Saturday, May 2, 2015

Charlotte of Wales marries Leopold: May 2, 1816

Princess Charlotte of Wales, heiress presumptive to the throne, and Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, were married today at Carlton House.

The Princess was led to the altar by the Duke of Clarence, where Prince Leopold, was already waiting.  Other members of the Royal Family who were present for the ceremony: Queen Charlotte,  Princesses Augusta, Elizabeth and Mary, the Duchess of York, Princess Sophia of Gloucester. The Duke of York, Clarence and Kent stood at the left of the altar.  The Dukes of Cumberland, Sussex, and Gloucester were not present.)

Dukes of Orleans and Bourbon "stood in front of the altar at some distance."

The wedding began just after 9 a.m., and was performed by the Archbishop of Canterbury, assisted by the Bishop of London.   The ceremony lasted for only 30 minutes, and was announced to the public "by the Park and Tower guns."

Princess Charlotte "advanced to the altar with much steadiness," and spoke her responses with "great clearness so as to be heard distinctly by every person present."

Prince Leopold's responses were not "heard distinctly."

The bride was given away by her father, the Prince Regent.   When the ceremony was finished, Princess Charlotte "embraced" her father, and went up to her grandmother, Queen Charlotte, "whose hand she kissed with respectful affection."   She then kissed her aunts, the Princesses, and then shook hands with her "illustrious uncles."

The newlyweds, arm in arm, left Carlton House, and were driven to Oatlands, arriving shortly before noon.

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