The world wants to believe that the British Royal Family is perfect. They always say the right thing, wear what’s fashionable, have control over their children, consort with good people, treat those less fortunate with compassion, resist the temptations that plague the rest of society and have fairy-tale romances. Right?
Queen Elizabeth II would love for this to be the case. She puts her country first and tries to lead by example, but as we all know, there’s only so much control that we have over our families! Even with all the power and money she has, she hasn’t been able to stop these family secrets and scandals from surfacing.
In the past, the Royals have been caught saying offensive things, succumbing temptation, forming relationships with questionable characters and even shunning their own family members over things beyond their control. Some have been in trouble with the law and some have struggled with their own demons behind the doors of the palace. Does this mean they’re not really Royal? No. It just means that behind their tiaras and designer clothes, they’re human too.
Read on to find out what Queen Elizabeth wishes the world would forget about her family.
15 The Queen Loved Her Sister Margaret, Even Though She Wasn't Perfect By Royal Standards
Queen Elizabeth is arguably the most perfect person in the family, judging by the way she presents herself to the public. She always seems to say and do the right thing and is never caught in an embarrassing moment. Her late sister, Princess Margaret, was a different story.
While Elizabeth is known for calculating every step she makes and controlling every detail, Margaret was more carefree in her younger years. Sources report that she started smoking and drinking at the age of 15, and was more concerned with living the life she wanted rather than what was expected of her. She married in 1960 and then began an affair with a gardener 17 years younger than her 16 years into her marriage. While Queen Elizabeth’s marriage to Prince Phillip has lasted 70 years, Princess Margaret was divorced after 18.
14 One Of Princess Anne's Dogs Never Faced Justice
The Queen’s only daughter, Princess Anne, might be more careful about getting caught up in scandals than her brothers, Prince Charles, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, but she hasn’t been able to totally escape the tabloids. The Princess came under fire in 2002 when one of her English Bull Terriers got loose while she was putting it in her car, and attacked two young boys nearby.
After the incident, the Princess and her husband were taken to court and ordered to pay a fine, which went down in history as the first time a Senior Royal was charged with a criminal offense. The fine was the extent of the punishment, which angered the families of the victims. In 2003, the same dog tragically attacked and killed one of the Queen’s most treasured corgis.
13 Princess Beatrice Went Steady With A Man Who Was Arrested For The Worst Crime
As we’ve seen from the highly publicized relationships of all the young Royals, whom you date when you’re a Prince or Princess is a big deal. Guidelines and expectations have relaxed in recent years, with Prince William changing things royally (pun intended) by marrying Kate Middleton in 2011. But there are still some attributes that the Queen doesn’t like to see in the partners of her children and grandchildren, and a history of criminal activity is one of them.
Princess Beatrice, the eldest daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson, became romantically involved with Paolo Liuzzo in 2006. The man had previously been convicted of assault and battery of a man who had died from his injuries. Though this presumably isn’t the kind of person the Queen wants to let into the family, Beatrice’s mother stated that the family had to trust Beatrice’s decisions.
12 The Queen Had At Least Two Pro-Nazi Relatives
The Queen’s father, George VI, became King of England when his brother, King Edward VIII abdicated his throne on December 10, 1936, to marry Wallis Simpson, a divorcee from America. Following this, the couple was basically disowned by the rest of the family and the public and went into exile.
Recent findings show that this is more than just a love story—Edward and Wallis weren’t fit to be rulers of the United Kingdom because of other interests and beliefs that they held. It’s been alleged that the two were Nazi sympathizers, fueled by Edward’s pride of his German heritage and Wallis’s love affair with a Nazi before meeting Edward. The couple visited Hitler himself in October of 1937, and it’s been said that Hitler wanted to put Edward back on the British throne as his own puppet.
