Who is Queen Consort Camilla Parker Bowles? A look at the wife of King Charles III

By | September 9, 2022

Camilla Parker Bowles is the wife of King Charles III. On September 8, 2022, Queen Elizabeth II died at age 96, and serving as the U.K.’s longest-reigning monarch. The Queen’s death made her son Charles the king and Camilla the queen consort. Although Camilla’s reputation has improved over the years, it was once very tarnished because of the love triangle that occurred between her, King Charles III and the late Princess Diana.

Camilla, who was born in 1947 in London met King Charles at a polo match in the early 1970s and they dated for a short time after their meeting. When King Charles went off to pursue his naval career, Camilla got married to an Army officer named Andrew Parker Bowles in 1973. They had two children, Tom and Laura before their divorce in 1995.

King Charles was married before Camilla to Diana Spenser. King Charles married Diana in 1981, when she was 20 years old, and she was given the title Diana, Princess of Wales. They had two sons, Prince William and Prince Harry. 

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In 1992, Diana and the king separated and were officially divorced in 1996.

In the moments after their split, King Charles and Princess Diana’s relationship started to take an ugly, public turn. In 1993, a transcript was leaked of a private, flirtatious conversation that went on between King Charles and Camilla from 1989.

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In 1994, King Charles was interviewed on TV, where he talked about his relationship with Camilla. He was asked if he had been “faithful and honorable” to Diana, which Charles answered with a “yes, absolutely.” He was then asked “And you were?” to which Charles answered saying “Yes…until it became irretrievably broken down, us both having tried.”

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In 1995, Diana also did an interview, where she was asked about Camilla. “There were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded,” she said.

In 1997, Diana was killed in a car accident in Paris when she was 36 years old. 

In 2005, Charles and Camilla got married, and she was not given Diana’s title of Princess of Wales, out of respect for the late princess, but was granted the title Duchess of Cornwall. 

Upon their marriage, it was announced that when the time came for Charles to ascend the throne, Camilla would be given the title princess consort, rather than queen consort, which is the title typically given to the wife of a king.

Over the years, Camilla provided support to her husband and has taken on notable charity work. Over many years, her negative public reputation started to make its way up.

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In February 2022, it was announced by The Queen that when Charles took the throne, she would be known as queen consort instead of princess consort, as was previously announced. A main responsibility of the queen consort is to support the king. 

When Queen Elizabeth died in September 2022, King Charles III took power, giving Camilla with the queen consort title. She will be taking part in a similar, but simpler coronation ceremony.