Princess Diana Fast Facts

CNN  — 

Here’s a look at the life of Diana, Princess of Wales.


Birth date: July 1, 1961

Death date: August 31, 1997

Birth place: Norfolk, England

Birth name: Diana Frances Spencer

Father: Edward John, 8th Earl Spencer

Mother: Frances (Ruth Burke-Roche) Spencer

Marriage: Charles (Philip Arthur George), Prince of Wales (July 29, 1981-August 28, 1996, divorced)

Children: Henry Charles Albert David (known as Harry), September 15, 1984; William Arthur Philip Louis, June 21, 1982

Education: Attended private schools in England and Switzerland


April 1969 - Diana’s parents divorce and Lord Spencer is given custody of the children.

1975 - Upon the death of the 7th Earl Spencer, Diana’s father becomes the 8th Earl Spencer. Diana is thereafter known as Lady Diana.

Late 1970s - After leaving school, Lady Diana works various jobs, including cook, nanny and kindergarten teacher.

February 24, 1981 - Buckingham Palace announces the engagement of 32-year-old Prince Charles, heir to the British throne, to Lady Diana Spencer.

July 29, 1981 - Prince Charles and Lady Diana are wed at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, England. The estimated worldwide television audience is more than 700 million people. After the ceremony is complete, Lady Diana assumes the title of Her Royal Highness, Princess of Wales.

June 21, 1982 - Diana gives birth to the royal couple’s first child. He is named William Arthur Philip Louis.

September 15, 1984 - Diana gives birth to the royal couple’s second child. He is named Henry Charles Albert David, but called Harry.

June 1992 - “Diana: Her True Story,” written by Andrew Morton, is published. The books details Diana’s bulimia and suicide attempts during the 1980s.

December 9, 1992 - Prime Minister John Major announces that Prince Charles and Diana have formally separated.

June 29, 1994 - A televised documentary, “Charles: The Private Man, the Public Role,” airs; in it he admits to adultery.

November 1995 - Diana gives an interview to the BBC in which she admits to adultery.

August 28, 1996 - The divorce is finalized. Diana loses the title Her Royal Highness, but retains the title of Princess of Wales.

January 1997 - Travels to Angola to bring attention to the anti-land mine campaign of the International Red Cross.

August 31, 1997 - Diana dies following a car accident in Paris, along with boyfriend Dodi Fayed and driver Henri Paul.

September 6, 1997 - Diana’s funeral is held at Westminster Abbey. An estimated 2.5 billion people around the world watch the services. Diana is buried at the Spencer family estate, Althorp, in Northamptonshire.

September 1999 - A French investigation concludes saying that driver Henri Paul, who was legally drunk at the time, is responsible for the accident.

January 2004 - The British Royal Coroner opens an inquest into Diana’s death.

December 2006 - The British police release a report about the crash saying, that there was no conspiracy, it was an accident and Henri Paul was driving intoxicated.

August 31, 2007 - On the 10th anniversary of her death, Diana’s sons pay tribute to her at a ceremony in the Guards’ Chapel in London. Guests include Elton John, Cliff Richard, celebrity photographer Mario Testino, Prime Minister Gordon Brown and former Prime Ministers Tony Blair and John Major. Prince Harry delivers a speech asking for Diana to be remembered as “fun-loving, generous, down-to-earth and entirely genuine.” Prince William reads from St. Paul’s letter to the Ephesians.

October 2007 - Lord Justice Scott Baker, Britain’s coroner, opens an official inquest into the deaths of Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed. Six women and five men are chosen as jurors.

April 7, 2008 - The British coroner’s jury finds that Diana and Dodi were unlawfully killed because of the actions of driver Henri Paul and the paparazzi.

June 29, 2011 - The July 4 issue of Newsweek magazine comes out with a computer generated, digitally aged, Princess Diana walking next to her daughter-in-law, the Duchess of Cambridge, on the cover. The issue is meant to commemorate what would have been the princess’ 50th birthday.

May 20, 2021 - The BBC offers an apology over the controversial 1995 interview by BBC journalist Martin Bashir with Diana, in which she detailed the breakdown of her relationship with Prince Charles. An inquiry found that Bashir used “deceitful” methods to secure the landmark interview.