Queen Fabiola of Belgium
Queen Fabiola on a state visit to Washington, D.C. in 1969
|Queen consort of the Belgians|
|Tenure||15 December 1960 – 31 July 1993|
|Spouse||Baudouin of Belgium|
|Father||Gonzalo de Mora Fernández Riera del Olmo|
|Mother||Blanca de Aragón y Carrillo de Albornoz Barroeta-Aldamar y Elío|
11 June 1928|
Zurbano Palace, Madrid, Spain
|Died||5 December 2014
Stuyvenberg Castle, Laeken, Belgium
|Burial||Church of Our Lady of Laeken|
Queen Fabiola of Belgium (born Doña Fabiola de Mora y Aragón;[nb 1] 11 June 1928 – 5 December 2014) was the wife of Baudouin, King of the Belgians. She was Queen consort of the Belgians for 33 years, between her wedding in 1960 and her husband's death in 1993. The couple were unable to have children, and the crown then passed to her husband's younger brother, King Albert II.
Fabiola de Mora y Aragón was born in Madrid, Spain, at the palacio Zurbano the main residence of the Marques of Casa Riera. She was born the sixth of seven children of Don Gonzalo de Mora y Fernández y Riera y del Olmo, 4th Marquess of Casa Riera, 2nd Count of Mora (1887–1957) and his wife, Doña Blanca de Aragón y Carrillo de Albornoz y Barroeta-Aldamar y Elío (1892–1981), Marchioness of Casa Torres, Viscountess of Baiguer. Her godmother was Queen Victoria Eugenia of Spain.
Before her marriage she published an album of 12 fairy tales (Los doce cuentos maravillosos), one of which ("The Indian Water Lilies") would get its own pavilion in the Efteling theme park in 1966.
On 15 December 1960, Fabiola married Baudouin, who had been King of the Belgians since the abdication of his father, Leopold III, in 1951. At the marriage ceremony in the Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula, she wore a 1926 Art Deco tiara that had been a gift of the Belgian state to her husband's mother, Astrid of Sweden, upon her marriage to Leopold III. Her dress of satin and ermine was designed by the couturier Cristóbal Balenciaga. Fabiola was a hospital nurse at the time of her engagement; TIME magazine, in its 26 September 1960, issue, called Doña Fabiola the "Cinderella Girl" and described her as "an attractive young woman, though no raving beauty" and "the girl who could not catch a man." On the occasion of her marriage, Spanish bakers set out to honor Fabiola and created a type of bread, "la fabiola", which is still made and consumed on a daily basis in many Spanish cities.
The explorer Guido Derom named Queen Fabiola Mountains – a newly discovered range of Antarctic mountains – in her honour in 1961. She also has several varieties of ornamental plants named after her.
The royal couple had no children, as the queen's five pregnancies ended in miscarriage. There are reports, however, that she had a stillborn child in the mid 1960s. Fabiola openly spoke about her miscarriages in 2008: 'You know, I myself lost five children. You learn something from that experience. I had problems with all my pregnancies, but you know, in the end I think life is beautiful'.
Baudouin died in 1993 and was succeeded by his younger brother, Albert II. Fabiola moved out of the Royal Palace of Laeken to the more modest Stuyvenberg Castle and reduced her public appearances in order not to overshadow her sister-in-law, Queen Paola.
Admired for her devout Roman Catholicism and involvement in social causes particularly those related to mental health, children's issues and women's issues, Queen Fabiola received the 2001 Ceres Medal, in recognition of her work to promote rural women in developing countries. The medal was given by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). She was also honorary president of King Baudouin Foundation.
Queen Fabiola was hospitalised with pneumonia on 16 January 2009, and spent 15 days there, with her condition being described as "serious". She subsequently made a good recovery and was attending public functions by the following May. In July 2009, anonymous death threats were published by newspapers. According to these Queen Fabiola was to be shot with a crossbow. She responded to the threats during the Belgian national holiday celebrations on 21 July by waving an apple to the crowd – a reference to the William Tell folk tale. Subsequent threats by an individual said to have a similar signature to the July 2009 threat-writer were received again in January 2010.
Tax avoidance claims
In January 2013, Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo criticised Queen Fabiola for her plans to set up a private foundation (Fons Pereos), which was widely seen by the public as inheritance tax evasion (although, since the construction was admitted by Di Rupo to be legal, it would more precisely be a case of tax avoidance). The Queen denied the charges, claiming that the funds used were "her private money", and that most of her annual public stipend was used for housekeeping and staff wages.
Death and funeral
Queen Fabiola had been in poor health for years, suffering from osteoporosis, as well as having never fully recovered from a lung inflammation she had in 2009. In the evening of 5 December 2014, the Royal Palace announced that Queen Fabiola had died at Stuyvenberg Castle.
