Modern signs shone through tradition at royal wedding: press

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The biggest royal wedding for 30 years succeeded in striking a balance between tradition and signs of a new, modern monarchy, the British press and newspapers across the world said Saturday.

Front pages from Warsaw to Sydney were covered in pictures of Prince William and Kate at their spectacular wedding in Westminster Abbey on Friday.

The Times in Britain summed up the new modern mood, with a wraparound front-page photograph of the couple cruising down The Mall during their impromptu drive in an open-top Aston Martin.

"Every element of the wedding reflected the couple's shared humour and taste, and a determination to remain as anchored as possible in their own normality," the newspaper said.

The Australian press picked up the same theme, with the Daily Telegraph tabloid highlighting a fresh new face to the British royal family.

"Beaming with happiness and radiant with love, a remarkably relaxed William and Catherine Middleton looked like the university sweethearts they were and the modern royals they are," it said under the headline "An uncommon journey to love".

Britain's biggest-selling newspaper The Sun's front page focused on the unprecedented double kiss on the Buckingham Palace balcony.

"You wait for years for a Royal kiss then two come along at once," its headline said on a full-page photograph of the couple embracing.

The paper said the wedding had given the country a lift at a time of deep public spending cuts and economic austerity.

"Britain showed the world yesterday that it is in good heart, capable, and open for business," it said in an editorial.

Germany's Bild tabloid also found the balcony scene irresistable, headlining its coverage: "Kate and William: Kiss! Kiss! Hurray!," even giving its readers precise timings: the first kiss lasted 0.7 seconds, the second smacker was 1.5 seconds long.

Newspapers in the Gulf gave front-page coverage to the wedding in London -- but left out the crowd-thrilling kiss.

In Poland, the Gazeta Wyborcza focused on the renewal of the dusty image of the British monarchy thanks to the addition of the middle-class girl who had snared her prince.

"It is said that two billion people watched this wedding of pomp and splendour which should renew the British monarchy," it said.

But in Australia, warnings were sounded that despite the public relations success of the spectacle played out in London on Friday, "the monarchy remains capable of stumbling into scandal at any moment", The Australian said.

"But the wedding... shows it has taken cues from corporate and celebrity image makers in a bid to more carefully craft its future," the paper added.

© 2011 AFP

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