Postcard from... Copenhagen


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The Independent Online


Think Kate Middleton’s got it bad under constant media scrutiny? Spare a thought for Crown Princess Mary of Denmark. She’s been putting up with life under the spotlight for 13 years – and three pregnancies.

Kate’s fellow “commoner” turned royal princess, Mary has long been considered public property with her wardrobe choices regularly making the news. Karl Lagerfeld, no less, described her as being like Kate Middleton’s older sister, “both beautiful and elegant”.

Mary, 41, who looks like a genetically gifted hybrid of Maggie Gyllenhaal and Victoria Beckham, appears to have handled the media intrusion admirably, keeping herself to herself. But it hasn’t stopped press striving for a scoop.

Last summer, one magazine reported that she had “a tell-tale glow” and was looking more full-figured than of late. These turned out to be the results of blusher, and perhaps a pastry.

This month reporters claimed Mary, already a mother of four including two-year-old twins, was expecting another multiple birth – despite her showing no signs of pregnancy and running around on an official tour of Chile. The Royal Court in Copenhagen told Woman’s Day magazine: “The story claiming that HRH the Crown Princess is pregnant is false.” This may be so, but it’s unlikely to be the last.

Even in Denmark, a country lauded for its gender equality, it seems women are still judged on the contents of their womb and their wardrobe.

Bad luck Kate – it’s not going to let up any time soon.