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  #201  
Old 04-10-2015, 02:27 AM
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According to the Telegraaf, Philippe, Mathilde and children are spending a part of their holidays in The Netherlands. Due to security reasons it is unknown where they are staying.

Wednesday evening the King, Queen, Pss Elisabeth and Prince Gabriel appeared in a theatre in Valkenburg ZH (near The Hague) to see the musical 'Soldier of Orange' about WWII.

Nederland is koningspaar rijker|Prive| Telegraaf.nl
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  #202  
Old 04-10-2015, 06:50 AM
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I know it is not going to happen because of the logistics involved but it would be fun if the Orange girls and the Belgians kids got to play together for a bit. The photo op would be priceless.
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  #203  
Old 04-12-2015, 03:38 AM
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If the Dutch royal couple & daughters were in Wassenaar last week, I am sure they will have met their Belgian collegues. Queen Mathilde is godmother of Pss Ariane after all. However, perhaps the Dutch RF was at the Rocco dei Dragoni in Tuscany for easter, like last year.

-
The Belgian royals were also in Amsterdam. They were seen by a well-known Dutch comedian in a 'posh' restaurant. The comedian bumped into the 'a stiff looking lady' in red who spoke 'broken Flemish' but who did have a wonderful perfume. He claims that he apologized, the more so as he noticed her leg brace. The lady reacted coldly. Only later he realised that it was Queen Mathilde.

Dansen? - nrc.nl
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  #204  
Old 04-12-2015, 05:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Marengo View Post



-
The Belgian royals were also in Amsterdam. They were seen by a well-known Dutch comedian in a 'posh' restaurant. The comedian bumped into the 'a stiff looking lady' in red who spoke 'broken Flemish' but who did have a wonderful perfume. He claims that he apologized, the more so as he noticed her leg brace. The lady reacted coldly. Only later he realised that it was Queen Mathilde.

Dansen? - nrc.nl
It was all exaggerated greatly to fit into the column though. The Dutch newspaper Telegraaf took it all for real and cited the column much to the amusement of Youp van 't Hek who in return made fun of the journalist who trapped into that one.
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  #205  
Old 04-12-2015, 06:01 AM
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I knew from the very start of the column that this was all fake and could never have happened for real. Typially De Telegraaf (with some exaggeration we can say: the Dutch little sister of the Daily Mail).

I hope the King, Queen and their children had a great time in the Netherlands. For myself I would never celebrate holiday in the Netherlands: too densely populated but maybe in the eyes of a Belgian there is some charm to spending holidays in the Northern neighbouring country.
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  #206  
Old 04-12-2015, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Marengo View Post

-
The Belgian royals were also in Amsterdam. They were seen by a well-known Dutch comedian in a 'posh' restaurant. The comedian bumped into the 'a stiff looking lady' in red who spoke 'broken Flemish' but who did have a wonderful perfume. He claims that he apologized, the more so as he noticed her leg brace. The lady reacted coldly. Only later he realised that it was Queen Mathilde.

Dansen? - nrc.nl
I wonder why people keep picking on Queen Mathilde's Dutch skills instead of praising the effort she makes to speak the language (unlike other previous queens of the Belgians BTW).
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  #207  
Old 04-12-2015, 08:18 AM
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I think because she is a Belgian-born Queen of the Belgians. Previous queen weren't native Belgians (except for Princess de Rethy, but that marriage had worse problems that the lacking language profieciency of the consort, besides she was not a Queen), so it was a passable excuse. And she was born and bred in Brussels, in Flemish country. Besides she is the Queen of the Belgians, where Dutch and French are the official languages (along with German).

Not to compare and contrast, and if this is the wrong forum, then sorry, but Princess Charlene also has received her share of grief about her broken French (which I have to admit is not ideal, as she is the Princess Consort of a country, where French is one of the official languages). But she is in Monaco and that is a world of its own.
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  #208  
Old 04-12-2015, 08:30 AM
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I think because she is a Belgian-born Queen of the Belgians. Previous queen weren't native Belgians, so it was a passable excuse. And she was born and bred in Brussels, in Flemish country. Besides she is the Queen of the Belgians, who speak both Dutch and French.
She is born in Belgium, but her domestic language was French. She went to French-speaking schools from kindergarten up to the end of university and, at that time, she and her family couldn't know she would be queen one day. It is really unfair to expect her to speak Dutch without an accent or with flawless grammar.
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  #209  
Old 04-12-2015, 08:45 AM
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Indeed and, besides that, it was just cheap points scored by a Dutch columnist, not known for his subtility.
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  #210  
Old 04-12-2015, 08:45 AM
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She is born in Belgium, but her domestic language was French. She went to French-speaking schools from kindergarten up to the end of university and, at that time, she and her family couldn't know she would be queen one day. It is really unfair to expect her to speak Dutch without an accent or with flawless grammar.
So is the situation of many consorts in Europe, yet they master the language of their adoptive countries with aplomb. Maybe the wrong thread, but CPss Mary and Pss Marie of Denmark both speak Danish fluently, although both of them had probably never heard a sentence in Danish before they met their husbands. Same goes for Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, who was able to speak Dutch in her engagement interview. Queen Silvia, who sometimes is criticised for her minor grammar mistakes, is able to speak the official language of her country. HGDss Stephanie of Luxembourg also falls under the same category. After one year, she was able to speak Luxembourgish during several interviews.

