The life of Princess Diana through stunning vintage photographs, 1960s-1990s

Diana, Princess of Wales, commonly referred to as Princess Diana, was a member of the British royal family. She was the first wife of Charles, Prince of Wales (later Charles III) and mother of Princes William and Harry.

Diana's activism and glamor made her an international icon and earned her lasting popularity, as well as unprecedented public scrutiny, which was heightened by her turbulent personal life.

Diana (born Diana Frances Spencer) was born in 1961 at Park House, the house her parents had rented on Queen Elizabeth II's estate in Sandringham and where Diana's childhood companion was the Queen's younger son, the Prince. Andrew and Prince Edward.

She was the third child and youngest daughter of Edward John Spencer, Viscount Althorp, heiress of 7th Earl Spencer, and his first wife, Francis Ruth Burke Roche (daughter of 4th Baron Fermoy).

Her parents' troubled marriage ended in divorce when Diana was a child, and she lived with her father along with her brother and two sisters. She became Lady Diana Spencer when her father succeeded her in being born in 1975.

Diana first met the Prince of Wales (King Charles III), Elizabeth II's eldest son and heir, when she was 16 in November 1977.

He was then 29 years old and was dating his elder sister Sara. Charles and Diana were guests at a country weekend during the summer of 1980, when he saw her playing polo and took a serious interest in her as a potential bride.

The relationship took off when he invited her to Cowes for a sailing weekend on the royal yacht Britannia. This was followed by an invitation to Balmoral Castle (the Scottish residence of the royal family) for a weekend visit to his family in November 1980.

He was warmly received by the Queen, the Queen Mother and the Duke of Edinburgh. Charles later dated Diana in London.

On February 24, 1981, their engagement was announced, and her beauty and shy demeanor—which earned her the nickname "Shy Di"—made her an instant sensation with the media and the public.

The couple married on July 29, 1981, in a globally televised ceremony at St. Paul's Cathedral, which was watched by hundreds of millions of viewers.

Their first child, Prince William Arthur Philip Louis of Wales, was born on 21 June 1982, and their second, Prince Henry ("Harry") Charles Albert David, was born on 15 September 1984.

"Princess Di" quickly evolved into a symbol of grace, elegance and glamour. Exuding natural charm and charisma, she used her celebrity status to aid several charitable causes, and her changing hairstyles and wardrobe made her a fashion trendsetter.

However, behind the scenes marital difficulties between the princess and the prince continued to escalate. Diana struggled with severe postpartum depression, low self-esteem, eating disorders, and the growing stress of being constantly followed by both the official media royal-viewers and the tabloid press, especially the paparazzi.

The marital breakdown became increasingly apparent amid mutual discrimination, admission of all autobiographies and infidelity on both sides, and the couple formally separated in 1992.

Diana presented her side in Andrew Morton's controversial book Diana: Her True Story (1992) and in an unusually candid television interview in 1995.

After lengthy negotiations that left Diana with a substantial financial settlement, but without the Her Royal Highness title, the couple's divorce became final on August 28, 1996.

He was celebrated in the media for his unconventional approach to charity work. His patronage initially focused on children and the elderly, but he later became known for his involvement in two special campaigns: one involving social attitudes and acceptance towards AIDS patients, and the other promoted through the International Red Landmines. to remove. across. He also raised awareness and advocated for ways to help those affected by cancer and mental illness.

To make sure William and Harry "had an understanding of people's feelings, their insecurities, people's woes and their hopes and dreams," Diana brought her sons with her to hospitals, homeless shelters and orphanages.

To introduce them to the world outside of royal prerogatives, she took them to fast food restaurants and on public transport. Her compassion, personal warmth, gentleness and accessibility earned her the nickname "People's Princess".

One of the most photographed women in the world, Diana's phenomenal popularity in the UK and abroad continued even after their divorce.

Although she used the figure to great effect to promote her charitable work, the media (especially the paparazzi) was often intrusive.

In an automobile accident in a tunnel under the streets of Paris in 1997, Diana, along with her partner, Dodi Fayed, and their driver, Henri Paul, were trying to escape from being pursued by journalists.

Although the photographers were initially blamed for the accident, in 1999 a French judge cleared them of any wrongdoing, instead blaming Paul, who was found to have had blood in excess of the legal limit at the time of the accident. had alcohol levels and had taken prescription drugs incompatible with alcohol.

In 2006 Scotland Yard's investigation into the incident also concluded that the driver was at fault. In April 2008, however, a British investigative jury convicted both the driver and the paparazzi of unlawful manslaughter through grievous negligent driving, although it found no evidence of a conspiracy to kill Diana or Fayed, by Fayed's father. There were long-standing allegations.

His death generated unprecedented expressions of public mourning, which testify to his enormous hold on the British national psyche.

The royal family, apparently from the extraordinary outpouring of grief and criticism of their emotional reticence, broke with the internationally televised tradition of making royal funeral arrangements.

The image of Prince William, then 15 years old, and Prince Harry, then 12 years old, walking behind Diana's coffin with his father at her funeral became iconic.

At Diana's funeral, Sir Elton John performed a version of his classic song "Candle in the Wind" (originally written about actress Marilyn Monroe), which was sung by his songwriting partner Bernie Taupin on Diana's life and death. Modified to reflect. , in which "Goodbye Rose of England; May you always grow in our hearts. / You were the grace that kept itself; Where life was shattered".

Diana was a fashion icon whose style was emulated by women around the world. Ian Hollingshade of The Telegraph wrote: "[Diana] had the ability to sell clothes just by looking at her."

An early example of the effect occurred during her courtship with Charles in 1980 when sales of Hunter Wellington shoes skyrocketed when she was pictured wearing a pair at the Balmoral estate.

According to designers and people who work with Diana, she used fashion and style to support her charitable cause, express herself and communicate that Diana remains a key figure for her fashion style, which It has influenced recent cultural and style trends.

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