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Princess Ragnhild, Mrs. Lorentzen

Princess Ragnhild, Mrs. Lorentzen Norwegian princess

Norwegian princess
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro Norwegian princess
A.K.A. Princess Ragnhild of Norway
Gender female
Birth 9 June 1930 (Oslo, Eastern Norway, Norway, Union between Sweden and Norway)
Death 16 September 2012 (Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Mother: Princess Märtha of Sweden
Father: Olav V of Norway
Spouse: Erling Lorentzen
Children: Haakon LorentzenIngeborg LorentzenRagnhild Lorentzen
The details

Princess Ragnhild, Mrs. Lorentzen (Ragnhild Alexandra; 9 June 1930 – 16 September 2012) was the eldest child of King Olav V of Norway and Princess Märtha of Sweden. She was the older sister of King Harald V and Princess Astrid.

Early life

Princess Ragnhild was the first Norwegian princess born on Norwegian soil for 629 years. She grew up at the royal residence of Skaugum near Asker, west of Oslo. She was christened in the Palace Chapel on 27 June 1930 and her godparents were: her paternal grandparents, The King and Queen of Norway; her maternal grandparents, The Duke and Duchess of Västergötland; her granduncle, The King of Sweden; her grandaunt, Princess Victoria of the United Kingdom; her maternal aunt, Princess Margrethe of Denmark; and The Duke of York.

During World War II, she fled the German invasion of Norway with her family in 1940, spending the wartime years in exile with her mother and siblings in Washington, D.C.. Before the birth of her younger brother, it was assumed she would accede to the throne in the absence of a male heir, although this would have required a constitutional amendment, as women could not inherit the throne at the time.

She opened the 1952 Winter Olympics in Oslo, as her father and grandfather were attending the funeral of King George VI.

Marriage and family

Princess Ragnhild married Erling Lorentzen, a member of the Norwegian merchant upper-class (see Lorentzen family), in Asker on 15 May 1953. There was great controversy when she married Lorentzen, a businessman and army officer who had served as her bodyguard during the War, as she was the first member of the Norwegian Royal Family to marry non-royalty. (In Norway, there is a tradition of "official flagdays", and royal birthdays are normally listed as such occasions; however, soon after the couple's wedding, it was announced that her birthday (9 June) would cease to be such an official flagday.)

Following her marriage, the couple moved to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where her husband has substantial business holdings, originally as a temporary residence, but they eventually settled there, and remained there in until her death in 2012. In Brazil, her husband founded Aracruz Celulose. She had three children with her husband: Haakon (23 August 1954), Ingeborg (27 February 1957), and Ragnhild (8 May 1968).

Public life

A conservative, Princess Ragnhild publicly criticized her niece and nephew, Princess Märtha Louise and Crown Prince Haakon Magnus, for their choice of spouses, in 2004.

Princess Ragnhild was patron of the Norwegian Organisation for the Hearing Impaired.

Several ships, including MS Prinsesse Ragnhild, were named for her.


Princess Ragnhild died at her home in Rio de Janeiro on 16 September 2012, following a period of cancer illness, aged 82. Her body arrived in Oslo on 24 September 2012, where her brother King Harald V and her sister Princess Astrid were present to greet her alongside her spouse Erling and their children. The funeral of Princess Ragnhild was held on 28 September 2012 in the chapel of the Royal Palace of Oslo. She was later cremated and privately interred in the church of Asker.

Titles, styles and honours


  • 9 June 1930 – 15 May 1953: Her Royal Highness Princess Ragnhild of Norway
  • 15 May 1953 – 16 September 2012: Her Highness Princess Ragnhild, Mrs. Lorentzen


National honours

  •  Norway: Knight Grand Cross with Collar of the Order of St. Olav
  •  Norway: Dame of the Royal Family Decoration King Haakon VII
  •  Norway: Dame of the Royal Family Decoration of King Olav V
  •  Norway: Dame of the Royal Family Decoration of King Harald V
  •  Norway: Recipient of the King Haakon VII Golden Jubilee Medal
  •  Norway: Recipient of the Medal of the 100th Anniversary of the Birth of King Haakon VII
  •  Norway: Recipient of the King Olav V Silver Jubilee Medal
  •  Norway: Recipient of the King Olav V Commemorative Medal
  •  Norway: Recipient of the Medal of the 100th Anniversary of the Birth of King Olav V
  •  Norway: Recipient of the Royal House Centenary Medal

Foreign honours

  •  Brazil: Grand Cross of the Order of the Southern Cross
  •  Netherlands: Knight Grand Cross of the Order of Orange-Nassau
  •  Netherlands: Honorary Knight Grand Cross of the Order of the Crown
  •  Portugal: Grand Cross of the Order of Merit
  •  Sweden: Member Grand Cross of the Royal Order of the Polar Star
  •  Sweden: Recipient of 90th Birthday Badge Medal of King Gustav V

Honorific eponym

A 540 000 km² area in Antarctica is named Princess Ragnhild Coast in her honour. The Jahre Line (later Color Line) cruiseferry MS Prinsesse Ragnhild was named in her honour.


She was a great-great granddaughter of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and thus a second cousin to Queen Elizabeth II. At the time of her death she was no. 77 in the line of succession to the British throne. Princess Ragnhild's maternal aunt was Queen Astrid of Belgium, which also made Princess Ragnhild a first cousin of kings Baudouin and Albert II of Belgium.

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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