I respect Queen Mathilde for many things, among which are keeping it together in the rather chaotic Belgian RF, but not being able to speak one of the official languages of her country, let alone the language that is being spoken by more than half of the country, is something she lacks. That being said, it was rather clever of them to make sure that their children are able to speak all three languages fluently.
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  #211  
Old 04-12-2015, 09:03 AM
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Not every one has an aptitude for languages esp learning them as an adult and extremely properl grammatically and formaly as is expected of a queen but she really trying and is in every other possible way a model queen And don't they communicate with their Royal peers in English extensively which they all know fluently( with exception of Letitzia I believe?) and BTW is one of hardest languages to learn. I could be mistaken in the former though.
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  #212  
Old 04-12-2015, 09:20 AM
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I think Queen Mathilde does master Dutch pretty well, given her background. She will never speak it without mistakes and an accent. The same counts for Queen Máxima, Crown Princess Mary and Princess Charlène, all of them have to speak, read and understand a language which is not theirs. I applaud them for their good efforts.

For Queen Mathilde speaks that all her children go to a Dutch-speaking school (the language of the majority) and that the language at home is French. Via this way the royal couple tries to make their children completely bilangual in Dutch and French. It is succesful. The children are even more so into Dutch language, that the royal couple felt forced to hire extra lessons in French for their children. Especially the eldest, the Duchess of Brabant, needed extra French lessons in writing. Speaking was not a problem.

Now thát is a long time ago, that a Belgian royal felt Dutch language is more his or her natural tongue than French... The last one was Princess Lilian Baels, born from Flemish parents (however the language of the élite, also in Flanders, was French, back in those days).
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  #213  
Old 04-12-2015, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Charlotte_Aster View Post
s.

I respect Queen Mathilde for many things, among which are keeping it together in the rather chaotic Belgian RF, but not being able to speak one of the official languages of her country, let alone the language that is being spoken by more than half of the country, is something she lacks.
Taking the word of Duc et Pair (who is Dutch BTW), it is not true that Queen Mathilde is "not able" to speak Dutch. She speaks it reasonably well, but with an accent and occasional mistakes, as even advanced L2 speakers often do, especially in spontaneous speech.

Also, I don't think the Belgian RF is "chaotic". Philippe, Mathilde and their children look like a very healthy family to me. The same is true IMHO of Princess Astrid and her family. There were some issues with Albert and Paola, or with Laurent, but nothing to justify saying that the family is "chaotic". Besides, for those who like tradition, they are one of last European royal families who still hang on to the principle of marrying (mostly) within the nobility.
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  #214  
Old 04-12-2015, 03:21 PM
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Taking the word of Duc et Pair (who is Dutch BTW), it is not true that Queen Mathilde is "not able" to speak Dutch. She speaks it reasonably well, but with an accent and occasional mistakes, as even advanced L2 speakers often do, especially in spontaneous speech.

Also, I don't think the Belgian RF is "chaotic". Philippe, Mathilde and their children look like a very healthy family to me. The same is true IMHO of Princess Astrid and her family. There were some issues with Albert and Paola, or with Laurent, but nothing to justify saying that the family is "chaotic". Besides, for those who like tradition, they are one of last European royal families who still hang on to the principle of marrying (mostly) within the nobility.
I think the families of King Philippe and Princess Astrid are harmonious. With "chaotic" I meant the court organization. The many communication blunders, the poor advisors (Fabiola's escapades with her Funds), the royals themselves jumping out of the pan (Laurent, Albert, Paola, Fabiola), the organization of royal events like the funeral of Queen Fabiola which was, by all experienced royal correspondents on Twitter, branded as a chaos and a very poor organization.

The Court simply needs a modernization. Everything. Its website, its departments, the workings of the internal organization, the accountability towards Government and Parliament, the implementation of norms and procedures according standards, etc. Honesty forces me to say that all levels of Belgian politics (federal, regional and in cities like Brussels) "chaos" is the first thing which pops up in my mind.

