The heir to the throne! A new biography on Prince Charles reveals many surprising details about the future king of England and his everyday life.
In royal writer Sally Bedell Smith‘s unauthorized biography Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life, she examines Queen Elizabeth II‘s eldest son’s inevitable rise to the throne over his son Prince William.
Here are five things we learned about Charles from Smith’s talked-about biography in the video above, and detailed below.
1. He Won’t Pass the Crown to William
“Charles will be King and Camilla will be Queen,” Smith writes, according to an excerpt obtained by Vanity Fair. “They will not skip over to William, who is being groomed to become King probably in his late 40s or early 50s.” (William is 34 years old.)
2. He Travels With a Leather Toilet Seat
Just in case? Charles, 68, travels with a white leather toilet seat, according to The New Yorker‘s report on Smith’s book. She also claims that the heir apparent is infuriated when he has to fly first class on a commercial flight rather than on a private jet.
3. He Was Bullied as a Child
At the age of 8, Charles was sent to a boarding school in Scotland, where he was often bullied by fellow students. He spent weekends at a family friend’s nearby home, where he would “cry his eyes out” and hide from the bullies, according to The New Yorker‘s extended review of Smith’s book. He was beaten up and ostracized, and many of the other boys made “slurping” noises at anyone who tried to befriend the young prince.
4. He Wasn’t Actually a Playboy
Charles’ public image throughout his twenties wasn’t always what it appeared to be. His reputation was partially fabricated by the press and his aides in an attempt to make him look less awkward and more “accessible” to the public, The New Yorker reported.
5. He Wept Before Marrying Princess Diana
In Smith’s book, she claims Charles wept on the eve of his wedding to the late Princess Diana, which was, in part, arranged by his father, Prince Philip. “Charles should either propose to [Diana] or release her. In either event, he should make a decision shortly,” Philip once wrote, according to Smith. Though Charles wasn’t necessarily in love with Diana, he went through with the nuptials anyway because it was “the right thing for this Country and for my family,” he wrote in a letter published in Smith’s biography.
Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life is in stores now.