The once secret, illegitimate daughter of former King Albert II of Belgium has drawn comparisons between herself and Princess Diana, calling herself a “princess princess.”
She also said of her father and former king ‘you can’t have a child and just kick it’ in an interview with Tatler.
Princess Delphine, 53, formerly known as Delphine Boël, was born during an 18-year affair between the former monarch, 86, and Belgian aristocrat Baroness Sybille de Selys Longchamps, 79, which began in the 1960s when he was crown prince.
Albert was in close contact with the Baroness and Delphine, born in 1968.
But when she turned 16 in 1984, the king-to-be – who ascended the throne in 1993 – abdicated from the couple in order to preserve his marriage.
Revealing the rejection still hurts, she said: “You don’t just have a kid and kick it.”
However, she said she does not blame her father, with whom she is now reconciled, saying that royal life is “isolation” and that he has been ill-advised.
The illegitimate daughter of King Albert II of Belgium has compared herself to Princess Diana in an interview with Tatler
Delphine de Saxe-Cobourg Gotha, meeting with her biological father King Albert II, center, and Queen Paola, left, during an informal meeting in Brussels in October 2020
The Belgian public also questioned her legitimacy at the time, but she said the tide of public opinion has turned after winning her seven-year trial to prove she was the monarch’s child.
“The public is now comparing me to Princess Diana because I am a princess of hearts and generous in charity work,” she said.
The princess is famous with a cropped blonde haircut that she hasn’t changed since her childhood, not unlike Princess Diana’s signature short haircut.
After a court officially recognized her as the love child of the former king of Belgium in October 2020, Delphine said her struggle to be recognized as a royal was not about money or status, but “principles”.
Albert II (pictured left with Queen Paola of Belgium) had fought tooth and nail to keep Delphine from being his daughter since the rumors of paternity became public in 1998
Left: Albert II before he became king. Right: Albert pictured with Queen Paola, his son Phillipe, born in 1960, and daughter Princess Astrid, born in 1962
Albert married Queen Paola in 1959 and always downplayed the rumors that he was Delphine’s father, once explosively telling her on the phone ‘you’re not my daughter!’
Now at 54, Delphine is finally entitled to bear the royal name de Saxe-Cobourg, and is formally recognized as part of the royal family, as are her two children, Princess Joséphine of Belgium,19 and Prince Oscar of Belgium. .14 which she shares with partner James O’Hare.
Delphine has attended royal engagements and says her relationship with her father has healed after years of bitterness.
In 2013, she told the VTM channel in a documentary ‘Because, you know, when you go to court, you actually say ‘I hate you, I never want to see you again’.
“What I didn’t realize is how important it was for me to see him again. And so now is a time of forgiveness, to work things out. It’s a time of healing.’
Her comments come after she appeared in a documentary about her struggle in which she said he brought her to tears when he accused the artist of pursuing her paternity claim because she “wanted attention”=
Princess Delphine said her now-acknowledged father was “nasty” when she spoke of their first meeting as part of a new television documentary.
During their first meeting in 2013, she claimed to the VTM station that he ‘sneaked’ her: ‘Ah, because it’s not going so well as an artist you need some attention.’
She said on the show ‘I thought how rude is this?’
‘After the first conversation with Albert and his lawyers, I walked out of the office completely crushed and crying.
“They said I ‘put a gun to the king’s head’ by going to court.”
Princess Delphine said: ‘The first time I visited him and his lawyers, he was very mean and made me cry.’
Delphine said her struggle to be recognized as a royal was not about money or status.
She explained that her mother’s husband, the wealthy industrialist and aristocrat Jacques Boel, “is much richer than the royal family.”
Delphine’s mother, Baroness Sybille de Selys Longchamps (left), now 80, had begun an affair with Albert in 1966, when he was the Crown Prince (Pictured: Baron Dieter von Malsen Ponickau with Baroness Sybille de Selys Longchamps at the castle of Osterberg, Germany , 1998)
Delphine also revealed that she won’t be using the “Her Royal Highness” prefix, adding, “I just wanted to be like my brother and sister.”
She told the Belgian radio program Matin Premiere: ‘I have the feeling that I have a right to exist. Not to exist in the royal family, but as me.
“My decision to seek help through the law, I feel today it was the right choice to do… The judiciary said I was right and I had a right to exist.”
She met her brother, King Philippe of Belgium, one of the 20 Belgian royals she is related to – in 2020, where they posted a socially distant photo on Facebook, describing it as a “warm meeting.”
For now, the princess is concentrating on her art projects and is launching an exhibition aptly named “What is to come is better than what was before” in September.