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ROYAL WEDDING
Wedding will 'boost Sweden's monarchy'

Wedding will 'boost Sweden's monarchy'

Published: 25 Feb 2009 07:56 GMT+01:00
Updated: 25 Feb 2009 07:56 GMT+01:00

As a new poll shows that Swedes believe Daniel Westling is the right choice for Crown Princess Victoria, one of the country’s most respected historians said that a royal wedding can only strengthen Sweden’s monarchy.

According to a survey carried out by Novus Opinion for TV4, 83 percent of Swedes support Victoria's engagement to Daniel Westling.

Only 6 percent don’t believe the 35-year-old gym owner is the right choice to be the husband of Sweden’s future queen.

Reacting to the news of the engagement, historian Herman Lindqvist said a royal wedding will provide the royal family with a boost similar to the one it received when the King married Queen Silvia.

Noting that next year marks 200 years since Field Marshall Bernadotte came to Sweden from France to become King Karl XIV Johan, Lindqvist theorized that were it not for the Crown Princess’s wedding, the occasion would have likely prompted calls for the monarchy to be abolished.

But now with all eyes on Victoria and Daniel, the royal family will most likely experience an upswing instead.

“Now, on the contrary, the publicity will be positive. There’s nothing that creates positive feelings like a big wedding. They will be wrapped in the people’s love and warmth. The wedding will help bring the monarchy forward for many years to come,” Lindqvist told the TT news agency.

He drew parallels between the present and the weak standing of the monarchy when the King wed Queen Silvia in 1976.

“Olof Palme said that we were one stroke of a pen away from being a republic. But when the King married Silvia, a woman of the people, it was a huge success for the royal family. It came them an enormous amount of positive publicity,” said Lindqvist.

He reckoned that the popularity brought by Silvia has extended the life of Sweden’s monarchy by at least 30 years.

The wedding between Crown Princess Victoria and Westling will be historic, added Linqvist.

It will be the first time that a female heir a European throne will wed a “man of the people”.

“It wouldn’t have been nearly embraced by the people if he had been called ‘prince von something’. Sweden, in these times in which we live, is a country with equality between the sexes. Women marry those they love and not those who their fathers have chosen,” said Linqvist.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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