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  #215  
Old 04-12-2015, 03:25 PM
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I have to say I agree that the Belgian Royal Court seems a little bit amateurish when compared with others but really this just may be the public face of it like the website for example (which has got to be one of the most outdated and least informative out of the European royal courts)
However we have to remember that Philippe is only just King and I suspect he will take it in hand and improve it. Hasn't he already got rid of a lot of his father's staff and advisors?
I think the problem is too much responsibility is placed on people not necessarily qualified, that will change as Philippe and Mathilde have history appointing highly qualified professionals.
As King and Queen they have continued what they started as heirs, a sincere, thoughtful, dedicated approach to their work.
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  #216  
Old 04-13-2015, 07:08 AM
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Sigh, here we go again.

Let's just put it clear: Mathilde speaks Dutch very well, better than Maxima even. She makes far less mistakes than Maxima. The difference is: Mathilde has a thick French accent which is often mocked and reminds republicans of the 19th century barons and counts who "ruled" Flanders but coudn't converse properly with the peasant population... Maxima on the other hand speaks in the same flow as most Dutch persons. So they each have their subtleties... But it's very unfair to say Mathilde doesn't speak Dutch or to say she doesn't speak it well.

And when having an accent is a problem, then Mary, Maxima, Sylvia all have a problem.
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  #217  
Old 04-13-2015, 08:37 AM
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The Problem with Queen Mathilde is that she is born in Belgium.
If you want to work in Belgium you have to speak fluently the 2 languages of the country. It is a problem for every Citizen. How many Ministers could not speak fluently our two languages.
Queen Paola was is already in belgium since 1959 and had did not speak Dutch until she became an unexpected Queen and had to learn it asap.
Queen Mathilde is our best speaking Royal but has a terrible french accent, Princess Astrid speaks Dutch as a Child, Princess Claire knows only a few basic sentences.
But our Heditary Crown Princess Elisabeth speaks Dutch fluently without any accent.
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  #218  
Old 04-13-2015, 04:10 PM
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Originally Posted by maria-olivia View Post
The Problem with Queen Mathilde is that she is born in Belgium.
If you want to work in Belgium you have to speak fluently the 2 languages of the country. It is a problem for every Citizen. How many Ministers could not speak fluently our two languages.
Queen Paola was is already in belgium since 1959 and had did not speak Dutch until she became an unexpected Queen and had to learn it asap.
Queen Mathilde is our best speaking Royal but has a terrible french accent, Princess Astrid speaks Dutch as a Child, Princess Claire knows only a few basic sentences.
But our Heditary Crown Princess Elisabeth speaks Dutch fluently without any accent.
AMEN !
Mathilde speaks Dutch fluently, the thing is she has a heavy French accent in EVERY language she speaks, have you ever heard her speaking English for example? it's the same thing, doesn't mean she can't speak the language, it means her accent comes across it.

Same happens to a lot us Spaniards when speaking other languages, our accent comes across, doesn't mean we're not fluent.

Or a more fitting example: I am Basque and I speak both Castilian and Euskera, the latter with a castilian accent because it is stronger, both are my mother languages and I'm completely fluent in both, it's just that one language tends to influence accent more strongly than the other.

Philippe's Dutch has improved immensely, he speaks much better now than when Elisabeth was born for example and his children are all bilingual (and at least the two oldest must speak English and maybe German as well by now).
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  #219  
Old 04-13-2015, 04:55 PM
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I suppose its a bigger problem as Belgium is so dived, that means each side whats their King & Queen and RF to speak their language perfectly as they would. Clearly this isn't always possible especially for someone like Mathilde who has married into the family after growing up in French speaking family & community.
To me you can't judge someone on whether they speak a language perfectly or not but on their willingness to accept they need to try using/learning a language. Mathilde speaks Dutch, even it doesn't sound great at least she and the rest of the RF try. Yes I've heard Astrid speaking Dutch and she sound odd, but again, at least she is trying. They could always not even bother and then people would really complain.
A true reflection would be to look at the next generation, Mathilde and Philippe's children speak both languages by all accounts pretty well and the couple have made important decisions to help them with this- sending them to Dutch speaking school for example. It shows that the King & Queen fully understand and appreciate the importance of both languages to their country. To me this is more important than how well or with how little an accent somebody speaks French or Dutch.
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  #220  
Old 05-06-2015, 12:13 PM
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https://ru-royalty.livejournal.com/2962542.html

The above post by kapenot88 contains photos of King Philippe, Queen Mathilde, and Crown Princess Elisabeth attending the ceremony of a naval ship launch in Zeebrugge naval base on May 6.
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