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Who is Prince Daniel of Sweden?

Prince Daniel of Sweden, Duke of Västergötland is the husband of Crown Princess Victoria, daughter and heir apparent of King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden. He was born Olof Daniel Westling on the 15 September 1973 in Örebro, Sweden. His parents, Olle and Ewa Westling, are descended from Finns who migrated to Sweden and turned some of the forests into farmland centuries ago. He has one older sister, Anna Westling Söderström. Daniel himself served with the Swedish Army and on leaving became a successful personal trainer and had his own fitness business. He met the Princess when he became her personal trainer, and they fell in love with each other.

As is the case in many monarchies across the world, the consent of the King was needed, and in the case of Sweden, the government as well, before the couple could get engaged. This they received on24 February 2009, and in order that he could assume royal duties, Daniel stepped down from the boards of the fitness companies he was a member of. Three months after their engagement was announced Daniel underwent a kidney transplant with his father, Olle as his donor. He had suffered from kidney problems from birth.

Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel on their wedding day in 2010. Photo: Holger Motzkau/Wikimedia Commons (cc-by-sa-3.0)

The couple were married on 19 June 2010 at Stockholm Cathedral, which just so happened to be the 34th wedding anniversary of her parents, King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia. After they wed, the couple moved into Haga Palace; the rights of the palace were given back to the Royal Court by the government so that the Crown Princess Couple could reside there.

Sweden had a rule of absolute primogeniture, but there was no precedent within Sweden as to what title should be given to Daniel. The decision was made that he would have a title in the same fashion as his brother-in-law, Prince Carl Philip, Duke of Värmland. Hence on his wedding day, he was made Prince Daniel, Duke of Västergötland. Västergötland which in English would be called West Gothland is a South-Western province of Sweden and contains its second largest city, Gothenburg.

The Crown Princess Family of Sweden: Prince Daniel, Crown Princess Victoria, Princess Estelle and Prince Oscar. Photo: Anna-Lena Ahlström/Royal Court, Sweden

The Prince has accompanied Crown Princess Victoria on an overseas visit to various locations and also assisted in looking after both of their children, Princess Estelle, Duchess of Östergötland (born 23 February 2012) and Prince Oscar, Duke of Skåne (born 2 March 2016).

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