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member of the British royal family

"Diana Spencer", "Lady Di", "People's Princess", and "Princess Diana" redirect here. For other uses, see , , , and .

Diana, Princess of Wales (born Diana Frances Spencer; 1 July 1961 – 31 August 1997) was a member of the . She was the first wife of , the to the British throne, and the mother of , and .

Diana was born into the , a family of with royal ancestry, and she was the youngest daughter of , and . She grew up in Park House, situated on the , and was educated in England and Switzerland. In 1975—after her father inherited the title of —she became known as Lady Diana Spencer. She came to prominence in February 1981 when her engagement to Prince Charles was announced to the world.

Diana's took place at on 29 July 1981 and reached a global television audience of over 750 million people. During her marriage, Diana was , , , and . The marriage produced two sons, the princes William and Harry, who were then respectively second and third in the . As Princess of Wales, Diana undertook royal duties on behalf of the and represented her at functions overseas. She was celebrated for her charity work and for her support of the . Diana was involved with dozens of charities including London's for children, of which she was president from 1989. She also raised awareness and advocated ways to help people affected with , cancer, and mental illness.

Diana remained the object of worldwide media scrutiny during and after her marriage, which ended in divorce on 28 August 1996 following well-publicised extramarital affairs by both parties. Media attention and public mourning were extensive after in a Paris tunnel on 31 August 1997 and subsequent .


Early life

Diana Frances Spencer was born on 1 July 1961, in Park House, . She was the fourth of five children of (1924–1992), and his first wife, ( ; 1936–2004). The has been closely allied with the for several generations. Both of Diana's grandmothers had served as to . The Spencers were hoping for a boy to carry on the family line, and no name was chosen for a week, until they settled on Diana Frances, after her mother and after , a many-times-great-aunt who was also a prospective Princess of Wales.

On 30 August 1961, Diana was baptised at . She grew up with three siblings: , , and . Her infant brother, John, died shortly after his birth one year before Diana was born. The desire for an heir added strain to the Spencers' marriage, and Lady Althorp was reportedly sent to clinics in London to determine the cause of the "problem". The experience was described as "humiliating" by Diana's younger brother, Charles: "It was a dreadful time for my parents and probably the root of their divorce because I don't think they ever got over it." Diana grew up in Park House, situated on the . The Spencers leased the house from its owner, . The royal family frequently holidayed at the neighbouring Sandringham House, and Diana played with the Queen's sons and .

Diana was seven years old when her parents divorced. Her mother later began a relationship with and married him in 1969. Diana lived with her mother in London during her parents' separation in 1967, but during that year's Christmas holidays, Lord Althorp refused to let Diana return to London with Lady Althorp. Shortly afterwards he won custody of Diana with support from his former mother-in-law, . In 1972, Lord Althorp began a relationship with . They married at , London in 1976. Diana's relationship with her stepmother was particularly bad. She resented Raine, whom she called a "bully", and on one occasion Diana "pushed her down the stairs". She later described her childhood as "very unhappy" and "very unstable, the whole thing". Diana became known as Lady Diana after her father later inherited the title of in 1975, at which point her father moved the entire family from Park House to , the Spencer seat in .

Education and career

Diana was initially home-schooled under the supervision of her , Gertrude Allen. She began her formal education at Silfield Private School in , and moved to , an all-girls boarding school near , when she was nine. She joined her sisters at in , , in 1973. She did not shine academically, failing her twice. Her outstanding community spirit was recognised with an award from West Heath.[22] She left West Heath when she was sixteen. Her brother Charles recalls her as being quite shy up until that time. She showed a talent for music as an accomplished pianist. Diana also excelled in swimming and diving, and studied ballet and .

After attending (a in ) for one term in 1978, Diana returned to London, where she shared her mother's flat with two school friends. In London, she took an advanced cooking course, but seldom cooked for her roommates. She took a series of low-paying jobs; she worked as a dance instructor for youth until a skiing accident caused her to miss three months of work. She then found employment as a playgroup pre-school assistant, did some cleaning work for her sister Sarah and several of her friends, and acted as a hostess at parties. Diana spent time working as a nanny for the Robertsons, an American family living in London, and worked as a nursery teacher's assistant at the Young England School in . In July 1979, her mother bought her a flat at Coleherne Court in as an 18th birthday present. She lived there with three flatmates until 25 February 1981.


Lady Diana first met , the Queen's eldest son and , when she was 16 in November 1977. He was then dating her older sister, Lady Sarah. They were guests at a country weekend during the summer of 1980 when she watched him play and he took a serious interest in Diana as a potential bride. The relationship progressed when he invited her aboard the royal yacht for a sailing weekend to . This was followed by an invitation to (the royal family's Scottish residence) to meet his family one weekend in November 1980. Lady Diana was well received by the Queen, the Queen Mother and the . Prince Charles subsequently courted Diana in London. The Prince proposed on 6 February 1981, and Lady Diana accepted, but their engagement was kept secret for the next few weeks.

Engagement and wedding

Further information: and

The wedding of Charles and Diana commemorated on a 1981 British

Their engagement became official on 24 February 1981. Diana selected a large that consisted of 14 solitaire diamonds surrounding a 12-carat oval blue Ceylon sapphire set in 18-carat white gold, which was similar to her mother's engagement ring. The ring was made by the Crown jewellers . In 2010, it became the engagement ring of . The Queen Mother gave Diana a sapphire and diamond brooch as an engagement present.

Following the engagement, Diana left her occupation as a kindergarten assistant and lived for a short period at , which was the home of the Queen Mother. She then lived at Buckingham Palace until the wedding. Diana was the first Englishwoman in 300 years to become the spouse of an heir apparent, and she was also the first royal bride to have a paying job before her engagement. She made her first public appearance with Prince Charles in a charity ball in March 1981 at , where she met the .

Twenty-year-old Diana became Princess of Wales when she married the Prince of Wales on 29 July 1981 at , which offered more seating than , a church that was generally used for royal nuptials. The service was widely described as a "fairytale wedding" and was watched by a global television audience of 750 million people while 600,000 spectators lined the streets to catch a glimpse of the couple en route to the ceremony. At the altar, Diana inadvertently reversed the order of Charles's first two names, saying "Philip Charles" Arthur George instead. She did not say that she would "obey" him; that traditional vow was left out at the couple's request, which caused some comment at the time. Diana valued at £9,000 with a 25-foot (7.62-metre) train.

After she became Princess of Wales, Diana automatically acquired rank as the third-highest female in the (after the Queen and the Queen Mother), and was fifth or sixth in the of her other realms, following the Queen, the relevant , the Duke of Edinburgh, the Queen Mother, and the Prince of Wales. Within a few years of the wedding, the Queen extended Diana visible tokens of membership in the Royal Family; she lent the Princess the , and granted her the of the .


The couple had residences at and , near . On 5 November 1981, the Princess's pregnancy was officially announced. In January 1982—twelve weeks into the pregnancy—Diana fell down a staircase at Sandringham, and the royal was summoned from London. He found that although she had suffered severe bruising, the was uninjured. Diana later confessed that she had intentionally thrown herself down the stairs as she was feeling "so inadequate". In February 1982, pictures of a pregnant Diana in bikini while holidaying was published in the media. The Queen subsequently released a statement and called it "the blackest day in the history of British journalism." On 21 June 1982, the Princess gave birth to the couple's first son, . The delivery took place under the care of Pinker in the private Lindo Wing of in . Amidst some media criticism, she decided to take William—who was still a baby—on her first major tours of Australia and New Zealand, and the decision was popularly applauded. By her own admission, the Princess of Wales had not initially intended to take William until , the , made the suggestion.

