‘Camillagate’ Tapes: Princess Diana Allegedly Revealed Prince Charles Married Her For One Reason
Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s failed marriage was one of the most publicized scandals in the royal family history. Although the Prince of Wales married the then 19-year-old Diana Spencer in 1981, his heart was fully owned by his ex Camilla Parker Bowles. The spouses eventually finalized their divorce in 1996.
But during their 15-year-marriage, Princess Diana was unhappy with Prince Charles, who was allegedly having an affair with Camilla Parker Bowles. The Princess of Wales famously said in a 1995 interview with Martin Bashir, "Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded."
Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles met in 1971 at a polo match in Windsor. The pair became lovers while Camilla was having a break from her on-off boyfriend army officer Andrew Parker Bowles.
Although the pair instantly bonded and fell in love, Camilla was not the typical woman that the prince was expected to marry. Christopher Wilson, the author of The Windsor Knot, Charles Camilla and the Legacy of Diana, said that “Camilla ... was not aristocratic enough to be a royal bride. One of Charles’ friends even cruelly remarked: ‘Can you imagine her face on a postage stamp?’”
Camilla eventually got married to Andrew in 1973, and Prince Charles started dating Diana in 1980. A year later, Prince Charles proposed to Diana, and she said, “yeah, Ok,” thinking it was a joke.
But, Prince Charles wasn’t joking; he was ready to marry her. But as their wedding day was approaching, Princess Diana began to realize that her soon-to-be husband was still very much in love with his ex. She then told her sisters that she didn’t want to marry the prince anymore, but she was laughed at.
Princess Diana then said that Prince Charles married her for one reason. “He’d found the virgin, the sacrificial lamb, and in a way, he was obsessed with me, but it was hot and cold, hot and cold,” she said.
In 1993, Prince Charles and Princess Diana officially announced their split. A month after, a set of tapes came to the surface to confirm the allegation of Prince Charles and Camilla’s affair, dubbed as “Tampongate.”
A transcript of the six-minute bedtime conversation between Prince Charles and Camilla in 1989 was published by People on Jan. 17, 1993. (Read the full Camillagate tapes transcript here).