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The life of Princess Diana, as we watched her royal story unfold on 21 magazine covers

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The life of Princess Diana, as we watched her royal story unfold from 1981-1997
Here’s a look back at Diana, Princess of Wales — a woman who was just as loved in America as she was in Great Britain. We have also included some quotes of hers from throughout the years — from her wedding to Prince Charles in 1981 until her sad, sudden death in 1997.

Prince Charles & Lady Diana Spencer’s Royal Wedding (1981)

The Royal Wedding: What it means to us (TV Guide)

“I’d like to be a queen in people’s hearts, but I don’t see myself being queen of this country.”

Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer wedding - July 1981


Princess Diana & Prince Charles’ wedding – Life (1982)

“I knew that something profound was coming my way and I was just treading water, waiting for it. I didn’t know what it was. But I knew I was different from my friends in where I was going.”

Princess Diana Prince Charles wedding 1982 - Life


Diana, Princess of Wales: The joys & problems of being Prince Charles’ Wife – Good Housekeeping (February 1982)

“They say it is better to be poor and happy than rich and miserable, but how about a compromise like moderately rich and just moody?”

Princess Diana on Good Housekeeping cover (February 1982)


Pregnant Princess Diana on Us magazine (April 1984)

“Hugs can do great amounts of good — especially for children.”

Princess Diana - Us magazine - April 1984

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Princess Diana & baby Prince William on the cover of LIFE (December 1984)

Diana and the newest star in the Royal family

“A mother’s arms are more comforting than anyone else’s.”

Princess Diana and Prince William on the cover of LIFE 1984


Diana on cover of McCalls (March 1985)

Goodbye, shy Di! How she is changing herself — and Charles

“I will fight for my children on any level so they can reach their potential as human beings and in their public duties.”

Diana on cover of McCalls (March 1985)


Princess Diana – The mouse that roared, on Vanity Fair (October 1985)

“Family is the most important thing in the world.”

Princess Diana - Vanity Fair - October 1985


Princess Diana – Newsweek cover (1985)

Guess who’s coming to dinner

“Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you.”

Princess Diana - Newsweek cover - 1985


Princess Diana on cover of Ladies Home Journal (November 1985)

Inside the court of Princess Di

“I want to walk into a room, be it a hospice for the dying or a hospital for sick children, and feel that I am needed. I want to do, not just to be.”

Ladies Home Journal 1985 - Princess Diana


Princess Diana – Vanity Fair (September 1988)

Diana brought to heel?

“HIV does not make people dangerous to know, so you can shake their hands and give them a hug: Heaven knows they need it.”

Princess Diana - Vanity Fair - September 1988


People magazine extra cover (1988)

All about Diana – The private world of a princess

“Everyone needs to be valued. Everyone has the potential to give something back.”

Princess Diana - People magazine extra cover - 1988


Diana: What she does better than anyone – Ladies Home Journal (July 1988)

“When you are happy, you can forgive a great deal.”

Princess Diana - Ladies Home Journal cover - July 1988


Princess Diana – Ladies Home Journal with Prince Harry (June 1991)

Diana: Ten years later – What she’s lost, what she’s learned

“I want my boys to have an understanding of people’s emotions, their insecurities, people’s distress, and their hopes and dreams.”

Princess Diana - Ladies Home Journal cover - June 1991


The monarchy in crisis: On her own – Newsweek (December 1992)

“If you find someone you love in your life, then hang on to that love.”

Princess Diana - Newsweek cover - 1992


Di on People magazine cover (April 1993)

Diana on her own: The perils – and pleasures – of life without Charles

“I think the biggest disease the world suffers from in this day and age is the disease of people feeling unloved.”

Princess Diana - People magazine cover - April 1993


Vogue – Leading royalty into reality – Princess Di of Wales (May 1993)

“I went to the school and put it to William, particularly, that if you find someone you love in life, you must hang onto it, and look after it, and if you were lucky enough to find someone who loved you, then you must protect it.”

Vogue 1993 May - Princess Diana


Diana’s daring new life (June 1994)

People magazine – Topless bathing? Holistic healing? Aromatherapy? Anything goes, as a liberated Diana struggles to find herself

“I don’t go by the rule book…I lead from the heart, not the head.”

Princess Diana - People magazine cover - June 1994


McCall’s magazine cover (March 1994)

Diana’s life alone – A special report from London

“Nothing brings me more happiness than trying to help the most vulnerable people in society. It is a good and essential part of my life, a kind of destiny.”

Princess Diana - McCalls magazine cover - March 1994


Diana’s sweet revenge: McCall’s magazine cover (April 1995)

“The kindness and the affection from the public have carried me through some of the most difficult periods, and always your love and affection have eased the journey.”

Princess Diana - McCalls magazine cover - April 1995

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Diana and Dodi Al Fayed (published one week before her death – August 25, 1997)

People Magazine: A guy for Di – In her first real post-Charles romance, Diana takes up with a controversial playboy. Is he a dreamboat – or a deadbeat?

“I like to be a free spirit. Some don’t like that, but that’s the way I am.”

Princess Diana on People Magazine August 25 1997


Princess Diana: 1961 – 1997

“Every one of us needs to show how much we care for each other and, in the process, care for ourselves.”

Princess Diana - Newsweek cover - 1997

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