Prince Charles' wife Camilla is known among the royal family and the public as the Duchess of Cornwall, but as the Prince of Wales' spouse, she is technically Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales. Ever since their marriage in 2005, it was decided that Camilla would use her husband's secondary designation of Cornwall and not Wales, and the reason is simple. The title Princess of Wales was so strongly associated with Charles' first wife Diana, that it seemed more appropriate for Camilla to take on a different title – and to avoid any tension or ill feeling from some members of the public.
Royal historian and founder of Royal Musings blog, Marlene Koenig, writes: "Camilla is HRH The Princess of Wales, but she is styled as HRH The Duchess of Cornwall. I believe the decision to use Cornwall was done to appease the Dianamanics. I think it is silly to not style Camilla as HRH The Princess of Wales."
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HELLO!'s royal correspondent Emily Nash has also explained why, at the time of Charles and Camilla's wedding, Clarence House announced that Camilla would be known as a Princess Consort and not a Queen consort when Charles becomes King. It was again down to appeasing the public. "She is technically the Princess of Wales but has never used the title," said Emily.
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"At the time of her 2005 wedding to Prince Charles, Clarence House said the Duchess of Cornwall would be known as Princess Consort when her husband became King. Memories of his divorce and the tragic death of Princess Diana meant the public were not receptive to the idea of her becoming Queen at that time. There is nothing to suggest that the plan has changed, although many royal watchers are convinced that the Prince of Wales wants his wife to be Queen alongside him when he is crowned."
Charles and Camilla at their 2005 wedding
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Speaking to HELLO! this week, former Buckingham Palace spokesman, Dickie Arbiter, heaped praise on the Duchess, saying she would make a formidable Queen Consort. "She's inquisitive so she'll ask probing questions," said Dickie. "She's interested so she'll listen and won't look over shoulders to see if there's someone more important and interesting, and she'll talk because she likes meeting people which makes her a good communicator, at ease talking to people from all walks of life whether a head of state or just chatting on walkabouts. She also has a good sense of fun and humour."
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