Next in line: Princess Amalia

POSTED: 04/26/13 12:16 PM


From Tuesday, the royal couple’s eldest daughter Catharina-Amalia will become Princess of Orange and the heir apparent to her father’s throne. This picture was taken in Wassenaar on March 28, 2012 by crown prince Willem Alexander. © RVD

St. Maarten – When crown prince Willem-Alexander succeeds Her Majesty Queen Beatrix on Tuesday, ending a rule that lasted 33 years, his own successor will witness the historic event. The eldest daughter of Willem-Alexander and Máxima, Catharina-Amalia will become Princess of Orange and the first in line to take the throne after the new King.

Willem-Alexander celebrates his 46th birthday on Sunday and he will be four years older than his mother when she succeeded Queen Juliana on April 30, 1980.

Queen Beatrix marked 75 in January – a nice round age to hand over the throne. If Willem-Alexander follows this example, and also abdicate when he turns 75 in 2042, Princess Catharina-Amalia – now 9 years old – will at age 39 become a reasonable young queen.

That will not make her the youngest queen in the royal family’s history though: Queen Wilhelmina was just 18 when her rule started in 1898, after her mother Emma did the honors for 8 years since 1890. Queen Wilhelmina stayed on for 50 years until 1948 when her daughter Juliana, then 39 years of age, took over for the next 32 years.

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