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Old 09-10-2004, 07:47 PM
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Sept. '04 Royal of the Month: Princess Astrid of Belgium

ROYAL OF THE MONTH: PRINCESS ASTRID OF BELGIUM


Princess Astrid, King Albert II and Queen Paola of Belgium's second child and only daughter, maintains a low public profile although she is active in many humanitarian organizations highly regarded throughout Belgium and internationally. This month, on September 22, Princess Astrid and her husband, Prince Lorenz, Archduke Austria-Este, celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary, and Royal Forums salutes one half of this anniversary couple.

Born on 5 June 1962 in Brussels, she was christened Astrid Josephine-Charlotte Fabrizia Elisabeth Paola Maria, names that honoured both her paternal and maternal families. She joined older brother Phillippe and the family was completed with the arrival of younger brother Laurent in October 1963.

Princess Astrid studied art history during one year in Leyden, the Netherlands, followed by other studies in Geneva and in Michigan, in the United States.

In 1984, Princess Astrid married Archduke Lorenz (born in 1955, in Boulogne-Billancourt) in Brussels. Princess Astrid’s wedding dress was designed by a Louis Mies, a Brussels couturier. It was made of silk and Brussels lace and featured a 5-meter-long train. Among the royal guests in attendance were the Luxembourg and Habsburg families, King Olaf of Norway, Prince Bertil and Princess Lilian of Sweden, Queen Sofia of Spain, Prince Hans-Adam of Lichenstein, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester and Princess Margriet of Holland and her husband Pieter van Vollenhoven.

Together Princess Astrid and Prince Lorenz are the parents of five children, ranging in age from 1 to 18, all of whom were born in Belgium: Amedeo (21 February 1986), Maria Laura (26 August 1988), Joachim (9 December 1991), Luisa Maria (11 October 1995) and Laetitia Maria (23 April 2003).

In addition to her royal duties, Princess Astrid has been the President of the Red Cross of Belgium since 1994, succeeding the role her father previously held. As part of her humanitarian efforts with the Red Cross, Princess Astrid occasionally travels abroad, most recently to South Africa. On 22 May 1997, Princess Astrid, who is a member of the Armed Forces of Belgium, was also named to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel of the Medical Service.

From 1986 till 1993 Astrid and her family lived in Switzerland. Princess Astrid and her family reside in villa Schonenberg in Brussels (Laeken).




With files from Cathérine Bergeyck
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Old 09-10-2004, 07:55 PM
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Belgium welcomes its littlest princess, Astrid Josephine-Charlotte Fabrizia Elisabeth Paola Maria, on 5 June 1962. Here, pictured with her proud mom, Paola.

Source: Corbis
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Old 09-10-2004, 08:05 PM
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The young princess growing up.

Source: Corbis
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Old 09-10-2004, 08:10 PM
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Engagement day and wedding day.

Photos courtesy of Hulton Archive, Cathérine Bergeyck and Chris
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Old 09-10-2004, 09:43 PM
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Astrid and Lorenz with their growing family.

Source: Corbis and IBL
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Old 09-10-2004, 10:08 PM
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Portrait of a princess.

Source: Corbis and IBL
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Old 09-10-2004, 10:24 PM
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A royal marriage.

Sources: Corbis and IBL
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Old 09-10-2004, 10:31 PM
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Astrid and family fan art, courtesy of Josefine.
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Old 09-10-2004, 10:38 PM
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For more on Princess Astrid and her family, please try the following links:

Princess Astrid and Archduke Lorenz: Princess Astrid & Prince Lorenz - Current Events part 1

Princess Astrid and Archduke Lorenz's children: Princess Astrid & Prince Lorenz's Children - Current Events part 1

Prince Amedeo, Part 1: Prince Amedeo: Picture Thread, part 1

Prince Amedeo, Part 2: Prince Amedeo; News and Pictures, Part 1; July 2004 - Aug. 2006

A Baby Girl (Latecia Maria) for Astrid: Baby Girl For Princess Astrid

Latecia Maria's Christening: Princess Laetitia Maria´s Baptism
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