Wow – big news out of the Netherlands today. As you’ve probably heard by now, Queen Beatrix has decided to abdicate in favour of her son Prince Willem-Alexander.
This is something of a tradition in the Netherlands since the Queen’s mother and grandmother both did the same thing .
And this means we will soon have a Queen Maxima on our hands!
Love the picture below. Maxima is being her usual exuberant self and that’s Catharina-Amalia, future Queen of the Netherlands, on the far right beside Queen Beatrix:
I think there is something to be said for this whole abdication thing. Why not hand over the reigns when everyone is healthy and you’re not in mourning? Plus, Prince Willem-Alexander and Princess Maxima have been married well over ten years now, which has given them plenty of time to get into the swing of things.
This photograph was taken last week during a State visit to Singapore. See? They have had lots of time for on-the-job training together. And to think that during that whole trip they knew this announcement was just around the corner…
The Royal Family’s official website can be found here with all of the details that have been released so far, so there is no need to recount them verbatim here.
I found it especially interesting to read that the Queen will be moving from Huis ten Bosch Palace in The Hague to Drakensteyn Castle in Lage Vuursche. This castle is a country home she purchased back in 1959. This is where she lived until she became Queen.
Here is a delightful photo of Beatrix in front of the castle:
Also, she is not going to be Queen Beatrix the Queen Mother or some such. Oh, no, she’s going back to being a princess. Another tidbit I found interesting was how the abdication means that:
After the abdication, the line of succession will begin with the children of His Majesty the King: Her Royal Highness the Princess of Orange, Her Royal Highness Princess Alexia, and Her Royal Highness Princess Ariane. The next in line will be His Royal Highness Prince Constantijn, his children and finally Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet.
After the abdication, the children of Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Professor Pieter van Vollenhoven will no longer be eligible for the throne. They will also cease to be members of the Royal House.
So, Princess Margriet is the Queen’s youngest sister aand she has four sons. I’d say that the Netherlands know how to a) abdicate with grace and b) keep things under control in terms of a too big, bursting at the seams royal family. Way to go.
What do you reckon Charles is thinking over in England?
If you’re in the mood for more, here are our top two posts on the family: