Another future monarch has come of age in Europe! Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway, granddaughter of King Harald V and Queen Sonja, celebrated her eighteenth birthday this week—and took steps toward the royal role that awaits her in the future.
Ingrid Alexandra’s birthday was on Friday, but she began the celebrations a day earlier. On Thursday, January 20, she made visits to several of Norway’s most senior government institutions, the beginning of a relationship between the future Queen and the government she will one day help lead.
The stops included a visit to Norway’s parliament, where she met with Masud Gharahkhani, the President of Parliament.
She also made a stop at the Norwegian Supreme Court in Oslo.
And she made an official visit to the office of Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre, who briefed her on government and ministry work.
For Thursday’s government meetings, Ingrid Alexandra wore a cream-colored jacket and top with black pants and carried a burgundy clutch bag with a crocodile pattern.
She also wore a modern pair of earrings with large, sparkling pendant stones. The princess has a second piercing in her left ear, and she wore a small gold hoop in that ear as well.
She finished off the look with several delicate rings on both hands.
On Friday, Princess Ingrid Alexandra turned eighteen and officially became an adult member of the Norwegian royal family. The milestone was marked with a special cabinet meeting at the Royal Palace in Oslo, which was also attended by King Harald V and Ingrid Alexandra’s father, Crown Prince Haakon. Also in attendance were Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre and several other cabinet ministers.
King Harald and his heirs sat at the head of the table. Behind them, busts of the two previous Norwegian monarchs: King Haakon VII, behind Crown Prince Haakon, and King Olav V, behind Princess Ingrid Alexandra, further emphasized the continuity of succession. Crown Prince Haakon is, of course, clearly named for King Haakon VII—but you may not immediately realize that Princess Ingrid Alexandra is in part named for King Olav V, who was born Prince Alexander of Denmark (named for his grandmother, Queen Alexandra of the United Kingdom). His name was changed to “Olav” when his father was elected King of Norway in 1905.
For her first cabinet meeting, Princess Ingrid Alexandra wore a white dress accessorized with pearls. A heart-shaped diamond and ruby pendant was suspended from her pearl necklace.
The necklace has special significance: it was the princess’s christening gift from her grandmother, Queen Sonja. Above, she wears the necklace in a portrait taken in 2016. She often wears it for important family milestone moments, and her mother, Crown Princess Mette-Marit has also worn the necklace on occasion.
Ingrid Alexandra received several official gifts to mark her milestone birthday as well. Here, Masud Gharahkhani, President of the Norwegian Parliament, is joined by First Vice President Svein Harberg (on the left) to present the official gift from parliament: a painting, “Missing Color,” by Norwegian artist Astrid Nondal.
Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre and Finance Minister Trygve Slagsvold Vedum (on the left) presented several books to the princess. These included a hardcover edition of the Constitutional Amendment of May 29, 1990, which changed the succession laws to allow the eldest child of the monarch to inherit the throne regardless of sex. (Without that change, Princess Ingrid Alexandra would not be second in line to the throne.) They also presented her with a book on Norwegian women’s history, plus a biography of Queen Eufemia, one of the most interesting literary and cultural figures from Norwegian royal history, and Mona Ringvej’s Landet mot nord, which tells the story of a millennium of Norwegian history through biographies of numerous prominent persons.
The royal court released several new official portraits of the princess to mark her birthday, including several showing her posed in business attire.
With this black suit and ivory blouse, Princess Ingrid Alexandra wears a modern pair of slender gold earrings with round pink pendants. (I think these earrings were borrowed from Crown Princess Mette-Marit.)
She also posed in a black dress, which she borrowed from her mother’s archive collection. Note the large cocktail ring on her right hand in this picture, which looks to be set either with an aquamarine or a blue topaz.
She also wore additional rings, plus a pair of earrings with a golden stud and a smoky topaz drop.
The entire family posed for a portrait on Friday as well. Seated, from left to right, are Queen Sonja, King Harald, Princess Ingrid Alexandra, and her maternal grandmother, Marit Tjessem. Standing, from left to right, are Prince Sverre Magnus, Crown Princess Mette-Marit, Crown Prince Haakon, and Marius Borg Høiby. As they were in the cabinet meeting, the family is surrounded by reminders of the royal past. The painting behind them depicts the 1873 Norwegian coronation of King Oscar II of Sweden and Norway. I believe the bust in the corner of the room is of Queen Alexandra of the United Kingdom (mother of Queen Maud of Norway). And the photographs on the table behind Queen Sonja include pictures of King Olav and Crown Princess Märtha.
King Harald, Crown Prince Haakon, and Princess Ingrid Alexandra also posed for a traditional “three generations” photograph during the session. Harald gave his granddaughter a special birthday gift, bestowing the Order of St. Olav and his Royal Family Order on the princess. Traditionally, the royal ladies of the family have also been given a tiara to mark their eighteenth birthdays. (Princess Märtha Louise, for example, received this tiara from her grandfather, King Olav.)
No word yet on whether Princess Ingrid Alexandra’s birthday presents included a tiara. Originally, the birthday celebrations were supposed to include a gala dinner, but that event has been postponed because of the pandemic. When the dinner eventually does take place, I think we’ll learn whether the princess now has a tiara of her very own!