American woman, 33, marries great-grandson of Ethiopia's Emperor Haile Selassie I

American woman, 33, marries great-grandson of Ethiopia's Emperor Haile Selassie I

33-year-old Ariana Austin, from Maryland in the US, became an African princess on September 9 when she married 35-year-old lawyer Joel Makonnen.

Makonnen is a great-grandson of the last Emperor of Ethiopia, Emperor Haile Selassie I, through Prince Makonnen.

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The adorable couple first met at a nightclub in Washington about 12 years ago. In an interview, Makonnen said he used a cheesy pick-up line on Austin: "I said, 'You guys look like an ad for Bombay Sapphire,' or whatever the gin was."

Austin said she is excited to be part of a family that traces its heritage back to the Biblical King Solomon and Queen of Sheba.

She said: "It's unbeatable heritage and history. It combines sheer black power and ancient Christian tradition."

The adorable couple on their wedding day. Photo: Dotun Ayodeji

The adorable couple on their wedding day. Photo: Dotun Ayodeji

Their elaborate Ethiopian Orthodox Christian wedding that took place in Maryland featured thirteen priests. They both wore crowns like true royalties.

They met at a nightclub about 12 years ago. Photo: Facebook/Joel D. Makonnen

They met at a nightclub about 12 years ago. Photo: Facebook/Joel D. Makonnen

Makonnen was born in Rome, where his family lived after Emperor Haile Selassie was overthrown in 1974.

They had an elaborate Ethiopian Orthodox Christian wedding. Photo: Facebook/Joel D. Makonnen

They had an elaborate Ethiopian Orthodox Christian wedding. Photo: Facebook/Joel D. Makonnen

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They wore crowns and looked like royals. Photo: Dotun Ayodeji

They wore crowns and looked like royals. Photo: Dotun Ayodeji

Friends and family were present to celebrate the special day. The bridesmaids dazzled in champagne coloured dresses and the groomsmen looked dapper in black suit.

Makonnen is Haile Selassie I's great-grandson. Photo: Dotun Ayodeji

Makonnen is Haile Selassie I's great-grandson. Photo: Dotun Ayodeji

Congratulations to the couple.

Haile Selassie I. Photo: Getty Images

Haile Selassie I. Photo: Getty Images

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