A second son, , was born on 15 September 1984. The Princess asserted she and the Prince were closest during her pregnancy with Harry. She was aware that their second child was a boy, but did not share the knowledge with anyone else, including the Prince of Wales. False speculation that Harry's father was not Charles but —with whom Diana later had an affair—was based on the alleged physical similarity between Hewitt and Harry, but Harry was born before the affair began.

Diana gave her sons wider experiences than was usual for royal children. She rarely deferred to the Prince or to the Royal Family, and was often intransigent when it came to the children. She chose their first given names, dismissed a royal family nanny and engaged one of her own choosing, selected their schools and clothing, planned their outings, and took them to school herself as often as her schedule permitted. She also organised her public duties around their timetables.

Problems and separation

Five years into the marriage, the couple's incompatibility and age difference of almost 13 years became visible and damaging. Charles resumed his relationship with his former girlfriend , and Diana later began one with Major , the family's former riding instructor. In 1989, Diana confronted Camilla about her and Charles's extramarital affair at a birthday party for . These affairs were later exposed in May 1992 with the publication of 's book, Diana: Her True Story. The book, which also revealed the Princess's allegedly suicidal unhappiness, caused a media storm. Morton later revealed that in 1991 he had also conducted a secret interview with Diana in which she had talked about her marital issues and difficulties. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh hosted a meeting between Charles and Diana and unsuccessfully tried to effect a reconciliation. Philip wrote to Diana and expressed his disappointment at the extra-marital affairs of both her and Charles; he asked her to examine their behaviour from the other's point of view. The Duke was direct and Diana was sensitive. She found the letters hard to take, but nevertheless, she appreciated that he was acting with good intent.

During 1992 and 1993, leaked tapes of telephone conversations negatively reflected on both the Prince and Princess of Wales. Tape recordings of the Princess and James Gilbey were made public in August 1992, and transcripts were published the same month. The article, "", was followed in November 1992 by the leaked "" tapes, intimate exchanges between the Prince and Camilla, published in the . In December 1992, Prime Minister announced the couple's "amicable separation" to the .

Between 1992 and 1993, Diana hired voice coach to help her develop her public speaking voice. In a videotape recorded by Settelen in 1992, Diana admitted that in 1984 through to 1986, she had been "deeply in love with someone who worked in this environment." It is thought she was referring to , who was transferred to the Diplomatic Protection Squad in 1986 after his managers had determined that his relationship with Diana had been inappropriate. Diana said in the tape that Mannakee had been "chucked out" from his role as her bodyguard following suspicion that the two were having an affair. suggested in her 1998 book that the Princess was in a romantic relationship with Mannakee. Diana's friends dismissed the claim as absurd. In the subsequently released tapes Diana stated that she had feelings for that "someone" and described him as "the greatest friend [she's] ever had", though she denied any sexual relationship with him. She also spoke bitterly of her husband saying that "[He] made me feel so inadequate in every possible way, that each time I came up for air he pushed me down again." Charles's aunt, , burned "highly personal" letters that Diana had written to the Queen Mother in 1993. Biographer considered Margaret's action to be "understandable" as she was "protecting her mother and other members of the family", but "regrettable from a historical viewpoint".

Although she blamed Camilla Parker Bowles for her marital troubles, Diana began to believe that her husband had also been involved in other affairs. In October 1993, the Princess wrote to her butler , telling him that she believed her husband was now in love with his personal assistant —who was also his sons' former nanny—and was planning to have her killed "to make the path clear for him to marry Tiggy". Legge-Bourke had been hired by the Prince as a young companion for his sons while they were in his care, and the Princess was resentful of Legge-Bourke and her relationship with the young princes. Prince Charles sought public understanding via a televised interview with on 29 June 1994. In the interview, he said that he had rekindled his relationship with Camilla in 1986 only after his marriage to the Princess had "irretrievably broken down". In the same year, the claimed that Diana had made numerous phone calls to the married art dealer Oliver Hoare. The Princess denied any romantic relationship with Hoare, whom she described as a friend, and said that "a young boy" was the source of the nuisance calls made to Hoare. She was also linked by the press to rugby union player and private equity investor , yet these claims were neither confirmed nor proven.


Journalist interviewed Diana for the BBC current affairs show . The interview was broadcast on 20 November 1995. The Princess discussed her and her husband's extramarital affairs. Referring to Charles's relationship with Camilla, she said: "Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded." She also expressed doubt about her husband's suitability for kingship. Authors , and support Diana's admission in the interview that she had suffered from , and had engaged numerous times in the act of ; the show's transcript records Diana confirming many of her mental health problems, including that she had "hurt (her) arms and legs". The combination of illnesses from which Diana herself said that she suffered resulted in some of her biographers opining that she had .

The interview proved to be the tipping point. On 20 December, Buckingham Palace announced that the Queen had sent letters to the Prince and Princess of Wales, advising them to divorce. The Queen's move was backed by the Prime Minister and by senior , and, according to the BBC, was decided after two weeks of talks. Charles formally agreed to the divorce in a written statement soon after. In February 1996, the Princess announced her agreement after negotiations with the Prince and representatives of the Queen, irritating Buckingham Palace by issuing her own announcement of the divorce agreement and its terms. In July 1996, the couple agreed on the terms of their divorce. This followed shortly after the Princess's accusation that the Prince's personal assistant Tiggy Legge-Bourke had aborted the Prince's child, after which Legge-Bourke instructed her attorney to demand an apology. Diana's secretary Patrick Jephson resigned shortly before the story broke, later writing that the Princess had "exulted in accusing Legge-Bourke of having had an abortion".

The divorce was finalised on 28 August 1996. Diana received a lump sum settlement of £17 million as well as £400,000 per year. The couple signed a confidentiality agreement that prohibited them from discussing the details of the divorce or of their married life. Days before, were issued with general rules to regulate royal titles after divorce. Diana lost the style "" and instead was styled Diana, Princess of Wales. As the mother of the prince expected to one day ascend to the throne, she continued to be regarded as a member of the royal family and was accorded the same precedence she enjoyed during her marriage. The Queen reportedly wanted to let Diana continue to use the style of Royal Highness after her divorce, but Charles had insisted on removing it. Prince William was reported to have reassured his mother: "Don't worry, Mummy, I will give it back to you one day when I am King." Almost a year before, according to , the Duke of Edinburgh had warned the Princess of Wales: "If you don't behave, my girl, we'll take your title away." She is said to have replied: "My title is a lot older than yours, Philip." Diana and her mother quarrelled in May 1997 after she told magazine that Diana was happy to lose the royal style. They were reportedly not on speaking terms with each other by the time of Diana's death. By contrast, Diana's relationship with her estranged stepmother reportedly improved in the years before her death in 1997.

Public life

Public appearances

Charles and Diana in , 1983

Diana's first official public appearance following her engagement was in a charity event at in March 1981. In October 1981, the Prince and Princess visited Wales. Diana attended the for the first time on 4 November 1981. Her first solo engagement was a visit to on 18 November 1981 to switch on the Christmas lights. She attended the for the first time in June 1982, making her appearance on the balcony of afterwards. The Princess made her overseas tour in September 1982, to attend the state funeral of . Also in 1982, Diana accompanied the Prince of Wales to the Netherlands and was created a Grand Cross of the by . In 1983, she accompanied the Prince on a tour of Australia and New Zealand with Prince William, where they met with representatives of the . Their visit to Canada in June and July 1983 included a trip to to open the and a stop in to commemorate the 400th anniversary of that island's acquisition by the Crown.

