A new biography of Prince Charles was released this week, and the book — Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life, by Sally Bedell Smith — offers an extensive, in-depth look at the heir to the throne of England.
As Vogue helpfully points out, the book also provides some fascinating — and surprising — nuggets of info about the royal family, including these five facts:
The Queen was surprisingly chill about Prince William’s wedding to Kate Middleton
When preparing the guest list for their wedding, Will and Kate were presented with a list of 700 names — which included nobody that they actually knew. When the prince talked to his grandmother about his concerns, she reportedly told him to get rid of the list. “Start from your friends and then we’ll add those we need to in due course,” she said, adding: “It’s your day.”
Prince Charles is a Luddite — and Prince Harry busts him on it
According to the book, Prince Charles responds to emails with handwritten notes, which once led Prince Harry to joke to him: “You’d get a lot more things done if you actually picked up the phone, or — guess what? — send a text message.”
Camilla is a huge “Downton Abbey” fan
After Times reporter Valentine Low wrote a story about “Downton Abbey” that gave away some spoilers, Camilla encountered the journalist during a trip to Australia, and told him: “Valentine, you ruined my ‘Downton’!”
The Queen openly discusses her own death
Queen Elizabeth, notes the book, has engaged in open discussions about what will happen after she passes away, apparently believing that an open discussion of the matter is “healthy and important.”
Kate Middleton once snuck into an art gallery, incognito
Smith’s book claims the Duchess of Cambridge snuck into the Royal Academy of Arts after-hours in 2012 to take in an exhibit focusing on British artist David Hockney. While there, she reportedly chatted with a lawyer and his son, who had no idea who she was.