Edward and Sophie – new order, new rules

King Charles’ slimmed down monarchy appears (according to heavily leaked rumours) to include withholding the title of Duke of Edinburgh from Prince Edward, despite it being promised by his parents, in favour of Princess Charlotte. The argument put forward being that she is second child to the heir and could even conceivably accede to the throne and the title of Duchess of Edinburgh was held by the Queen herself after her marriage.

  The astrology certainly indicated increased tensions with the Wessexes so what lies ahead does not suggest future decisions will be received amiably.

  Charles’ Scorpio Sun is square Edward’s Saturn in Aquarius so there would always be a distance between them, not the least because of the considerable 15 year age gap. Their relationship chart has a jostling-for-the-upper-hand Jupiter opposition Pluto in a chained-together and resenting-it square to Saturn. Plus an uncompromising and explosive Mars opposition Uranus square Neptune. They were never natural allies.

  Their relationship was under considerable stress over Charles’ divorce from Diana so there may still be resentment lingering from old slights which Charles’ Scorpio Sun won’t let go.

  If anything Camilla’s relationship with Edward is even trickier, chillier and running at cross purposes, more so than usual over the next two years plus.

  Sophie is disappointed in Charles’ decisions ahead and devastated by the change from her recent elevation as Queen Elizabeth’s confidante with no joy from Camilla either.

  Both Edward and Sophie also look uncertain and under-supported in their relationship with Prince William, who seems to be taking a firm position on many Royal matters.

  Family cross-currents are bad enough in a normal brood and heightened many-fold amongst the Royals. Charles is notoriously thin-skinned and can be petulant. While slimming down is a good idea, the Wessexes do pull their weight in endless ribbon-cutting, hand-shaking events and there won’t be enough of the inner circle to cope if the shrinkage goes too far.    

31 thoughts on “Edward and Sophie – new order, new rules

  1. CharlotteC yes you’re right the Sovereign Grant has replaced the civil list but performs a similar function. The revenue from the Crown Estate as you say is transferred to HM Treasury by the Crown as per historical agreement so is public money. I’m surprised to hear that Edward and Sophie pay rent for their 122 room home in Bagshot.
    The RF seem to own a huge amount of property. I’d like to see some of it given up for the public good with there being such a shortage of housing for ordinary people. William has shown interest in this I think.
    If unsuitable for conversion maybe some properties could be sold and the revenue used to fund affordable housing schemes.?
    Just a thought.

  2. Prince Edward and Sophie seemed to be the best of the Queen’s children, in terms of balancing royal duties, personal careers and (seen from afar, of course) down-to-earth personalities with drama-free lives. In fact, if I could choose who should be King, they’d be my favorites.

    So while streamlining the monarchy is a positive step, it’s a shame that they should the ones negatively impacted. I don’t know whether monies are automatically associated with titles, but couldn’t there be a compromise where they can obtain the latter without burdening the monarchy and taxpayers ? (I don’t sense that Charles is the compromising type, with Pluto in Leo & in the first, and MC in Taurus)

  3. Anita, this analogy is also frequently used to describe MM’s behaviour. The problem with the Crown has been the deft mix of fiction and fact is starting to break down as 1/too many people remember the real events 2/there is too much source material online -why would the writers change HMTQs speeches or poll results when you can read the original online. I also struggle when people point to behaviour from 20-30 years ago as if it is frozen from that time on and the person concerned has learned no life lessons or failed to mature one iota. I don’t think that’s true of most people and I don’t think it’s true of KC3 either, flawed as he undoubtedly is.

  4. There are lots of Royal Dukedoms that can be doled out. The title Duke of Clarence has been used in and off over the centuries but is currently retired. There is nothing stopping a monarch reviving it if they need to grant titles.

    • The title Duke of Clarence is wreathed in various rumours and scandals, which is why I think it is probably not used. One of them is said to have drowned in a vat of Malmsey wine. King William was formerly Duke of Clarence when he was living, for many years, with Mrs Jordan – a famous comic actress – and their children. David Cameron is descended from this liaison.
      Then Queen Victoria’s grandson, Eddy, was the last Duke of Clarence – suspected of being Jack the Ripper for a truly mad, conspiracy theory interlude. Also, he was suspected of being involved in the Cleveland Street scandal about a homosexual brothel in that location. Various aristocratic men were said to use this place, a couple were named at the time, but others hidden – hence the rumours. Perhaps the RF would prefer not to reawaken any of these tales?

