 110 million crowns in 2008.

September 21st

Prince Louis of Luxemburg and his wife Tessy de Nassau had their second son Noah. The baby was born at the Maternité Grande-Duchesse Charlotte in Luxemburg-City this afternoon at 14h30. Mother and child are doing fine.

The United Nations have named Princess Haya bint Hussein of Jordan as a UN peace envoy. The new Messenger of Peace, together with three others, will be honoured at the International Day of Peace and will join four other messengers of peace. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon cited the humanitarian work of Princess Haya. She has promoted health, education and sports programs for Arab and Muslim youths. In her new role she will be championing the UN’s most important task – promoting peace.

September 24th

Former King and Prime Minister Simeon Saxe-Coburg of Bulgaria has denied allegiations by opposition party leader Yane Yanev. Mr Yanev said two days ago that the former King was working for the KGB in the past and was recruited because of his affection for gambling. The former King says that it is propaganda for the upcoming municipal elections and an attempt to discredit him and his party. He said he has gotten “used to being a target for undeserved offences and slander” in the past years, but that he did not expect “some people to fall so low and to become authors of such an infamous campaign.” Committee leader Evtim Kostadinov has called on Yanev to come forward with the evidence he claims to have in possession.

A team of Egyptian archaeologists have found eight baskets with well preserved doum fruits in the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamon. The sweet orange-red fruit comes from the Doum Palm and was traditionally offered at funerals. The team also discovered twenty pear-shaped containers bearing the seal of the Pharaoh. They will be opened soon.

September 25th

Princess Beatrice of York has gotten a film role as a non-speaking lady-in-waiting in the film ‘The Young Victoria’ which will come out next year. Recordings with her were made at Lincoln Cathedral today. Beatrice said “”It was tiring and I was freezing cold, but I absolutely loved it. I am so excited about it.” A spokesman of her mother said: “Beatrice is playing one of Victoria’s ladies-in-waiting. She’s carrying her train and things like that. She has always had a great admiration for the Queen and is named after one of her daughters. She really wanted to be involved in this project.” The film is produced by Martin Scorsese. The Duchess of York is one of the executive producers of the film. The film is about Beatrice’s great-great-great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria of Great Britain’s early life. Emily Blunt will star as Queen Victoria, Rupert Friend as Prince Albert.

September 26th

Doctors have told King Albert II of the Belgians to cut down his activities. In the coming weeks he will only be busy with political audiences in connection with the forming of a new government. Also the state visit to Ireland will go on. As soon as Belgium has a new government the King will take some time off to rest. Because of the problems with forming a new government the King hasn’t had enough time to recover from his hip operation at the end of June.

Madame Tussauds in London has unveiled the new wax figure of the Duchess of Cornwall. She is placed in the same room as Diana Princess of Wales, but 4,5 metres away from her slightly away from the Prince of Wales, Prince William and Prince Harry of Wales. The wax figure wears a cornflower blue jacket and skirt the Duchess wore at Ascot in June 2005. She wears also crystal flower brooches and drop earrings. The LK Bennett shoes and Philip Treacy clutch bag were donated by the Duchess herself. The museum intends to move the Duchess into the group with her husband and stepsons in the future. The wax figure was made by sculptor Stephen Mansfield who took four and a half months to complete the work. The Duchess sat for him at Clarence House. The Duchess selected her outfit and accessoires herself.

The Danish newspaper Børsen today reveals that Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg will become a member of the board of the Swiss company Ferring Pharmaceutical. Fredrik Paulsen, the firm’s chairman, thinks that her experience will be a big pre for Ferring in connection with the ethical work of the firm and have its effect on Ferrings social responsibility.

First Deputy Prosecutor General Alexander Buksman today ruled that Czar Nikolai II of Russia and his family are not victims of political persecution. He sees no grounds for the claim as there was no trial and no accusations were officially made against the family.

September 27th

The Royal Court of Justice in London have selected 25 potential jurors – 15 women and 10 men – for the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales. The court had selected 227 candidates, but only 80 turned up. They were questioned over their suitability. Coroner Lord Justice Scott Baker said that the candidates had not been given advance notice of their involvement because of the worldwide interest in the case. They have been asked if they have any connections to the royal family, the Al-Fayed family or the Secret Service. The final 11 jurors will be chosen by ballot at the start of the hearing on Tuesday. The chosen candidates will be escorted to and from court by a special Scotland Yard protection unit. They are not allowed to read a newspaper or online articles or watch any television programmes about the deaths of the princess and Dodi Al-Fayed.

Prince Amedeo of Belgium, Archduke of Austria-Este has taken the oath as reserve officer at the Royal Military School. The ceremony was attended by his parents and his sister Laetitia Maria. Amedeo followed education at the school in 2004/2005. At the moment he is studying at the London School of Economics.

September 28th

Russian scientists have said they might well have identified the missing remains of two of the children of Czar Nikolai II of Russia, Alexei and Maria. The remains found near Yekaterinburg in July 2007 are being researched. The deputy forensic chief scientist in the Sverdlovsk region, Vladimir Gromov, says that according to preliminary forensic and DNA tests the appearance, age and sex of the found remains are ‘highly probable’ from Alexei and Maria.

The Nepali Congress Party has abandoned its traditional support for the moanrchy and is now in favour of a republic in Nepal. Arjun Narsingh K C, senior leader of party, said: “The general assembly of the party passed the resolution of going for a federal republic in the upcoming constituent assembly elections. We have come to a conclusion that monarchy and democracy cannot go together. The resolution has opened doors for the party to campaign for a republican setup for the November polls.”

A Chinese archaeologist has discovered the tomb of Ziying, the third and last emperor of the Qin Dynasty. Ziying was killed in 206 BC. The tomb is 109 meters long, 26 meters wide and 15,5 meters deep and is located only about 500 meters from the mausoleum of the first emperor Qin Shihuang at Xi’an, Shaanxi province. The tomb itself was found in 2003.

October 2nd

Six men and five women were selected as jurors today for the inquest into the accident that caused the death of Diana Princess of Wales and Dodi Al-Fayed ten years ago. Coroner Lord Justice Scott Baker told them to weigh only the evidence given in the High Court in London. The eleven jurors took an oath to ‘diligently enquire on behalf of our Lady the Queen into the deaths’ in court. They received maps of the route the car took before the accident and photographs of the wrecked Mercedes. In the meantime the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France, has rejected a complaint by Dodi Al-Fayed’s father Mohamed Al-Fayed about a French probe into the death of his son and the princess. The court says that “The points of disagreement between the applicant and the investigating judges … did not suffice to show that there were shortcomings in the investigation or any impediment preventing the circumstances of the death of the applicant’s son from being elucidated. While the applicant complained about certain aspects of the judicial investigation, he availed himself of the opportunity to raise various issues, and the refusals he met with did not, as such, call into question the effectiveness of the investigations, as a whole, by the French authorities.”

Princess Märtha Louise of Norway showed up in court at Vestfold today, as first member of the Norwegian royal family ever, to try to stop the sale of a book called Märtha’s Angels. She says the book misuses her photo, which is on the frontpage of the book, and that her name and goodwill is exploited although she has never given permission to do so. The book by Emma Heathcote-James was published in England five years ago. The preface of the Norwegian version refers to the angel venture of the Princess.

Spanish prosecutors today requested 15 months in jail for two Catalan separatists. The two men burned a few large pictures of King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia of Spain when the king visited Gerona on September 13. A date for the trial hasn’t been set yet.

Former King Simeon Saxe-Coburg of Bulgaria and his sister Princess Maria Luisa have officially lodged a lawsuit against governor Todor Petkov. Mr Petkov has refused to restore the ownership of the former Krichim royal residence and claims that the papers they provide don’t coincide with the dates in the municipal archives. The former King and his sister claim that their ownership can’t be litigated.

October 3rd

Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik of Denmark this morning announced the engagement of their son Prince Joachim with Marie Cavallier. At a meeting of the Council of State at Christiansborg Queen Margrethe II gave her consent to the marriage of her son. The meeting was also attended by Prince Joachim and Marie Cavallier as well as Crown Prince Frederik. The wedding will take place in the Spring of 2008. Marie Cavallier will assume the title of Her Royal Highness Princess Marie. The catholic Marie has expressed the wish to become a member of the Evangelical-Lutheran church of Denmark and to apply for Danish citizenship. Marie Agathe Odile Cavallier was born at Paris, France,on 6 February 1976, as only daughter of Alain Cavallier and Françoise (now Grassiot). She has four elder brothers. Her parents divorced when she was 13 and Marie and her mother moved to Geneva, Switzerland, where her mother remarried. Marie went to the boarding school Le Beau Soleil in Villars-sur-Ollon from 1989 to 1993, thereafter studied commerce and marketing at University in Boston, USA, and studied and worked (IT) in New York for five years. She currently lives in Geneva, Switzerland and has an appartment in Paris. She works for the finance company of her stepfather Christian Grassiot. After the engagement announcement the family left for Fredensborg where they had lunch.

