Friday, February 12, 2016

Royal Profile: Princess Astrid of Norway, Mrs. Ferner

Princess Astrid Maud Ingeborg of Norway, Mrs. Ferner was born 12 February 1932, as the second daughter of King Olav V and Princess Märtha of Sweden {Source}. She has one older sister and a younger brother, two siblings-in-laws and several nieces and nephews{Source}:
  1. Princess Ragnhild (1930-2012)
    1.  Erling Lorentzen (1923)
      1. Haakon Lorentzen (1954) 
        1. Martha Carvalho de Freitas (1958)
          1. Olav Alexander Lorentzen (1985)
          2. Christian Frederik Lorentzen (1988)
          3. Sophia Anne Lorentzen (1994)
      2. Ingeborg Lorentzen (1957) 
        1. Paulo César Ribeiro Filho
          1. Victoria Ragina Ribeiro (1988)
            1.  Felipe Sampaio Falcão 
      3. Ragnhild Lorentzen (1968) 
        1. Aaron Long 
          1. Alexandra Long (2007)
          2. Elizabeth Long (2011)
  2. King Harald of Norway (1937)
    1. Queen Sonja of Norway (1934)
      1. Princess Märtha Louise of Norway (1971)
        1. Mr. Ari Behn (1972)
          1. Miss Maud Angelica Behn(2003)
          2. Leah Isadora Behn (2005)
          3. Emma Tallulah Behn (2008)
      2. Crown Prince Haakon (1973)
        1. Crown Princess Mette-Marit (1973)
          1. Mr. Marius Borg Høiby (1997, technically Haakon's stepson)
          2. Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway (2004)
          3. Prince Sverre Magnus of Norway (2005)
Princess Astrid was christened in the Palace Chapel on 31 March 1932 and her godparents were:

  1. King Haakon VII (paternal grandfather)
  2. Queen Maud of Norway (paternal grandmother)
  3. Prince Carl of Sweden (maternal grandfather)
  4. Princess Ingeborg of Sweden (maternal grandmother)
  5. Princess Astrid of Belgium (maternal aunt)
  6. Princess Elizabeth, The Duchess of York (later The Queen Mum)
  7. Princess Thyra of Denmark
  8. Prince Eugen of Sweden
  9. Prince George, The Duke of Kent 
As she is a great-grandchild of King Edward VII, she is distantly in line for the British throne, as well as a second cousin to Queen Elizabeth II and a maternal 1st cousin to King Albert II of Belgium.

She grew up in Norway, and was privately tutored. During WWII, she fled with her family to the United States. After the war, she returned to Europe, to study economics and political history at Oxford.

From her mother's death in April 1954 to her brother's marriage in August 1968, Princess Astrid was Norway's de facto first lady, often assisting her father and brother with official duties.In 2005, she took part in ceremonies marking the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II, including the unveiling of a plaque marking the Norwegian monarch's exile in London{Source}. In February 2012, Princess Astrid celebrated her 80th birthday with a private dinner at the Royal Palace in Oslo {Source},

She married Johan Martin Ferner in January 1961. Together, they have the following children and grandchildren{Source}:

  1. Ms. Cathrine Ferner (1962)
    1. Mr. Sebastian Ferner Johansen (1990).
    2. Miss Madeleine Ferner Johansen (1993)
  2. Mr. Benedikte Ferner (1963)
  3. Mr. Alexander Ferner (1965)
    1. Mr. Edward Ferner (1996)
    2. Miss Stella Ferner (1998).
  4. Mrs. Elisabeth Ferner Beckmann (1969)
    1. Master Benjamin Ferner Beckmann (1999)
  5. Mr. Carl-Christian Ferner (1972)
Her husband died on 24 January 2015, shortly after they celebrated their 54th wedding anniversary.

Princess Astrid is chair of the board of Crown Princess Märtha’s Memorial Fund which provides financial support to social and humanitarian initiatives carried out by non-governmental organisations{Source}

The Princess is a patron of several organizations and participates in their activities with great interest. She has been particularly involved in work for children and young people with dyslexia, herself having had a hard time during her childhood and youth due to that condition.

She holds several Norwegian and international honors. A 580,000 km² area in Antarctica is named Princess Astrid Coast in her honor.

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