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Wedding of Princess Anne and Mark Phillips

Wedding of Princess Anne and Mark Phillips

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Wedding of Princess Anne and Mark Phillips
Princess Anne and Mark Phillips on their wedding day
Date 14 November 1973
Venue Westminster Abbey
Location London, England
Participants Princess Anne
Mark Phillips

The wedding of Princess Anne and Mark Phillips took place on Wednesday, 14 November 1973 at Westminster Abbey in London.[1] Princess Anne is the only daughter and second child of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, while Mark Phillips is a skilled horseman and equestrian.


Anne first met her future husband Mark Phillips at a party for horse lovers in 1968.[2] Princess Anne had been a keen fan of horses for most of her life and they bonded over that. She was BBC Sports Personality of the Year in 1971.[3] Phillips later went on to win an equestrian gold medal at the Munich Olympics in 1972. Their engagement was announced on 29 May 1973.[4][5] Phillips presented Anne with a Garrard engagement ring made from sapphire and diamond.[5][6]

The wedding

Combined coat of arms of Princess Anne and Mark Phillips

The wedding day, which was on the twenty-fifth birthday of her older brother, Charles, Prince of Wales was declared special bank holiday and a global estimated audience of 500 million watched the Westminster Abbey ceremony, with large crowds lining the streets on the wedding day.[4][7] Phillips was a lieutenant in the Army at the time of the marriage.[8] Princess Anne was accompanied to the ceremony in the Glass State Coach by her father, the Duke of Edinburgh.[5] The ceremony featured many ceremonial aspects, including use of the state carriages and roles for the Household Cavalry, Irish Guards, and Coldstream Guards.[9] A tall icy wedding cake with silver tiers was prepared for the ceremony.[10]

The service was a traditional royal wedding conducted by Donald Coggan, the Archbishop of Canterbury. In keeping with tradition, Anne's wedding ring was crafted from Welsh gold.[11] The tradition of using Welsh gold within the wedding rings of the Royal Family dates back to 1923. Following the service, the couple then returned to Buckingham Palace for the traditional balcony appearance and a wedding lunch.[8] At night, they stayed at White House Lodge in Richmond Park before going on their honeymoon on board the Royal Yacht Britannia, travelling the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.[4][8] The wedding ceremony was positively received by the public who gathered in the streets to celebrate the occasion.[4][8] The BBC gained the rights to broadcast the event.[11]


Anne wore an "embroidered Tudor-style wedding dress, with a high collar and mediaeval-influenced sleeves".[8] The dress was high-necked and high-waisted.[12] It was designed by Maureen Baker, the chief designer for Susan Small.[13][14] Anne's hair was "slightly parted up-do, with beehive volume,"[5] and the Queen Mary Fringe Tiara secured her veil.[15][16] Phillips wore the full dress uniform of his regiment, the Queen's Dragoon Guards.[17][8]

Best man, bridesmaid and page boy

Capt. Eric Grounds served as the groom's best man. Princess Anne's bridesmaid was her nine-year-old cousin, Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones, the daughter of Princess Margaret, while her page boy was her nine-year-old brother, Prince Edward.[8][4][18]


The Royal family that attended the wedding included:

Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, the bride's grandmother

The Duchess of Gloucester, the bride's great-aunt by marriage

Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone, the bride's first cousin, thrice removed, and great-great-aunt by marriage

Other royal guests


  1. ^ "Princess Anne, daughter of Queen Elizabeth II". Westminster Abbey. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  2. ^ Longworth, R. C. (1 September 1989). "Princess Anne To Separate From Husband". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 13 May 2018. 
  3. ^ Corrigan, Peter (14 December 2003). "Bravo for Jonny but Beeb need new act". The Independent. Retrieved 24 February 2009. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "Princess Anne's wedding". BBC News. Retrieved 13 May 2017. 
  5. ^ a b c d "Iconic weddings: Princess Anne and Mark Phillips". Hello!. 27 July 2011. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  6. ^ Chang, Mahalia (27 November 2017). "A Very Thorough History Of British Royal Engagement Rings". Harper's Bazaar Australia. Retrieved 15 May 2018. 
  7. ^ "Photograph of procession for Princess Anne's wedding". UK Parliament. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f g "1973: Crowds cheer marriage of Princess Anne". BBC. Retrieved 12 February 2015. 
  9. ^ Mackie, Lindsay (12 November 2006). "This week in 1973: The marriage of Princess Anne and Mark Phillips". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  10. ^ Ball, Sarah (March 2011). "Tiers of Joy: Royal Wedding Cakes". Vanity Fair. Retrieved 15 May 2018. 
  11. ^ a b Crosby, John (11 October 2014). "From the Observer archive, 14 October 1973: royal wedding fever". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  12. ^ "The Most Iconic Royal Wedding Gowns of All Time (slide 23)". Harper's Bazaar. 13 April 2018. Retrieved 15 May 2018. 
  13. ^ "The most beautiful royal wedding dresses of all time, from Princess Diana to Grace Kelly". The Daily Telegraph. 11 March 2018. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  14. ^ "The most iconic Royal wedding dresses (slide 18)". Marie Claire UK. 27 April 2018. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  15. ^ Maloney, Maggie (26 March 2018). "The 22 Most Gorgeous Royal Wedding Tiara Moments of All Time (slide 14)". Town & Country. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  16. ^ "British royal wedding tiaras: See the jewels worn by princess brides". Hello!. 15 March 2018. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  17. ^ Lopez, Alfred, ed. (2005). Postcolonial Whiteness: A Critical Reader on Race and Empire. Albany, NY, USA: State University of New York Press. p. 49. ISBN 0791463613. 
  18. ^ "November 15, 1973 - A royal wedding album". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on 6 July 2015. 

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