During a press conference at Amalienborg in Copenhagen this afternoon Prince Joachim of Denmark said: “This is a very great and very happy day.” His fiancée Marie Cavallier told that Prince Joachim went down on his knees to propose to her during a vacation in Turkey this summer. Prince Joachim told he had met Marie for the first time in the autumn of 2003 during a hunting-party, but the two didn’t fall in love until spring 2005. The couple told they want to have children together very much. Marie told to have been very nervous for her first meeting with Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, but that she was received very hearty. Her family is very pleased for her. The wedding date is not known yet, but will become known later this year. Marie Cavallier will not move to Joachim’s house Schackenborg until shorter before the wedding. She hasn’t learnt Danish yet but she will start as soon as possible. Countess Alexandra of Frederiksborg told the press that she is happy for her former husband. More photos of the press conference

During today’s hearing at the inquest into the death of Diana Princes of Wales Coroner Lord Justice Scott Baker said that no pregnancy test was carried out at the hospital in Paris where the princess was taken after the accident. In a later post-mortem examination no evidence was detected that she was pregnant. He said that “it is likely pregnancy is a matter that cannot be proved one way or the other in scientific terms in this case.” There is evidence however that the princess used the contraceptive pill. The court was shown CCTV footage from inside and outside the Ritz Hotel in the hours before the crash. Mohamed Al-Fayed has criticised the opening remarks of the coroner, saying that he doesn’t act very neutral.

October 4th

On the second birthday of Emmanuel, Elisabeth and Gabriël are together with their celebrating brother and their parents Princess Mathilde and Prince Philippe very happy to be able to announce that they are welcoming a sister or a brother in the spring of 2008. The King and the Queen, the whole royal family and the family of Princess Mathilde share in this big joy.

CCTV footage from the Ritz Hotel suggests that driver Henri Paul might have tipped off the paparazzi outside the hotel. The footage shows him speaking to the photographers on three occasions in the hours before the crash. The jury at the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales also saw a home video made by an Australian tourist outside the hotel.

Lord and Lady Nicholas Windsor had a son, Albert. He was born on 22 September (?) at the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital in London. The baby is the eight grandchild of the Duke and Duchess of Kent.

Lady Katherine Brandram née Princess of Greece and Denmark died on 2 October 2007. She was born at Athens, Greece, on 4 May 1913 as the youngest child of King Konstantinos I of Greece and Princess Sophie of Prussia. In 1947 she married Richard Brandram who died in 1994. She is survived by her son, daughter-in-law and three grandchildren. Lady Katherine Brandram was the last surviving great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria of Great Britain. Only one great-grandson, Count Carl Johan Bernadotte, is alive now.

An appeal court at Cambodia has announced it will maintain the 18 month jail sentence of Prince Norodom Ranariddh of Cambodia over the illegal sale of the former headquarter of his political party Funcinpec. A spokesman for the prince says that the sentence is politically motivated and aims to prevent the prince from returning to his country.

Count Carl-Eduard von Bismarck is to withdraw from politics, at latest in Spring 2008. It is said he wants to spend more time to family business and probably move abroad. The count – member of the German parliament for the CDU-party – was named the most lazy politician of Germany last year.

October 5th

Prince William of Wales is very concerned after he and his girlfriend Kate Middleton were aggressively pursued by paparazzi. Clarence House said today that the prince and Kate Middleton were in a car during the incident after leaving the Boujis nightclub early this morning. Pictures were published in London’s Evening Standard. The Prince’s spokesman Paddy Harverson said that “Prince William was concerned by the threatening behaviour of the paparazzi in London last night. Having already been photographed leaving the club, he and Kate Middleton were then pursued in his car by photographers on motorcycles, in vehicles and on foot. The aggressive pursuit was potentially dangerous and worrying for them. It seems incomprehensible, particularly at this time, that this behaviour is still going on.” He said the matter has been raised with the Press Complaints Commission. One of the photographers said that the prince’s car was only followed when it returned to the club shortly after leaving and that nobody chased or followed when it left again soon afterwards.

Princess Märtha Louise of Norway and Publicom publishing house have reached an out-of-court settlement over a book about angels. They have agreed that the picture of Princess Märtha Louise will be taken off the cover. The publishing house will pay 150.000 Norwegian crowns to keep on using the title ‘Märtha’s Angels’. The money will go to charity.

Brunei Darussalam today celebrated the 40th anniversary of the accession to the throne of Sulta Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah. At the time of his ascession he was 21 years old.

October 6th

32-year-old Major Alexis Roberts of the Royal Gurkha Rifles was killed in southern Afghanistan on Thursday. He had been the instructor of Prince William of Wales at Sandhurst. A statement issued today said: “Prince William was deeply saddened to learn of the death in action of Lex Roberts whom he remembers with great respect as his platoon commander at Sandhurst and as a good friend. At this time his thoughts and prayers are with Lex’s wife Susie, their two young daughters, and with all his family and friends.”

October 8th

Aschehoug Publishing House has delayed the release of the book ‘In Her Majesty’s Secret Service’ by Jesper Lundorf, a former bodyguard of the Danish royal family. The book was supposed to be released in two weeks, but will now only be published in Spring 2008. The publishers will thoroughly review the information given in the book for accuracy and will determine whether concerns of Lundorf’s former employer PET (intelligence agency) that some information could jeopardise the safety of the people – royals and politicians – mentioned in the book are valid.

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has issued a royal decree today with details of regulations to implement a succession law that was announced one year ago. New regulations are listed in 18 articles. They among others say who can become a member of the Allegiance Commission, that since October 2006 is entrusted with voting a new king in the future, and what should be done if a member died and how to choose a crown prince. Under the new statute members of the commission should be one of the sons of the dynasty’s founder King Abdul Aziz al-Saud (he had 37 sons), and if they are deceased, not interested or incapable, the membership should go to one of their sons. The 2006 law aims to prevent internal power struggles within the family.

A majority of opposition parties in Georgia have said that they support the initiative of the Patriarch of the Georgian Orthodox Church Ilia II to restore the monarchy in Georgia. In a sermon on Sunday at the Holy Trinity Church in Tbilisi the Patriarch said that “it has been a dream of the Georgian people to have this dynasty [Bagration] restored” since the Russian annexation of Georgia in 1801. He said that “today conditions exist which may help to make this dream of the Georgian people come true”. He also said it could take a few years. According to the leader of the Laborist Party the restoration of the monarchy would give Georgia an historical and national passport. The leader of the party Freedom says that a King could guarantee the integrity of the country.

October 9th

Prince Floris and Princess Aimée van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven had their first child, a daughter, this morning at 4.37 at the VU Hospital in Amsterdam. Magali Margriet Eleonoor van Vollenhoven weighed 3850 grams and is the seventh grandchild of Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Pieter van Vollenhoven. Via the RVD the parents let know: “We are intense happy with our dear child. It is an overwhelming feeling of big gratitude and happiness.”

Queen Margrethe II and Prince Henrik will cut short their visit to South Korea. Prince Henrik fell ill and had to cancel his appointments on Monday and Tuesday after he was briefly admitted to a local hospital suffering from bronchitis. According to a spokeswoman at the Danish Embassy in Seoul the Prince was discharged later and has been recovering. According to the Danish royal court Prince Henrik will now leave South Korea on Wednesday, while the Queen will leave on Thursday, one day earlier than she had planned.

Yesterday evening the jury in the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales has made a visit to the Pont de l’Alma tunnel in Paris where the car accident happened in which the princess died. They drove through the tunnel and afterwards took the way to the hospital where the princess was taken. During the day they visited the tunnel also, as well as the Ritz Hotel as part of a two-day trip. Today the jury visited the Ritz Hotel and the former apartment of Dodi Al-Fayed in Paris. They were accompanied by coroner Lord Justice Scott Baker, counsel and court officials.

The mummy of Pharaoh Tutankhamun will go on public display for the first time. The mummy of the Pharaoh will be exposed in a climate-controlled glass case in the antechamber of the Pharaoh’s tomb in Luxor in November. The pharaoh’s remains will be partially rewrapped in linen with the face of the pharaoh left uncovered. The move is part of an effort to preserve the mummy, which has been in poor condition since it was first discovered, Zahi Hawass, secretary general of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities explained. Officials hope the display will increase the number of visitors and generate profit for the conservation of other Egyptian antiquities.

