With Prince Harry and Meghan Markle officially married and now carrying the titles of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, it will likely be awhile before another royal wedding takes place, maybe 25 years if you’re looking at Britain alone.
And with this royal wedding came many modern touches: a gospel choir singing “Stand By Me,” an African-American Episcopalian bishop giving a rousing sermon to the surprise (and apparent delight) of the normally stiff-upper-lipped, mostly British guests in attendance, and the choice by the bride to walk the aisle (at least half of it) alone.
Here are the most memorable and iconic royal weddings since the 20th century to rival Harry and Meghan’s.
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip
When Queen Elizabeth II married Prince Phillip (she was 21 and he was 26) in 1947, it was almost a disaster. The Queen was slated to wear the Fringe Tiara, which had been made for Queen Victoria in 1919.
The only problem? Her hairdresser broke it before the ceremony.
Thanks to some quick thinking by the police, who escorted the broken tiara to the royal jeweler, the topper was fixed in time for the ceremony and is still being worn to this day. The queen famously saved up ration cards to pay for the dress, which took 350 women seven weeks to create.
Prince Charles and Princess Diana
When 32-year-old Prince Charles – the man who would be King – married 19-year-old Lady Diana Spencer in 1981, both were fraught with nerves not just because of what was then called “The Wedding of the Century,” but also because more than 750 million viewers were watching on the telly.
During their vow exchange, Diana reversed Charles’ two first names and called him “Philip Charles Arthur George” instead of “Charles Philip Arthur George.” Charles then offered to give Diana “thy goods” instead of “my worldly goods.”
Prince Rainier of Monaco and Grace Kelly
The always elegant American actress Grace Kelly gave up her movie career to marry the dashing Prince Rainier of Monaco in 1956. The couple would go on to have three children: Caroline, Albert and Stephanie.
Her wedding dress was designed by Helen Rose, a costume designer for MGM studios. Rose was already famous for having outfitted Kelly for several of her movies, but the wedding gown topped them all. Not only was it the most expensive dress Rose ever crafted, it featured century-old rare lace, 100 yards of silk netting, and 25 yards of silk taffeta.
Prince Aly Khan and Rita Hayworth
Beating Grace Kelly by seven years, bombshell actress Rita Hayworth left her Hollywood career in 1949 to marry Prince Aly Khan – a son of Sultan Muhammed Shah, Aga Khan III. Her simple, yet elegant wedding dress (her third; she was married a total of five times) was designed by Christian Dior and featured a simple top and a long, full skirt.
Prince William and Kate Middleton
Of course, before Harry and Meghan there was William and Kate, who got married on April 29, 2011 in Westminster Abbey. Harry acted as best man to his brother, who would go on to return the favor.
Kate Middleton stunned in an iconic Alexander McQueen wedding dress that won’t be soon forgotten, and maid of honor/sister Pippa Middleton became a celebrity in her own right.