In February 1984, Diana was the patron of when she travelled to Norway on her own to attend a performance organised by the company. In April 1985, the Prince and Princess of Wales visited Italy, and were later joined by Princes William and Harry. They met with President . Their visit to the included a private audience with . In November 1985, the couple visited the United States, meeting President and First Lady at the White House. Diana had a busy year in 1986. She embarked with the Prince of Wales on a tour of Japan, Indonesia, Spain, and Canada. In Canada they visited , where Diana fainted in the California Pavilion. In 1988, the Prince and Princess of Wales visited Thailand and toured Australia for the . In February 1989, she spent a few days in New York as a solo visit. During a tour of , she made a profound impact on the public by spontaneously hugging a seven-year-old child with AIDS.

Charles and Diana with the US Vice President and his wife following the enthronement of Emperor Akihito, 1990

In March 1990, she and the Prince of Wales toured Nigeria and Cameroon. The President of Cameroon hosted an official dinner to welcome them in . Highlights of the tour included visits by the Princess of Wales to hospitals and projects focusing on women's development. In May 1990, they visited Hungary for four days. It was the first visit by members of the Royal Family to "a former country". They attended a dinner hosted by interim President and viewed a fashion display at the in Budapest. Peto Institute was among the places that were visited by the Princess, and she presented its director with an honorary . In November 1990, the royal couple went to Japan to attend the of .

In her desire to play an encouraging role during the , the Princess of Wales visited Germany in December 1990 to meet with the families of soldiers. She subsequently travelled to Germany in January 1991 to visit , and later wrote an encouraging letter which was published in , and . In 1991, the Prince and Princess of Wales visited in , where they presented the university with a replica of their royal charter. In September 1991, the Princess visited Pakistan on a solo trip, and went to Brazil with Charles. During the Brazilian tour, Diana paid visits to organisations that battled homelessness among street children. Her final trips with Charles were to India and South Korea in 1992. She visited 's hospice in , India, in 1992. The two women who again met each other later that year, developed a personal relationship. It was also during the Indian tour that pictures of an alone Diana in front of made headlines.

In December 1993, she announced that she would withdraw from public life, but in November 1994 she stated that she wished to "make a partial return". In her capacity as the vice-president of , she was interested in playing an important role for its 125th anniversary celebrations. Later, the Queen formally invited her to attend the anniversary celebrations of . In February 1995, the Princess visited Japan. She paid a formal visit to Emperor Akihito and , and visited the National Children's Hospital in Tokyo. In June 1995, Diana went to the art festival, and also visited where she received the International Leonardo Prize. In November 1995, the Princess undertook a four-day trip to Argentina in order to attend a charity event. The Princess visited many other countries, including Belgium, Nepal, Switzerland, and Zimbabwe, alongside numerous others. During her separation from Charles which lasted for almost four years, she participated in major national occasions as a senior member of the Royal Family, notably including "the commemorations of the 50th anniversaries of and " in 1995. The Princess's 36th and final birthday celebration was held at which was also a commemorative event for the gallery's 100th anniversary.

Charity work and patronage

In 1983, she confided in the then-, , "I am finding it very difficult to cope with the pressures of being Princess of Wales, but I am learning to cope with it." As Princess of Wales, she was expected to make regular public appearances at hospitals, schools, and other facilities, in the 20th-century model of royal patronage. From the mid-1980s, she became increasingly associated with numerous charities. She carried out 191 official engagements in 1988 and 397 in 1991. The Princess developed an intense interest in serious illnesses and health-related matters outside the purview of traditional royal involvement, including AIDS and . In recognition of her effect as a philanthropist, Stephen Lee, director of the UK Institute of Charity Fundraising Managers, said "Her overall effect on charity is probably more significant than any other person's in the 20th century."

The Princess on a royal visit for the official opening of the community centre on Whitehall Road, , in May 1987

Diana's extensive charity work also included campaigning for and fighting against the use of . She was the of charities and organisations who worked with the homeless, youth, drug addicts, and the elderly. From 1989, she was president of for Children. She was patron of the and president of the . From 1984 to 1996, she was president of , a charity founded by Dr. in 1866 to care for vulnerable children and young people. In 1988, she became patron of the and supported its organisations in other countries such as Australia and Canada. She made several lengthy visits each week to , where she worked to comfort seriously ill or dying patients. From 1991 to 1996, she was a patron of Headway, a brain injury association. In 1992, she became the first patron of Chester Childbirth Appeal, a charity that she had supported since 1984. The charity, which is named after one of Diana's royal titles, could raise over £1 million with her help. In 1994, she helped her friend launch the charity Child Bereavement UK which supports children "of military families, those of suicide victims, [and] terminally-ill parents," and became its patron. Prince William later replaced his mother as the charity's royal patron.

Her patronages also included ,, the , the , (joint patron with Prince Charles), the , Youth, the ,, the , the ,, the ,, the ,,,,,,, Faculty of Dental Surgery of the ,,,, as well as president or patron of other charities.

In 1987, Diana was awarded the Honorary , the highest honour which is in the power of the City of London to bestow on someone. In June 1995, the Princess travelled to Moscow. She paid a visit to a children's hospital that she had previously supported when she provided them with medical equipment. In Moscow, she received the International Leonardo Prize, which is given to "the most distinguished patrons and people in the arts, medicine, and sports". In December 1995, Diana received the United Cerebral Palsy Humanitarian of the Year Award in New York City for her philanthropic efforts. In October 1996, for her works on the elderly, the Princess was awarded a gold medal at a health care conference organised by the Pio Manzù Centre in , Italy.

The day after her divorce, she announced her resignation from over 100 charities and retained patronages of only six: , , , , , and the . She continued her work with the British Red Cross Anti-Personnel Land Mines Campaign, but was no longer listed as patron.

In May 1997, the Princess opened the Richard Attenborough Centre for Disability and the Arts in Leicester, after being asked by her friend . In June 1997, her dresses and suits were sold at Christie's auction houses in London and New York, and the proceeds that were earned from these events were donated to charities. Her final official engagement was a visit to , London, on 21 July 1997.

Areas of work


The Princess began her work with AIDS victims in the 1980s. In 1989, she opened in South London. She was not averse to making physical contact with AIDS patients, though it was still unknown whether the disease could be spread that way. Diana was the first British royal figure to contact AIDS patients. In 1987, she held hands with an AIDS patient in one of her early efforts to de-stigmatise the condition. Diana noted: "HIV does not make people dangerous to know. You can shake their hands and give them a hug. Heaven knows they need it. What's more, you can share their homes, their workplaces, and their playgrounds and toys." To Diana's disappointment, the Queen did not support this type of charity work, suggesting she get involved in "something more pleasant". In October 1990, Diana opened Grandma's House, a home for young AIDS victims in Washington, D.C. She was also a patron of the . In 1991, she famously hugged one victim during a visit to the AIDS ward of the , which she had opened in 1987 as the first hospital unit dedicated to this cause in the UK. As the patron of , a health and social care organisation, Diana visited its project in London for people with HIV/AIDS in 1992. She later established and led fundraising campaigns for AIDS research.

