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AMSTERDAM 30 Apr 2013 Prince Willem-Alexander invested as Dutch monarch

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands announced on Jan 28 that she is abdicating the throne in favour of her son, Prince Willem-Alex

April 30, 2013 - NULL

AMSTERDAM 30 Apr 2013 Prince Willem-Alexander invested as Dutch monarch

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands announced on Jan 28 that she is abdicating the throne in favour of her son, Prince Willem-Alexander, and the investiture is set for Apr 30. He will be the Netherlands' first king since Willem III died in 1890. The Queen's retirement continues a tradition set by Dutch monarchs: Queen Beatrix's mother Queen Juliana abdicated at age 70 after 32 years on the throne, and her mother, Queen Wilhelmina, in 1948 after reigning for 50 years. Queen Beatrix, 75, has reigned for 33 years

AMSTERDAM 30 Apr 2013 Prince Willem-Alexander invested as Dutch monarch

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands announced on Jan 28 that she is abdicating the throne in favour of her son, Prince Willem-Alexander, and the investiture is set for Apr 30. He will be the Netherlands' first king since Willem III died in 1890. The Queen's retirement continues a tradition set by Dutch monarchs: Queen Beatrix's mother Queen Juliana abdicated at age 70 after 32 years on the throne, and her mother, Queen Wilhelmina, in 1948 after reigning for 50 years. Queen Beatrix, 75, has reigned for 33 years. The Netherlands will have another queen after Willem-Alexander's reign: his daughter Catharina-Amalia will be first in line to succeed him.

Under Dutch law, the monarch has few powers and the role is considered ceremonial.

The House of Orange, a princely dynasty that derived its name from the medieval principality of Orange, in old Provence in southern France, is 200 years old in 2013. The Queen timed her abdication to coincide with the bicentenary year. Apr 30 is Queen's Day. It marks the birthday of Queen Juliana.

Willem-Alexander, 45, is an International Olympic Committee member, a pilot and a water management expert. The Prince and his Argentina-born wife Maxima Zorreguieta, who married in 2002, have three young daughters. FILE - In this Sept. 20, 2011 file photo, Dutch Queen Beatrix, center, Crown Prince Willem-Alexander, left and Princess Maxima, second left, arrive at the "Hall of Knights" to formally open the new parliamentary year in The Hague, Netherlands. Queen Beatrix announced she is to abdicate in favour of Crown Prince Willem Alexander during a nationally televised speech Monday, Jan. 28, 2013. Beatrix, who turns 75 on Thursday, has ruled the nation of 16 million for more than 32 years and would be succeeded by her eldest son, Crown Prince Willem-Alexander. (AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski, File) Close

They are described as hard-working, with the Prince sharing his expertise at water conferences, and soon-to-be Queen Maxima, a former investment banker, continuing her career as a microfinance expert. (WRITTEN FEB 2013)

KEYWORDS: Queen Beatrix, abdication, abdicates, Netherlands, April 2013, Prince Willem-Alexander, invested, investiture, Queen's Day, Queen Juliana, Queen Wilhelmina, Princess Catharina-Amalia, Queen Maxima, Maxima Zorreguieta, Dutch monarch, Dutch monarchs

RELATED READING:

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands to abdicate for son (BBC 28 Jan 2013)
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-21237254

Queen Beatrix bucks 'job for life' trend among Europe's monarchs (Guardian 1 Feb 2013)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2013/feb/01/ruling-monarch-job-for-life

Date written/update: 2013-04-30