It took six years and several entreaties, but in the end, Masako Owada agreed to marry Japan's Crown Prince Naruhito. After announcing the engagement, they revealed the words that finally won her heart: "Masako-san, I will protect you for my entire life."
To continue reading: or Log-In
Want the full story?
Get TIME the way you want it
Week Digital Pass — $4.99
Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS — $2.99
Year ALL ACCESS — Just $30! Best Deal!
Print Magazine + Digital Edition +
Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com
Learn more about the benefits of being
a TIME subscriber
If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!