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Albert and Charlene finish wedding ceremonies

Albert and Charlene finish wedding ceremonies
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Prince Albert of Monaco and Charelene Wittstock have finished two days of wedding celebrations with a religious marriage ceremony in the principality.

It was an opulent affair in the courtyard of the Royal Palace in Monaco attended by royalty, world leaders and leading figures from the world of entertainment and sport.

The couple had already married in a civil ceremony. This time they exchanged vows in a service presided over by Monaco’s Archbishop.

It is the first time Monaco has seen the wedding of a ruling prince since Albert’s parents, Prince Rainer and Grace Kelly, married in 1956.

The era of glamour that the Hollywood star ushered into Monaco was reflected in the guestlist.

Giorgio Armani, who designed Charlene’s wedding dress, was among the congregation. So was fellow fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld.

The ceremony at the foot of the Palace’s sweeping marble staircase bordered with white flowers was also witnessed by the film star Roger Moore.

Other guests who also took part in the service included the American soprano Renee Fleming and the tenor Andrea Bocelli.

After signing the wedding register in the Palace chapel the newlyweds emerged from the courtyard.

They were greeted with confetti by the three and a half thousand guests who had been invited to watch the ceremony on big screens just outside the courtyard.

Those who had read reports in recent days that alleged Charlene had got cold feet just days before the ceremony watched the couple’s demeanour closely.

The palace had strenuously denied the reports in the French media, that claimed she had had to be persuaded to stay after buying a one-way ticket home to South Africa.

The emotion of the day spilled over at the chapel of Monaco’s patron saint, Ste Devote.

It was there Princess Charlene followed tradition and laid her bridal bouquet in offering at the altar.

The crowds had followed the couple all along the route, and their new princess rewarded them all with a kiss. And after some encouragement, one for her prince too.