Prince William Suffered Teasing, Was Upset Over Princess Diana’s Topless Photo Scandal

Prince William faced some teasing while at school when topless photos of his mother, Princess Diana, landed in tabloids in 1996. He was left very upset about the photo scandal, calling his mom to let her know how it impacted him. The details of the story are being shared in a new book.

prince william princess diana topless photos
Prince William with Prince Charles, Princess Diana, and Prince Harry | Julian Parker/UK Press via Getty Images

Diana’s topless photos made headlines

Photos of Princess Diana sunbathing topless on a balcony in Spain were naturally a big get for tabloids. The images made their way into the media and, as a result, Prince William received quite a lot of teasing over it.

Vogue publisher Nicholas Coleridge shared the details in his memoir The Glossy Years, writing that Princess Diana had shared with him how Prince William was heckled at his boarding school, Eton College, when he was just 14 years old.

In a preview posted by The Times, Coleridge noted about how he and Diana had lunch and she brought up the matter. According to Coleridge, she said: “Nicholas, can I ask you something? Please be truthful. Did you see the photograph of me in the Daily Mirror? The topless one?”

She added: “William rang me from Eton. Poor boy, he’s only 14. He was upset. He said some of the other boys were teasing him, saying my t**s are too small.”

Princess Diana, with her cheeky sense of humor, asked Coleridge his opinion of her chest and he noted, “I became breathless, and went as red as a guardsman’s tunic.” He was able to muster up some reassurance that her breasts were “perfect,” and “told her not to worry.”

Diana responded, “Thank you, Nicholas. I knew you’d tell me the truth. Thank you, I feel better now.”

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Today marks #999DayUK, when we celebrate and say thank you to our incredible Police, Fire and Emergency Medical services ‍♀‍‍⚕ and all our specialised emergency services for all that they do to keep us safe. The first photograph in this post is of The Duke of Cambridge and The Duke of Sussex and their mother Diana, Princess of Wales, with their cousins Peter Phillips and Zara Tindall in the yard of the Old Fire Station in the grounds of Sandringham House in 1988. On 999 Day later today The Duke will visit @TheFirefightersCharity at Harcombe House in Devon to hear about the support that the centre provides to members of the fire and rescue service and their families, and meet representatives from across the emergency services sector. On the extraordinary work of our emergency services, The Duke of Cambridge said: "As a society, we owe our wellbeing, and indeed our lives, to the men and women in our emergency services who work tirelessly to protect us in some of the most difficult circumstances. It is only fitting that we should recognise the vital role that they play, and pay tribute to the bravery and dedication of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their communities." 999 Day begins annually at 9am on the 9th September (the 9th hour of the 9th day of the 9th month) and is held to pay tribute to the invaluable work that is carried out by the emergency services and responders. Getty images / Press Association

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History repeated with Kate Middleton topless photos

In 2012, photos of Prince William’s wife, Kate Middleton, sunbathing topless while vacationing in France were published in French Closer magazine. The couple wasn’t standing for this invasion of privacy and took legal action, suing the publication and ordering the magazine and two of its staff to pay the Cambridges $226,000 in damages.

A statement released at the time by St. James’ Palace said the invasion of privacy was “reminiscent of the worst excesses of the press and paparazzi during the life of Diana, Princess of Wales, and all the more upsetting to the Duke and Duchess for being so.”

In a statement read in court, Prince William noted: “In September 2012, my wife and I thought that we could go to France for a few days in a secluded villa owned by a member of my family, and thus enjoy our privacy. We know France and the French and we know that they are, in principle, respectful of private life, including that of their guests.”

He continued: “The clandestine way in which these photographs were taken was particularly shocking to us as it breached our privacy.”

He shared that the photographs taken were “all the more painful” because of the way the paparazzi had harassed his mother.