Queens (20th and 21st centuries)
The 20th century became a century reigned by Queens.
Queen Wilhelmina (1880-1962)
When King William III died in 1890, his only daughter was too
young to reign. Queen Emma acted as regent until her daughter
Wilhelmina came of age in 1898.
Queen Wilhelmina's fifty-year reign spanned two World Wars and the decolonisation of Indonesia. From 1940 to 1945, the Dutch government worked in exile, in London. Her resolute stance during that time won her great respect, both in her homeland and abroad.
A daughter, Princess Juliana, was born in 1909 to Wilhelmina and her husband, Duke Hendrik of Mecklenburg. In 1948 Queen Wilhelmina abdicated, retiring to Het Loo Palace in Apeldoorn. Following her abdication she was once again addressed as 'princess', in accordance with her wishes.
Queen Juliana (1909-2004)
Queen Juliana reigned from 1948 to 1980. Dutch society went
through major changes during this period, including the post-war
reconstruction, student riots in the 1960s and the oil crisis in
the mid-1970s. Queen Juliana earned the love of her people through
her concern for social issues and her informal manner.
In 1937 she married Prince Bernhard of Lippe-Biesterveld. The couple had four daughters: Beatrix (born 1938), Irene (born 1939), Margriet (born 1943, in Canadian exile) and Christina (born 1947). Both before and after the war, the family lived at Soestdijk Palace.
Princess Juliana passed away on 20 March 2004, and her husband Prince Bernhard died some months later, on 1 December.
Queen Beatrix (1938)
Princess Beatrix succeeded her mother in 1980, thereby becoming
the fourth female head of state in succession. In 1966 she married
the German diplomat Claus von Amsberg.
Together they had three sons Willem-Alexander (born 1967), Friso (born 1968) and Constantijn (born 1969). Prince Claus passed away on 6 October 2002.
Since 1980 the Queen has resided at Huis ten Bosch Palace, while working, with the Royal Household, at Noordeinde Palace. The Queen is assisted in the performance of her royal duties by other members of the Royal House.