11 Prince George Didn't Fit The Royal Stereotype, And Then Mysteriously Passed Away
Edward VIII, the Queen’s uncle, and George VI, her father, had another brother who was also called George, and he was known as the Duke of Kent. Unlike most of the other members of his family, George the Duke of Kent lived a relatively controversial lifestyle, which was said to be of concern to the others. It was reported that George had a long list of lovers, including both men and women, loved to party and was also a hard user of illegal substances.
This gossip, alleged to be true by some sources, is said to have upset the Royal Family at the time. But the real story that the Queen would probably rather nobody discuss is how George died. He lost his life in a plane crash in 1942, but several theories suggest that due to his controversial lifestyle, he was assassinated.
10 One Of Prince Andrew's Best Buds Was A Registered Offender
Prince Andrew, son of the Queen and brother to Princess Anne, Prince Charles and Prince Edward, landed himself in trouble with the media in 2011 when his friendship with American financier Jeffrey Epstein was revealed. The issue was that Jeffrey was a convicted criminal found guilty of soliciting underage girls. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison for his crimes but was released in only 13.
Due to overwhelming pressure, Prince Andrew appeared to end his friendship with the criminal. His ex-wife Sarah Ferguson explained that Prince Andrew had sought out Jeffrey’s friendship so that he could help her repay some of her debts. Even today, the palace is still called out to explain how the Prince could have thought it appropriate to be friends with him in the first place.
9 Zara Phillips' Husband Partook In An Offensive Club For Fun
Zara Phillips is the daughter of Princess Anne, making her granddaughter to the Queen and first cousin to Princes William and Harry. Though her distance from the throne also gives her distance from the paparazzi, she has still found herself caught up in a scandal or two. The most notable incident was when her husband Mike Tindall went to New Zealand with the English rugby team.
After his team’s win over Argentina, Mike went to a dwarf-tossing club with his teammates. Of course, the public response to this was huge. Even before celebrities like Peter Dinklage had raised awareness as to how barbaric the concept is, the British public didn’t approve. Mike maintains that he didn’t participate in any dwarf tossing, nor did anybody on his team, but the public and the family were still unimpressed.
8 The Duke Of Edinburgh Puts His Foot In His Mouth A Little Too Much
While Queen Elizabeth obviously plans what she says very carefully, her husband, Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh, is a little less careful. On more than one occasion, the Duke has landed himself in trouble thanks to not being able to filter his thoughts before they make it to his mouth.
Back in the 1980s, the Duke spoke to a group of British students studying in China, telling them, “If you stay here much longer, you’ll go slit-eyed.” That one earned him a few comments from the public. More recently, on a trip to Australia, the Duke asked an Indigenous Australian leader, “Do you still throw spears at each other?” At the age of 96, Prince Phillip has now retired from his Royal duties, so that should be the last of the comments.
7 Prince Harry Visited A Rehab Center After Admitting To A Bad Habit
You might not have known that Prince Harry struggled with the pressures of his life as he grew up, and ended up turning to underage drinking and the use of illegal substances to help him cope. When he was just 17, Harry came clean to his father, Prince Charles, and in response, his dad had him visit the Featherstone Lodge and Rehabilitation Center in South London.
He didn’t receive any treatment and only took a tour and listened to the patients’ stories, but it helped him understand the magnitude of his actions. We think that, while the Queen might not want this to be discussed, it’s actually a good thing. Harry went through what a lot of teenagers do and dealt with it head-on rather than covering it up and letting it fester into a much bigger problem.
6 The Queen Had Two Cousins With Disabilities Who Were Hidden Away
The issue of mental illness has traditionally been taboo, and though the Royal Family are now more open to discussing the realities of it, we’re not sure what would happen if a member of the family was diagnosed with any kind of mental or intellectual condition. But back in the 1940s, two members of the family were born with disabilities, and they were hardly spoken about in public.
Nerissa and Katherine Bowes-Lyon were first cousins to Queen Elizabeth and nieces to her mother. Suffering from mental disabilities, the girls were put into homes that would care for them and were hardly ever mentioned by any members of the family. The nurses at the institution claimed that no family members came to see the girls, but the family denies this.
