Answers to Your Questions on the Royals

Finally, morganatic marriage never really caught on in England. And when these marriages did occur in European royal families, they usually were problematic. In a morganatic marriage, a person of royal or noble rank was allowed to marry someone of inferior rank, but that person couldn't share the title, and any children of the marriage, although legitimate, couldn't inherit. The Battenbergs -- the family of Prince Philip's mother (they later anglicized it to Mountbatten) -- were descended from a morganatic marriage, and in the 19th century other royals sometimes sneered at them as half-breeds.

So Charles and Camilla are getting married, period. Nothing morganatic about it. So there's no legal reason why Camilla Parker Bowles could be denied Prince Charles' titles once she becomes his wife. She's said she wants to be known as Duchess of Cornwall, not Princess of Wales, but both titles will automatically be hers, whether she chooses to use them or not.

Haimatbruecke in Denmark writes: I like to know the birthday of Camilla.

Answer: Camilla Parker Bowles, née Shand, was born July 17, 1947. Prince Charles was born Nov. 14, 1948. Although Camilla has often been portrayed as much older or as a "maternal" figure for Charles, she is just a year and a half older than he is. That's not very motherly.

Cathy asks: If Diana were still alive, could Charles remarry? In a church?

Answer: If Diana were still alive, Charles could remarry, because they were legally divorced. But he couldn't do it in an Anglican church. The Church of England says that in some extreme circumstances a divorced person may remarry in the church even when the ex-spouse is still living, but Charles and Camilla probably wouldn't meet its criteria. Diana's death technically would free Charles to marry in the church, but his intended, Camilla Parker Bowles, is a divorcée whose first husband is still living. So they're having a civil ceremony.

Faith in the Philippines asks: How does the two princes feel about the marriage -- Prince William and Harry -- and will they live together with the two princes?

Answer: Prince William and Prince Harry issued a statement saying they were "delighted" by their father's plan to marry Mrs. Parker Bowles. William will be his father's witness at the civil ceremony; Camilla's son, Tom Parker Bowles, will be hers. There have been several published reports hinting that Harry is secretly not so thrilled, mindful of how his mother felt about Camilla.

In any event, William is 22 and in his last year at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland. Harry, 20, plans to enter Sandhurst, the British equivalent of West Point, so it's not like the young princes are home a lot. Camilla has been a constant presence at Clarence House, Charles' London home, and Highgrove, his country estate, for some time, so it's not like it will be a sudden shock for them to have her around.

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