Vladimir Solovyov, senior investigator with the Prosecutor’s General’s Office said today that genetic analysis of the remains of what are believed to be the son and a daughter of Tsar Nikolai II of Russia will last at least three months. The genetic analysis is planned to start late this month. “We can well expect that once all studies have been completed, the mystery of the last Russian emperor’s missing family members will be solved,” Mr Solovyov said. He said bullets have been found near the remains and are similar to those discovered by the remains of the tsar, tsarina and their three other daughters in 1991.

Nino Burdzhanadze, speaker of the Georgian Parliament, will start consultations today on the restoration of the monarchy in the country. During the consultations a date will be defined to hold a debate on the developing of the political system in Georgia, including becoming a constitutional monarchy.

October 10th

The Duchess of Cornwall has become a grandmother for the first time and the Prince of Wales a step-grandfather. The Duchess’ son Tom Parker Bowles and his wife Sara Buys had a daughter shortly after 5pm yesterday. Lola was born at Queen Charlotte’s Hospital in Hammersmith, West London. The Duchess of Cornwall visited her granddaughter yesterday evening. A Clarence House spokeswoman said: “The Duchess is absolutely thrilled.”

Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende of the Netherlands has said that the 36% rise in the past years in costs of the royal house and connected costs is caused by the temporarily costs for palace renovations and growing costs of security. He however promised to provide more clear reports on the expenditure of the Dutch royal family in the future.

Soestdijk Palace has welcomed its 100.000 visitor since the opening on 15 December 2006 today. The opening of the palace thus far has been a huge success. The palace will at least be open to the public until the end of 2009.

Two children’s picture books translated from English into Japanese by Princess Akishino of Japan will go on sale on 23 October, the Imperial household Agency said. She also took part in creating the format of the books. One of the books is about Ben the Beaver, the other one about Eric the Wolf. It is said Princess Kiko hopes the translated series will offer a good opportunity to tell children about the lives of animals from around the world in an easy-to-understand manner. The complete serie of eight books is to be published by Shinjusha Inc.

Archduke Ferdinand and Archduchess Katharina of Austria had their third child yesterday morning. Lara Sophie was born at Berlin, Germany. Mother and daughter are doing fine.

October 11th

The Jury at the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales have been shown pixellated photographs of the crash and the scene made by 17 paparazzi. Although so far all pictures and video footage shown to the jury has been put on the inquest’s website, these pictures won’t. Coroner Lord Justice Scott Baker said: “Although ordinarily everything that the jury hears and sees will go almost immediately on the inquest website, these photographs will not go on the website for the reason that it is possible for photographs that have been pixellated to be unpixellated if they get into certain hands.”

The Nepalese Parliament has started debating the abolishing of the Nepalese monarchy today. Parties don’t agree about the way the monarchy should be abolished and when. The debate is to be continued on Sunday.

Lady Katherine Brandram née Princess of Greece was buried at the royal burial grounds at Tatoi near Athens, Greece. The funeral was among others attended by the son of the deceased Paul Brandram and his three children, former King Constantine and former Queen Anne-Marie of the Hellenes, Crown Prince Pavlos and Prince Nikolaos of Greece, Princess Irene of Greece, the Duke and Duchess of Aosta, Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine of Yugoslavia.

October 12th

The first pictures of Magali van Vollenhoven, daughter of Prince Floris and Princess Aimée van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven, were issued today. The pictures were taken at home in Amsterdam on Friday. The baby was named after Aimée’s sister, but Magali also derives from Margaret, which means Pearl.

The Palace of Venaria Reale just outside Turin, Italy was officially opened today. The opening was attended by the Duke and Duchess of Savoy, the Prince of Venice, the Duke and Duchess of Aosta and the Duke of Apulia. The palace will reopen to the public tomorrow after two centuries of decay. The baroque hunting palace was built by the Savoy family in the 17th and 18th century. In the 19th century the palace was used as barracks. The renovation started 11 years ago and costed 200 million Euros. The palace has been a UNESCO world heritage site since 1997.

The Georgian parliament will discuss a possible transition to a constitutional monarchy on October 25. 104 Members of Parliament voted in favour of a discussion, only six members against.

October 13th

79-year-old King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand was hospitalised at the Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok this morning. The King underwent an 8-hour operation and treatment for a blood clot which caused an inadequate blood supply to his brain. The Royal Household Office said that the king showed symptoms of loss of strength in the right side of his body and that scans revealed a minimal cerebral ischemia on the left side of the King’s brain. His condition has improved after treatment but he requires further observation. Doctors said he will at least be hospitalised for three days.

October 14th

In a statement issued today the Royal Household Office of Thailand announced that the condition of King Bhumibol Adulyadej is improving: “Blood pressure is normal, his respiratory system is normal, his right body, which was weak from the shoulder to the arm, has more strength.” Doctors are preparing a course of physical therapy to aid the rehabilitation. Hundreds of Thai people have gathered outside the hospital.

October 15th

During the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales François Levistre, who drove a car in front of the car of the princess, said he had seen a major white flash in the tunnel before the fatal crash. The flash came from a motorbike overtaking the car of the princess.

Hereditary Prince Bernhard von Baden has announced that the family will sell Salem Castle to private investors. The family doesn’t trust Baden-Württemberg anymore to keep the castle as accessible cultural heritage. The family has debts of 30 million Euros, and to be able to pay off these debts to the bank selling is the only possibility.

October 16th

Libya has given back a mansion in Tripoli to Fatma Cherif, wife of the late King Idris Senussi of Libya. The mansion is the residence of the British ambassador. The authorities also compensate the former queen, who lives in exile in Egypt, for two other lost properties.

October 17th

During the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales one of the paparazzi, Thierry Orban, told in a statement that he had been told by his chief editor that there were rumours that the princess was to announce a pregnancy or an engagement.

October 18th

During the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales the jury was told that Dodi Al-Fayed bought an engagement ring in the Parisian jewellery shop ‘Dis moi oui’ of Alberto Repossi on 30 August 1997. Dodi didn’t get the chance to give the ring to the princess and the ring was found in his flat after he died.

Robert Brown, who claims to be the illegitimate son of the late Princess Margaret of Great Britain and Captain Peter Townsend, has won permission to pursue his battle to see the contents of the secret royal wills of the late Queen Mother and of Princess Margaret. The Court of Appeal in London today ruled that although he has no private right to unseal the wills, but that it is arguable that there was a “general public interest” in whether the wills should be unsealed. This comes after the High Court family division had said in July that his claim should be struck out as ‘vexatious and an abuse of process’.

The Funcinpec Party in Cambodia has officially appointed 52-year-old Princess Norodom Arun Rasmey, youngest daughter of retired King Norodom Sihanouk, as its prime minister candidate for the general elections that will be held on 27 July 2008. The princess is married to the president of the party and ambassador in Malaysia, Keo Puth Rasmey. The decision was made after a one-day national congress.

October 19th

The Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs has requested for extra money for a ‘wedding in the Royal Court’ in 2008, the newspaper Expressen reported today. They say to have read it in a memo of the Ministry. The amount of additional cash needed for “overtime, press logistics, computer support, extra staff etc.” was however “impossible to quantify at the present moment”. Spokeswoman of the Swedish Royal Court, Nina Eldh this morning said: “There are currently no plans for a wedding. You’ll have to ask the foreign ministry about that [the memo]. It’s not something I know anything about.” It was commented by Expressen by the way that this kind of request also appeared in 2006.

October 20th

Princess Ariane of the Netherlands was christened at the Kloosterkerk in The Hague this afternoon with water from the river Jordan. Ariane wore the christening robe of brussels lace that was made for the christening of Queen Wilhelmina in 1880. The robe among others was worn by Ariane’s father the Prince of Orange and by her sisters Amalia and Alexia. Princess Ariane arrived at church with her parents the Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima of the Netherlands and her sisters. Ariane’s godparents were Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume of Luxemburg, Inès Zorreguieta, Tijo Baron Collot d’Escury, Valeria Delger and Anton Friling. Inès Zorreguieta carried the baby into church halfway the service which was led by ds. Deodaat van der Boon. She was followed by nannies with royal children who partly took their seats on red cushions with an A on it in front of the font. Their behaviour caused lots of fun among the other guests. Among the about 850 guests attending the christening were Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, Prince Friso and Princess Mabel van Oranje- Nassau and their daughters Luana and Zaria, Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands with their children Eloise, Claus-Casimir and Leonore, Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Pieter van Vollenhoven, Princess Annette van Oranje-Nassau van Vollenhoven with her children Isabella and Sam, Princess Anita van Oranje-Nassau van Vollenhoven with her daughter Emma, Prince Floris van Oranje-Nassau van Vollenhoven, Princess Irene of the Netherlands, the Duke of Parma, Prince Carlos de Bourbon de Parme, Jorge and Maria del Carmen Zorreguieta, Juan Zorreguieta, Count Franz-Clemens and Countess Stephanie zu Waldburg-Zeil und Hohenems with their youngest daughters Leonie and Sophie, as well as three sisters of the late Prince Claus of the Netherlands. Royal Portraits: Arrival guests

In her written 73rd birthday interview Empress Michiko of Japan said to hope that her daughter-in-law, Crown Princess Masako, recovers from her stress illness. She said she wants to “watch quietly over” Crown Princess Masako and Crown Prince Naruhito. She said: “Now that she seems to be on her way to recovery, which for me is such a joy, I would simply like to continue praying for the full recovery of the Crown Princess.”

