SLIDESHOW: Best of the Royal Wedding 

With a smile that lit up TV screens around the world, Kate Middleton married Prince William in a union that promised to revitalize the British monarchy. A million people roared their approval as the royal couple then paraded through London in an open carriage.

Click on the photo to the right to see a slideshow of the highlights from the wedding.

Even knowing that an immense television audience was tuning in to watch, the couple managed, at times, to appear in their own private world Friday, both at Westminster Abbey and on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.

William whispered to Kate, who radiated contentment and joy, as they pledged their lives to one another at the church with the simple words "I will."

After a ceremonial tour around London, they then delivered two — not one — sweet, slightly self-conscious kisses on the balcony, with William blushing deeply at the highly anticipated event. Within moments, a flyby of vintage and modern Royal Air Force planes roared overhead.

For much of the world, the wedding was a dramatic introduction to Middleton's beguiling star power. Despite the pressure, the 29-year-old carried the day with an easy smile, youthful exuberance and a sense of decorum that matched the event.

After the ceremony, Middleton curtsied easily before Queen Elizabeth II, comfortably sharing the stage with the woman who has reigned since 1952.

The sighting of Middleton's wedding gown — the biggest secret of the day — prompted swoons of admiration as she stepped out of a Rolls-Royce with her father at the abbey. Against all odds, the sun broke through steely gray skies at precisely that moment.

Her ivory-and-white satin dress — with its plunging neckline, long lacy shoulders and sleeves and a train over 2-meters (yards) long — was designed by Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen. Middleton's hair was half-up, half-down, decorated with dramatic veil and a tiara on loan from the queen. Her dramatic diamond earrings were a gift from her parents. -- AP

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