Did Prince Charles Propose To Anyone Else Before Diana?

We know that Prince Charles ended up marrying Lady Diana Spencer on July 29, 1981, in what was dubbed the “wedding of the century.” However, their union wasn’t a happy one and they separated in 1992, four years before their divorce was finalized.

We also know that Charles was in love with his ex-girlfriend, Camilla Parker Bowles, and after hearing about her marriage the heir to the British throne tried to find a suitable bride. So did he propose to any other women prior to getting engaged to Diana and if so how many? Here’s more on that, plus who pressured Charles into marrying his first wife.

Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer
Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer in 1981 | Anwar Hussein/WireImage

Prince Charles proposed to his cousin first

Charles did propose to other women before Diana and one of those women was his second cousin, Lady Amanda Knatchbull. Before you get sick by that thought remember that marrying their relatives was not frowned upon or uncommon for royals.

Lady Amanda was the granddaughter of Prince Philip’s uncle, Lord Louis Mountbatten, and according to the documentary series The Royal House of Windsor as well as several other news outlets, Mountbatten played matchmaker.

In Penny Junor’s book The Firm, she noted that Lord Mountbatten even sent a letter to his great-nephew on advice about choosing a wife which said, “In a case like yours, the man should sow his wild oats and have as many affairs as he can before settling down. But for a wife, he should choose a suitable, attractive, and sweet-charactered girl before she has met anyone else she might fall for.” 

Lady Amanda Knatchbull
Lady Amanda Knatchbull | Tim Graham/Getty Images

When Charles asked Lady Amanda to be his wife she wasn’t ready for marriage and turned him down.

Charles proposed to another woman twice

The other woman Charles proposed to was Anna Wallace. She was a Scottish heiress and the daughter of landowner Hamish Wallace.

The two dated and he asked for her hand in marriage, not once but twice. Both times she declined.

Royal author Christopher Wilson said that the reason was because “there were too many factors against it including her other love interests — and his.”

Wallace broke up with him following a party for the Queen Mother at Windsor Castle.

Who pressured Charles to marry Diana?

Eventually, Prince Charles proposed to Lady Diana Spencer but it’s been reported that he only did so because he felt tremendous pressure, mainly from his father, to ask her.

Prince Charles and Prince Philip
Prince Charles and Prince Philip |Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

Charles and Diana had met just a dozen times before he popped the question and the prince apparently had reservations about marrying someone he hardly knew. According to royal correspondent Robert Jobson, that did not matter to Prince Philip and he told his son to “either propose to Diana or release her.”

Jobson, who is also the author of Charles At Seventy: Thoughts, Hopes And Dreams, said the Prince of Wales admitted, “I desperately wanted to get out of the wedding … when during the engagement I discovered just how awful the prospects were having had no chance whatsoever to get to know Diana beforehand.”

Princess Diana died following a car crash in Paris on Aug. 31, 1997. On April 9, 2005, Prince Charles married Camilla.

Read more: What Message Did Prince Charles Have For Camilla That Left Princess Diana ‘Traumatized’?

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