October 22nd

The Royal Household Bureau of Thailand announced today that King Bhumibol Adulyadej is making satisfactory progress. An MRI-scan of his brain showed no infraction or brain damage. The statement says: “There is no evidence of cerebral blood vessel stenosis nor occlusion, which indicated that there was temporary cerebral ischemia.”

October 23rd

The ruined summer palace of King Zog of Albania in Durres is to become the first luxury resort in Albania. The palace will be refurbished as a spa and divided into 50 apartments. King Zog’s son Leka will get his own penthouse suite in the palace.

October 25th

At the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales a volunteer fireman told the inquest in the high court today by video link from Paris that the Princess repeatingly said ‘Oh my God’ when he tried to help her after the crash.

84-year-old Princess Galyani Vadhana, sister of King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand, was given medical treatment for cerebral embolism today. According to the Royal Household Bureau a computerised x-ray examination showed an extensive area of infarction on the left side of her brain as a result of occlusion of the cerebral artery. Her condition is under close watch. The Princess has been hospitalised at Siriraj Hospital since 15 JUne for abdominal cancer.

The wedding of Princess Marie-Therese von Hohenberg and Anthony Bailey will start tomorrow evening with a welcoming dinner at Festung Hohensalzburg, Austria. The religious wedding will take place at St. Peter’s Abbey in Salzburg on Saturday, with Lord Nicholas Windsor as one of the witnesses of the groom. The wedding ceremony is followed by a reception in the Salzburg Festival Hall and a white-tie ball at the Residence in Salzburg. On Sunday there will be held a brunch at the Museum of Modern Art in Salzburg.

October 26th

A rule nisi will take place at court in Amsterdam on Monday morning after the discovery that the paedophile association Martijn had placed pictures of Princess Amalia of the Netherlands as well as Anna and Lucas van Lippe-Biesterfeld van Vollenhoven with some comments of sexual nature. Yesterday the Government Information Service summoned Martijn to remove the pictures from their website, which was done last night. However there are still pictures on the closed area of the website. The service said: “It is almost inconceivable to think of anything further beyond the limit of decency.” A rule nisi will take place because Martijn didn’t agree to sigh a declaration in which they would promise never to publish any private pictures of the royal children on their website again or otherwise pay a fine of 50.000 Euro per picture.

The London Evening Standard claims that the Duke of Edinburgh has been suffering from an heart condition for the past 15 years and needs regular medication. Recent ill-health should cause concern among the royal family. Buckingham Palace declines to comment. The Duke’s private staff is quotes as saying he was in a robust health for a man of his age.

October 27th

Noah de Nassau, son of Prince Louis of Luxemburg and Tessy de Nassau, was christened at the parish church of Gilsdorf today. The mass was led by Abbé Frank and Pater Paulo von Habsburg. Godparents of Noah were Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume of Luxemburg and Patty Antony. Present were among others Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Teresa and their children, as well as Grand Duke Jean of Luxemburg.

Yesterday evening at 22.10 Princess Alexia of Greece gave birth to her third daughter at the Clínica Teknon in Barcelona. The baby was named Amelia, is 52,5 cm tall and weighs 3,9 kilogrammes. Mother and daughter are doing very well. Among today’s visitors were husband Carlos Morales Quintana and children Arrietta, Ana Maria and Carlos, as well as Infanta Cristina of Spain with her three sons.

Anthony Bailey married Princess Marie-Therese von Hohenberg in a religious ceremony at the Abbey of St. Peter’s in Salzburg, Austria. The bride wore a lace wedding gown by Valentino with a long lace veil and a Hohenberg family tiara. The groom wore a uniform, while the bridal children wer dressed in the Austrian national colours red and white. The ceremony was led by Archbishop Eugenio Sbarbaro, Apostolic Nuncio to Serbia, with assistance of the Rt Rev George Stack, Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster, the Rt Rev Thomas Burns, Roman Catholic Bishop of the Armed Forces, His Grace Edmund Wagenhofer, Archabbot of St Peter’s and Fr Michael Seed from Westminster Cathedral. During the ceremony blessings were read out from Pope Benedict XVI, the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, the Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams and the head of the Syriac Orthodox Church Ignatius Zakka I Iwas. Best man was Peter Jonas. Witnesses for the bride were Princess Marie-Christine von Hohenberg, Comtesse Henriette du Bessey de Contenson, Countess Fleur von Göess, Livia Engel and Baron Alexander Dóczy. 600 guests were invited, among them members of the Hohenberg and Altenburg family, Duchess Helene in Bayern, Princess Lavinia of Yugoslavia and many other royals and nobles. After the wedding celebrations the couple went on honeymoon to Asia.

October 28th

The Sunday Times today reports that a member of the British royal family has been subject of a blackmail attempt. They write that two men contacted a member of the royal staff and demanded £50,000, threatening to go public with a video recording involving sex and drugs if their demand was not met. A member of the royal family and one of their aides were said to be involved. Buckingham Palace refuses to discuss the subject and only wishes to say that it is a police matter and that Scotland Yard is investigating. The police says that two men have appeared before the City of Westminster magistrates on 13 September in private accused of blackmail and were remanded in custody. They will next appear at the Old Bailey in December.

The Royal Household Bureau issued a statement saying that Princess Galyani Vadhana of Thailand is getting increasing movement in her right arm and right leg. She is more conscious and can perform some physical exercises. The physical strength of King Bhumibol Adulyadej has increased and he is no longer receiving antibiotics.

October 29th

The Royal Household Bureau said today that King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand is able to stand without assistance now. A statement says: “His arms, legs and feet regain more strength and he can stand without a walker for support for some time. He can exercise for a longer time.”

October 30th

During a conversation with the press at the end of their three-day visit to Bhutan the Prince of Orange and Princess Maxima of the Netherlands spoke out about the pictures of their daughter Amalia being placed on a paedophile organisation’s website. The Prince said: “I do not want to see the website. I am afraid I may lose it.” He added that the couple also wants to create jurisprudence for other people with children. The couple further said to have enjoyed Bhutan very much, and that it is a pity that they only stay for three days as the country deserves a much longer visit.

Princess Alexia of Greece and her newborn daughter Amelia left hospital in Barcelona at noon today. She was accompanied by her husband Carlos Morales Quintana, children Arrietta, Anna-Maria and Carlos, as well as her parents former King Constantine II and Queen Anne-Marie of Greece and Princess Theodora of Greece.

October 31st

Hereditary Prince Maximilian and Hereditary Princess Marissa zu Bentheim-Tecklenburg had their second daughter. Amalia Anna Elisabeth was born at the Evangelischen Krankenhaus in Lippstadt on 25 October. She is 49 cm tall and weighs 3280 grammes.

November 1st

The court of justice in Amsterdam ruled today that the paedophile association Martijn has to remove the photographs of Princess Amalia of the Netherlands and Anna and Lucas van Lippe-Biesterfeld van Vollenhoven completely from their website. Publishing the photos was a breach of the portrait rigths and an intrusion of the private life of members of the royal family. The judge took into account the nature of the website. Martijn will be fined € 5000 every time photos of children of the royal family are again placed on their website.

Coroner Lord Justice Scott Baker has contacted the Ministry of Justice to try to put pressure on the French. He wants that the French paparazzi involved in the deathly crash of Diana Princess of Wales give evidence at the inquest into the princess’s death. So far the paparazzi have refused.

Crown Prince Naruhito of Japan has been appointed the honorary president of the UN Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation for a term lasting until 2010. The advisory board is chaired by the Prince of Orange.

November 3rd

At Make a Difference Day the Dutch royals again took part to promote voluntary work. Queen Beatrix and Princess Margriet helped out in the teahouse at De Groote Modderkolk in Loenen where people with a mental handicap work. The Queen helped baking an apple pie, while Princess Margriet helped out in the kitchen. Princess Maxima visited a hospital in Gouda, Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien did work in a center for asylum seekers in Alkmaar. Prince Maurits and Princess Marilène helped at the LaLuz Foundation in Amsterdam, Pieter van Vollenhoven took part in a rescue-team exercise in Hoek van Holland and Prince Pieter-Christiaan and Princess Anita helped at the night centre for the homeless in Utrecht.

