Dutch Monarchy: Overview
Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands is the Queen Regnant of the Kingdom of the Netherlands since her accession in April 1980; the Kingdom is composed of the Netherlands, Aruba, Curaçao and Saint Maarten.
The Prince of Orange established the Dutch Monarchy in 1813 after successfully driving the French appointed King off the throne. The Great Powers recognized the newly established Monarchy during the Congress of Vienna in 1815.
The newly created Monarchy was shared in personal union with the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg with King William I as King of the Netherlands and Grand Duke of Luxembourg.
Tradition has been set over the past few reigns whereby the Monarch abdicates in favour of his/her successor; this is seen in the Netherlands a time when the Monarch is allowed to retire. All recent Dutch Sovereigns have carried along with this tradition, though the current Queen Beatrix has made it clear she will not be abdicating anytime soon in order to allow her soon Crown Prince Willem-Alexander and Princess Maxima time to raise their young family.
As Sovereign, the Queen of the Netherlands undertakes many important roles within the government and public life of the country. She presides over the council of ministers, she appoints ministers of State and has the power to dismiss the elected government and parliament.
Laws need the Royal Assent before becoming law.
The Monarchy in the Netherlands is perhaps the most well defined Monarchy in Europe, its codes and practices are written down in the Constitution quite clearly, in fact the Dutch Constitution is mostly devoted to the Monarch, its role in government and succession.
Queen Beatrix is supported by members of the Dutch Royal Families and are often seen out and about promoting charitable causes, morale and representing the Netherlands abroad.
The Royal Family is composed of:
- T.R.H. The Prince of Orange and Princess Maxima
- H.R.H. The Hereditary Princess of Orange
- H.R.H. Princess Alexia
- H.R.H. Princess Ariane
- T.R.H. Prince Friso and Princess Mabel
- Countess Luana
- Countess Zaria
- T.R.H. Prince Constantjin and Princess Laurentien
- Countess Eloise
- Count Claus-Casimir
- Countess Leonore
The Royal House of the Netherlands is the House of Orange-Nassau.
Several residences are placed at the disposal of the Dutch Royal Family, these include the Royal Palace of Amsterdam, Noordeinde Palace and Huis ten Bosch.
The Royal Finances of the Monarchy are handled by the Dutch Government, current estimates for the funding of the Monarchy near the USD $50 million mark.