Celebrating Harry and Meghan’s Big Day!

Anticipation for the May 19 wedding of H.R.H. Prince Harry of Wales and his American bride-to-be, actress Meghan Markle, is reaching fever pitch. Though the recent birth of Prince Louis of Cambridge has moved Harry down a notch to 6th in line for the throne of Great Britain, fans remain royally enthusiastic as details emerge.

Not so long ago, a British prince wouldn't have been allowed to marry a commoner. Harry's 4-times-great-grandmother, Queen Victoria, tried very hard to influence the marital choices of her grandchildren. Sometimes even other royals weren't considered appropriate by Victoria! As detailed in Queen Victoria's Matchmaking, royal couplings of the past weren't simply about love and romance - they affected the balance of power in Europe and the world.

Victoria's own wedding set the style the Western world has followed ever since: white gowns, orange blossoms and more. Photography, which was invented in Victoria's day, captured the look. Five Gold Rings showcases several subsequent British royal weddings.

TV audiences numbered in the hundreds of millions for the 1981 wedding of Harry's parents, Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer, and the 1986 wedding of Prince Andrew and Sarah FergusonThe Royal Wedding of Harry's brother Prince William and Catherine Middleton in 2011 is available on DVD.

Harry and Meghan aren't the only royal couple planning to marry this year. Harry's cousin, Princess Eugenie, the daughter of the Duke and Duchess of York, will marry Jack Brooksbank in the fall of 2018.

It's not too soon to place a hold on the commemorative book, Harry & Meghan: A Royal Wedding!

Will you watch the wedding live, or stream it later?

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