At the Museum of Contemporary History in Moscow the exhibition Russian First Ladies in the 20th century was opened. The exhibition displays clothes, jewelry, photographs and furniture related to the women who were married to leaders at the Kremlin. The exhibition starts with Tsarina Alexandra Feodorovna, wife of Tsar Nikolai II of Russia, and ends with Ljudmila Putina, wife of the current president of Russia. The exhibition is shown until 10 March.

November 4th

Prince Lorenz and Prince Amedeo of Belgium, Archdukes of Austria-Este ran the marathon of New York today. It took Prince Amedeo 3:48;18 to reach the finish, Prince Lorenz 4:39;27.

The mummy of pharaoh Tutankhamon has gone on display today at his tomb in Luxor, Egypt. His remains were for the occasion moved to a climate-controlled glass box. It is the first time he is shown. Only his face can be seen, while the rest of the mummy is covered in linen.

November 5th

King Juan Carlos II and Queen Sofia of Spain visited the Spanish enclave Ceuta in Morocco today. Tomorrow the couple will visit the other Spanish enclave Melilla. It is the first visit ever to the enclaves in the 32-year reign of the King. Inhabitants of Ceuta flagged, but 1000 Moroccans protested against the visit on the other side of the border. Moroccan authorities have described the visit as regrettable. Morocco wants the two enclaves back. The enclaves came under Spanish control about 500 years ago, but are also claimed by Morocco.

A parliament session that lasted for almost 600 hours and was stretched over 25 days has finally ended. However the parties didn’t agree to the proposal of the government to modify their demands. The proposal suggested to start the process for declaring Nepal a republic immediately and to announce a fresh date for the election. That means that Nepal still remains a monarchy.

November 6th

Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain opened the Parliament today. The Queen read the government plans for 2008.

During the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales accident expert Tony Read said that driver Henri Paul was over-reacting when trying to avoid a mystery white car. He said also that the princess and Dodi Al-Fayed might have survived the crash if they had been wearing seatbelts. Members of the jury also saw fragments of the car in which they died. In the meantime the High Court in London was told that the paparazzi who chased the car will definitely not be forced to testify.

Pope Benedict XVI has received King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia today. He is the first monarch of Saudi Arabia to visit the Vatican. The Pope and the King discussed ideas on the Middle East and the need to find a fair solution to the conflicts in the region. The Pope also raised the issue of Christians living in Saudi Arabia. The King offered the Pope a gold sword encrusted with precious stones, and received a 16th-century engraving of the Vatican.

In Wallis and New Caledonia ceremonies have been held to mark the end of the period of six months mourning for the late King, who died in May. A new king hasn’t been chosen yet and it is unclear when a new king will be elected.

November 7th

The Danish royal house has announced that it will auction off several unused carriages. Several of them haven’t been used in decades. The auction will take place at the Royal Mews at Christiansborg in Copenhagen on 24 November 2007. Proceeds from the sale will be used to fund maintenance of the regularly used carriages. The carriages are auctioned off via Auktionshuset.

King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand left hospital this morning loudly cheered by crownds outside. He was accompanied by Queen Sirikit and Princess Ubol Ratana. According to the Royal Household Bureau the king can now walk without help for short distances. He has been told to continue exercises to fully strengthen his muscles. Via the Royal Household Bureau the King thanked all the Thai people, diplomats, foreign dignitaries, expatriates, priests and monks who have wished him well.

Funds to rebuild the royal palace in Berlin have been approved. The German parliament budget committee voted late today. The amount of money to be spent on the project will be € 552 million. The federal government will provide € 440 milion, € 80 million is to come from private donations and € from the Berlin state administration. Building is due to begin in 2010. The palace is to become a cultural centre.

November 8th

The Supreme Court in Russia has rejected an appeal by monarchists to rehabilitate Tsar Nikolai II of Russia and his family. They say: “The tsar’s family were not victims of political repression and their rights were not violated.” It was said they were never formally sentenced and they were premeditated murdered (with political motive). Lawyer German Lukyanov says his clients will appeal to the Presidium of the Supreme Court and if necessary to the European Court of Human Rights.

November 9th

The Sultan of Brunei Darussalam has won a case at the Privy Council today against his brother Prince Jefri. Prince Jefri was ordered to hand over two hotels, three houses, diamonds, paintings and cash worth £3 billion. Prince Jefri says he will keep on fighting.

Prince Sisowath Thomico of Cambodia has been expelled from the Funcinpec party. Recently he criticized the leadership of the party and opposed its principles.

November 11th

During a summit of leaders from Latin America, Spain and Portugal King Juan Carlos of Spain told President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela to ‘shut up’. Mr Chavez called former Spanish prime minister José Maria Aznar a fascist because he backed the war in Iraq. During the response by present Spanish prime minister José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero Mr Chavez repeatedly tried to interrupt, after which the King turned into his direction and told him: “Why don’t you shut up?”.

Chelsy Davy is said to have told friends that she is having a ‘trial separation’ from Prince Harry of Wales. The couple has been together since 2004. Friends say they still care for each other, but are going seperate ways for the moment. According to a palace aid the relationship is over and the prince will be carrying on his army carreer and Chelsy Davy her studies in Leeds.

November 12th

A watch of Empress Joséphine of France has been sold at Christie’s in Geneva, Switzerland for 1,3 million dollars today. The watch was made in 1800 in gold and enamel and set with diamonds.

Airbus SAS has announced today that Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal of Saudi Arabia has bought an Airbus A380. That is the biggest passenger plane in the world. It is a double-decker jet with 557 square metres and options for private bedrooms, movie theatre and a gym with jacuzzi. The prince already owns a Boeing 747-100.

November 13th

The Spanish royal court has announced that Infanta Elena of Spain and her husband Jaime de Marichalar have separated after 12 years of marriage. The decision for a temporary separation has been taken by mutual agreement.

Two Spanish cartoonists have been fined 3000 euros each for their cartoon which was placed at the front page of El Jueves magazine in July.

November 15th

The Belgian royal family celebrated King’s Day. Traditionally the King and the Queen didn’t attend, but all of their children with partners and Queen Fabiola did. In the morning there was a Te Deum at the cathedral in Brussels. Upon arrival of the royal family members of the far-right student association NSV shouted anti-Belgian slogans. Several of them were arrested.In the afternoon a ceremony took place at the Federal Parliament in Brussels.

The Duchess of York launched a new series of children’s books entitled Helping Hands. The books will serve as advice about social and personal issues for children like separation, going to hospital, a new brother or sister, first school day. The books are exclusively sold by Lloydspharmacy.

November 16th

The marriage between Peter Phillips and Autumn Kelly will take place at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor in May 2008.

November 17th

The engagement was announced between Lady Rose Windsor, youngest daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, and George Gilman. They have been a couple already for a few years. George Gilman is a son of Peter and Gillian Gilman.

November 18th

On the occasion of the 60th wedding anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh 60 facts about the marriage were revealed by Buckingham Palace. The couple will celebrate their diamond wedding anniversary on Tuesday when flying to Malta for a short holiday. Buckingham Palace also released a photo of the couple taken at Broadlands. The setting and position is the same as on a picture taken during their honeymoon in 1947. Queen Elizabeth also wears the same brooch and necklace.

The Prince of Wales tonight hosted a family dinner at Clarence House in London on the occasion of the 60th wedding anniversary of his parents Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh. 25 Royals attended. The dinner was Eggs Drumkilbo with lobster – a set mousse – roast partridge, with roast potatoes, braised cabbage and bread sauce – vanilla, raspberry and chocolate layered ice-cream cake with a compote of red berries. The white orchids on the table were inspired by the contents of the Queen’s bouquet on her wedding day.

Fürst Siegfried zu Castell-Rüdenhausen died at Rüdenhausen castle on Friday evening 16 November surrounded by his family. He was 91 years old and died as result of a fall three weeks earlier. Fürst Siegfried was a son of Casimir Fürst zu Castell-Rüdenhausen and his wife Mechtild née Countess von Bentinck. In 1946 he married Countess Irene zu Solms-Laubach who died in November 2006. The couple had eight children. The funeral will take place at Rüdenhausen on 24 November. He will be buried in the family vault.

November 19th

On the occasion of the 60th wedding anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh a special 50-minute service of thanksgiving was held at Westminster Abbey in London. The service was attended by about 2000 people including more than 30 members of the royal family, politicians, about 500 members of Royal Household staff, around 20 members of the public present who all married on 20 November 1947 also. The service was led by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Prince William of Wales gave a reading, while Dame Judi Dench read a specially commissioned poem by Andrew Motion.