In March 1997, Diana visited South Africa, where she met with President . On 2 November 2002, Mandela announced that the would be teaming up with the to help victims of AIDS. They had planned the combination of the two charities a few months before her death. "When she stroked the limbs of someone with leprosy or sat on the bed of a man with HIV/AIDS and held his hand, she transformed public attitudes and improved the life chances of such people," Mandela said about the late Princess. Diana had used her celebrity status to "fight stigma attached to people living with HIV/AIDS", Mandela said. In 2009, a panel including Sir and chose Diana's portrait to be shown in the Gay Icons exhibition at the . In October 2017, the magazine honoured Diana with its Legacy Award for her HIV/AIDS work. Prince Harry accepted the award on behalf of his mother.


Diana was the patron of , an organisation that removes debris—particularly landmines—left behind by war. In January 1997, pictures of Diana touring an Angolan minefield in a ballistic helmet and were seen worldwide. During her campaign, she was accused of meddling in politics and called a 'loose cannon'. Despite the criticism, HALO states that Diana's efforts resulted in raising international awareness about landmines and the subsequent sufferings caused by them. In June 1997, she gave a speech at a landmines conference held at the , and travelled to to help promote the landmines campaign. From 7 to 10 August 1997, just days before her death, she visited with and of the .

Her work on the landmines issue has been described as influential in the signing of the , which created an international ban on the use of anti-personnel landmines. Introducing the of the Landmines 1998 to the , the , , paid tribute to Diana's work on landmines:

All Honourable Members will be aware from their postbags of the immense contribution made by Diana, Princess of Wales to bringing home to many of our constituents the human costs of landmines. The best way in which to record our appreciation of her work, and the work of NGOs that have campaigned against landmines, is to pass the Bill, and to pave the way towards a global ban on landmines.

Carol Bellamy, Executive Director of the (UNICEF), said that landmines remained "a deadly attraction for children, whose innate curiosity and need for play often lure them directly into harm's way". She urged countries which produce and stockpile the largest numbers of landmines (United States, China, India, North Korea, Pakistan, and Russia) to sign the treaty. A few months after Diana's death in 1997, the won the .


For her first solo official trip, Diana visited , a cancer treatment hospital in London. She later chose this charity to be among the organisations that benefited from the auction of her clothes in New York. The trust's communications manager said, "The Princess had done much to remove the stigma and taboo associated with diseases such as cancer, AIDS, HIV and leprosy." Diana became president of the hospital on 27 June 1989. The Wolfson Children's Cancer Unit was opened by Diana on 25 February 1993. In February 1996, the Princess who had been informed about a built by , travelled to Pakistan to visit its children's cancer wards and attend a fundraising dinner in aid of the charity in . She later visited the hospital again in May 1997. In June 1996, she travelled to Chicago in her capacity as president of the Royal Marsden Hospital in order to attend a fundraising event and raised more than £1 million for cancer research. In September 1996, after being asked by , the Princess went to Washington and appeared at a White House breakfast in respect of the Nina Hyde Center for Breast Cancer Research. She also attended an annual fund-raiser for breast cancer research organised by at the same centre.

Children with Leukaemia (later renamed Children with Cancer UK) was opened by the Princess of Wales in memory of two young cancer victims in 1988. In November 1987, a few days after the death of Jean O'Gorman from cancer, Diana met her family. The deaths of Jean and her brother affected the Princess, and she assisted their family to establish the charity. It was opened by her on 12 January 1988 at Mill Hill Secondary School, and she supported it until her death in 1997.

Other areas

In November 1989, the Princess visited a leprosy hospital in Indonesia. Following her visit, she became patron of , an organisation dedicated to providing medicine, treatment, and other support services to those who are afflicted with the disease. She remained the patron of this charity and visited several of its hospitals around the world, especially in India, Nepal, Zimbabwe and Nigeria until her death in 1997. She famously touched those affected by the disease when many people believed it could be contracted through casual contact. "It has always been my concern to touch people with leprosy, trying to show in a simple action that they are not reviled, nor are we repulsed," she commented. The Diana Princess of Wales Health Education and Media Centre in Noida, India, was opened in her honour in November 1999, funded by the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Fund to give social support to the people affected by leprosy and disability.

Diana was a long-standing and active supporter of , a charity which provides accommodation and support to homeless people, and became patron in 1992. She supported organisations that battle poverty and homelessness. The Princess was a supporter of young homeless people and spoke out on behalf of them by saying that "they deserve a decent start in life". "We, as a part of society, must ensure that young people – who are our future – are given the chance they deserve," she said. Diana used to take young William and Harry for private visits to Centrepoint services and homeless shelters. "The young people at Centrepoint were always really touched by her visits and by her genuine feelings for them," said one of the charity's staff members. Prince William later became the patron of this charity.

Diana was a staunch and longtime supporter of charities and organisations that focused on social and mental issues, including and . Relate was relaunched in 1987 as a renewed version to its predecessor, the National Marriage Guidance Council. Diana became its patron in 1989. Turning Point, a health and social care organisation, was founded in 1964 to help and support those affected by drug and alcohol misuse and mental health problems. She became the charity's patron in 1987 and visited the charity on a regular basis, meeting the sufferers at its centres or institutions including Rampton and Broadmoor. In 1990 during a speech for Turning Point she said, "It takes professionalism to convince a doubting public that it should accept back into its midst many of those diagnosed as psychotics, neurotics and other sufferers who Victorian communities decided should be kept out of sight in the safety of mental institutions." Despite the protocol problems of travelling to a Muslim country, she made a trip to Pakistan later that year in order to visit a rehabilitation centre in as a sign of "her commitment to working against drug abuse".

Privacy and the media

In 1993, (MGN) published photographs of the Princess that were taken by gym owner Bryce Taylor. The photos showed her exercising in the gym wearing "a leotard and cycling shorts". The Princess's lawyers immediately filed a criminal complaint that sought "a permanent ban on the sale and publication of the photographs" around the world. However, some newspapers outside the UK published the pictures. The courts granted an injunction against Taylor and MGN that prohibited "further publication of the pictures". MGN later issued an apology after facing much criticism from the public. It is said that MGN gave the Princess £1 million as a payment for her legal costs and donated £200,000 to her charities. Taylor apologised as well and paid Diana £300,000, although it was alleged that a member of the Royal Family had helped him financially.

Personal life after divorce

After her 1996 divorce, Diana retained the double apartment on the north side of that she had shared with the Prince of Wales since the first year of their marriage; the apartment remained her home until her death the following year. She also moved her offices to Kensington Palace but was permitted "to use the state apartments at St James's Palace". Furthermore, she continued to have access to the jewellery that she had received during her marriage, and was allowed to use the . In a book published in 2003, claimed that the Princess's private letters had revealed that her brother, Lord Spencer, had refused to allow her to live at , despite her request.

Diana dated the British-Pakistani heart surgeon , who was called "the love of her life" by many of her closest friends after her death, and she is said to have described him as "Mr Wonderful". In May 1996, Diana visited Lahore upon invitation of , a relative of Hasnat Khan, and visited the latter's family in secret. Khan was intensely private and the relationship was conducted in secrecy, with Diana lying to members of the press who questioned her about it. Their relationship lasted almost two years with differing accounts of who ended it. She is said to have spoken of her distress when "he" ended their relationship. However, according to Khan's testimonial at the inquest for her death, it was Diana who ended their relationship in the summer of 1997. Burrell also said that the relationship was ended by the Princess in July 1997. Burrell also claimed that Diana's mother, Frances Shand Kydd, disapproved of her daughter's relationship with a Muslim man.

