The memory of the Royal wedding and its surrounding hype can be recalled by almost anyone in the United States, let alone Great Britain. However, a far less publicized event is taking place just across the channel that will have consequences far greater than those that happened in England.
In the Netherlands, Queen Beatrix will be abdicating her throne in favor of her son, Willem-Alexander this spring. She follows a seeming Dutch tradition of monarchs stepping down rather than remaining monarch until death.
At only 75 years of age, Beatrix is over a decade younger than Queen Elizabeth II of England. She plans to step down not due to the pressures of the job on her age, but because she believes that the next generation needed its turn to lead.
With Willem’s coronation, he will become the first Dutch King in over a century, yet he does not plan any grand reforms of the position. Instead, he has stated that his focus will be the maintenance of tradition while exploring the possibilities of modernizing the royal family.
While the Netherlands may not be as connected to the United States as Great Britain is, the events do offer a look at an event we may see in the near future of the island nation.