November 20th

Two judges at the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales have decided that documentary evidence from paparazzi can’t be admitted without cross examination at the inquest. Earlier the coroner had decided that the statements of the paparazzi could be heard at the inquest altought the photographers refuse to show up themselves.

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and her sister Princess Margriet of the Netherlands will celebrate their 70th respectively 65th birthday with a festive concert at the Royal Theatre Carré in Amsterdam on Friday 1 February 2008. Family and friends will be able to enjoy a performance with dance and music by students of the conservatoriums and stage- arteducations in the Netherlands.

November 21st

The marriage between Prince Joachim of Denmark and Marie Cavallier will take place at the church of Møgeltønder, Denmark, on Saturday 24 May 2008. The ceremony will be led by Bishop Erik Norman Svendsen. A private wedding banquet will take place at Schackenborg castle after the ceremony.

Queen Beatrix has said to be unhappy about a new book about her ancestors Kings Willem I, II and III of the Netherlands and thinks their use of documents is very selective. A spokesman of the Government Information Service said that the fact that the authors were given permission to use documents from the Royal Archives doesn’t mean that the Queen thinks that the picture painted by the book does justice to the kings or their service to the Netherlands. The book was written by Dorine Hermans and Daniela Hooghiemstra.

During the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales her former private secretary Michael Gibbons – who had been working for her since 1996 – said that the princess clearly believed her phone calls were being tapped in the months before her death. He also said he had noticed disapproval within the royal household about princess Diana’s lovers. He named Major James Hewitt, rugby player Will Carling, James Gilbey, Barry Mannakee and Oliver Hoare.

The court of justice in Amsterdam has decided that Princess Margarita de Bourbon de Parme doesn’t have to pay alimentation to her former husband Edwin de Roy van Zuydewijn. The princess earns too little money and lives from a loan of her mother Princess Irene of the Netherlands.

The Prince of Naples and the Prince of Venice want € 260.000.000 from the Italian state as a compensation for the years of exile. They also want confiscated property returned, including the Quirinale Palace, Villa Ada-Savoia and Villa Margherita, as well as jewellery held in the vaults of the Bank of Italy. The prince of Venice said to a tv-channel: “We have asked our lawyers to contact the Italian government to examine the problem. It is well known that from 1948 on Italy went against the Convention on Human Rights.” The family calls the exile a violation of the Savoys’ human rights based on the ban on inhuman and degrading punishment by the European Convention on Human Rights. A seven-page letter was sent to Prime Minister Romano Prodi and President Giorgio Napolitano last month, but no answer was received yet.

November 22nd

The Prince of Venice today said that he and his family are going to move from Switzerland to Italy in January 2008.

November 24th

Archduke Otto of Austria celebrated his 95th birthday with a party for about 150 guests from royalty, nobility and society at the Künstlerhaus in München, Germany. Host of the evening was his daughter Gabriela. Tomorrow a birthday mass will take place at the Liebfrauendom in München. The pictures made known that grandson Count Philipp von Neipperg is engaged to Paula Wolff, whose mother is a Countess von Meran. Archduke Otto’s actual birthday was 20 November, which he celebrated at Banja Luka and Sarajevo, Bosnia. Already on Monday a mass was celebrated by Cardinal Schönborn at the Stephansdom in Vienna, Austria. Afterwards the Archduke was received in the Hofburg in Vienna by president Fischer.

November 25th

The 700-year old coronation chair, also known as St Edward’s chair, at Westminster Abbey has been damaged by the central heating. This was disclosed in the December issue of The Art Newspaper. According to officials they have already conducted one set of repairs three years agobecause the paint gilding was lifted away from the wood. Abbey authorities have installed humidity monitors. Almost all monarchs since King Edward II in 1308 were crowned in the chair.

November 26th

Dr Robert Chapman, who carried out the post-mortem on Diana Princess of Wales, told at the inquest into her death that her womb and ovaries didn’t show any signs of a pregnancy. She also didn’t drink alcohol in the hours before her death. Lord Justice Scott Baker has lost the appeal he lodged at the High Court on Friday to have the written testimony from paparazzi involved in the case read in front of the jury.

November 27th

Princess Claire of Belgium had surgery because of appendicitis on Sunday in a hospital in Brussels. The operation went well and she will be able to return home at the end of the week.

Delphine Boël, illegitimate daughter of King Albert of the Belgians, and her partner Jim O’Hare expect their second child. Delphine Boël is almost four months pregnant. The couple already has a daughter, Josephine.

The corruption case against the Duke of Savoy has been dropped because of lack of proof by a judge in Rome, his lawyer Sergio Calvetti said today. However he is still under investigation in the city of Potenza.

November 28th

Zara Phillips was awarded an MBE at Buckingham Palace today. She is the first member to recieve an MBE. The MBE was handed over to her by her grandmother Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain, who kissed her on both cheeks when she accepted the award. Zara was accompanied by the Princess Royal, stepfather Timothy Laurence, her boyfriend Mike Tindall, her brother Peter Phillips and his fiancée Autumn Kelly. Zara Phillips was being honoured for her service to equestianism. Timothy Laurence himself also received an award and became a Companion of the Order of the Bath (Military Division).

A spokesperson from Mainau has announced the separation of Bernd Grawe and Gräfin Diana Bernadotte. The decision to separate was taken in mutual agreement. The couple married in September 2003. They will keep the care of their daughter Paulina Marie together. Diana has left the couple’s house in Litzelstetten and she and her daughter live with her mother at Mainau at the moment.

November 29th

During the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales president of the Paris Ritz Hotel Franz Klein said that the princess and Dodi Al Fayed planned to get married and wanted to live in Paris. He said that Dodi Al Fayed informed him about it in a phonecall in August 1997. He didn’t mention the princess by name tough.

Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan received the humanitarian Bambi Award in a ceremony at Berlin, Germany for her tireless work in advocating child welfare and promoting women’s issues.

Correspondence between the Russian imperial family and the Tolstoy family has been sold at auction at Drouot in Paris, France. Several letters were written from Jekaterinenburg by Tsarina Alexandra and her daughters shortly before they were executed. The letters were saved in a private collection and have never been published.

December 1st

Photos were released by the Imperial Household Agency on the occasion of the 6th birthday of Princess Aiko of Japan.

December 2nd

Princess Haya bint Al Hussein of Jordan gave birth to a baby daughter today. Mother and daughter are doing fine. According to the announcement by the courts of Dubai and Jordan the princess is very happy and enjoys the first moments of motherhood. The baby is the first child of the princess and her husband Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Emir of Dubai together. The Emir already has 16 children from other marriages/relationships.

Crown Princess Marie Chantal of Greece opened the christmas shopping at Walton Street, Knightsbridge, London.

December 3rd

At the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales night security manager François Tendil said that Henri Paul wasn’t supposed to drive the car of the princess and Dodi Al Fayed the night they died. Henri Paul was head of security at the Ritz Hotel in Paris. Dodi Al Fayed’s usual driver Philippe Dorneau remained at the front of the hotel acting as a decoy. The plan was made to evade the paparazzi at the hotel. Mr Dorneau told at the inquest that there had been very much press attention that night. He is sure that the crash wouldn’t have happened if the media hadn’t been there.

The car King Edward VIII of Great Britain drove when heading for Downing Street to announce his abdication on 10 December 1936 was sold at auction at Bonhams in London for $ 205.429. The buyer wasn’t named. The American built Buick from 1934 was made for the King when being Prince of Wales.

December 4th

At the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales former manager at the Ritz Hotel, Thierry Rocher said that driver Henri Paul had a specific status at the hotel and was allowed to drink while on duty, unlike other employees. Yesterday manager François Tendil stressed that Henri Paul didn’t appear to be drunk.

An exhibition at Windsor Castle is to mark the 60th birthday of the Prince of Wales on 14 November 2008. The exhibition will be open from 16 May 2008 to 22 February 2009. It will show private family photographs from the Royal Photograph Collection, photos of major public events in his life and personal effects.

December 5th

The Prince of Orange, Princess Maxima of the Netherlands and their three daughters will spend Christmas at Princess Maxima’s family in Argentina.

King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand celebrated his 80th birthday today. Celebrations were held in Thailand to mark this event. Thousands of people gathered in the streets around the royal palace in Bangkok to show the King their respect. The King and Queen arrived at the Grand Palace in a motorcade at 10.00 am and waved to the people in the streets. At 10.35am the King, Queen and other members of the royal family appeared at the balcony of the Chakri Throne Hall Building. In front of the Chakri Thone Hall politicians, diplomats, dignitaries, top civil servants and other distinguished guests had were waiting to attend the Royal Blessing ceremony. The King delivered a short speech that was broadcasted live on television. Yesterday he delivered a longer speech. He stressed the need for national unity. He also reassured the people that his health is fine.

