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By Petra Cahill

LONDON — For centuries, European royal families sought marriages with other nobles as a way to secure bloodlines and power.

In the U.K. marriage to a commoner — someone who was not a member of the British nobility — was frowned upon, especially after King Edward VIII abdicated the throne in 1936 to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson.

But Princess Margaret, Queen Elizabeth II’s sister, broke the mold when she married photographer Anthony Armstrong-Jones in 1960. Looking back, she was a trendsetter.

Take a look through some of the other commoners who married into royalty: