(16 Nov 2010)
Prince William has finally became engaged to long-time girlfriend Kate Middleton, giving her his late mother's engagement ring and Britain the prospect of its biggest royal wedding since Prince Charles married Lady Diana Spencer almost 30 years ago.
Royal officials announced on Tuesday that William will marry Middleton next spring or summer in London, ending years of rumoured splits, reconciliations and will-they, won't-they speculation.
The college romance that seemed to wilt under the pressure of adulthood and the glare of the paparazzi had blossomed at last.
"This was my way of making sure that my mother didn't miss out on today," William said as the couple posed for photographers inside St. James's Palace.
William proposed during a holiday in Kenya last month and gave Kate the oval blue sapphire surrounded by diamonds, from the jeweller Garrard, that his mother, Princess Diana, once wore.
William is second in line to the British throne after Charles, his father.
Kate and William's first child would move ahead of his younger brother Prince Harry to become third in line to the throne.
"Blimey," said William as he faced a torrent of camera flashes Tuesday at St. James's Palace.
He wore a navy suit, Kate a simple blue dress.
Kate acknowledged that being queen was "a daunting prospect" and declined to say whether the prince had gone down on bended knee when he proposed.
Many in Britain welcomed the royal engagement as a rare piece of good news in a time of economic uncertainty and cutbacks - a time much like 1981, when millions watched Charles and Diana's fairy-tale wedding.
Their marriage eventually ended in divorce - but no one was dwelling on that detail on Tuesday.
William's grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, and her husband Prince Philip "are absolutely delighted for them both," Buckingham Palace said.
Prince Charles said he was "obviously thrilled," and his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, said her stepson's engagement was "the most brilliant news."
Middleton's parents, Carole and Michael, also welcomed the prince to their family.
"We all think he's wonderful, we're extremely fond of him," Michael Middleton said. "They make a lovely couple."
Using Twitter as well as a news release, Clarence House said Charles was "delighted to announce the engagement of Prince William to Miss Catherine Middleton."
Few were surprised by the news. Kate and William's engagement was the safest bet in Britain, an event so certain that bookies had stopped taking bets on a 2011 wedding.
The date avoids London's Summer Olympics and the queen's Diamond Jubilee, both being held in 2012.
No venue has been announced yet.
For true pomp, the ceremony is likely to fall between the extraordinary spectacle of Charles and Diana's wedding in St. Paul's Cathedral and Charles' subdued second marriage to Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall at Windsor Guildhall in 2005.
The formal engagement is likely to turn the poised, brunette Middleton - already depicted approvingly in the fashion pages - into a global icon.
With her confident good looks and long brown hair, Middleton has already become one of the most photographed women in Britain.
The palace will be hoping that she combines Diana's glamour and charm with a more commonsense approach to life.
At 28, Middleton is considerably older than Diana was when she wed at 20, and has had greater life experiences and longer training in dealing with the media.
William and Harry have spent a lifetime in the spotlight, with their drunken nights out and female friends the subject of constant tabloid gossip.
William once told an interviewer he wouldn't marry "until I'm at least 28 or maybe 30."
He turned 28 in June,
Middleton met William at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland.
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When he said that was his mothers ring Kate looked ill . Just meaning she had the oh shit I better not lose this ring look. I don’t know if I would have wanted that ring. It’s such an iconic piece of jewelry. Princess Charlotte might just get that ring in the future.
Now I see why Harry chose to do his & Meghan engagement announcement outdoors in garden!! I certainly couldn't take all dat media frenzy & all da reporters camera bulbs flashing sooo loudly!! Poor Katherine & William having to put up with all dat frenzy from all those reporters on their engagement announcement!!😱 GOD bless you Prince William & Princess Kate & fambily!!🌷🌷
Gracie C. Agree. Harry & Meghan's entire relationship seemed a bit rushed to me. As if he felt the pressure to propose and get married. I am not sure whether their marriage will work out. I wish them the best though 🙈
Becky Sebring Harry engagement has no significance whatsoever.William is the future king therefore formality is attached to everything he does.don't compare a state event(William's wedding) which was a national hollyday to a private matter (Harry's wedding) which was shown on tv just to seek unecessary attention.Harry and William may be brothers but They have a very different status.Harry technically doesn't count especially now that William has produced heirs.stop trying to put them on the same lane,they are just not.
Holy crap! The flashes are just too much! I'm watching this to compare it to today's announcement of Prince Harry and Meghan's announcement. They did their thing outside in the daylight. Much better idea.
Nadia 4u85 they are not a real couple. His real wife is in another country. This woman was a stalker. Please spread the word. Prince william was always a private man but he put his true wife true hell. His wife suffered by the time the stalker came in the marriage especially by her pimping mother.
For while they had Liberty they despised the most high they were in contempt to his law and forsake his ways for doctrines of men and Unholy laws of Wicked men through the craft of Lucifer that has deceived the whole world moreover they have trodden down his righteousness saying in their heart there was no God though they knew that they should die for all the things that I have spoken of is made ready for you for it thirst and pain prepared for them for God would not that Man Parrish but they after they were created have defiled the name of him that made them and are unthankful unto him whish prepared life for them therefore my judgment is now at hand therefore repent for you cannot drink the cup of demons and the cup of the Lord therefore again repent because after death there shall be pain then after the judgement
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