Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Royal engagement announced today
January 14, 1929
King Gustav V of Sweden today announced the engagement of Princess Martha, daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Vastergotland, and Crown Prince Olav of Norway.
The prospective bride and groom are first cousins. Crown Prince Olav will turn 26 in July. His future wife is two years his senior. Olav arrived incognito this morning in Stockholm from Oslo. He accompanied Princess Martha and her parents, he visited the king, and then called upon the Crown Prince and Princess at the Ulriksdal Palace.
Crown Prince Olav and Princess Martha were the guests at a lunch hosted by Prince Eugene.
Tomorrow, the King will host a luncheon party in honor of the engaged couple. The entire royal family is expected to attend.
No date has been set for the wedding, which has brought "great satisfaction" to the Swedes. The engagement came as a surprise in Oslo. King Haakon summoned members of the government to the palace, where they were told about the betrothal. The king asked the government for consent, which is required by the constitution. The Norwegian prime minister said that the engagement would "create enjoyment among the Norwegian nation."
The engagement dates back two and half years when Princess Martha and her mother, Princess Ingeborg, visited Oslo. At that time, the young couple agreed that they would marry, but would keep their troth secret, even from their closest relatives, until the Crown Prince completed his studies at Oxford.
Crown Prince Olav left Oslo without no one noticing. He wore "dark blue goggles and an unfamiliar suit so nobody would recognize him." A berth in a sleeper car on the train was reserved under an assumed name.
Princess Ingeborg and King Haakon are siblings. Martha's two sisters, Margaretha and Astrid, are already married. Margaretha is married to Prince Axel of Denmark, and Astrid is the wife of the Crown Prince of Belgium.