Who is the new Queen of England? Camilla’s new role as queen consort – NBC Chicago

After seven decades, the UK has a new woman to call queen, except she will instead be known as the queen consort.

Charles’ wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, will be Queen Consort – a title that came with Queen Elizabeth II’s blessing after years of contention, dating back to the days before she even married Prince Charles.

It was not always taken for granted that Camilla, 75, would win the title, even if it does not give her any of the powers of the sovereign.

While a king’s wife is traditionally crowned queen, the question of what title Camilla would hold when Charles becomes king has been a delicate one for many years. This was due to the sensitivity of his status as a second wife – and the wave of grief that swept through Britain after the death of his estranged wife, Princess Diana, in a car accident in 1997.

Charles and the royal household acted cautiously on the matter, aware of the persistent public perception of Camilla as a “third person” who ruined the marriage between Charles and the beloved princess.

But over the decades, Camilla has won over much of the British public with her low-key, down-to-earth personality and loyalty to her husband.

When Camilla and Charles married in a low-key civil ceremony in 2005, she was effectively the new Princess of Wales – Diana’s title – but instead styled herself the Duchess of Cornwall.

Palace officials have said for years that Camilla “intended” to be known as the “princess consort” – instead of the traditional “queen consort” – when Charles came to the throne.

There is no precedent for the title Princess Consort, which is said to have been suggested by royal officials. The similar title of prince consort has only been used once – for Prince Albert, husband of Queen Victoria, who reigned from 1837 to 1901.

In a 2010 interview with NBC, Charles was asked if Camilla would become “the Queen of England, if and when you become the monarch.” He hesitated as he replied, “It’s, well… We’ll see, won’t we? It could be.”

The issue was resolved when Elizabeth said she wanted Camilla to be known as Queen Consort after her son became king. It was an endorsement that officially signified the royal family’s acceptance of Camilla as a respected senior member and was widely seen as a move by Elizabeth to usher in a smooth transition to Charles’s reign.

A sign was posted outside Balmoral Castle in Scotland on Thursday announcing the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

“When, in the fulness of time, my son Charles becomes king, I know you will give him and his wife, Camilla, the same support you have given me; and I sincerely hope that, when the time comes, Camilla will be known as Queen Consort as she continues her loyal service,” Elizabeth said in February 2022, when she celebrated the 70th anniversary of her reign.

Charles said he and Camilla were “deeply aware of the honour”.

“As we have sought together to serve and support Her Majesty and the people of our communities, my beloved wife has been my own unwavering support throughout,” he said.

The most recent queen consort in British history was George VI’s wife, Queen Elizabeth, later known as the Queen Mother after her daughter became monarch in 1952.

According to custom, Camilla will be anointed at Charles’ coronation, although this may be omitted.

Born Camilla Rosemary Shand on July 17, 1947, she is descended from aristocrats with long and close ties to the British royal family. Her great-grandmother, Alice Keppel, was a romantic partner of King Edward VII.

She met Charles at a polo match in 1970 when she was 23 and he was considered Britain’s most eligible bachelor. The two immediately became close and by the end of 1972, Charles was in love. But the romance was cut short by his eight months of naval service.

In his absence, Camilla married her longtime boyfriend, army officer Andrew Parker Bowles, in 1973. The couple divorced in 1995, shortly after Charles gave an explosive TV interview admitting an affair. with Camila. Charles and Diana divorced the following year.

Queen Elizabeth II: A royal life in pictures

Charles and Camilla waited another nine years, marrying in 2005 in a private ceremony at Windsor’s Guildhall.

Since then, Camilla has taken on dozens of royal duties. She is patron or president of over 90 charities and has shown a particular interest in working with animals, promoting literacy and empowering women. She has also found her voice as a public speaker, earning respect campaigning on tough issues such as sexual violence against women and domestic violence.

In 2021, she delivered what many called her landmark speech, urging “the men in our lives” to get involved in women’s rights and expressing sympathy for the families of murdered women.

In the same year, Buckingham Palace highlighted Camilla’s role as a senior royal by making her a Lady Royal of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, Britain’s oldest order of chivalry. .

NBC Chicago

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