In 2004, Las Olas was excited about a forthcoming exhibition at the Museum of Art | Fort Lauderdale. It was the USA premiere of Diana – a Celebration. It exhibited over a hundred and fifty items relating to the late Diana, Princess of Wales. The exhibition started at Althorp, the Spencer family’s home in England, and toured Japan and America before going Canada. Probably the item that generated the most interest was her wedding dress.
Her younger brother Charles, the one who famously read a tribute to his sister at the funeral, flew to Fort Lauderdale for the premiere. The original text of his speech was on display. So were the hand-written lyrics of the song Elton John sang at the service. It was his well-known Candle in the Wind, but with the lyrics altered to suit the occasion. The procceeds from the exhibition went to the charities that Diana had supported.
Here’s some Diana trivia:
Although she was regularly refered to as ‘Princess Diana’ her actual title was Diana, Princess of Wales. Only women born as princesses (for example, Diana’s sister in law Princess Anne,) are permitted to use their title in front of their given name.
When she married, she did not agree to ‘obey’ her husband. That part of the marriage service was removed at her request. She bumbled her husband’s name during the ceremony, calling him ‘Philip Charles’ instead of the other way around.
She met her husband-to-be Charles, Prince of Wales when she was a young teenager. He was dating her older sister.
Diana’s stepmother was the daughter of a somewhat eccentric novelist named Barabara Cartland.She always dressed in pink, she was a self-appointed expert on romance and holds the record for the greatest number of novels written in one year – twenty three books in 1983. Her and Diana did not have a good relationship. Diana also did not have a good relationship with her step mother.
In today’s money, her engagement ring would cost $95,000. In 2010 the same ring was used when her son William became engaged to Catherine Middleton. Her dress, displayed at the Las Olas exhibiton, cost $9,000.
In 1994, it became public knowledge, that she had a five-year affair with James Hewitt. In 1995, she admitted on a TV interview that this was true. Many people believed at the time, and still do, that her second son is his. James denies this although the similarity between the two men – when compared at the same age – is astonishing. Diana admitted on TV that she ‘adored him’.
When Diana and Prince Charles divorced in 1996, her financial settlement was $17 million. She retained the title of Diana, Princess of Wales but lost the designation of Royal Highness. This made her the first non-royal British princess. She was permitted to retain the princess title due to being the mother of a future king.
When Diana died, there were countless conspiricy theories, the major one being that the British Royal Family had engineered it.
Diana had publicly admitted that he had psychologcal problems such as depression, self-injury and bulmia. A biographer revealed that she had a borderline personality disorder. The book, authorized by Diana herself, Diana, Her True Story, revealed that she was also suicidal.
In December 2007, witnesses at Diana’s inquest were questioned about a letter to Paul Burrell which Diana had written by hand in October 1993, of which only redacted versions had previously been public. In this letter, Diana said, “This particular phase in my life is the most dangerous – my husband is planning ‘an accident’ in my car, brake failure and serious head injury in order to make the path clear for him to marry Tiggy [Legge-Bourke]. Camilla [Parker-Bowles] is nothing but a decoy, so we are all being used by the man in every sense of the word.”
Neither Diana or her lover Dodi Al-Fayed were wearing seatbelts at the time of their fatal accident.