Legendary first ladies

Culture

Melania Trump: Future first lady?

The wife of US Republican presidential front-runner and real estate mogul Donald Trump has been rather quiet during the current election campaign. Before her husband announced his candidacy last summer, the native Slovenian diligently posted selfies and pictures of the fancy interiors of her apartments on Instagram. In January 2017, she hopes to ascend to the illustrious circle of US first ladies.

Culture

Bill Clinton: Future 'first dude'?

Or, come January, will there perhaps be a first man at the side of a female US president? Much speculation has been made in the US media about former President Bill Clinton's title, should his wife Hillary win the election in November. Hillary, herself a former first lady, has jokingly suggested "first dude" - definitely a suitable name for her charming, stylish and scandal-plagued husband.

Culture

Carla Bruni Sarkozy

Originally from Italy, Carla Bruni Sarkozy rose to fame as a model and singer. She began studies in art and architecture, but did not continue after the age of 19. She found success with music, especially with the album "Quelqu'un m'a dit" in 2002. In 2008 she married the then French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Today, Bruni Sarkozy is still a style icon.

Culture

Queen Rania of Jordan

The mother of four has been queen of Jordan since 1999, at the side of her husband King Abdullah II. She is known for her social commitment in Jordan and abroad. Rania has participated in demonstrations against the so-called "Islamic State" and has fiercely condemned the terrorist militia. For her efforts she received the Walther Rathenau Prize from Chancellor Angela Merkel in September.

Culture

Inkhosikati LaMbikiza

She is queen of Swaziland - but one of many, because King Mswati III has 13 wives. But Queen LaMbikiza is the one that accompanies the king at most of his representative occasions - and steals the show with her striking gowns. At home, LaMbikiza is known for her fight against HIV and AIDS.

Culture

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis

The widow of assassinated US President John F. Kennedy is adored to this day. Jacqueline "Jackie" Bouvier Kennedy, born in 1929, came from New York's upper class and had French roots. Jackie and her husband, whom she married in 1953, were the most glamorous presidential couple ever to move into the White House. Her sense of style made her a legend beyond her time as a first lady. She died in 1994.

Culture

Grace Kelly

The successful Hollywood actress, who starred opposite Gary Cooper and Clark Gable, became Princess Grace of Monaco in 1956. But there were rumors throughout her life that she wasn't happy with her marriage. Kelly is even supposed to have said that her wedding was the worst day of her life. In 1982, she died at the age of 52 in a car accident - and became a legend.

Culture

Empress Soraya Esfandiary-Bakhtiari

Soraya Esfandiary-Bakhtiari was the wife of the last shah of Iran. In 1951, at the tender age of 19, she married Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, who ruled the country from 1967 until he was overthrown in the 1979 Iranian Revolution. Soraya spoke fluent German and French, and loved riding and skiing. Her marriage with the shah was annulled after seven years because of the couple couldn't have children.

Culture

Imelda Marcos

This lady was known for her love of luxury and her eccentricities. The former beauty queen was the woman at the side of Ferdinand Marcos, the 10th president of the Philippines from 1966 to 1986. Imelda became world famous for her record-breaking shoe collection, which contained several thousand designer pairs.

Culture

Michelle Obama

In 2009, Michelle Obama became the first black first lady in US history. The graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School has been admired not only for her accomplished past but also as a style icon. She accompanies President Obama on numerous officials visits - and always dazzles in bold, creative outfits that match her gracious manner. She's pictured on International Women's Day.

For many presidential palaces and royal houses, first ladies are the guarantors of glamor. But some also stand out for eccentricity or dedication. DW looks at legendary first ladies - and one who still wants to be one.