On June 19, 1999, Edward of England — Elizabeth II’s fourth child and the youngest — married his fiancée and girlfriend of six years, Sophie Rhys-Jones. The couple received as a wedding gift from the queen a title, as is the custom of the sovereign when their children marry, but in this case a somewhat minor one. The children of the monarch usually acquire the status of Duke, while Edward and Sofia became only Earls of Wessex, earls, by its denomination in English, a scale below the dukes. But that title was accompanied by a promise: when his father, Philip, died, the title of Duke of Edinburgh would pass to Edward. A promise that will now be broken. Carlos, his older brother and heir to the throne of England, has decided that it will not be so because the title of Duke of Edinburgh wants it for himself.
The fight for what has been the best known of the royal family names seems to be in full swing. First it was the British tabloids that revealed that Carlos, 72, intended to stay with him. But now the information jumps to the much more reliable newspaper The Times, which cites two sources very close to the heir. “Prince [Carlos] He is today the Duke of Edinburgh, and what happens with the title depends on him. It will not go to Eduardo “, one affirms, while another assures:”[El ducado de] Edinburgh will not be for the Wessex as far as the prince is concerned. ” The decision does not have to be made now, but will come when the title returns definitively to the Crown, when Carlos is king.
It is surprising that third change with respect to the title. When Philip of Edinburgh passed away in April, many assumed that Edward, his youngest son, would be the heir to that name, which the queen’s husband carried for more than 70 years, since he married Elizabeth. Eduardo had spent years dealing with affairs and associations managed by the Duke of Edinburgh and in fact he is the face and in charge of granting the awards that he founded in 1956 with his name and that recognizes young talents from different disciplines.
That the title of Duke of Edinburgh passes to Edward is not a whim or an invention of his. It is a reality that was made public not only by Isabel II, but by the Duke himself and even Carlos in 1999, with Eduardo’s wedding. “The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales have agreed that Prince Edward will be granted the Duchy of Edinburgh when the present title now held by Prince Philip finally returns to the Crown,” read a statement released when married. That is, the change would come when Felipe died and Queen Elizabeth also, therefore, when Carlos was king. In a recent interview with the newspaper The Daily TelegraphSophia from Wessex remembered that moment more than 20 years ago. “We were slightly surprised,” said Sofia. “He [Felipe de Edimburgo] He came straight to us and told us that he would very much like us to consider it. ” In that same interview, Eduardo explained that accepting it was “bittersweet”: “Because the only way the title could come to me would be for my parents to die”.
At first, it was Andrew (the third son of the queen) who was going to opt for that honor, but in the end at his wedding he was invested Duke of York, a title that is usually carried by the second male children of the sovereigns. “My father was very interested in the title continuing, but he didn’t move fast with Andrés, so he thought of us. It was a beautiful idea ”, Eduardo acknowledged about a title created in 1726 by George I, which was only used again by Queen Victoria in the mid-nineteenth century for her second son and that George VI, father of the current sovereign, recovered in 1947 for him. husband of her eldest daughter.
The BBC network also asked Eduardo in June about whether he would accept the challenge of bearing the title of Duke of Edinburgh, and he tried to be restrained in his comments. “It was a good idea in theory years ago, when it was kind of my father’s dream… and of course it will depend on whether the Prince of Wales, when he becomes king, wants to do it. So we will have to wait and see. But yes, it would be a challenge to receive it ”. At the moment, however, it does not appear that Carlos has any intention of releasing that title, although neither his spokesmen nor those of Buckingham have decided to communicate anything about it.
The Wessexes have become an important asset in the last two years in the British royal family. Anne of England (the Queen’s second daughter), 70, makes many commitments, but most fall on William of England and Kate Middleton. For this reason, with the fall from grace of Prince Andrew and the departure of Enrique and Meghan Markle (in addition to the battle between brothers that Guillermo and Enrique maintain) Eduardo and Sofia are an asset on the rise. Discreet, polite and without scandals, in the last two years they have mobilized for the family, with the addition that Sofia is one of the favorite people of Queen Elizabeth II. The Wessexes and their children have shared many moments with the queen and her husband; the posthumous photograph of Felipe —which was her favorite— that the royal house shared was a portrait made by Sofia herself. The point is that, beyond the queen and Felipe, in the end the decision of the title will be made by Prince Charles. And we will have to wait for the decision until he is king.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.