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Re: Wise Beatrix
Posted by Jane
on 5/10/2022, 13:32:36, in reply to "Wise Beatrix
Indeed, you're right: in the past, death rates were high, succession laws were restrictive (limited to male lines), and royals were expected to marry their own kind. Also, until World War I, hereditary monarchy was the normal form of government. So even if a country acquired full autonomy by separating from another, which was governed by a monarch, the newly independent country would opt to retain a monarchical form of government by offering the crown to a prince from an established country (e.g. Norway).
So there were numerous ways and chances for younger sons to obtain thrones. But dynasties no longer branch out, life expectancies have improved, and succession laws have expanded to be more inclusive. So spares no longer expect to succeed: only heirs -- and direct heirs at that.
With all the drama surrounding second sons (Belgium, Denmark, UK) I think the decision of Queen Beatrix (and perhaps also Princess Juliana to some extent) should be applauded.
From what I gather, she and the late Prince Claus, always made it clear to the two younger sons that they should find a fulfilling job/ life outside the RF.
As an outsider, I think this has led to a much normal (and healthy) family dynamic where 'the spare' is not jealous of all the attention the heir gets. And a situation where the spare gets pushed aside by nieces and nephews (children of the heir) also does not cause bad blood.
Hopefully (and from what I read it seems so) the present generation of royal parents to (young) children takes note and will allow and even stimulate their younger children to shape their own lives away from the crown.
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