Death of Erling Lorentzen: who was this protagonist of a brilliant coup at the Norwegian Court in 1953?

The Royal Court of Norway announced the death on March 9 at the age of 98 of Erling Lorentzen, widower of Princess Raghnild (1930-2012).

Princess Raghnild is the first child of future King Olav V and Princess Martha of Sweden (sister of Queen Astrid). His grandfather King Haakon has reigned since 1903. It is a young monarchy since the separation of the Swedish crown. Ragnhild is the first princess to emerge in Norway since the Middle Ages!

At that time, the succession to the throne did not allow the accession of a woman. Raghnild although the eldest, will have a sister Astrid and a brother Harald who is the current ruler. Her parents see her marry a prince from a European royal court and start a family, but Raghnild has met the handsome Erling Lorentzen, 7 years her senior. Coming from a Norwegian upper middle class family, war hero and young entrepreneur, he has a perfect CV except that he is a commoner. In 1953, we do not play around with misalliances.

The princess makes her choice and decides to marry the chosen one of her heart. She is the first princess (European princes had, however, already done so) to take this step and lose her rank. Supreme “punishment” of the protocol: the flag is no longer hoisted on his birthday …

The couple moved to Rio de Janeiro where Erling Lorentzen became a successful businessman, notably at the head of the Aracruz Celulose paper company. Three children will be born from this very happy union: Haakon (1954), Ingeborg (1957) and Raghnild (1968). During school holidays, the children returned to Oslo to see their grandfather King Olav. They made their respective lives in Brazil.

In 2001, during the marriage of her nephew Crown Prince Haakon of Norway to Mette Tjessem, commoner and single mother, Princess Raghnild (cousin of King Albert II) could not help telling the press that times have definitely looked good. exchange…

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