Monday, October 18, 2010

Our Favorite Luxembourger

Last Monday was the birthday of the late Belgian princesse and Grand Duchesse de Luxembourg Josephine-Charlotte. She was born in Brussels in 1927 to SM King Leopold III and Queen Astrid. She had really extensive royal relations. King Harald V of Norway was her first cousin, King Baudouin and King Albert II were her brothers. During World War II she was kept under house arrest in Germany with her father King Leopold III until they were freed by the Allied armies and went to Switzerland. She went to school in Geneva before going home to Belgium to help people with social problems. Princesse Josephine Charlotte was said to be a reluctant bride when she married the Hereditary Grand Duke Jean of Luxembourg in 1953 but they were married for over 50 years and had many children. She did a lot of charity work as Grand Duchesse of Luxembourg, was leader of the Red Cross and set styles for the tiny country. She also liked to work in the garden and participate in outdoor and water sports when she was young. When her son, now reigning Grand Duke Henri, married Grand Duchess Maria Teresa (originally from Cuba) there was some controversy over the reports that the new consort and her mother-in-law did not get along well with each other. This is not surprising since they were two women from totally different backgrounds, generations and ways of thinking. The Grand Duchess, the best thing to ever happen to Luxembourg, died in 2005 of lung cancer.


  1. I have alot of admiration for Grand Duchess Josephine-Charlotte. She was a strong and dignified lady. Her youth must have been very hard.