Diana, Princess of Wales, was a member of the British royal family. She was the first wife of Charles, Prince of Wales, the heir apparent to the British throne, and the mother of Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex. Take a look below for 30 more interesting and fascinating facts about Diana, Princess of Wales.
1. Diana was born into the Spencer family, a family of British nobility with royal ancestry and was the youngest daughter of John Spencer, Viscount Althorp, and Frances Roche.
2. She grew up in Park House, located on the Sandringham estate, and was educated in England and Switzerland.
3. In 1975, after her father inherited the title of Earl Spencer, she became known as Lady Diana Spencer.
4. She came to prominence in February, 1981, when her engagement to Prince Charles was announced to the world.
5. Diana’s wedding to the Prince of Wales took place at St. Paul’s Cathedral on July 29, 1981, and reached a global television audience of over 750 million people.
6. During her marriage, Diana was Princess of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, Duchess of Rothesay, and Countess of Chester.
7. She gave birth to two sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, who were then respectively second and third in line of succession to the British throne.
8. As Princess of Wales, Diana undertook royal duties on behalf of the Queen and represented her at functions overseas.
9. She was celebrated for her charity work and for her support of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines.
10. Diana was involved with dozens of charities including London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital for children, of which she was president from 1989.
11. She raised awareness and advocated for ways to help people affected with HIV/AIDS, cancer and mental illness.
12. Diana remained the object of worldwide media scrutiny during and after her marriage, which ended in divorce on August 28, 1996, following well-publicized extramarital affairs by both parties.
13. Media attention and public mourning were extensive after her death in a car crash in a Paris tunnel on August 31, 1997, and subsequent televised funeral.
14. Lady Fermoy, Diana’s maternal grandmother, was lady-in-waiting to Charles’ grandmother, The Queen Mother.
15. Diana’s engagement ring cost 30,000 British pounds at the time. The 18 carat white gold band holds 14 solitaire diamonds and a 12 carat blue Caylon sapphire. The ring is now worn by the Duchess of Cambridge.
16. Her funeral was viewed by 2.5 billion people.
17. She failed her O Levels twice and often made jokes about having a poor academic record.
18. Diana’s stepmother, Raine Spencer, was the daughter of romance novelist Barbara Cartland.
19. She supported over 100 charities and changed the world’s perception of AIDS for the better. Her charitable work still thrives today through the Princess of Wales fund.
20. Among Diana’s closest friends were Elton John, Gianni Versace, George Michael and Michael Berrymore.
21. Almost every magazine that featured her on the cover sold out.
23. Diana once invited supermodel Cindy Crawford to Buckingham Palace for dinner to please a young Prince William who had a secret crush on her.
24. She had an infant brother, John, who died shortly after his birth in 1960.
25. Following Diana’s death, the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund was granted intellectual property rights over her image.
26. From her engagement to the Prince of Wales in 1981 until her death in 1997, Diana was a major presence on the world stage, often described as the, “world’s most photographed woman.”
27. During her lifetime, she was featured on the cover of People Magazine more than 50 times. Time Magazine featured her eight times and Newsweek featured her on the cover seven times.
28. The initial French judicial investigation concluded that the accident that led to her death was caused by Paul’s drunken loss of control.
29. In February, 1998, Mohamed Al-Fayed, the owner of the Paris Ritz where Paul had worked, publicly maintained that the crash had been planned, accusing MI6 and the Duke of Edinburgh.
30. An inquest in London starting in 2004 and continued in 2007 and 2008 attributed the accident to grossly negligent driving by Paul and to the pursuing paparazzi.