Within a month, Diana began a relationship with , the son of her summer host, . That summer, Diana had considered taking her sons on a holiday to on , but security officials had prevented it. After deciding against a trip to Thailand, she accepted Fayed's invitation to join his family in the south of France, where his compound and large security detail would not cause concern to the Royal Protection squad. Mohamed Al-Fayed bought the , a 60-metre multimillion-pound yacht on which to entertain Diana and her sons.


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On 31 August 1997, Diana was killed in a car crash in the tunnel in Paris. The accident also resulted in the deaths of her companion and the driver, , who was the acting security manager of the . Diana's bodyguard, , survived the crash. The televised funeral, on 6 September, was watched by a British television audience that peaked at 32.10 million, which was one of the United Kingdom's . Millions more watched the event around the world.

Tribute, funeral, and burial

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The sudden and unexpected death of an extraordinarily popular royal figure brought statements from senior figures worldwide and many tributes by members of the public. People left public offerings of flowers, candles, cards, and personal messages outside Kensington Palace for many months. Her coffin, draped with the royal flag, was brought to London from Paris by Prince Charles and Diana's two sisters on 31 August 1997. The coffin was taken to a private mortuary and then placed in the Chapel Royal, .

On 5 September, Queen Elizabeth II paid tribute to her in a live television broadcast. Diana's funeral took place in Westminster Abbey on 6 September. Her sons walked in the funeral procession behind her coffin, along with her ex-husband the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Edinburgh, Diana's brother Lord Spencer, and representatives of some of her charities. Lord Spencer said of his sister, "She proved in the last year that she needed no royal title to continue to generate her particular brand of magic." Re-written in tribute to Diana, "" was performed by at the funeral service (the only occasion the song has been performed live). Released as a single in 1997, the global proceeds from the song have gone to Diana's charities.

The burial took place privately later the same day. Diana's former husband, sons, mother, siblings, a close friend, and a clergyman were present. Diana's body was clothed in a black long-sleeved dress designed by , which she had chosen some weeks before. A set of beads that she had received from was placed in her hands. Mother Teresa had died the same week as Diana. Diana's grave is on an island () within the grounds of Park, the Spencer family home for centuries.

The burial party was provided by the 2nd Battalion , who were given the honour of carrying the Princess across to the island and laying her to rest. Diana was the Regiment's from 1992 to 1996. The original plan was for Diana to be buried in the Spencer family vault at the local church in nearby , but Lord Spencer said that he was concerned about public safety and security and the onslaught of visitors that might overwhelm Great Brington. He decided that Diana would be buried where her grave could be easily cared for and visited in privacy by William, Harry, and other Spencer relatives.

Conspiracy theories, inquest and verdict

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The initial French judicial investigation concluded that the accident was caused by Paul's , reckless driving, speeding (65 mph), and effects of prescription drugs. In February 1998, Mohamed Al-Fayed, owner of the Paris Ritz where Paul had worked, publicly stated that the crash had been planned and accused and the Duke of Edinburgh. An inquest that started in London in 2004 and continued in 2007–08 attributed the accident to grossly negligent driving by Paul and to the pursuing , who forced Paul to speed into the tunnel. On 7 April 2008, the jury returned a verdict of "unlawful killing". On the day after the final verdict of the inquest, Al-Fayed announced that he would end his 10-year campaign to establish that the tragedy was murder rather than an accident; he stated that he did so for the sake of the Princess's children.

Later events


Following her death, Diana left a £21 million estate, "netting £17 million after estate taxes", which were left in the hands of trustees, her mother, and her sister, Lady Sarah. The will was signed in June 1993, but Diana had it modified in February 1996 to remove the name of her personal secretary from the list of trustees and have her sister Sarah replace him. Her two sons subsequently inherited the majority of her estate. Each of them received £10 million upon turning 30 years old in 2012 and 2014 respectively. Many of Diana's possessions were initially left in the care of her brother who put them on show in Althorp twice a year until they were returned to the princes. They were also put on display in American museums and as of 2011 raised two million dollars for charities. Among the objects were her dresses and suits along with numerous family paintings, jewels and two diamond tiaras. Diana's engagement ring was given to her elder son who later passed it to his wife, while her wedding dress was given to her younger son, Prince Harry.

In addition to her will, Diana had also written a letter of wishes in which she had asked for three-fourths of her personal property to be given to her sons, and dividing the remaining one-fourth (aside from the jewelry) between her 17 godchildren. Despite Diana's wishes, the executors (her mother and sister) "petitioned the probate court for a "variance" of the will", and the letter of wishes was ignored "because it did not contain certain language required by British law". Eventually, one item from Diana's estate was given to each of her godchildren, while they would have received £100,000 each, had one-fourth of her estate been divided between them. The variance also prevented the estate from being distributed between her sons at the age of 25 but postponed it until they were 30. Diana also left her butler Paul Burrell around ,000 in cash.

Subject of government surveillance

In 1999 after the submission of a request filed by the Internet news service apbonline.com, it was revealed that Diana had been placed under surveillance by the until her death, and the organisation kept a file on her containing more than 1,000 pages. The contents of Diana's NSA file cannot be disclosed because of concerns. The NSA officials insisted that Diana was not a "target of [their] massive, worldwide electronic eavesdropping infrastructure." Despite multiple inquiries for the files to be declassified—with one of the notable ones being filed by —the NSA has refused to release the documents.

In 2008, Ken Wharfe, a former bodyguard of the Princess claimed that her scandalous conversations with (commonly referred to as the ) were in fact recorded by the which intentionally released them on a "loop". People close to the Princess believe that it was an action to defame her. Wharfe said that Diana herself believed that members of the royal family were all being monitored, though he also stated that the main reason of it could be due to the potential threats of the .

The Memorial Fund controversy

The was established after her death and was granted intellectual property rights over her image. In 1998, the fund sued the , accusing it of illegally selling Diana dolls, plates, and jewellery after having been refused a license to do so. In California, where the initial case was tried, a suit to preserve the right of publicity may be filed on behalf of a dead person, but only if that person is a Californian. The Memorial Fund therefore filed the lawsuit on behalf of the estate and, upon losing the case, was required to pay the Franklin Mint's legal costs of £3 million which, combined with other fees, caused the Memorial Fund to freeze its grants to charities. In 2003, the Franklin Mint counter-sued. In November 2004, the case was settled out of court with the Memorial Fund agreeing to pay £13.5 million (US.5 million) to charitable causes on which both sides agreed. In addition to this, the Memorial Fund had spent a total of close to £4 million (US.5 million) in costs and fees relating to this litigation, and as a result froze grants allocated to a number of charities.

Anniversaries, commemorations, and auctions

On the first anniversary of Diana's death, people left flowers and bouquets outside the gates of Kensington Palace and a memorial service was held at Westminster Abbey. The royal family and the Prime Minister and his family went to for private prayers, while Diana's family held a private memorial service at Althorp. All and other royal residences were flown at on the Queen's orders. The was first lowered to half-mast on the day of Diana's funeral and has set a precedent, as based on the previous protocol no flag could ever fly at half-mast over the palace "even on the death of a monarch". Since 1997, however, the flag has flown at half-mast upon the deaths of members of the royal family, and other times of national mourning.

The at was held on 1 July 2007. The event, organised by the Princes William and Harry, celebrated the 46th anniversary of their mother's birth and occurred a few weeks before the 10th anniversary of her death on 31 August. The proceeds that were earned from this event were donated to Diana's charities. On 31 August 2007, a memorial service for Diana took place in the . Guests included members of the royal family and their relatives, members of the Spencer family, members of Diana's wedding party, Diana's close friends and aides, representatives from many of her charities, British politicians , , and , and friends from the entertainment world such as , , and .