  5. I feel obliged to repeat, this story is just a rumour that is very successfully generating anti KC3 and anti-RF commentary across MSM. I thought we’d all become more savvy about this kind of media manipulation over the last 5 years. As they say, ‘follow the money’. Who benefits most at this time from 1/negative and spiteful anti-Charles comments 2/undermining (or further undermining) relationships within the RF and 3/perhaps (for the rumour mongers) sweetest of all using Princess Charlotte as the lens of all the negative press.
    Other than that, as always I enjoyed Marjorie’s column found the commentary interesting and insightful. My own view is that KC3 will either retire the title or give it to Prince Edward, in his own time, as part of a much larger more complex package of changes. I suspect PE and Sophie are not particularly involved in those changes so probably feel quite fragile about everything that is going on. The problem, as with Harry, is that these changes can’t be used as a short term measure, but will affect the monarchy and members of the RF for generations to come.

    • Yanette/Candy Yes I think a long term strategy is needed re the monarchy not a knee jerk reaction. I’m sure most of the public would like to see less money spent in these difficult financial times and a more Scandinavian style one perhaps emerge if it is to survive/thrive?
      As Solaia was saying though, Queen Margrethe seems not to have handled her version of slimming down very tactfully if she possibly didn’t discuss it with her sons before her announcement!
      I think since the 1999 peerages act royal dukes and the the Prince of Wales are excluded from sitting in the Lords? Before that it was expected that they did not take up their seats so as to not be involved in politics?
      Charlotte would not be entitled to be Princess Royal when she grows up as Princess Anne holds that title. I don’t know if that has anything to do with the rumour about the Edinburgh title?
      Will she even want to be a working royal when the time comes rather than pursue a career?

      • Princess Charlotte could not be created Princess Royal until William becomes King which we hope won’t be for many years in the future and Princess Anne did not come Princess Royal until she was in her thirties. It is the title that is in the Monarch’s gift for his or her eldest daughter

        • Charlotte Princess Anne holds the Princess Royal title for life. The previous PR was Princess Mary daughter of King George V who died in 1965. For this reason our Queen Elizabeth never held the PR title.
          Even when William becomes King Charlotte could not be given the title until after Anne’s death. And the Windsor’s are a long lived family.
          We’re all becoming royal experts!
          The Wessexes as working royals receive money from the Civil List for undertaking their royal duties paid for by the taxpayer.
          Their very large mansion in Bagshot was a gift from the Queen on their wedding.

          • Thank you. I understand that they do pay rent on Bagshot and remember that the Civil list was abolished replaced with the Sovereign Grant which is calculated as a proportion of profits from the Crown Estate. Since the 1760s the King or Queen surrenders the revenue from the Crown Estate at the start of every reign in exchange for the Sovereign Grant (previously Civil List) and this is how the government funds the monarchy

    • Yanette, I agree the stuff about Charlotte inheriting the title is suspect.

      It’s a hereditary dukedom inherited through the male line only, with the eldest son taking precedence.

      So the title of Duke of Edinburgh passes from Philip -> Charles -> William -> George -> George’s eldest son.

      Charlotte doesn’t come into it at all.

      (It’s a peculiarity of the system that while the monarchy itself can be inherited by women, dating to a decree made by Henry I for his daughter Matilda, aristocratic titles only pass down the male line. Various aristos have petitioned Parliament to change this, but Parliament is too busy to be bothered).

  6. If this is true the Wessexes have every reason to be upset. I remember reading a long while ago that Edward only received an Earldom when he married because he would eventually inherit the Duke title from his father. The question is was this put in writing, or in Philip’s will or was it just a verbal promise? Edward is very easygoing and probably wouldn’t complain but I imagine Sophie being quite angry on her husband’s behalf that he was being treated this way.

    • It’s a hereditary title that passed from Prince Philip on his death to the then Prince Charles (now king).

      Nothing to do with Philip’s will – it wasn’t in his power to pass the title elsewhere. It’s down to the monarch.

      I can see Charles point of view – if he gave it to Edward, it would go to his son, who’d then be entitled to sit in the House of Lords as one of the 100 hereditary peers.

      Keeping the title in the main line prevents politics getting involved (as their titles of prince and princess prevent them sitting in the Lords.