5 The Windsors Are Descendants Of A Real Vampire
Well, they’re descendants of a man who was as much of a vampire as anyone can be. Vlad III, known endearingly as Vlad the Impaler, is said to be the inspiration behind the story of the vampire, and Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
The tyrant was fond of torturing his subjects and used to dip his bread in their blood. The current Royals are related to him through Princess Mary of Teck, Queen Elizabeth’s grandmother. She was a descendant of two of Vlad’s sons, which makes Prince Charles a great-grandson, 16 times removed, to Vlad. While the Queen might not want to remind people of this, Prince Charles has happily commented that he has Transylvania in his blood, and has even bought a farmhouse in a rural Romanian village, near the location of Vlad’s old castle.
4 Princess Diana's Life Was Hell After Marrying Prince Charles
There was such media interest over Diana, Princess of Wales, that even the Queen couldn’t stop the truth about her life from coming out. When Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer first announced their engagement, they truly seemed like a fairy-tale couple. He was the handsome prince, she was the perfect bachelorette and everyone thought they were headed for a life of happiness.
But in reality, Diana’s life became hell once she married Charles. Before her death in 1997, Diana recorded several secret tapes, is said to have authorized a book, and filmed an interview, all which revealed the problems plaguing her life and marriage. Fueled by Charles’ undying love for Camilla Parker-Bowles, Diana suffered from an eating disorder and depression inside the walls of the palace. She even recalled throwing herself down the stairs while she was pregnant to get her husband’s attention.
3 The Spencer Family Still Haven't Forgiven The Windsors
Diana’s interviews and voice recordings say one thing, and the Royal Family says another, so we’ll never know for certain exactly what went down between the People’s Princess and the family of her ex-husband. But we safely assume that whatever happened, Diana’s family haven’t forgotten her, and aren’t on the best terms with the Windsors.
Evidence of this was clear at the wedding between Diana’s son, Prince William, and Kate Middleton. Diana’s brother and a few other relatives were invited but as far as the reports go, they chose to sit on Kate’s side. Being Diana’s family, they should have sat on the groom’s side of the church, but appeared to want as little to do with his family as physically possible. If that doesn’t scream bad blood, we don’t know what does.
2 The Epileptic Prince Who Was Hushed And Forgotten
While each generation of the Royal Family has their share of problems, just like any other family, it seems that Queen Elizabeth’s father’s generation was particularly troubled. Not only was his brother Edward consorting with Nazis and his brother George killed in a plane crash, but his youngest brother John suffered from epilepsy.
John was kept at the family estate in Sandringham, accompanied only by his nurse Charlotte Bill, and a male orderly. When he was brought to London to see doctors, he was transported in a car with the blinds drawn. He was kept out of the family photographs taken at Buckingham Palace, and only a few photos of him have been found. Sadly, Prince John passed away at the age of 13, and while most of his family was devastated, it’s been alleged that Edward showed no interest in mourning his little brother, who he referred to as “the animal”.
1 The Legitimate Royal Family?
These secrets and scandals don’t mean that the Royal Family isn’t Royal, just that they’re human. However, evidence unearthed in 2012 may prove that in actual fact, the Windsors aren’t the legitimate heirs to the British throne.
King Richard III’s remains were discovered in 2012, and after much testing, it was found that his Y-chromosome haplotypes didn’t match any of his present descendants. Experts believe this means that somewhere in the family tree, the paternal DNA was broken, and an illegitimate child was taken as legitimate.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that the monarchs don’t have a claim to the throne, as it depends on where the chain was broken. But without exhuming more Royal bodies, scientists will never be sure whether the break happened more recently, not affecting the current Royals, or up to 500 years ago, which could bring the whole family into question as legitimate heirs to the throne.
Sources: listverse.com, cheatsheet.com, theclever.com