Upon her death, the federal government decided to declare a period of national mourning from Saturday 6 December to Friday 12 December, the day when the funeral of Queen Fabiola took place at the Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula in Brussels.
The Queen was greeted with open coffin in the Royal Palace by the Royal Family, the government and the Lord Speaker on 10 December. A guard of honour was formed by generals and members of the Royal Military household of the King. The coffin was placed in the grand antechamber, and ornated with flowers. The Requiem Mass was conducted by Cardinal Godfried Danneels, Metropolitan Archbishop of Mechelen-Brussels.
The following royals attended the funeral:
- TM The King and Queen of the Belgians
- TM King Albert II and Queen Paola of Belgium
- TI&RH Princess Astrid and Prince Lorenz of Belgium, Archduchess and Archduke of Austria-Este
- TRH Prince Laurent and Princess Claire of Belgium
- HRH Princess Léa of Belgium
- HRH Princess Marie-Esméralda of Belgium
- TRH The Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Luxembourg
- HRH Grand Duke Jean of Luxembourg
- TI&RH Princess Marie Astrid of Luxembourg and Archduke Carl Christian of Austria
- TI&RH Archduke Imre and Archduchess Kathleen of Austria
- HRH Prince Jean of Luxembourg and HE Countess Diane of Nassau
- HRH Princess Margaretha of Luxembourg and HSH Prince Nikolaus of Liechtenstein
- TRH Prince Guillaume and Princess Sibilla of Luxembourg
- TM King Juan Carlos and Queen Sofia of Spain.
- HM The Queen of Denmark
- HIM The Empress of Japan
- HRH The Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands
- HM The King of Norway and HH Princess Astrid of Norway
- TM The King and Queen of Sweden
- HRH Princess Sirindhorn of Thailand
- HRH Prince Moulay Rachid of Morocco
- HRH Sheikh Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah
- HRH Prince Eudes, Duke of Angouleme
- HIM Empress Farah of Iran
- HSH Prince Hans Adam II of Liechtenstein
- HRH The Prince of Naples
- HI&RH Archduke Karl of Austria
- HH The Prince of Ligne
- TRH The Duke and Duchess of Castro
- HIH Grand Duke George Mikhailovich of Russia
- HM The Fouad II of Egypt
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Funeral of Queen Fabiola of Belgium.|
- 11 June 1928 – 15 December 1960: Doña Fabiola de Mora y Aragón
- 15 December 1960 – 31 July 1993: Her Majesty The Queen of the Belgians
- 31 July 1993 – 5 December 2014: Her Majesty Queen Fabiola of Belgium
|Spain||Dame Grand Cross of the Royal Order of Isabella the Catholic (22/11/1960)|||
|Holy See||Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice (08/06/1961)|||
|Iran||Commemorative Medal of the 2500th Anniversary of the founding of the Persian Empire (14/10/1971)|||
|Portugal||Dame Grand Cross of the Order of Christ (24/08/1982)|||
|Spain||Dame of the Solar de Tejada (03/10/2009)|||
|Ancestors of Queen Fabiola of Belgium|
- Belgian Vocation Foundation
- Queen Fabiola Foundation for Mental Health
- Queen Fabiola Mountains
- Indian Water-lilies
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- "De Indische waterlelies". Efteling.com. Retrieved 5 December 2014.
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- "Queen Fabiola's death threats". Monstersandcritics.com. 5 January 2010. Retrieved 2013-01-13.
- "Belgium PM slams queen over inheritance plan". Aljazeera.com. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
- "Belgian monarchy rocked by Queen Fabiola tax row". Telegraph.co.uk. 11 January 2013. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
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- Arrivée à Bruxelles de S.A.R le Prince Moulay Rachid pour représenter S.M. le Roi aux funérailles de la Reine Fabiola - LE MATIN.ma
- KUNA : His Highness Amir's Rep. arrives in Belgium for Queen Fabiola funeral - Politics - 12/12/2014
- Royalement Blog - Timeline Photos
- Veel hoge gasten, maar geen Britse royals in Brussel
- Belgium's royals join European monarchs as they bid farewell to Queen Fabiola | Daily Mail Online
- "16674 Newspaper Cutting" (PDF). Boe.es. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
- "GABINETE DE PROTOCOLO: LOS ESTADOS DE LA UNION EUROPEA: BÉLGICA". Gabinetedeprotocolo.blogspot.com.es. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
- "Photo with Pope John XIII" (JPG). 2.bp.blogspot.com. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
- "News, Notes & Texts – from the Tablet Archive". Thetablet.co.uk. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
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- "Photograph" (JPG). Badraie.com. Retrieved 11 December 2014.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Queen Fabiola of Belgium.|
- Queen Fabiola – official website of The Belgian Monarchy
- Queen Fabiola: The Woman Behind The Hairdo – Website The Royal Universe
Title last held byAstrid of Sweden
|Queen consort of the Belgians
Paola Ruffo di Calabria