A to Z of British King Charles III

– One for action man –

Charles earned the nickname in his daring youth, jumping out of planes, escaping from submarines, windsurfing, playing polo and water skiing.

– B for black spider –

Before he became king, he bombarded ministers with letters, called the “black spider memos” because of his messy notes.

– C for Camilla –

Charles was devastated when, while in the Navy, she married Andrew Parker Bowles in 1973. Charles turned to Camilla after his marriage to Diana collapsed. They got married in 2005.

– D for Diana –

A mismatched couple, their “fairytale marriage” exploded apart. They separated in 1992 and divorced in 1996, a year before her death in a car accident.

– E for environment –

An avid environmentalist, Charles is driven by environmental conservation and organic farming. He was outspoken about climate change long before it became mainstream.

– F for faith –

The new head of the Church of England sees his role as defending the free practice of all religions. Charles has studied Judaism and Islam and tries to encourage interfaith dialogue.

– G for Gordonstoun –

Charles hated his years at the grim Scottish boarding school and described his years there as a solitary “imprisonment”. Showing off for the sake of duty was part of his character.

– H for homeopathy –

Charles is convinced by alternative medicine and even uses it on his farm animals. His outspoken views have often infuriated some in the scientific community.

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– me for income –

Before his accession, Charles’s money came from the Duchy of Cornwall, the heir to the throne’s private land and property portfolio. The surplus financed his family’s public, charitable and private activities, and he voluntarily paid income tax.

– J for anniversary speeches –

His moving, rousing speeches at the conclusion of Queen Elizabeth II’s Jubilee celebrations in 2002, 2012, and 2022, in which he referred to her as “Mommy,” endeared him to the nation.

– K for Knatchbull –

The one that got away. Encouraged by Lord Mountbatten, Charles proposed in 1979 to Amanda Knatchbull, his great-nephew and granddaughter of Mountbatten, but she refused.

– L for long wait –

Charles was the longest-serving heir to the throne in British history, since the age of three in 1952, and the longest-serving Prince of Wales, since the age of nine in 1958.

– M for Mountbatten –

The Prince’s great-uncle, Louis Mountbatten, was his mentor and closest confidante, leading his early life. His assassination by Irish Republican paramilitaries in 1979 left Charles distraught.

– N for Navy –

Charles served on the ships from 1971 to 1976 and took command of a coastal minehunter for the last 10 months. He served in the Caribbean and around the Pacific and learned to fly helicopters.

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– O for offspring –

Charles was a more practical parent to Princes William and Harry than his own parents had been. However, he has become estranged from Harry after he gave up his royal duties and moved to California, sniping at Charles on his way.

– P for Prince’s Trust –

Charles launched the Prince’s Trust with his £7,500 severance payment for the navy and the charity had helped over a million underprivileged young people by the time he came to the throne.

– Q for Queen Mother –

Charles adored his “cute grandmother”, Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother. “She meant everything to me,” he said in a moving tribute after her death in 2002.

– R for residences –

Charles is now expected to take up residence at Buckingham Palace and give up his official residence at Clarence House in London. He also inherits the Sandringham estate in the east of England and Balmoral in the Scottish Highlands.

– S for style –

Old-fashioned to some, impeccably soft to others, Charles’ sartorial style is unwavering, perhaps because his outfits are the same: shoes from 1968, a jacket from 1985 and immaculate double-breasted suits.

– T for Transylvania –

The king, who claims to be descended from Vlad the Impaler, bought and restored several properties in Romania to preserve the beautiful nature and unique rural traditions.

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– You for university –

He attended Trinity College at the University of Cambridge and became the first heir to the throne to earn a degree, graduating in 1970 with a 2:2. He switched from anthropology and archeology to study history.

– V for Vision of Britain –

Charles’ 1989 book outlines his beloved architectural principles and calls for a proportionate aesthetic development in keeping with local tradition. He put his theories into practice and built Poundbury, a model neighborhood.

– W for Wales –

Queen Elizabeth II made Charles the Prince of Wales at the age of nine, and he learned Welsh for his inauguration ceremony in 1969.

– X for X-Rated –

A secretly recorded 1989 telephone conversation with Camilla, published in 1993, was deeply embarrassing after tabloid newspapers got their hands on it and published transcripts.

– Y for youth –

Charles thinks Britain could emulate Germany’s national community or military service, as part of his drive to unlock latent talent in the country’s youth.

– Z for Zaza –

Also known as a gin and Dubonnet. The royals’ favorite lunchtime cocktail. Former Prime Minister Tony Blair called them “real rocket fuel.”


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