A new book about the royal family claims Prince Charles "made a huge mistake" marrying Princess Diana back in the early 1980s. According to author Penny Junor, Charles' on-again, off-again romantic relationship with his now-wife, Camilla Parker Bowles, put a significant strain on his past marriage to Diana.
"He made a huge mistake. You can sympathize with Diana — oh God, yes. Put that way, he was the architect of the disaster," Junor wrote in The Duchess: The Untold Story, according to an excerpt obtained by the Daily Mail.
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"He’s very interested in objective things, but not subjective, so he couldn’t have understood the complexities of [Diana's] feelings," Junor continued. By 1992, Charles and Diana separated after 11 years of marriage.
Charles and Diana on their July 1981 wedding day. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
Interestingly, his isn't the first time the ups and downs of Charles and Diana's relationship has been uncovered in a book about the royals. Earlier this year, author Sally Bedell Smith claimed the prince wept the night before his wedding to Diana because he was still in love with Camilla.
Despite his trepidations about tying the knot with Diana, Charles felt "pressured" to settle down so he went through with the marriage.
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In Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life, biographer Bedell Smith wrote Diana — who sadly passed away at age 36 in an August 1997 car crash — and Charles were just too different to make their relationship work.
Charles and Diana (left) and Charles and Camilla (right). (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
According to Bedell Smith, Charles' father, Prince Philip, once sent his eldest son a letter telling him to get engaged to Diana. Though The People's Princess was 13 years younger than her future husband, the royal family thought Diana's aristocratic background, fun-loving personality, and undeniable beauty made her a good match for Charles.
"[He] wasn’t in love, he wasn’t ready. Psychologically he assumed his father bullied him, so he read it as a bullying letter," Bedell Smith wrote.
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"Charles should either propose to her or release her. In either event, he should make a decision shortly," the author added. The couple later announced their engagement in February 1981 and married in a lavish royal wedding just five months later.
Throughout his marriage to Diana, Charles never forgot about his former flame Camilla. According to Bedell Smith, Charles was drawn to Camilla's down-to-earth personality, love of the countryside, and disinterest in fashion. He also appreciated that she "always listened" to him.
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Charles' subsequent affair with Camilla was highly documented by the press and the two later married in April 2005, eight years after Diana's tragic death.
Check out the gallery to see more photos of the most iconic royal weddings!
Elizabeth and Philip were married on Nov. 20, 1947 at London's Westminster Abbey. At the time, Britain hadn't fully recovered from the devastation of World War II, so Elizabeth used ration coupons to buy the material for her wedding gown, which was designed by Norman Hartnell.