There has been much said about Camilla Parker Bowles, the Duchess of Cornwall and the wife of Prince Charle. Now in her 70s, Prince William and Prince Harry’s stepmother has been in the public eye since the 1970’s, first as the girlfriend of Prince Charles, and then in the ’80s and ’90s as the scandalous other woman who carried on an affair with the prince while he was married to the beloved late, Princess Diana.
Despite the scandals and the disdain from both the public and the royal family, Duchess Camilla Parker Bowles has managed to weather every storm, stay true to herself, and even bond with her new daughter-in-law, Duchess Meghan Markle. Forget what you heard, here are some shocking secrets you never knew about Camilla Parker Bowles.
1. Unfit for a prince
Duchess Camilla Parker Bowles and Prince Charles initially met in the early ’70s. The pair were introduced through a mutual friend, and the prince was immediately smitten. Royal biographer Penny Juror wrote in The Duchess: Camilla Parker Bowles and the Love Affair That Rocked the Crown, that the duchess was “not in anyway overawed by him, not fawning or sycophantic.” Though the pair had an intense connection, the prince was shipped off with the Royal Navy in 1973, and Parker Bowles accepted the proposal of her on-again, off-again beau, Andrew Parker Bowles.
Even if things had worked out for the pair, in the beginning, the Palace did not feel that Parker Bowles was a good fit for the future king. She is not from an aristocratic background which was super important at the time, and she also had a “reputation.” Since Western society is rooted in sexism, Parker Bowles wasn’t virginal enough to be the future queen.
Next: Banned from the palace