Why did Queen Camilla’s family nickname her “Lorraine” before her ascension to the throne, and why did it reportedly annoy King Charles so much? It’s wordplay, see.
In the rich tradition of cheeky nicknames within the royal family (looking at you, One Pint Willy aka Prince William), according to an upcoming book focusing on Charles and his ascension, Camilla had one of her own: Lorraine.
In The Making of a King: King Charles III and the Modern Monarchy, which is set to hit shelves January 18, author Robert Hardman reveals that before she sat on the throne alongside Charles, Camilla’s family coined the jokey moniker, a play on “La Reine,” French for “the Queen.” The nickname was a wink at her place within the royal family, and her possible future. Camilla reportedly thought it was funny. The then-Prince Charles? Not so much.
“She always saw the funny side of that—even if Prince Charles did not,” a friend revealed to Hardman in the book, according to the Daily Mail.
Of course, she did eventually become queen, even after years of discourse over what a title should be for the second spouse of the future monarch when the time came.
Camilla’s sister, Annabel Elliot, was interviewed for the book and called her sister’s new station “totally surreal” for the family to comprehend, and said that she “find[s] it very hard to curtsy to her. And call her ‘Your Majesty’? That I can’t do.”
“She’s a wonderful mother and grandmother,” Elliot said of Camilla in her private life. “She’s very, very hands-on. All our children have grown up very much together. It’s almost like one family, so she’s back to being her normal self when she’s with all of us. I mean, she wouldn’t get away with it otherwise!”
“There’s quite a bit of irreverence: ‘You’re not the Queen to us,’ and so on,” she said. “There’s quite a lot of all that—thank God.”
Others noted Camilla’s good sense of humor in the book as well, like British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, who called her “uproariously funny.”
“It was hard during the dinner to try and keep the volume down because we were having such a good time,” he said of a weekend he spent with the royal family at Balmoral.
Another friend, the Marchioness of Lansdowne, said that Camilla “has got a great twinkle and it comes out very readily.”
“She knows when to wink at a bishop, but when not to–which I think is a rather endearing quality,” she said.
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