Biography of Princess Alexandra
Princess Alexandra,The Honourable Lady Ogilvy (Alexandra Helen Elizabeth Olga Christabel ) is a member of the British royal family.
Alexandra was born to Prince George, Duke of Kent(brother of King George VI) and Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark, Duchess of Kent. She is a first cousin of the current British monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, and since her mother Princess Marina was a first cousin of the queen's husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, she is also his first cousin once removed.
Princess Alexandra was born on 25 December 1936 at 3 Belgrave Square, London. Her parents were Prince George, Duke of Kent, the fourth son of King George V and Queen Mary, and Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark, a daughter of Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark and Grand Duchess Elena Vladimirovna of Russia. She was named after her paternal great-grandmother, Queen Alexandra; her grandmother, Grand Duchess Elena Vladimirovna of Russia; and both of her maternal aunts, Countess Elizabeth of Törring-Jettenbach and Princess Olga of Yugoslavia.
Alexandra is the widow of businessman Sir Angus Ogilvy, to whom she was married from 1963 until his death in 2004.
As a male-line granddaughter of the British monarch, Princess Alexandra was styled as a British princess with the prefix Her Royal Highness. At the time of her birth, she was sixth in the line of succession to the British throne, behind her cousins Elizabeth and Margaret, her uncle the Duke of Gloucester, her father the Duke of Kent, and her elder brother Prince Edward. She was born two weeks after the abdication of her uncle King Edward VIII.
The Princess was baptised in the Private Chapel of Buckingham Palace, on 9 February 1937, and her godparents were King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (her paternal uncle and aunt); the Queen of Norway (her grand-aunt); Princess Nicholas of Greece and Denmark (her maternal grandmother); Princess Olga of Yugoslavia (her maternal aunt); the Princess Beatrice (her paternal great-grand-aunt); the Earl of Athlone (her paternal grand-uncle); and Count Karl Theodor of Toerring-Jettenbach (her maternal uncle by marriage).
Princess Alexandra spent most of her childhood at her family's country house, Coppins, in Buckinghamshire. She lived with her grandmother, Queen Mary, the widow of George V, during World War II at Badminton. Her father was killed in an aeroplane crash near Caithness, Scotland on 25 August 1942 while serving in the Royal Air Force. Princess Alexandra has the distinction of being the first British princess to have attended a boarding school, Heathfield School near Ascot. She then studied in Paris. She was also trained at Great Ormond Street Hospital.
On 20 November 1947, Princess Alexandra served as bridesmaid at the wedding of her cousins, the then-Princess Elizabeth and The Duke of Edinburgh.
She was also a bridesmaid at the 1962 wedding of Prince Juan Carlos of Spain and her second cousin, Princess Sophia of Greece and Denmark.
On 24 April 1963, Princess Alexandra married the Hon. Angus James Bruce Ogilvy (1928–2004), the second son of the 12th Earl of Airlie and Lady Alexandra Coke, at Westminster Abbey. Ogilvy presented Alexandra with an engagement ring made of a cabochon sapphire set in gold and surrounded by diamonds on both sides.
The wedding ceremony was attended by the royal family and was broadcast worldwide on television, watched by an estimated 200 million people.
The bride wore a wedding gown of Valenciennes lace of intricate pattern of oak leaves and acorns from her late grandmother Princess Nicholas of Greece, with matching veil and train, designed by John Cavanagh (who has also created the wedding gown of Alexandra's sister-in-law, Katharine, the current Duchess and dressed her mother Princess Marina), anchored by City of London diamond fringe tiara worn by her mother on her own wedding.
Princess Alexandra made her way with her brother, the Duke of Kent, from Kensington Palace to the church. Angus Ogilvy declined the Queen's offer to be created an earl upon marriage, so their children carry no titles.
Angus Ogilvy was knighted in 1988 (when Princess Alexandra assumed the style of The Hon. Lady Ogilvy), later being sworn of the Privy Council in 1997.
Since the late 1950s, Princess Alexandra has carried out an extensive programme of engagements in support of the Queen, both in the United Kingdom and overseas. Taking part in roughly 120 engagements each year, Princess Alexandra was one of the most active members of the royal family. She made 110 engagements in 2012.
However, in late June 2013 she cancelled her engagements due to arthritis. In November 2016, one month ahead of her 80th birthday, the Queen held a reception at Buckingham Palace in honour of the work of Princess Alexandra's charities.
As of 2017, she is still listed on the official website of the British Monarchy as a working member of the Royal Family, attending numerous ceremonial and charitable engagements.