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  #321  
Old 07-23-2008, 02:52 PM
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Well, IMO, Edward VIII deserves at least some credit for not expecting to have his cake and eat it too.
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  #322  
Old 07-23-2008, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Jo of Palatine View Post
No, the souverain can't create people who are not in the line of succession a Royal Highness. He/she could under certain circumstances recognise a foreign Royal title through a special license though in fact this hasn't happened yet. But the opinion of the experts advising the souverain is clear when it comes to Royal Highnesses
The style of HRH has no constitutional meaning or legal status. It is purely a personal honour granted by The Sovereign to signify place and precedence in the royal family as defined by letters patent. However, as a matter of common law and practice, a wife shares the rank and title of her husband if superior to her own. This is where the slippery slope began in the case of Wallis, requiring letters patent to achieve their goal.

Until created a Peer (although the House of Lords was reformed by Blair), the princes and princesses of the UK are commoners.
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  #323  
Old 07-23-2008, 08:30 PM
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So Princess Anne and Prince William could stand for election to Parliament? I mean, that's what "commoners" means in this context, isn't it?
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  #324  
Old 07-23-2008, 09:16 PM
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I am always amazed by how many Duchess of Cornwall supporters loathe the Duchess of Windsor. Surely they had many similarities, ie married mistress of the current (at that time) Prince of Wales (and for 11 months King Edward) who married their spouses after much public brouhaha and constitutional consternation. The only differences to me are that the earlier POW/Edward was not allowed to retain his place in the succession and the later Duchess was given HRH. Before you shout at me about the reference to either as being the 'Mistress', I am using the Websters Dictionary definition of the word : 'A woman who has a continuing extramarital sexual relationship with one man, especially with a man with whom in return for an exclusive and continuing liason provides the woman with financial support', which is an accurate description of the relationships of both POW/King Edward and their Duchesses. I think in both cases it was a love match. But, IMO the Duke of Windsor was truly willing to give up everything both to have his spouse, and to do what was constitutionally right/best for England, where as Charles, IMO, wants to have the cake and eat it too. Certainly, neither Prince of Wales/King Edward was historically the first to marry the mistress...think Henry VII and Anne Bolyen (I can cite more if you like), but it has never been a popular decision with the subjects.
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  #325  
Old 07-23-2008, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Monika_ View Post
Well, IMO, Edward VIII deserves at least some credit for not expecting to have his cake and eat it too.
My sentiments exactly. I read a lot about their romance their alleged relationship with the Nazis etc and have no strong opinions about either one of them.
However her last photograph looking out the window of Buckingham Palace the day of his funeral looked like a very sad ending to their story.
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  #326  
Old 07-23-2008, 10:12 PM
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I am always amazed by how many Duchess of Cornwall supporters loathe the Duchess of Windsor.
I've always been fond of the Duchess of Windsor, and over the years have grown really quite fond of Camilla.
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  #327  
Old 07-24-2008, 04:57 AM
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What happens and what happens not in the BRF is IMHo very much a question of politics, not personal feelings.

So I believe that Edward was the problem, not his relationship to Wallis. For the politicians of his time, the idea that he could really want to marry Wallis and make her his queen showed them IMHO what kind of king he was - as the political situation in Europe was extremely dangerous at that time they needed a reliable king as head of their state. They couldn't allow the marriage of their king and his queen "Wallis" to split society when they needed unity. So I think they decided to force him to toe the line once and for all or to quit. That's the reasoning behind his expatriation as well, IMHO.

While Charles and Camilla's marriage did not really endanger the country. Britain is now a part of Europe, the political system is safe so I guess the government didn't bother much about Charles wish for a second marriage.

As for the similarities: both Edward and Charles are Windsors. The Windsors tend to chose a soulmate and stick to her or him. But I pity Wallis. I doubt she really wanted to be queen - she must have known that British society would not bend to her, be she queen or no queen. And when Edward gave up the throne for her, she had to live with a man who probably thought it was her duty now to assure that he didn't regret that choice: what a burden on any woman. Was she even asked? Was her saying he should not do it maybe a sign that she didn't want to face the consequences of his actions? While Camilla accepted IMHO because she was always willing to support Charles. She would have stayed his lady love but when he felt it was an impossible situation, that protocoll would not bend to his wishes now (Van Cutsem-wedding) and would not bend once he was the king, that something had to be done about that, she agreed.

Both women IMHO accepted their husband's decision and lived with it. But it was politics who dictated the outcome. I seriously doubt Charles would have endangered Britain in 1936 for the sake of a woman. He would have toed the line. But in 2005 he could marry his former mistress because of different circumstances.
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  #328  
Old 07-24-2008, 05:25 AM
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Originally Posted by scooter View Post
I am always amazed by how many Duchess of Cornwall supporters loathe the Duchess of Windsor.
I think it best not to attempt to classify members in such a hard and fast manner, and it's wise not to ascribe extreme language ("loathe") to others.
It does nothing for the atmosphere of the Forums to place members in camps, nor to put words in their mouths.

