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  #561  
Old 10-29-2013, 08:10 PM
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Originally Posted by COUNTESS View Post
She did, she was Lady Diana Spencer, a daughter of an Earl.
She had the courtesy styling of Lady Diana Spencer as the daughter of her father. It wasn't her title.
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  #562  
Old 10-29-2013, 08:12 PM
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For clarity - unless you are the holder of the main, specific title (ie Earl Spencer) all other titles are honorary (Viscount Althrop, Lady XX Spencer).
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  #563  
Old 10-29-2013, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Binny2 View Post
Someone once explained the difference between The Princess of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales. The first one is a title. Being an American, it is very different from what we are accustomed to. The title is used in passports, it is part of your designation. It appears on all official documents. The second one is used as part of a person's name.
I see where you're coming here, but you're a bit of base. All titles are essentially names, that's why they can be used in passports.

An untitled man would be Mr. John Smith. His wife would be Mrs. John Smith. Were they to divorce then she would become Mrs. Jane Smith; prior to her marriage she would have been Miss Jane Doe.

If you give John a title, however, he becomes The Duke of Wherever, and she becomes the Duchess of Wherever. Her title remains the female equivalent of his, without any of her own name, so long as they remain married. If they divorce, however, she becomes Jane Smith, Duchess of Wherever, until she remarries.

The same thing happened with Diana. When she was unmarried she was Lady Diana Spencer - Lady in place of Miss. When she married Charles she took the feminine equivalent of what essentially is his name, The Princess of Wales. When they divorced, she inserted her name into the mix - Diana, Princess of Wales. All the Queen did was take away the styling entitled to her as a member of the royal family.

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Originally Posted by Osipi View Post
Diana actually did not hold any titles herself.
Diana didn't hold any substantial titles, but she did hold courtesy titles. Lady is a courtesy title, as is Princess of Wales when they're held by the means as Diana held them (as a daughter or a wife).

Styling is something different altogether. While she was married Diana's title was Princess of Wales, her style was HRH. When she divorced she didn't lose any titles - it was just changed - but the Queen stripped her of her style (although, I guess she could have gone back to
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  #564  
Old 11-03-2013, 01:34 AM
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It is very complicated! So, Diana after the divorce kept her title the Princess of Wales, but lost the styling HRH. Is this less than what she had before she divorced ? Did she lose prestige?
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  #565  
Old 11-03-2013, 02:48 AM
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It is very complicated! So, Diana after the divorce kept her title the Princess of Wales, but lost the styling HRH. Is this less than what she had before she divorced ? Did she lose prestige?
She didn't keep the title "the Princess of Wales" because she didn't keep the status of "the wife of the Prince of Wales." Her title instead changed to "Diana, Princess of Wales," to reflect her new status as "the unmarried ex-wife of the Prince of Wales." Titles for women more often than not reflect their marital status and their relationship to the men in their lives (curtesy titles for men reflect their relationship to their fathers).

As Lady Diana Spencer her title showed that he was the daughter of an Earl, as The Princess of Wales her titles showed that she was the wife of the PoW. As Diana, Princess of a Wales her title showed that she was the ex-wife of the PoW and hadn't married again - if she had married again, she would have taken the female equivalent of her second husband's titles.
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  #566  
Old 11-03-2013, 03:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Binny2 View Post
It is very complicated! So, Diana after the divorce kept her title the Princess of Wales, but lost the styling HRH. Is this less than what she had before she divorced ? Did she lose prestige?
Diana was in a unique position as she was also the mother of a future king so she was regarded as still being a member of the royal family and would be given the precedence related to her position as William's mother had she attended major royal events after her divorce. Her death stopped us seeing how that would play out.

During her lifetime her styles changed - all in relation to her father or her husband:

The Honourable Diana Spencer - indicating the daughter of the heir to a peerage.

Lady Diana Spencer - indicating the daughter of a peer - in her case an Earl

HRH The Princess of Wales et. al - the wife of HRH The Prince of Wales et. al.

Diana, Princess of Wales - indicating that she had divorced HRH The Prince of Wales - and was no longer The Princess of Wales.

The use of the word 'The' with or without a capital letter - when not at the beginning of a sentence - is important as well. e.g.

I went to a function at which The Princess of Wales was present.

I went to a function at which the Princess of Wales was present.

They read the same but... that use of capital 'T' indicates that the first sentence refers to the wife of The Prince of Wales while the second sentence refers to the ex-wife of The Prince of Wales - a lesser person in precedence.
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  #567  
Old 11-03-2013, 04:32 PM
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I thought 'The Princess' referred to one born of the sovereign as in The Princess Margaret or The Princess Anne.
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  #568  
Old 11-03-2013, 05:45 PM
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When it refers to a name - The Princess xxxx does refer to the daughter of the monarch so The Princess Anne, The Princess Margaret, The Princess Elizabeth. Elizabeth, from her marriage was officially - HRH The Princess Elizabeth, The Duchess of Edinburgh - indicating her personal position as the daughter of the monarch but also as the wife of The Duke of Edinburgh.

When it refers to a title - The Princess of Wales, The Duchess of Cambridge - it refers to the wife of the holder of the title, or the holder herself e.g. The Baroness Thatcher.
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  #569  
Old 11-03-2013, 07:51 PM
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Good to know! Thank you!
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  #570  
Old 11-03-2013, 08:40 PM
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Thanks for the info! A woman's title appears to be dependent on her relationship to the male title-holder. Except for perhaps Baroness Thatcher.
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  #571  
Old 11-03-2013, 09:16 PM
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There are exceptions like Baroness Thatcher, but they're a rarity. You can tell if a woman holds a title but her husband doesn't hold the masculine version - then she holds the title in her own right. Another example would be the Queen.
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  #572  
Old 11-13-2013, 11:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Duchess of Durham View Post
I used to have an internet friend (I knew him from other message boards) who considered Di's correct title as Princess Diana. When I told him what it was and that Catherine could end up being styled HRH Princess William of Wales he went off on me (not in a good way). He proclaimed he knew the correct titles because he was Canadian and he had studied British history. This little ole southern American lady had to throw her hands in the air and give up. Idiot! Glad we're not Facebook friends anymore.
She was "HRH The Princess of Wales" while married, and "Diana, Princess of Wales" with divorce. Although she was never "Princess Diana" officially, the Palace confirmed numerous times it was acceptable as she became a Princess when she married the heir to the throne and was the mother of the future King.
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  #573  
Old 11-14-2013, 12:21 AM
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Originally Posted by branchg View Post
She was "HRH The Princess of Wales" while married, and "Diana, Princess of Wales" with divorce. Although she was never "Princess Diana" officially, the Palace confirmed numerous times it was acceptable as she became a Princess when she married the heir to the throne and was the mother of the future King.
Although, Diana never liked being called Princess Diana. She used to correct people on her title.
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  #574  
Old 11-14-2013, 11:59 AM
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Although, Diana never liked being called Princess Diana. She used to correct people on her title.
That's correct and one of the reasons why she refused the offer to be styled as such after the divorce. She felt being Princess of Wales was far superior to being just Princess X, which is true as that is technically a courtesy style, rather than a title like POW.
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