This coming April 30, 2013, the Kingdom of the Netherlands will finally have a Queen Consort after 123 years. The last Queen Consort was Princess Emma of Waldeck-Pyrmont, a sister-in-law to Prince Leopold, the Duke of Albany and the youngest son of Queen Victoria of England.
Princess Maxima of the Netherlands
Starting April 30, 2013 she will be known as Queen Maxima
Princess Maxima is the wife of Prince Wilhelm-Alexander, the Prince of Orange and heir-apparent of Queen Beatrix, as the latter had already announced her impending abdication this coming April, the country will have a new monarch and the first male heir to ascend the Dutch throne since the death of King William III in 1890. Wilhelm-Alexander will reign under the regnal name William IV.
Princess Maxima was born Maxima Zorreguieta on May 17, 1971 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, her father is Jorge Zorreguieta, a former Agriculture Cabinet Minister in Argentina. She graduated with a degree in Economics at the Universidad Catolica Argentina in 1995. She worked as an investment banker before marrying the Dutch Prince. She remained a Roman Catholic after her marriage.
Maxima met the future Dutch King in Seville, Spain during the Seville Spring Fair in April 1999 and got engaged in March 30, 2001. The announcement of their engagement caused controversies in the Netherlands because it was reported that the future bride's father as a powerful cabinet minister was somehow involved in the notorious human right violations committed by the regime of Argentinian President, Jorge Videla. Zorreguieta denied the allegation, an inquiry arranged by the Dutch parliament also revealed that Maxima's father was not directly involved, nevertheless he chose not to attend the wedding to avoid creating further controversies.
Unlike other future Queen Consorts--Mary of Denmark, Mette-Mariet of Norway, Letezia of Spain and Kate Middleton, Princess Maxima has a royal pedigree through her father whose family origin can be traced up from King Alfonso II of Portugal. Despite this royal connection in the past, Maxima remained a commoner. She is the first commoner to become a queen consort of the Netherlands.
Maxima and the Prince of Orange have three daughters together: Princesses Catharina-Amalia, Alexia and Ariane. She was not titled Princess of Orange despite being the wife of a Prince of Orange because the title is only granted to the future Queen Regnant of the Netherlands, she was given Princess of the Netherlands title instead.