Facts Princess Diana. Biography

Facts Princess Diana. Biography
  • Diana Frances Spencer was born at Park House, Sandringham in Norfolk, England on 1 July 1961
  • In 1975, she inherited the title ‘Lady Diana Spencer’ after her father became Earl Spencer. She held this title until her marriage in 1982.

Parents

  • John Spencer, 8th Earl Spencer, and his first wife, Frances Spencer, Viscountess Althorp.
  • After her parent’s divorce, she was brought up by her father, Earl Spencer.
  • Her distant ancestors include Mary, Queen of Scots, Lady Catherine Grey, Mary Boleyn, and Robert I (The Bruce).
  • She once said to the Duke of Edinburgh that the Spencer family she was born into was older and more aristocratic than the House of Windsor.

Religion: Church of England

Education

  • Silfield School Kings Lynn, Norfolk
  • Riddlesworth Hall in Norfolk
  • West Heath Girls’ School in Sevenoaks, Kent.
  • She had a talent for music and was an accomplished pianist.
  • She was not academically talented. She left school without any O levels, despite trying twice.
  • More on Princess Diana’s Childhood

Marriage

  • Engaged on February 24, 1981, to Prince Charles – next in line to the throne.
  • Engagement ring consisted of 14 diamonds and a sapphire.
  • Charles and Diana were married on July 29th, 1981
  • Their marriage at St Paul’s Cathedral, London was a global event with a combined TV audience of 750 million. Her funeral 16 years later had an estimated 2.5 billion viewers.
  • When the couple married, Princess Diana was 20, Prince Charles 32.
  • After her marriage, her official title was ‘Her Royal Highness, Princess of Wales.’
  • The Princess of Wales is an honorific title given to the wife of the Prince of Wales, which was created after the conquest of Wales in 1301. There have been 10 Princesses of Wales since 1301.
  • Camilla Parker-Bowles was officially entitled to the title of ‘Princess of Wales’ after her marriage to Prince Charles, but due to public association with Diana, she chose the title Duchess of Cornwall.

Life

  • After school, on the advice of her mother, she took an advanced cooking course, though never became adept at cooking.
  • When she became engaged to Prince Charles, she was working as an assistant in a playgroup.
  • The Princess of Wales was considered to be the world’s most photographed woman. Though some claim Grace Kelly came close.
  • In 1995, Diana gave an interview to BBC television in which she admits to adultery and says that she would like to be “a queen in people’s hearts.” – November 1995
  • Princess Diana met with Mother Teresa in June 1997, in the Bronx, New York a few months before her death.
  • After her divorce, she dated respected heart surgeon Hasnat Khan. It was later made into a feature film, though Khan claims it misrepresented the truth.
  • After much speculation over their married life, Diana and Charles separated on 9 December 1992. Princess Diana blamed Camilla Parker-Bowles for her relationship breakdown.
  • After her divorce in August 1996, she lost her title ‘Her Royal Highness’ and became just Diana, Princess of Wales. However, she was still called a member of the Royal family.
  • After her divorce, she gained $22.5 million lump sum and some $600,000 a year to maintain her private office.
  • Diana called Camilla “the Rottweiler”. Camilla called her “that ridiculous creature”.
  • On TV she admitted adultery, but, only after Charles had had an affair.

Charity Work

  • Diana worked for many charities. Including AIDS awareness – ‘chain of hope’ organization.
  • Princess Diana was the first prominent public figure in the UK to be pictured holding the hand of a person with AIDS in his hospital bed; an action which helped to change perceptions on AIDS victims.
  • On World AIDS Day in 1993 and 1994, Princess Diana organised a Concert for Hope at Wembley Arena to raise awareness of HIV
  • One of her many charities, the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, won the Nobel Peace Prize a few months after her death.
  • Princess Diana is credited with influencing the signing of the Ottawa Treaty, a ban on the use of anti-personnel landmines.
  • More on Princess Diana’s Charity Work

Death

  • On 31 August 1997, Diana died in car crash in Paris along with Dodi Al-Fayed
  • She died from her injuries at the Pitie-Salpetriere Hospital.
  • Her tragic death led to an unprecedented wave of public grief, which eventually caused Royal Family to break old protocol and fly the flag at Buckingham Palace at half mast.
  • Diana’s funeral service was conducted in Westminster Abbey on 6 September 1997.
  • Princess Diana was buried with a set of rosary beads, which were a gift from Mother Teresa.
  • Diana was buried on an island in the middle of a lake at her ancestral home of Althorp House in Northamptonshire.
  • A French investigation found the driver Henri Paul, who was legally drunk at the time, was responsible for the accident.
  • In 2004, an independent inquiry into her death found the case ‘complex’ but no evidence of a conspiracy. Though Dodi Al-Fayed’s father has often claimed a conspiracy to kill Diana and his son.
  • After her death, Tony Blair referred to Princess Diana as the ‘People’s Princess.’

“She was the people’s princess and that’s how she will stay, how she will remain, in our hearts and in our memories forever.”

– Tony Blair

Related pages

Biography Princess Diana

Life story of Princess Diana

Charity work of Princess Dianadiana-charity

Charity work of Princess Diana including landmines and AIDS.

Diana: Princess of Wales by Mario Testino

Diana: Princess of Wales by Mario Testino at Amazon

Princess Diana: Her Life Story, 1961-1997

Princess Diana: Her Life Story, 1961-1997 at Amazon