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The Royal 2010s: The Decade of Duchesses

Duchess of Cambridge, Duchess of Sussex
Picture by Stephen Lock / i-Images

As the decade winds to a close, let’s look back at the new duchesses of the United Kingdom, the new generation of royal dukes and duchesses in Sweden, and the new heir in Belgium.

The Duchess of Cambridge

Picture by i-Images / Pool

Upon her marriage to Prince William in 2011, Kate Middleton became the Duchess of Cambridge. The title has existed since the 1700s and was extant for over 100 years when it was created for the fifth time for the current Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Cambridge is one of six royal dukedoms in the United Kingdom currently, and it’s located in the south-east of England.

As Duchess of Cambridge, Kate’s areas of focus have been mental health, the early years of childhood development, arts, and sports.

The Duchess of Sussex

Photo Credit: Charlie Proctor / Royal Central

Upon her marriage to Prince Harry in 2018, Meghan Markle became the first Duchess of Sussex in history. The dukedom of Sussex has existed since the 1800s and was extant for 175 years before it was created for the second time for the current Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

The Duchy of Sussex is located in southeast England.

As Duchess of Sussex, Meghan’s areas of focus have been women’s rights, access to education, the arts, and animal well-being.

Crown Princess Victoria, Duchess of Västergötland and Prince Daniel, Duke of Västergötland

Linda Broström, The Royal Court of Sweden

Crown Princess Victoria has held the title of Duchess of Västergötland since 1980 when she became the heir to the throne. However, upon her marriage to Daniel Westling in 2010, the future queen’s husband was given the male version of the title, Duke of Västergötland.

Västergötland is located in southwest Sweden.

Princess Estelle, Duchess of Östergötland

Princess Estelle. Photo: HRH Crown Princess Victoria

The elder child and heir of Crown Princess Victoria, Princess Estelle was born on 23 February 2012. At birth, she was granted the title Duchess of Östergötland.

Östergötland is a southern province of Sweden, and Princess Estelle visited her duchy for the first time in 2014.

Prince Oscar, Duke of Skåne

Sara Friberg, Royal Court of Sweden

The youngest son of Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel, Prince Oscar was born on 2 March 2016 and was granted the subsidiary title of Duke of Skåne upon his birth.

Skåne is the southernmost province in Sweden.

Princess Sofia, Duchess of Värmland

Upon her marriage to Prince Carl Philip in 2015, Princess Sofia became the Duchess of Värmland. Värmland is a province in west-central Sweden that borders Norway.

Sofia’s areas of focus include children and young people, and she is the honorary chairperson of the Sophiahemmet, a private hospital in Stockholm.

Prince Alexander, Duke of Södermanland

Josefine Persson/Royal Court, Sweden

The oldest son of Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, Prince Alexander was born 19 April 2016. At birth, he was granted the title of Duke of Södermanland. He visited his duchy for the first time in 2018.

Södermanland is a province on the southeastern coast of Sweden and roughly translates to “Land of the Southern Men.”

In 2019, King Carl XVI Gustaf revised the Royal House to remove the royal status from Prince Carl Philip and Princess Madeleine’s children. They retain their ducal titles, however, their future spouses will not take a title, nor will they pass onto their children.

Prince Gabriel, Duke of Dalarna

HRH Princess Sofia, Royal Court, Sweden

The younger son of Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, Prince Gabriel was born 31 August 2017 and was granted the title of Duke of Dalarna upon birth. He has yet to visit his duchy, which is the home province of his mother.

Dalarna is located in central Sweden.

Princess Leonore, Duchess of Gotland

PHOTO: ERIKA GERDEMARK / KUNGAHUSET.SE

The eldest daughter of Princess Madeleine and Christopher O’Neill, Princess Leonore was born on 20 February 2014. She was granted the title Duchess of Gotland upon birth and visited her duchy for the first time in 2016.

Gotland is an island off of Sweden.

Prince Nicolas, Duke of Ångermanland

Photo: HRH Princess Madeleine

Prince Nicolas is the middle child and only son of Princess Madeleine and Christopher O’Neill and was born on 15 June 2015. He was granted the title of Duke of Ångermanland upon birth.

Ångermanland is a province in the northern part of Sweden.

Princess Adrienne, Duchess of Blekinge

Photo: HRH Princess Madeleine

Princess Adrienne is the youngest daughter of Princess Madeleine and Christopher O’Neill and was born on 9 March 2018. She was granted the title of Duchess of Blekinge upon birth. She is the first royal to hold this title, as Blekinge was the only Swedish province that had never been made a royal dukedom.

Blekinge is located in the south of Sweden.

Princess Elisabeth, Duchess of Brabant

Princess Elisabeth is the eldest child of King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium. She became the Duchess of Brabant (the title of the heir to the Belgian throne) upon her father’s ascension to the throne upon the abdication of her grandfather, King Albert II on 21 July 2013.

© Royal Palace, Brussels/Koninklijk Paleis, Brussel/Palais Royal, Bruxelles/Königlicher Palast, Brüssel Photographer: Michel Gronemberger


About author

Jess is a communications professional and freelance writer who lives in Halifax and has a passion for all things royal, particularly the British Royal Family.