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  #329  
Old 07-24-2008, 05:45 AM
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Originally Posted by scooter View Post
I am always amazed by how many Duchess of Cornwall supporters loathe the Duchess of Windsor.
I certainly can't speak for other Camilla 'supporters', but I certainly don't loath Wallis and never have. I believe, for whatever reason, senior members of the government wanted Edward out and having made their decision went home to their ohh so cosy homes and refused the King, the right to put the decision in the hands of his subjects. I believe she was treated shamefully by 'righteous' men who probably had more than a few secrets to hide themselves!
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  #330  
Old 07-24-2008, 08:29 AM
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I still say for him to give up crown and country for that person was wrong. She may have loved him, but she also knew just how to pull the right strings to control him.

They deserved to be banned and due to the time and their relationship with Hitler, had they stayed in England the damage to the monarchy could have been terrible. They (George VI and Elizabeth) were still trying to shed off the German roots and really devote themselves to the war movement and their subjects.

The Duke and Duchess made their bed and now had to lay in it. Their loss and I do not feel pity for them.
I am right with you on this LM. I keep remembering from one of her biographies how shocked people at a dinner were when they talked about a picturesque little village in England that had just been bombed. She remarked that it was what they deserved for the way the people of England treated her......actually I think her main gripe was not being made Queen (a title she never fully understood in my opinion) and being refused the title HRH. She said she wasn´t intererested but she manipulated her husband and all through WWII he bombarded the King and the prime minister on the subject of his wife´s title. To me this absolutely disgraceful. In her time in Estoril she stayed at a Banker´s house and they had a beautiful swimming pool but she found that her favourite bathing costume had been left in France when they fled the war. She got in touch with some official and managed to get someone to search through her belongings for her "eau de nil" swimming outfit in occupied France. At the time it was called the Cleopatra incident. Unfortunately I don´t agree with anyone who says they led a dignified life after the abdication, they led an extremely frivolous and pointless life,especially for someone who had been King of England He spent the rest of his life going to parties and obeying his wife.
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  #331  
Old 07-24-2008, 10:39 AM
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So Princess Anne and Prince William could stand for election to Parliament? I mean, that's what "commoners" means in this context, isn't it?
Yes, although The Sovereign would likely issue a royal warrant allowing them to stop using their royal styles and assume a surname (i.e. Lord William Mountbatten-Windsor).
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  #332  
Old 07-24-2008, 11:09 AM
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I am right with you on this LM. I keep remembering from one of her biographies how shocked people at a dinner were when they talked about a picturesque little village in England that had just been bombed. She remarked that it was what they deserved for the way the people of England treated her......actually I think her main gripe was not being made Queen (a title she never fully understood in my opinion) and being refused the title HRH.
I can fully sympathise with the HRH gripe, but not the Queen one - back then the position of the Church on remarriage of divorcees was rigid, and she must have known it.

However, I've read several biographies too (by no means all of them, though) and I must say I don't recall reading about the comment saying she thought those people deserved to be bombed. Do you happen to recall which book it was in?
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  #333  
Old 07-24-2008, 04:34 PM
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Elspeth I will have a good hunt for it tomorrow. I have quite a few books about the Windsors and I have a good idea where I will find the quote but first I have to find the book. Some time back I decided to be more organised and have my books in categories and easy to find.........well it was a good idea.

I found it..... The book is "Secret Lives of the Duchess of Windsor WALLIS" by Charles Higham. The page number is 341 and [quote] On 10 May the American journalist and playwright Mrs Henry (Clare Boothe) Luce was in Paris, and was invited to dinner at the Boulevard Suchet. There was a BBC broadcast that Germans had bombed London and coastal villages. Mrs Luce said, "I´ve driven through many of those villages. I hate to see the British so wantonly attacked." The Duchess replied: "After what they did to me, I can´t say I feel sorry for them - a whole nation against a lone woman!" [quote]
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  #334  
Old 07-24-2008, 06:04 PM
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The Higham book was filled with inneundos and inaccuracies about The Duchess and often misquoted other sources. It certainly was not a historical biography of Wallis.

While it's true she certainly expressed bitterness about the way she and The Duke were treated, it was more from the standpoint of the royal family, rather than the British people or the nation. Also, she was not particularly well-disposed towards England in the first place. The weather bothered her and, as an American, she disliked the rigid class structure and formalities that went with it.

If she had a choice, it's very likely they would have settled in the U.S., but since that was not an option, they ended up in France, where The Duchess felt most comfortable. The Duke was never enamoured of the French or their culture, believing British and German (and later American) attitudes were the best.

