Is it just me, or do you get the tiniest twinge of excitement when you hear something about the upcoming royal wedding? When the subject comes up around anyone around my age or older, we reminisce about getting up in the wee hours to watch Charles and Diana’s wedding in 1981. Diana wore the puffiest of puffed sleeves, the likes of which would make Anne Shirley swoon with delight! She was so young and lovely, and I wanted to be a princess just like her! Of course, now I think the dress is sort of hideous, and we all know what a disaster the marriage turned out to be.
Even in Jane Austen’s time, the royals weren’t so good at marriage. Apparently, while George IV was just a young prince, he secretly married a woman named Maria Fitzherbert, who was not only a commoner, but also Catholic. Big no-no considering he wouldn’t be able to become king if he were married to a Catholic (fun fact: the Act of Settlement 1701 is still in effect today!), nor could he marry without the king’s consent (which he didn’t have). Eventually, his crazy dad (King George III, see also “Madness of…”) promised to help pay his debts if he married his cousin, Caroline of Brunswick. I don’t know if it’s just that she was German, that she was his cousin, or perhaps that she wasn’t particularly easy on the eyes, but they didn’t get along. Things were so bad that in an act of extreme turdiness, he banned her from his coronation. Through the years, George continued his relationship with Maria Fitzherbert, as well as many other mistresses.
I hope for much better relationship between William and Kate—and, despite the odds being against marital harmony, I can’t help but get excited about their wedding. Clearly, I’m not alone, otherwise we wouldn’t have the wedding artistically recreated with Legos or replica engagement rings coming out the wazoo. I am rooting for them, and I wish them the best as I share their joyous occasion along with millions around the world! I’ll be the one wearing the “I (heart) Prince Harry” t-shirt.