December 6th

At the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales Claude Roulet, former employee of the Al Fayed family said that he helped Dodi Al Fayed chosing a ring at Alberto Repossi’s shop in Paris. He said it was a late decision and that Dodi Al Fayed didn’t even look at it and bought the cheapest ring available. He said that Dodi Al Fayed and Princess Diana didn’t chose the ring together and disputes that it was an engagement ring. Mohammed Al Fayed told him later on to shut up when he questioned Alberto Repossi’s story.

Prince Bandar bin Sultan of Saudi Arabia has sold his guest home in Aspen for $ 36,5 million to Star Mountain 3 LLC, a Florida concern. The house was used to host members of the prince’s family. The deal was recorded yesterday. The prince in 2006 put up for sale his Hala Ranch at Aspen, but took it off the market last month.

Prince Friedrich Wilhelm of Prussia has lost his case at the Bundesgerichtshof in Karlsruhe. He had tried to terminate the work of the executor of the will of his late father. The Prince now might have to return paintings and furniture from the Villa Monbijou in Berlin where he lives.

Israeli archaeologists said yesterday they believe to have uncovered a 2000-year old mansion of Queen Helene of Adiabene just outside the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem. The uncovered building is the largest ever found in the area and includes storerooms, living quarters and ritual baths.

December 7th

It became known that Royal Aide Brigadier Sir Miles Hunt-Davies will appear at the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales next week. He is the Duke of Edinburgh’s private secretary. Next week also Princess Diana’s stepmother Raine Countess Spencer and her friend Rosa Monkton are expected to give evidence.

Princess Astrid of Belgium is to quit as chairwoman of the Belgian Red Cross. Her term will come to an end on 31 December 2007. She however intends to carry on supporting the projects and organisations that have received help during her period at the helm of the Belgian Red Cross. She will be open to requests for support from other NGOs that are involved in humanitarian work at home or abroad it said in a statement by the Belgian royal court. The Princess took the opportunity to thank the 25.000 people that do voluntary work for the Belgian Red Cross and said that “the constant selfless efforts by the volunteers have always been a great source of inspiration and encouragement.”

December 9th

In a statement issued on the occasion of her 44th birthday Crown Princess Masako of Japan says she is grateful that she has been able to increase her official duties in 2007. She said: “Although I feel regret for not been able to fully recover yet, I am grateful that I have been able to extend the scope of activities in the past one year.” She said to hope that her daughter Princess Aiko will enthusiastically take a new step as she enters an elementary school next April.

Prince Pieter-Christiaan van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven ran the Honolulu marathon today. He also ran the marathon five years ago. It took him 3 hours and 51 minutes to reach the finish.

December 10th

The Swedish royal family attended the Nobel Prize celebrations in Stockholm today. For the first time since 1976 Princess Lilian of Sweden didn’t attend the Nobel festivities. The awards ceremony took place at the Stockholm Concert Hall, followed by the banquet at the city hall. The Norwegian royal family earlier on the day attended the Nobel peace prize ceremony at the town hall in Oslo.

Princess Amalia of the Netherlands started school today in group 1b of the Openbare Bloemcamp School in Wassenaar. She was taken to school this morning by her parents the Prince of Orange and Princess Maxima. The princess had already been there for one morning some weeks before to have a look. Only few press was allowed inside the school, and despite requests not to come several photographers were outside the school to take photographs. Princess Amalia turned 4 last Friday. She celebrated her birthday at home.

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has chosen his half-brother Prince Meshal bin Abdul Aziz al-Saud to lead the 35-member committee that will choose the country’s future kings and crown princes. The King announced the appointment during a family gathering in Riyadh on Sunday evening.

The court of appeal at Kuwait upheld the death sentence against Sheikh Talal, a member of the royal family, for drugs trafficking. A life term against three accomplices was also confirmed.

Sheikh Saqr bin Mohammed Al Qasimi died this afternoon aged 73. He was the elder brother of the ruler of Sharjah Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi. Funeral prayers will be held tomorrow at King Faisal Mosque, followed by the funeral at Al Jubail cemetery. Sharjah is one of the United Arab Emirates.

The palace of Emperor Augustus in Rome will partially reopen to the public on 2 March 2008 officials said today. Groups of up to 10 people will be guided through the palace. The palace had been closed since the 1980s because of restoration work. Restoration will continue in other parts of the residence.

December 11th

At the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales barman Sebastien Trotte said that driver Henri Paul didn’t appear to be drunk. He served him two 4cl measures of Ricard at the Bar Vendome at the Ritz Hotel. Emanuele Gobbo, employee at Repossi jewellers, said that Dodi Al Fayed wanted to buy a ring, but never mentioned the word engagement ring. His boss Alberto Repossi however again stated yesterday that Dodi Al Fayed wanted to buy an engagement ring.

Petra News Agency today reports that the baby girl of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al-Maktoum of Dubai and Princess Haya Bint Hussein of Jordan was named Aljalila.

Christian Estrosi, secretary of state for overseas territories of France, will travel to Great Britain to request the return of the remains of Emperor Napoleon III of France and his wife. The couple was buried at St Michael’s Abbey in Farnborough, Hampshire, which was founded around 1888 by Empress Eugénie. The couple died in exile. Father Cuthbert, who heads the abbey, is unlikely to agree to the request.

The annals of the Joseon Kingdom comprising 1,893 books covering 472 years (1392-1863) of history from founder King Taejo to the end of King Cheoljong will be available on the Internet. Internet users can see the Korean translation, original texts in Chinese and original images. The National Institute of Korean History completed the three-years project recently. The online service will open on 12 December.

December 12th

At the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales the princess’s stepmother Raine Countess Spencer tried to make clear that her stepdaughter had had a difficult life. She described Dodi Al Fayed as charming, sweet and modest and said that the love between Dodi Al Fayed and Princess Diana hadn’t merely been a summer romance. She said to be convinced that they were making plans to get married or live together shortly before they died.

Conservative lawmakers in Japan said that 1-year-old Prince Hisahito should be treated with more reverence as third in line to the throne. One politician said: “We lawmakers are very concerned about how someone who has a very high chance of inheriting the throne will be brought up to become emperor.

Christie’s didn’t manage to sell a necklace with pearls and diamonds once belonging to Queen Marie-Antoinette of France. The pearls and diamonds were smuggled for the Queen to Great Britain by the British ambassador’s wife Lady Sutherland when she fled the country in 1792. After the Queen’s death the pearls and diamonds were made into a necklace. The necklace had been expected to fetch 350.000 to 400.000 pounds.

December 13th

At the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales the jury was shown extracts of letters between Diana Princess of Wales and the Duke of Edinburgh. The letters, written between June and September 1992, were presented by the Duke’s private secretary Brigadier Sir Miles Hunt-Davis. In the letters the Duke said he would do his best to help the Princess and his son the Prince of Wales, but admitted to have no talents as marriage counsellor. The Princess’s friend Rosa Monckton said that the allegations by Mohammed Al Fayed that she became friendly with Diana so she could pass on information to MI6 were “absolute fantasy”. However she said that someone close to her was involved in the Secret Intelligence Service. Rosa Monckton said that the relationship between the princess and Dodi Al Fayed was just a fling. She also said that the princess had told her that Dodi Al Fayed would buy her a ring that would definitely go on a finger on her right hand and that she wasn’t going to get engaged. Rosa Monckton also said that the princess had her period 10 days before her death on a yachting holiday. Two letters were released in the inquest. In a letter dated 6 August 1997 Princess Diana thanks Dodi Al Fayed for the great vacation and for bringing joy in her life.

December 14th

Archduke Carl Ludwig of Austria, fifth child of Emperor Karl and Empress Zita of Austria, died at Brussels (Belgium) on December 11 it was announced today. He was born on 10 March 1918. In 1950 he married Princess Yolande de Ligne. He is survived by his wife, four children and 20 grandchildren. The funeral will take place at the Kapuzinergruft in Vienna, Austria, on 12 January 2008.

December 15th

An HQ version of the Christmas Greetings for 2007 of the Spanish royal couple and the crown princely couple can be downloaded at the website of the Spanish royal family.

The funeral service for Archduke Carl Ludwig of Austria will be held at the Stephansdom in Vienna, Austria, on 12 January 2008 (4pm). A requiem will be held at the Abbaye de la Cambre at Brussels, Belgium, on 18 January 2008 (11am).

December 17th

At 4.20pm today the Countess of Wessex gave birth by caesarean section to a son at Frimley Park NHS Hospital in Surrey. The baby weighs 2800 gramms and is 8th in line to the throne. A name hasn’t been chosen yet, but he will receive the title Viscount Severn. The Earl of Wessex was present at birth. A spokeswomen said: “They are thrilled, absolutely thrilled.” The Earl of Wessex said later to the press that the birth had been ‘a lot calmer than last time’ and that the countess was ‘doing very well’. He said that his son was ‘like most babies, rather small, very cute and very cuddly’. Also the grandparents are said to be delighted with the news. The baby is the 8th grandchild of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and the Duke of Edinburgh. The Countess is expected to stay in hospital for the next few days.