As far as her title and style goes, Wallis always made it clear publicly and privately that she never cared about the HRH and was content as Her Grace. But she also made it clear that her husband was very hurt by the refusal to give her equal rank and highly insulted.
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  #335  
Old 07-24-2008, 07:16 PM
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I can easily believe Wallis never cared about the HRH, and can equally believe David was more touchy about it. To her, the implications must have been nothing, while to him, the implications had deep roots. Personally, I think it stinks. It made their union a morganatic one, which had no reason. It made what should have been a matter of course, a matter of protocol (wife of HRH Duke = HRH Duchess), into an excuse to give a personal insult. It should not have been personal. It was more than unprofessional. It was petty.
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  #336  
Old 07-24-2008, 07:24 PM
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Yes, it was rather petty....but I think everyone needs to consider the times. Divorce was so frowned upon in the 1930's and to think that the King of England wanted to marry a divorcee with TWO living ex husbands. For all they knew, the marriage would have lasted three to five years, and then she could have moved on to the next husband and then what she be, HRH, Wallis, Mr. Thomas Lester? It was unknown territory.

I totally blame Edward for this...I can appreciate and understand him wanting to marry the women he loved. But it was his country, his people, he should have known that she would have been accepted as his companion, mistress but not his wife. She might have lived in Britain for quite some time but she was not English. Heck, from what I understand...the Scottish and the Irish don't consider themselves to be English (not to offend anyone by the comment). So he was going to marry some American with two living ex husbands?

And from what I understand based upon some books that I have read....Edward and Ernest (2nd husband) had the discussion about the triangle, marriage and divorce without her. I think she would have been content to remain Mrs. Edward Simpson, with the jewels and power that were afforded her being the "mistress" of the King.
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  #337  
Old 07-24-2008, 10:29 PM
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Exactly. I think George VI genuinely felt, as his mother and wife certainly did, that Wallis could not be trusted to stay married and committed to The Duke as a loyal wife, given her history and character. Finding a way to avoid conferring royal status on her was felt to be extremely important to rebuilding the image of the monarchy after the shock of the Abdication.

I do feel, however, the vendetta should have ended with time. By the 1960's, The Queen should have rectified the matter and granted Wallis what was rightfully hers.
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  #338  
Old 07-24-2008, 10:39 PM
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It's sort of ironic that one of the excuses put forward for withholding the HRH was that it would be unacceptable for her to divorce Edward and still be HRH. They were fast enough to yank the HRH from Fergie when she divorced, which shows pretty well that the King (or the present Queen) could have removed Wallis's HRH if she divorced Edward, and no doubt there'd have been a lot of public sympathy. I think this was just another excuse, however plausible it sounded.

I think it's really unfortunate that the hypocrisy of keeping a mistress is considered acceptable but the honesty of wanting to marry is not.
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  #339  
Old 07-25-2008, 02:18 AM
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The Higham book was filled with inneundos and inaccuracies about The Duchess and often misquoted other sources. It certainly was not a historical biography of Wallis.
As far as her title and style goes, Wallis always made it clear publicly and privately that she never cared about the HRH and was content as Her Grace. But she also made it clear that her husband was very hurt by the refusal to give her equal rank and highly insulted.
I think the you have it wrong, nearly all her biographies say how she was really put out about not being HRH and it was said that it was strange that she was, as she had attained the exalted rank of Duchess which was not a title to sneeze at. As to being called Your Grace, anyone who called her that was not invited again. When anyone addressed her by anything but HRH they were put straight immediately. Whatever is said they were not a lovable couple, they were mean with money and although could be considered very well off indeed they considered themselves poor. The Duke was very reluctant to pay for anything except entertainment and travel and cothes and jewellery for his wife, they ran down France and the French but accepted the virtually free mansion while they were doing it. They rarely entertained, and it is true they were rarely entertained by, anyone of noble French birth, they preferred playboys, good time company and actors and above all the very rich.
Wallis had her good points, she was an excellent lady of the house, everything was done to perfection and she dressed beautifully (except for her wedding dress). Whether she made Edward happy or not, he enjoyed giving in to her every whim, so that might be the happiest he could be. He was very upset at her flirtation with Jimmy Donohue... He was her adoring slave, she broke a nail, the ex-King of England ran to get a file and fix it for her. It might not make other men happy but he liked doing this. The one thing that it is said she nagged him about,was her title, he found he could only give her this in private company and that made him quite frustrated, why else would an ex-King pester the King and Prime Minister of Britain in the middle of an extremely desperate and bloody war for survival about a better title for his wife? She herself, in one of her auto-biographies, said that it sounded very petty but that it was very important to him. More important that the fate of his country?
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  #340  
Old 07-25-2008, 07:54 AM
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The Duke was the one who always insisted on The Duchess being addressed as "Your Royal Highness" by staff and any guests. She herself never imposed this. However, The Duke was extremely irritated by anyone who refused to do so.

Indeed, when they were in the Bahamas as representatives of The Sovereign, she was always addressed as Your Grace (except perhaps by their personal staff when they were alone).
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