Meghan and the queen: the background of the breakup

Meghan and the queen: the background of the breakup

They first met over tea and a tray of scones. Prince Harry’s new girlfriend, Meghan Markle, was an actress by trade, noshe would never have arrived unprepared for the most anticipated audition: the meeting with the queen. For weeks before flying to London, she had frequented the Rose Tree Cottage, a little corner of England in the heart of Pasadena, California, a British-filled shop known for serving afternoon tea in keeping with British etiquette.

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Accepting Meghan into the family would have meant for Elizabeth II to drop all the unspoken requisites required of a royal bride: virgin, aristocrat, Protestant, Anglo-Saxon and white. Yet Elizabeth did it, certainly considering the political convenience of having a girl with whom a large part of the Commonwealth could recognize themselves, but above all to make happy her favorite nephew of hers, Harry. Thatwho today joined his brother William, after months of discussions and silence, and his uncles to go to the bedside of his grandmother, who passed away at 96 years of age. Meghan no, she stayed at home, because after what happened in recent months her presence would not have been welcome.

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Yes, because since that fateful, very successful first meeting, things have changed quickly. How has the relationship between Meghan and Eliabetta evolved? Meghan, divorced and American, reminded the queen of the ghost of Wallis Simpson, and yet she had decided not to be influenced by memories and history. She welcomed her by giving her everything it took Kate Middleton years to have of her, like inviting her to attend a public event together, alone, with no other members of the royal family present. Or a magnanimous look at protocol errors, like her showing up to her without a hat on.

Queen Elizabeth II and Meghan Markle joke together at the Mersey Gateway Bridge opening ceremony on June 14, 2018 Photo: Getty

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Meghan had arrived like a cyclone at the Court bringing freshness and modernity, receiving an unexpected favor from the public. For a short time she seemed to overshadow even Kate Middleton, because her living royalty out of her protocol made William’s wife look in a cast and out of time. It all worked, for a while, but then she and Harry started feeling ‘trapped’ in a life they don’t want. They wanted more space, to do things their way, and they thought they deserved it. They have started a discussion table with the Queen’s staff asking for a meeting with her, which however is postponed, so they impulsively decide to leave moorings and set out to sea, for the New World. “They will always be beloved members of the family,” the grandmother queen reacts seraphic. Which also bears well the low blow landed by the couple during the interview with Oprah Winfrey, on American TV, while Prince Philip was hospitalized, which must have certainly hurt her. Meghan’s accusations are thoughtful, racism is even brought up, so much so that, with a decision that she has of the historian, the queen allows the release of a press release to say that she would have investigated the matter.

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The pandemic does not help to put things in order and not even the death of the prince consort, Philip, is enough to bring Harry back to his family. He and Meghan stay apart, the prince’s dialogue with his father Charles and his brother William is increasingly difficult, a door closes. Only the queen leaves hers always open for the royal expat couple, “the rebels of the monarchy”, and also welcomes them when they return to present her with Lilibet Diana, their daughter born in August 2021, who on the occasion of the Platinum Jubilee puts foot for the first time in the UK.

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What the queen really thought of Meghan, hard to say. Certainly her has never been a judgment polluted by the thought of others, despite the judgment of Prince Philip – the only one that the queen has always held in high regard – towards the former actress was very negative. The affection that the sovereign felt for her nephew Harry, who at the age of 12 lost his mother in a tragic accident only to be placed at the center of a media circus, has also been extended to the woman Harry loves. With some reservations perhaps, since at Balmoral, at the queen’s bedside, Meghan did not go. Harry, on the other hand, came alone, after all, and left alone, to return to Meghan at Frogmore Cottage. It is also unclear whether the Sussexes will attend the funeral of the queen, probably yes, but the feeling remains that Meghan is not welcome in the family. And would she, Elisabetta, have wanted it? The queen’s thought has always been impenetrable and even this question will remain unanswered.

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