In January 2013, a previously unseen photograph of Diana taken during her engagement to Charles was put up for auction. The picture belonged to the Daily Mirror newspaper and has "Not to be published" written on it. In it, a young Diana lies across the lap of an unidentified man.

On 19 March 2013, ten of Diana's dresses, including a midnight blue velvet gown she wore to a 1985 at the when she famously danced with (which became known as the ), raised over £800,000 at auction in London.

In January 2017, a series of letters that Diana and other members of the Royal Family had written to a Buckingham Palace steward were sold as a part of a collection titled "the private letters between a trusted butler and the royal family". The six letters that were written by Diana included information about her young sons' daily life and raised £15,100.

"Diana: Her Fashion Story", an exhibition of gowns and suits worn by the Princess, was announced to be opened at Kensington Palace in February 2017 as a tribute to mark her 20th death anniversary, with her favorite dresses created by numerous fashion designers, including and , being displayed. The exhibition opened on 24 February displaying a collection of 25 dresses, and is set to remain open until 2018.

Other tributes planned for the anniversary included exhibitions at Althorp hosted by the Princess's brother, , a series of commemorating events organised by the , as well as restyling and creating a new section called "The White Garden" in order to symbolise Diana's life and style.


Public image

Among members of the Royal Family throughout history, Diana remains one of the most popular, and continues to influence the principles of the Royal Family and its younger generations. She was a major presence on the world stage from her engagement to the Prince of Wales in 1981 until her death in 1997, and was often described as the "world's most photographed woman". She was noted for her compassion, style, charisma, and high-profile charity work, as well as her ill-fated marriage to the Prince of Wales. Her former private secretary described her as an organised and hardworking person, and pointed out that the Princess's husband was not able to "reconcile with his wife's extraordinary popularity", a viewpoint supported by biographer . He also said that she was a tough boss who was "equally quick to appreciate hard work", but could also be defiant "if she felt she had been the victim of injustice"., who worked as a for the Princess, remembered her as a "deep thinker" capable of "introspective analysis". She was often described as a devoted mother to her children, who are influenced by her personality and way of life. In the early years, Diana was often noted for her shy nature, as well as her shrewdness, funny character, and smartness. Those who communicated with her closely describe her as a person who was led by her heart. The Princess was also said to have a strong character, because she entered the Royal Family as an inexperienced girl with little education, but could handle their expectations, and overcome the difficulties and sufferings of her marital life.

Diana was widely known for her encounters with sick and dying patients, and the poor and unwanted whom she used to comfort, an action that earned her more popularity. She was mindful of people's thoughts and feelings, and later revealed her wish to become a beloved figure among the people, saying in her 1995 interview, that "[She would] like to be a queen of people's hearts, in people's hearts." According to Tina Brown, she could charm people with a single glance. Brown also points out that Diana's fame had spread around the world, even affecting who reportedly said that Diana had shown the nation "a new way to be British". Diana is often credited with widening the range of charity works carried out by the Royal Family in a more modern style, as well as affecting some of the household's traditional manners. of wrote in an article that "Diana imbued her role as royal princess with vitality, activism and, above all, glamour." Alicia Carroll of described Diana as "a breath of fresh air" who was the main reason the Royal Family was known in the United States. Despite all the marital issues and scandals, Diana continued to enjoy a high level of popularity in the polls while her husband was suffering from low levels of public approval. Her peak popularity rate in the United Kingdom between 1981 and 2012 was 47%.

Diana had become what Prime Minister Tony Blair called the "People's Princess", an iconic national figure. Her accidental death brought an unprecedented spasm of grief and mourning, and subsequently a crisis arose in the Royal Household. said that by her death she "revived the culture of public sentiment". Her brother, the Earl Spencer, captured her role:

Diana was the very essence of compassion, of duty, of style, of beauty. All over the world she was a symbol of selfless humanity. All over the world, a standard bearer for the rights of the truly downtrodden, a very British girl who transcended nationality. Someone with a natural nobility who was classless and who proved in the last year that she needed no royal title to continue to generate her particular brand of magic.

In 1997, the Princess was one of the runners-up for . In 1999, magazine named Diana one of the . In 2002, Diana ranked third on the 's poll of the , above the Queen and other British monarchs. In 2006, the Japanese public ranked Diana twelfth in . In 2018, Diana ranked fifteenth on the 's poll of 100 Women Who Changed the World.

Despite being regarded as an iconic figure and a popular member of the Royal Family, Diana was subject to criticism during her life. Patrick Jephson, her private secretary of eight years, wrote in an article in that "[Diana] had an extra quality that frustrated her critics during her lifetime and has done little to soften their disdain since her death ... the human face of a remote institution". Some have said that it was Diana who let the journalists and paparazzi into her life as she knew that they were the source of her power, thus she had "overburdened herself with public duties" and destroyed the border between private and public life. Diana was famously criticised by philosophy professor who, in his notes argued that she was unable to fulfill her duties, her reckless behaviour was damaging the monarchy, and she was "self-indulgent" in her philanthropic efforts. Following his remarks, charity organisations that were supported by her defended the Princess, and called O'Hear's comments "distasteful and inappropriate". Further criticism surfaced as she was accused of using her public profile to benefit herself, which in turn "demeaned her royal office". Diana's unique type of charity work, which sometimes included physical contact with people affected by serious diseases sometimes had a negative reaction in the media.

characterised Diana as unpredictable, egocentric, and possessive. Smith also argued that in her desire to do charity works she was "motivated by personal considerations, rather than by an ambitious urge to take on a societal problem". Robinson, however, said that "[Diana] was serious about the causes she espoused". According to , Diana looked down on the whom she reportedly viewed "as jumped-up foreign princelings" and called them "the Germans". She believed that Diana was a "victim of her own poor judgment" as she lost social privilege by doing the Panorama interview. Some observers characterised her as a manipulative person. It was also alleged by some people that the Princess and her former father-in-law, Prince Philip, had a relationship filled with tension; however, other observers said that their letters provided no sign of friction between them. Author believed that Diana has not had any impact on public opinions posthumously; an idea supported by of who also noted in his article that Diana's memory and influence started to fade away in the years after her death, while Peter Conrad, another Guardian contributor, argued that even in "a decade after her death, she is still not silent," and of The Telegraph described the Princess as "the celebrity of celebrities" whose sentiments "continue to shape our society".

Style icon

Diana was a fashion icon whose style was emulated by women around the world. of The Telegraph wrote: "[Diana] had an ability to sell clothes just by looking at them." An early example of the effect occurred during her courtship with Charles in 1980 when sales of Hunter skyrocketed after she was pictured wearing a pair on the Balmoral estate. According to designers and people who worked with Diana, she used fashion and style to endorse her charitable causes, express herself and communicate. The Princess continued to remain a prominent figure for her fashion style, and is still considered an inspiration for stylists, celebrities, and young women, famously including the singer who is influenced by her and during an interview by in 2013 said: "[Diana] killed it. Every look was right. She was gangsta with her clothes. She had these crazy hats. She got oversize jackets. I loved everything she wore!" In the words of one of her favourite milliners, , "Diana was our best ambassador for hats, and the entire millinery industry owes her a debt." Boyd's pink hat Diana wore for her honeymoon was later copied by milliners across the world and credited with rebooting an industry in decline for decades.

