Known as Lady Diana or Diana, Princess of Wales, Diana Frances Spencer was the youngest daughter of John Spencer, Viscount Althorp, the eighth earl Spencer. Her father was a descendant of King Charles II through several generations of illegitimate sons, and a descendant of King James II through an illegitimate daughter. The Spencer family had long been close to the royal family; Diana's grandmother was a friend and lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth.
Prince Charles was romantically involved with Diana's older sister Lady Sarah before he began courting nineteen-year-old Diana in the summer of 1980. Charles and Diana were married in July of 1981 in St. Paul's Cathedral in London. Their first son William was born less than a year later; Harry was born two years after that.
As well as remaining a devoted mother, Diana became involved in humanitarian work. She was a proponent of the International Campaign to Ban Landmines and from 1989 onward she was the president of the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children.
Charles and Diana divorced in 1996 as a result of extramarital affairs. She died in a car crash in Paris in August of 1997. After her death, the International Campaign to Ban Landmines won the Nobel Peace Prize.
To learn more about Diana's genealogy, read Richard K. Evans's The Ancestry of Diana, Princess of Wales, for Twelve Generations published in 2009 by the New England Historic Genealogical Society.
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