Why Princess Diana’s Sister and Prince Charles Broke Up

Lady Sarah McCorquodale and Prince Charles

Lady Sarah McCorquodale and Prince Charles | Screenshot via YouTube

For those who are unaware before he began dating Diana, Prince Charles was in a relationship with her older sister.

The Prince of Wales and Lady Sarah Spencer started their courtship in 1977. It is believed that when they met Charles was looking for a woman to settle down with. He had dated then-Camilla Shand in the early ’70s but after they split, he was pressured to find someone his family would deem as appropriate to marry. Some reports suggest that the prince dated more than 20 different women in his quest to find a princess.

When the press learned that Sarah and the heir to the throne were dating they wanted to know as much as possible about their relationship. Lady Sarah agreed to sit down with Mirror reporter James Whittaker who said that at the time his “mission improbable as a young journalist was to discover who Charles would marry and be first with the news.”

Whitaker recalled how candid Sarah was during their interview about her high-profile beau telling the publication, “Sarah was disarmingly frank about her boyfriend and declared she would not marry Charles ‘If he were the dustman or the King of England.'”

Whitaker remembered, “That was good news from where I was sitting and Sarah seemed delighted I was so keen to share it with the nation.” However, Charles wasn’t as thrilled about it and told her, “You have just done something incredibly stupid.” The pair then ended things and a few months later, the prince started dating Diana.

Princess Diana sits next to Prince Charles.

Princess Diana and Prince Charles | Patrick Riviere/Getty Images

While it sounds like an extremely awkward situation, Diana’s older sibling has spoken about this in the past and explained that she actually set the two of them up. “I introduced them,” she said. “I’m Cupid.”

Sarah ended up marrying Neil McCorquodale in 1980. Lady Sarah McCorquodale and her husband have three children together — Emily, George, and Celia.

A year later, Charles and Diana were married and had two sons Princes William and Harry. But their marriage was riddled with trouble and embarrassing scandals and they divorced in 1996. Diana died following a car crash in August 1997. Sarah, Charles, and Diana’s other sibling, Lady Jane, flew to Paris to collect the princess’ body.

Following her sister’s tragic death, Sarah has tried to stay out of the spotlight as much as possible but has remained very close with her nephews. She’s been spotted accompanying them to different charity events and attended Prince William and Kate Middleton’s royal wedding in 2011 as well as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s in 2018. The princes were also present when Sarah’s eldest daughter got married in 2012.

Prince Charles, of course, went on to marry Camilla Parker Bowles, now the Duchess of Cornwall, in 2005. Because they are both divorcees, the pair elected to have a civil marriage ceremony followed by a blessing at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor instead of a church service.

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