The Princess chose her dressing style based on both the Royal Family's demands and popular modern styles in Britain, and developed her personal fashion trend. While on diplomatic trips, her clothes and attire were chosen to match the destination countries' costumes, and while off-duty she used to wear loose jackets and jumpers. "She was always very thoughtful about how her clothes would be interpreted, it was something that really mattered to her," according to , a former editor and the Princess's fashion mentor., one of the designers who worked with Diana, believed that she had "broken the rules" trying new styles. Diana chose not to practice some of the royal clothing traditions such as putting aside the tradition of wearing gloves as she believed it would prevent a direct connection with the people she met, such as those affected by serious diseases like AIDS patients. She used to wear certain types of clothes at charity events which were appropriate for the people she would meet, such as wearing colourful dresses and "jangling jewels" so she could easily play with children at hospitals. According to who worked closely with the Princess alongside her brother, Diana's interest and sense of curiosity about fashion grew significantly after her separation from Charles. Versace also points out that "[she doesn't] think that anyone, before or after her, has done for fashion what Diana did".

was among Diana's favorite designers with whom she worked to create her "royal uniform". For her foreign tours and state visits, Walker and her husband used to do research and were determined to design clothes that would not outshine the Princess, a viewpoint supported by who believes that Diana did not want "to let her clothes wear her". Eleri Lynn, curator of the exhibition Diana: Her Fashion Story, also believes that "[Diana] didn't want to be known as a clothes horse," and mentions that "the style [Catherine and Diana] created together was a very slender, fluid silhouette which did away with the frills and ruffles of the early '80s and created a sleek silhouette that really flattered the princess's frame and became a timeless look for her. A royal uniform if you like."

Diana made her debut as a in 1979 with a gown by Regamus. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, the Princess wore outfits and ensembles by numerous notable fashion designers. She also wore ensembles by fashion companies such as , , , and . Among her iconic outfits are a by and worn by a newly engaged Diana at a charity event, a cocktail dress by Christina Stambolian, commonly known as the "Revenge Dress", which she wore after Charles's admission of adultery, an evening gown by that she wore to a reception at the White House and later became known as the "", and a Catherine Walker pearl-encrusted gown and jacket dubbed the "Elvis Dress", which she wore for the first time on an official visit to Hong Kong.

In early 1980s, Diana preferred to wear dresses with floral collars, pie-crust blouses, and pearls. These items rapidly became fashion trends. Copies of her -featured pink chiffon blouse by David and Elizabeth Emanuel, which appeared on the magazine's cover on her engagement announcement day, sold in the millions. Her habit of wearing wide-shouldered gowns and lavish fabrics earned her the nickname "Dynasty Di". In the years after her marriage and then her divorce, Diana grew more confident in her choices, and her style underwent a change, with her new choices consisting of blazers, one-shoulder and off-shoulder dresses, two-tone themed suits, military-styled suits, and nude-colored outfits. White shirt and jeans, plaid dresses, jumpsuits and sheath dresses were among the other fashion trends that she tried. Her way of dressing began to be influenced by other celebrities including , , , as well as many others. Following her death many of her dresses were auctioned and sold to different people and museums, each time for a significant amount of money.

The Princess's influential short hairstyle was created by after a Vogue shoot in 1990, which, in McKnight and Donatella Versace's opinion, brought her more liberty as "it always looked great". The Princess reportedly did her own make up and would always have a hairstylist by her side before an event. She told McKnight: "It's not for me, Sam. It is for the people I visit or who come to see me. They don't want me in off-duty mode, they want a princess. Let's give them what they want."

The Princess was named to the Hall of Fame in 1989. In 2004, cited her as one of the all-time most beautiful women. In 2012, Time included Diana on its All-TIME 100 Fashion Icons list.

In 2016, fashion designer Sharmadean Reid designed a collection of clothes for inspired by Diana's style. "Di's incredible relationship with accessible sportswear through to luxury fashion forms the cornerstone of the collection and feels more modern than ever," Reid said about the Princess in a press release.

Following the opening of an exhibition of Diana's clothes and dresses at Kensington Palace in 2017, of stated that such exhibitions are among the suitable ways to commemorate public figures whose fashion styles were noted due to their achievements. The exhibition suggests to detractors that, like many other princesses, "looking lovely in different clothes was pretty much her life's work" which also brings interest in her clothing.

Diana was an inspiration for 's Spring 2018 show at in 2017. The designer used the Princess' signature looks as fragments to design new suits and attire. Supermodel , dressed in a combination of white blazer and cropped spandex leggings in reference to Diana's formal and off-duty styles, closed off the show.


Immediately after her death, many sites around the world became briefly ad hoc memorials to Diana where the public left flowers and other tributes. The largest was outside the gates of Kensington Palace, where people continue to leave flowers and tributes. Permanent memorials include:

  • The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Gardens in Regent Centre Gardens
  • The in , opened by Queen Elizabeth II
  • The in , London
  • The , a circular path between Kensington Gardens, , Hyde Park, and , London
  • The , established in 1999 and later relaunched in 2007 by
  • The Austria is the first memorial dedicated to Diana, Princess of Wales, in a German-speaking country. It is placed in the garden of Schloss Cobenzl in Vienna. It was raised by reporter .

The was erected in 1989 on the Place de l'Alma in Paris above the entrance to the tunnel in which the fatal crash later occurred. It has become an unofficial memorial to Diana. In addition, there are two memorials inside department store, commissioned by Dodi Fayed's father, who owned the store from 1985 to 2010. The first memorial is a pyramid-shaped display containing photos of the princess and al-Fayed's son, a wine glass said to be from their last dinner, and a ring purchased by Dodi the day prior to the crash. The second, , unveiled in 2005, is a bronze statue of Fayed dancing with Diana on a beach beneath the wings of an albatross. In January 2018, it was announced that the statue would be returned to the Al-Fayed family.

Rosa 'Princess of Wales', a white blend , is named in honour of Diana. She received it as a tribute for her 10-year cooperation with the . It was bred by in the United Kingdom and introduced in 1997. The nostalgic is also known as 'Hardinkum'. It has a double bloom form, and a mild to strong fragrance. The rose is said to be one of Diana's favourites. After her death, the proceeds from selling the roses in 1998–99 were donated to the British Lung Foundation. In 2002, it was granted the by the .Rosa 'Diana, Princess of Wales', a pink blend garden rose, was first introduced in 1998 at the British Embassy in the United States. The classical was bred by Keith W. Zary of and is also known under the names 'Elegant Lady' and 'Jacshaq'. It has a classic bloom form with ivory , and a mild, sweet fragrance. "15% of the retail price" for buying each of the roses was donated to the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund. It was also not sold in the United Kingdom in order to prevent from creating a competition with Rosa 'Princess of Wales'.

In 1998, issued in Azerbaijan. The English text on issued reads "DIANA, PRINCESS OF WALES The Princess that captured people's hearts (1961–1997)". Several other countries issued commemorative stamps that year, including Great Britain, Somalia, and Congo. also issued a postage stamp commemorating Diana in Armenia at the same year.

In November 2002, a £4,000 bronze plaque was unveiled by Earl Spencer at as a memorial to his sister. In February 2013, in announced that its new 25,000 square foot arts centre would be named the Princess of Wales Visual Arts Centre.Princess Diana Drive was named in her memory in . Diana's granddaughter, (born 2015), and her niece, (born 2012), are named after her.

In January 2017, Diana's sons commissioned a statue of their mother for Kensington Palace to commemorate the 20th anniversary of her death. In an official statement released by Kensington Palace, William and Harry said "Our mother touched so many lives. We hope the statue will help all those who visit Kensington Palace to reflect on her life and her legacy." The money will be raised through public donations, and a small committee consisting of close friends and advisers, including Diana's sister , are said to be working on the project. In December 2017, it was announced that had been commissioned to execute the statue. Its completion is expected in 2019.