At the inquest into the death of Diana Princess of Wales it was said that French police investigating the car crash never suggested that the crash was anything else than a tragic accident. Scotland Yard Detective Chief Superintendant Rees said he had repeatedly asked his French colleagues about the possibility of foul play, but they always denied. Lady Annabel Goldsmith told at the inquest that the princess had a wonderful time with Dodi Al-Fayed but that an engagement hadn’t been planned.

In an interview to the tv-channel SVT in connection with her internship at the Swedish delegation to the European Union in Brussels, Belgium, in the first half of this month Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden said: “I hope that I too have some freedom of expression. You cannot remain silent regarding all issues, for instance environment issues or the sexual exploitation of children.” Victoria also said that preparing to become a queen “is a life-long” process, involving “deeper and broader” studies. She said: “I am pretty glad about that. I am curious and find it easy to interest myself in different matters.”

Crown Princess Himani of Nepal was rushed to the Medicare Heart Centre in Chabahil this evening after complaining about a headache and breathing problems. She was accompanied by two doctors of the royal family. She was released one hour later after having had an ECG and X-ray done. She was told to undergo a thorough check up later on.

December 18th

New photos were released of Prince Floris and Princess Aimée van Oranje-Nassau, van Vollenhoven and their daughter Magali who was born last October. These are the first photos of them as a family. They were taken by Frank van Beek at the couple’s house in Amsterdam.

December 20th

Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain has become the oldest reigning monarch of Great Britain today around 5.00 pm taking into account times of birth and death, Buckingham palace said. She overtook from her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria who died in 1901 at the age of 81 years and 243 days.

The Earl and Countess of Wessex and their newborn son left hospital today and went home to Bagshot Park. They briefly showed their son to the press and well wishers outside the hospital. A spokeswoman said that the couple hasn’t chosen a name yet but were ‘narrowing it down’. She also said that the baby was ‘the perfect Christmas present’. It is expected they will celebrate Christmas with the rest of the royal family at Sandringham.

December 21st

The Earl and Countess of Wessex have named their son James Alexander Philip Theo.

December 22nd

The Prince of Orange, Princess Maxima of the Netherlands and their three daughters posed for photographers in the garden of the Dutch embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina. They hope that the Argentinean media leave them alone during their vacation in Princess Maxima’s homeland.

The Norwegian royal court has issued the yearly Christmas photos of the royal family. They were made at Kongsseteren this morning and show the family decorating gingerbread men.

The Belgian royal court announced that King Albert II of the Belgians will take a month off to fully recover from his hip operation in June 2007. The news doesn’t come as a surprise. Due to the political crisis in Belgium the king didn’t manage to take the three months rest he needed after the operation. The king swore in a new interim government yesterday.

December 23rd

Emperor Akihito of Japan celebrated his 74th birthday today. He and his family appeared at the glass-covered balcony of the palace to greet the 11.000 well-wishers. The Emperor told them: “I thank you for coming to wish me a happy birthday on this cold and rainy day.” He also said: “I hope the new year will be a bright and happy one for you.” On the occasion of his birthday the Emperor answered some questions by the press on Thursday. He criticised media reports for misinterpreting his comments about the private vacation to the Netherlands of Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako in August 2006. He refused to answer any family questions during the press conference.

December 24th

In his Christmas speech which was aired today King Albert II of the Belgians has implored Belgium to rise above its political and cultural divisions. He said: “We sometimes have the impression that our relations with foreign countries are better organized and better structured than those within our own country.” He said that it was necassary, especially for young people, to know also the languages of the other communities in Belgium.

In his Christmas speech this evening from La Zarzuela Palace King Juan Carlos I of Spain called for unity in the fight against terrorism and for greater efforts to reach a consensus between political parties.

The government of Nepal has agreed to abolish the monarchy and declare Nepal a republic after the general election in April 2008 and the establishment of a new constituent assembly afterwards. The agreement is part of a deal to persuade Maoist former rebels to rejoin the interim government administration. The agreement was signed by the main political parties of Nepal.

December 25th

On the 50th anniversary of her first televised Christmas speech this year’s speech of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain has been posted on the video website YouTube. The link www.youtube.com/theroyalchannel also features archive and recent footage of the queen and other British royals. In her Christmas speech the Queen this year highlighted the need of vulnerable people in society. She said that people should share responsibility to help those who are less fortunate than themselves. The royal family attended Christmas morning service at St Mary Magdalene Church at Sandringham today. Hundreds of people came to see the royals arriving.

In her yearly Christmas speech Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands criticised intolerance and increasing individualism. She said that it can’t be expected that everyone thinks, does and believes the same thing: “While people were free to practice their own religion and ideology, everyone must obey the same law.”

In his Christmas speech King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden expressed his concern over the conflicts in the world, but also expressed hope for a better world. He said: “We seem to have trouble living together on this earth.” He also said taht we have to find ways to live together with mutual respect for each other’s differences.” The King also spoke about climate problems: “The rich world must take its responsibility.”

December 27th

Right wing politician Geert Wilders, leader of the political party PVV, criticised the Christmas speech of Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and said it was ‘stuffed full of multi-cultural nonsense’. He said that the speech is an attack on his party. He says he is going to submit a motion calling for the role of the Queen in the government to be restricted to ceremonial functions. Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende said: “Wilders says he wants to defend Dutch interests, but he is destroying that which makes the Netherlands the Netherlands: our royal family, our tolerance and our solidarity with people beyond our borders.” Other politicians say the speech was very beautiful and by no means an attack.

December 28th

A poll by Discovery Channel among 1004 people reveals that nearly 70% of the British people between 18 and 24 years old are in favour of the monarchy. Only 16% wishes a republic. 81% of them doesn’t want Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain to step down. 70% favours Prince William of Wales as the next monarch. 80% thinks that his girlfriend Kate Middleton would be a good addition to the British royal family. Less than half of the people questioned find the Duchess of Cornwall a good ambassador for the royal family. Almost 70% admire the late Diana Princess of Wales more than the Duchess of Cornwall.

Today also the Nepalese parliament voted for abolishing the monarchy in Nepal. The motion from the government passed with a majority of 270 votes to three, and 56 abstentions or absences.

Prince Dom Pedro Gastão de Orléans e Bragança, head of the imperial house of Brazil, died on 27 December at his house in Villamanrique de la Condesa, Spain. He was 94 years old. He was a son of Prince Dom Pedro de Orléans e Bragança and his wife Countess Elisabeth Dobrzensky von Dobrzenic. In 1944 he married Princess Maria de la Esperanza de Bourbon-Sicilies who died in 2005. He is survived by his six children and by grandchildren, as well as by his sister Teresa. The funeral service took place today at the Parish church of Santa Maria Magdalena at Villamanrique de la Condesa.

December 29th

According to the Royal Household Bureau 84-year-old Princess Galyani Vadhana of Thailand is in a stable condition with occasional fever and fatigue. The hospital staff continues treating and monitoring her. The princess stays at Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok. On the occasion of her 84th birthday a website in the Thai language was opened on 21 December. The website shows her biography, work, interests, as well as rare photos.

Prince Rodrigo d’Arenberg died at Punta del Este, Uruguay, on 27 December 2007. He was cremated in Montevideo today and his ashes will later be buried next to the grave of his mother and adoptive father in France. He is survived by his wife Patricia Della Giovampaola, and by his sister Laetitia, her children and grandchildren. The deceased was a son of Marquis Henri de Belzunce and Marie Thérèse de La Poëze d’Harambure. After his father was killed in action in 1944 his mother remarried to Prince and Duke Eric Engelbert d’Arenberg, who adopted the two children of his wife in 1956. They officially got the name de Belsunce d’Arenberg, but obviously use the title prince(ss) d’Arenberg.

December 30th

The Countess of Wessex appeared in public for the first time since the birth of her son James. She attended a church service at St Mary Magdelene Church in Sandringham this morning together with other members of the royal family. She arrived by car together with Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain. The Countess told well-wishers that she and her son are doing very well. She also told that her daughter Louise loves her new baby brother.

The new fundamental rules of the royal family of Romania were signed today at noon by former King Michael I of Romania. With the new document all earlier statutes and privileges, styles, titles, rank and rights of dynasts and their descendants are revoked. Also women can now succeed to the throne – males shall take precedence. Princess Margarita is now styled crown princess and is the future head of the family. Fundamental rules of the royal family of Romania

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