Princess Léa of Belgium
||This article may require copy editing for grammar, style, cohesion, tone, or spelling. (March 2014)|
|Spouse||Serge Victorovich Spetschinsky
(m. 1975, div. 1980)
(m. 1982, div. )
Prince Alexander of Belgium
(m. 1991, wid. 2009)
|Léa Inga Dora|
|House||House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha (by marriage)|
2 December 1951 |
|Belgian Royal Family|
Princess Léa of Belgium (née: Léa Inga Dora Wolman, born 2 December 1951, Etterbeek) is the widow of Prince Alexander of Belgium, younger half-brother of King Albert II of Belgium, King Baudouin, and the Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte of Luxembourg.
Born the daughter of Sigismund Wolman and wife Lisa Bornstein (Nuremberg, 1916 - Brussels, 29 October 1996), in 1975 she married Serge Victorovich Spetschinsky (born in Léopoldville, Belgian Congo, on 25 April 1951), from whom she was divorced in 1980. They had a daughter Laetitia Spetschinsky (born in 1976), married to Didier Nagant de Deuxchaisnes and mother of two sons. In 1982 Lea married Robert Bichara, and they had a son Renaud Bichara on 1 September 1983.
After her second divorce she wed Prince Alexander, in Debenham, Suffolk, on 14 March 1991. They had been introduced in 1986 by a former defence minister Léon Mundeleer. Alexander asked her to accompany him to the cinema. She vacillated initially, but they began to enjoy dining out together, Alexander being a gourmand, according to his future wife.
The couple had no children together, and the marriage was kept secret until 1998. Apparently the prince feared his mother would disapprove. Alexander's marriage contravened Article 85 of the Belgian constitution, which deprived of the right of succession to the throne any descendant of King Leopold I who marries without the sovereign's permission.
Although sometimes the royal title is prefixed to her name (i.e., Princess Léa) as for other females who have married into the royal family, that style is not used at the Belgian court nor by the government, and she is otherwise referred to as "Princess Alexandre of Belgium". She explained in a May 2008 interview with Point de Vue, "On 2 December 1991, a royal decree declared that henceforth the title of Prince or Princess of Belgium would no longer be transmitted by marriage, but would be created by royal decree. We have no regrets, no rancor."
In 2008 she published a book of photographs from the life of her husband and his family, called Le Prince Alexandre de Belgique, because she felt that he was too little known in Belgium.
- Séguy, Philippe (2008-04-29). "Léa de Belgique: Il faut en finir avec le malheur". Point de Vue (in French): 18–21.
- Velde, François. "The Belgian Succession". Heraldica.org. Retrieved 2008-05-06.