Diana in contemporary art

Before and after her death, Diana has been depicted in . The first about Diana and Charles were Charles and Diana: A Royal Love Story and that were broadcast on American TV channels on 17 and 20 September 1981, respectively. In December 1992, aired Charles and Diana: Unhappily Ever After, a TV movie about marital discord between Diana and Charles. In the 1990s, British magazine called her "Cheryl" and Prince Charles "Brian". Some of the artworks after her death have , as well as paying tribute to Diana's compassion and acknowledging her perceived victimhood.

In July 1999, created a number of monoprint drawings featuring textual references about Diana's public and private life for Temple of Diana, a themed exhibition at The Blue Gallery, London. Works such as They Wanted You To Be Destroyed (1999) related to Diana's , while others included affectionate texts such as Love Was on Your Side and Diana's Dress with puffy sleeves. Another text praised her selflessness – The things you did to help other people, showing Diana in protective clothing walking through a minefield in Angola – while referenced the conspiracy theories. Of her drawings, Emin maintained "They're quite sentimental ... and there's nothing cynical about it whatsoever."

In 2005, premiered during the the film . This fictional work starts with the world discovering Diana alive and enjoying a happy undercover new life in a dangerous on the outskirts of . Shot at an Uruguayan slum using a Diana impersonator from , the film was selected by the Italian Art Critics Association as one of the Venice Biennial's best works.

In 2007, following an earlier series referencing the conspiracy theories, created a series of Diana paintings for her first major solo exhibition at gallery. Vine intended to portray Diana's combined strength and vulnerability as well as her closeness to her two sons. The works, all completed in 2007, included Diana branches, Diana family picnic, Diana veil, Diana crash and Diana pram, which incorporates the quotation "I vow to thee my country". Vine asserted her own abiding attraction to "the beauty and the tragedy of Diana's life".

The 2007 details the final two months of her life. She is portrayed by Irish actress . On an October 2007 episode of , mocked Diana in his "Eulogy Song", which immediately created considerable controversy in the Australian media.

In 2017, Prince William and Prince Harry commissioned two documentaries to mark the 20th anniversary of her death. The first of the two, , was broadcast on and on 24 July 2017. This film focuses on Diana's legacy and humanitarian efforts for causes such as AIDS, landmines, homelessness and cancer. The second documentary, , aired on 27 August on and focused on Diana's death and the subsequent outpouring of grief. The two documentaries feature interviews with Prince William and Prince Harry, as well as people close to the princess.

Actresses who have portrayed Diana include (in ), (in Princess in Love), Amy Seccombe (in ), (in ), Nathalie Brocker (in ), and (in ).

Titles, styles, honours and arms

Titles and styles

  • 1 July 1961 – 9 June 1975: The Honourable Diana Frances Spencer
  • 9 June 1975 – 29 July 1981: Lady Diana Frances Spencer
  • 29 July 1981 – 28 August 1996: Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales
    • in Scotland: 29 July 1981 – 28 August 1996: Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Rothesay
  • 28 August 1996 – 31 August 1997: Diana, Princess of Wales

Posthumously, as in life, she is most popularly referred to as "Princess Diana", a title not formally correct and one she never held. She is still sometimes referred to in the media as "Lady Diana Spencer" or simply as "Lady Di". In a speech after her death, then-Prime Minister referred to Diana as the People's Princess.


See also:

Orders Foreign honours Fellowships Others

Honorary military appointments

The Princess of Wales held the following military appointments:

Australia Australia Canada Canada United Kingdom United Kingdom

She gave up these appointments following her divorce.


Coat of arms of Diana, Princess of Wales Coat of Arms of Diana, Princess of Wales (1981-1996).svg Notes Coat of Arms of Diana, Princess of Wales (1996-1997).svg During her marriage, as the wife of the Prince of Wales, Diana used impaled (side by side) with those of . After her divorce, she resumed her paternal arms with the addition of a royal . Adopted 1981 Coronet Escutcheon 1st and 4th gules three lions passant guardant in pale or armed and langed azure 2nd or a lion rampant gules armed and langued azure within a double tressure flory counterflory of the second 3rd azure a harp or stringed argent (the ), the whole difference with a label of three points Argent; with an inescutcheon of four lions passant guardant, in gold and red, counterchanged, surmounted by the coronet of the heir (for the ); impaled with a shield quarterly 1st and 4th Argent 2nd and 3rd Gules a Or overall a bend Sable charged with three Argent. Supporters Dexter a lion rampant gardant Or crowned with the coronet of the Prince of Wales Proper, sinister a griffin winged and unguled Or, gorged with a coronet Or composed of crosses patée and fleurs de lis a chain affixed thereto passing between the forelegs and reflexed over the back also Or Motto DIEU DEFEND LE DROIT
(: God defends the right) Symbolism Coat of Arms of Lady Diana Spencer.svg The Spencers were granted a coat of arms in 1504 (Azure a fess Ermine between 6 sea-mews' heads erased Argent), which bears no resemblance to that used by the family after c. 1595, which was derived from the Despencer arms. Writer J.H. Round argued that the Despencer descent was fabricated by Richard Lee, a corrupt . Previous versions Diana's coat of arms before her marriage was based on the Spencer coat of arms. It depicted a hanging from a blue ribbon, which symbolised her unmarried state. It included three escallops argent of the Spencer coat of arms. This version was used only before her marriage and was also applied by her sisters.



Diana was born into the British , different branches of which hold the titles of , , , and . The Spencers claimed descent from a cadet branch of the powerful medieval Despenser family, but its validity is questioned. Her great-grandmother was Margaret Baring, a member of the German-British of bankers and the daughter of . Diana's distant noble ancestors included and his wife . Diana and Charles were distantly related, as they were both descended from the through . She was also descended from the through by , and , and his brother by . Other noble ancestors include , granddaughter of ; , an English nobleman and a of ; and , a descendant of through his son . Diana's Scottish roots came from her maternal grandmother, . Among her Scottish ancestors were , and his wife , and .

Diana's American lineage came from her great-grandmother , daughter of wealthy American stockbroker Franklin H. Work from , who was married to her great-grandfather , an Irish peer. Diana's fourth great-grandmother in her , Eliza Kewark, whose daughter was fathered by Theodore Forbes, is variously described in contemporary documents as "a dark-skinned native woman", "an Armenian woman from ", and "Mrs. Forbesian". Genealogist assumed she was Armenian. In June 2013, announced that on two of Diana's distant cousins in the same direct maternal line confirm that Eliza Kewark was of descent.

Ancestors of Diana, Princess of Wales 16. 8. 17. Adelaide Seymour 4. 18. 9. 19. 2. 20. 10. 21. 5. 22. 11. 23. 1. Diana, Princess of Wales 24. 12. 25. Eliza Caroline Boothby 6. 26. Franklin H. Work 13. 27. Ellen Wood 3. 28. Alexander Ogston Gill 14. William Smith Gill 29. Barbara Smith Marr 7. 30. David Littlejohn 15. Ruth Littlejohn 31. Jane Crombie


  1. Often used by the public and media, the style "Princess Diana" is incorrect. With rare exceptions by permission of the Sovereign (such as ), only women born to the title (such as ) may use it before their given names. After her divorce in 1996, Diana was officially styled Diana, Princess of Wales, having lost the prefix "".


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