      As it is, it’s a problem that Prince Harry is Duke of Sussex, as Archie will inherit the dukedom and be able to take his place in the Lords. We are lucky the Duke of York has no sons.

      The late Queen was just too indulgent and should have allowed her children and grandchildren to hold the title of prince or princess, but nothing more.

  7. Can KC111 not give them a different dukedom, although that maybe a touch sensitive bearing in mind his desire to trim down the monarchy, they certainly fulfil their duties.

  8. As a fellow Scorpio to Charles I think you may be stereotyping us just a little..
    Charles has always made it known he intends to slim down the monarchy both to save public money and to modernise it.
    Grandchildren of the Queen in Denmark have recently been told they will lose their prince and princess titles unless in direct line to the throne which seems sensible to me. There was a backlash from their parents at the time so perhaps it could have been handled better..
    I think the dukedom of Edinburgh is an hereditary title so Edward would have been able to hand it down to his son.
    The Wessexes have said they are trying to give their children as normal an upbringing as possible.
    Princess Anne was very wise to refuse titles for Peter and Zara. They are not working royals and have had a more ‘normal’ life in consequence, able to follow the careers of their choice.
    Who would want to be in the royal goldfish bowl?

    • Remember that it is a title and it doesn’t necessarily come with royal duties and expenses attached. Like everything much is reported about the royal family but we are left unsure about what is fact and what is fiction

    • @Josie, there’s a post here on Margrethe II’s decision, from October 2nd. I always thought the two Queens “second of their names” after truly legendary firsts got along well, and King Charles III respects one of his closest royal cousins.

      But Margrethe probably miscalculated partly because of Carl Gustaf XVI of Sweden – her actual, 1st degree cousin – has made similar decisions with his siblings and children with their consent.

  9. My English father emigrated to Canada and had no time for the Royals. “Inbred Germans” was his take on them. Shoddy behavior like this by Charles (disappointingly supported by William) hastens the Monarchy’s end.

    • Sun last degree Capricorn or zero Aquarius, with a Virgo Moon conjunct Uranus Pluto. Maybe a Gemini rising though she doesn’t look it. 12.46pm is a possible birth time. Venus in Capricorn,. Jupiter in Taurus – very earthy.

      • Also Tr Pluto will be conjunct her natal Sun, beginning to apply within the next few weeks – change of life direction, others who have power over her life and decisions (Charles) will be applying their power over her for a year or two to come. A personal fight to make her own decisions fit with her life purpose too.

  10. It is disappointing, particularly as Prince Edward was promised the title. It would have been nice to have a new Duke of Edinburgh.

  11. This story, that KC3 is going to pass on the DofE title to Charlotte instead of Edward is being widely reported, but does anyone know if there’s a shred of evidence to back it up? Given HMTQs promise to Prince Edward is so well known, I do not believe for one moment KC3 would put his 7 yo grandchild (Charlotte) up as target practice for the media, as is happening right now. Please can we all take care not to assume that heavily promoted rumour is fact, especially where young children are concerned.

  12. Such a pity that King Charles cannot think strategically. A petty little bully whose authority has gone to his head.

    The Wessexes really do pull their weight on Royal engagements, they have kept their noses relatively clean, so there’s no reason why they should not have this dukedom. A smart manager would find a way to keep their hard workers on board. Why should they bother cutting ribbons now. I don’t blame Countess Sophie for feeling down about it. No matter what she does or has, it’s all at the whim of her brother in law.

  13. Very petty decision. Why not honour his parents by abiding with their wishes?
    Or is this pressure coming from the Wales or whatever they are called now.

    • Season 5 of the Crown is currently showing on Netflix, and while I know it’s a blend of fact and fiction, inspired by true events, I personally think the entire series doesn’t portray Charles in the best of light (that includes Diana for that matter). So one wonders about his scorpion personality in this recent move. It it all seems rather petty, but mostly vengeful and spiteful. It reminds me of the fable where the scorpion, asks a frog to carry it across a river on the frog’s back. The frog hesitates, afraid of being stung by the scorpion, but the scorpion argues that if it did that, they would both drown. The frog considers this argument sensible and agrees to transport the scorpion. Midway across the river, the scorpion stings the frog anyway, dooming them both. The dying frog asks the scorpion why it stung despite knowing the consequence, to which the scorpion replies: “I couldn’t help it. It’s in my nature.”

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