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17 May 10:00am

Kate Williams picks five books about royal marriages

The Guardian
From a disastrous ceremony where the groom was already married to the greatest marriage that never happened, historian Williams selects the best books about royal weddings Royal weddings would not exist in their present form had it not been for Queen Victoria. Her 1840 extravaganza of white and purity was meant to show how different she was from her predecessors George IV and William IV, who were seen as immoral and extravagant. Before Victoria, brides wore any colour and royal weddings were quiet, usually late-night affairs. When she drove to the ceremony in an open carriage, wearing a white gown, the giant white wedding was born, with a celebration that was designed to foster and secure public support. As Daisy Goodwin and Sara Sheridan show in their compelling study
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