Wearing her father’s necklace and looking radiant, Elizabeth made her entrance into the ancient abbey in a dress that had taken 3,000 clothes coupons and bore 10,000 pearls. Some 2,000 guests were waiting, among them one of the largest gatherings of royalty since the time of Queen Victoria. All eyes were on the silk-clad figure as she walked down the long nave. There was an awareness that history was being made; all the ritual of a royal wedding in this building so alive with past spectacle. Princess Marina, who had helped to facilitate the match with private meetings at Coppins between her young cousin, Prince Philip, and her niece, Princess Elizabeth, was delighted. The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester were waiting in some trepidation as Prince William was to hold the long train of her dress as a page. From across Europe they came drawn to this great royal reunion, like times of old. Many were direct descendants of Queen Victoria, such as King Michael of Romania, Queen Victoria Eugenie of Spain and Queen Ingrid of Sweden; others were related by marriage, such as Uncle Charles.
The wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip
Princes At War by Deborah Cadbury