One of our readers requested that we do a post on Princess Elisabeth of Belgium as part of our series on Future Queens of Europe and so here it is! We have certainly been remiss with our posts on the Belgians so it’s about time.
Princess Elisabeth is now ten years old; she’s the cutie at the forefront of the picture to the left. Her other siblings are Prince Gabriel (born in 2003), Prince Emmanuel (born in 2005), and Princess Eleonore (born in 2008).
She was born in the Brussels municipality of Anderlecht on October 25, 2001. Her full name is Her Royal Highness Princess Elisabeth Therese Marie Helene of Belgium.
Princess Elisabeth’s parents are Princess Mathilde (wearer of one of our favourite all time royal wedding dresses) and Prince Philippe. They are also known as the Duke and Duchess of Brabant. Belgium was one of the first European countries to amend their laws to succession so that the first born child of the heir, regardless of gender, is next in line to the throne. Princess Elisabeth is consequently second in line to the throne ahead of her younger brothers.
Interestingly, it has been a Belgian tradition that the first son of the heir apparent be titled Count Hainaut. Consequently when Princess Elisabeth was born it was expected that she would be styled ‘Countess Hainut’ but instead the title was abolished along with the courtesy titles Count of Flanders and Prince of Liege. The Belgians certainly have some different traditions when it comes to titles. One fun fact is that one month before Princess Mathilde’s December 1999 wedding to Prince Philippe, she was created a Princess of Belgium in her own right. The Order was put into effect on the date of the wedding. The reason all of this went down was that the wife of a Belgian prince used to receive this title automatically, but a special Order is now required. She’s not the only one who acquired a title; Mathilde’s father and mother were given the title of Count and Countess and her two uncles were also elevated to the rank of Count. Can’t imagine the British royals taking that tradition up, can you??
Back to Elisabeth. We love this picture of her hard at work at her bridesmaid duties at her maternal aunt’s wedding. Very focussed!
She currently attends an elementary school where she is educated in Dutch, which is a first for an heir to the Belgian throne. Her cousins, the children of Princess Astrid and Prince Lorenz, were also educated there.
If you missed our other posts on this series on Young Future Queens of Europe, you can read about Princess Catharina-Amalia of the Netherlands here, Princess Ingrid of Norway here, and Infanta Leonor of Spain here.