For decades, Camilla Parker-Bowles (née Shand) to be painted together the intrusive third party in the romance in between Prince Charles and also the late Princess Diana. With the come of The Crown season 3, the narrative to be re-examined. Showrunner Peter Morgan told Entertainment Weekly, "People constantly assume Charles cheated ~ above Diana through Camilla. It"s for sure the wrong means round. He was deeply in love v Camilla and forced come marry Diana."

The couple"s against-all-odds relationship proceeds to play a duty in The Crown"s newly-released fourth season. After Camilla is married turn off to longtime beau Andrew Parker-Bowles, Charles is encouraged to discover a wife that will follow the rules. Get in Diana, who fits the invoice of perfect Princess of Wales at very first glance. But, as imperial enthusiasts know all as well well, Charles"s undying love for Camilla causes his arranged marriage to crumble.

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While the The Crown"s latest installment doesn"t cast the best light on Charles and Camilla, she reportedly has plans to watch the new season. A source tells Vanity Fair royal reporter Katie Nicholl the Camilla watched pervious seasons of the Netflix show and will likely see season 4. “I imagine she’ll it is in tuning in with a glass that red wine to watch it, she has seen the vault series,” a girlfriend of the Duchess called Nicholl. “She has actually a wonderful feeling of humor and this won’t fuss her in the slightest.”

As Charles (Josh O"Connor) and also Camilla"s (Emerald Fennell) forbidden love story and triangle through Diana (Emma Corrin) unfolds on the Netflix series, relive the royals" real-life romantic below.

1970 or "71

There are number of conflicting reports about how Charles and Camilla met, historian and also The Crown advisor Robert Lacey writes in The Crown: The official Companion Volume 2. Charles swears they met v their friend (and his ex), Lucia Santa Cruz, and also Cruz corroborated this in later interviews. Historian Sally Bedell Smith, writer of Prince Charles: The Passions and also Paradoxes of an Improbable Life, also confirms this, telling, "Charles dropped instantly in love, and also Camilla, who had actually been date Andrew Parker Bowles on and also off for 6 years, was prepared for part fun v the Prince the Wales."

However, other reports state Charles and also Camilla met in the at an early stage "70s at a polo match in Windsor great Park, while People reported in 1992 that the pair met at a party in 1972 wherein Camilla’s opening line to Charles was allegedly, "My great-grandmother was the mistress of your great-great-grandfather. Ns feel we have something in common." (Camilla recommendations this truth in The Crown"s 3rd and 4th seasons.)

In The Crown"s season 3, the couple"s conference isn"t shown. What is illustrated is exactly how their bond created via private meetings and calls. Royal biographer penny Junor chronicles Charles" infatuation in The Duchess: The Untold Story: "He loved the fact that she smiled through her eyes and her mouth, and also laughed at the same silly things as that did. In short, he was really taken v her, and also after that first meeting he started ringing her up.” It"s crucial to note that return Camilla was from an upper-class background, she wasn"t aristocratic, making she a less than an ideal partner for Charles in the eyes of the monarchy. Additionally, Camilla had actually a call for dating a most men, and also Patricia Mountbatten, daughter of lord Mountbatten ("Uncle Dickie"), told Smith, "you didn’t desire a previous that hung about."



Camilla and also Charles spent a many time with each other this year, according to Lacey, going come Annabel"s nightclub in London"s Berkeley Square together and also visiting Camilla"s family members in Sussex top top the weekends. The two likewise stayed at lord Mountbatten"s Hampshire estate, Broadlands, when the prince trained because that the royal Navy at Portsmouth. Uncle Dickie was really fond the Camilla and thought she would be a suitable mistress because that Charles.

However, Lacey cites biographer sarah Bradford, who reports that when Mountbatten realized exactly how serious Charles was with Camilla, that arranged for Charles to be assigned come the West Indies for an eight-month period, as shown in the ninth episode of The Crown season 3. (The Queen mom was likely not connected in the scheming.) People report in that 1992 piece, "Although the smitten prince courted her for 6 months, the failed to propose before returning come sea in February 1973." Lacey cites Caroline Graham"s Camilla and Charles, which price quotes Camilla as informing a friend in 1972, "I love Charles very much yet I simply can"t forget around Andrew…I think of him all the time. Is it possible to love two guys at the exact same time?"


On July 4, Camilla married British military captain Andrew Parker Bowles, a former boyfriend that was previously linked to Princess Anne. Camilla and Andrew would go on to have two youngsters together, son Tom in 1974 and also daughter Laura in 1978. Charles is even Tom"s godfather.


Junor write in her book that Camilla"s marriage only intensified Charles" longing because that her. "It to be only once she was irretrievably gone the the Prince realized what he had lost,” she created in The Duchess: The Untold Story.


Charles and also Camilla"s friendship continued after she marriage, and they to be photographed with each other at a polo complement this year.


Then-Diana Spencer entered the picture. In an additional twisted connection web, Charles very first met a 16-year-old Diana when he to be courting her sister, Lady Sarah. Buy it not just approved that the relationship between her previous beau and also Diana, yet is quoted saying, "I introduced them. I"m Cupid."

Diana would later describe her meet-cute with Charles in a 1981 post-engagement interview: "It to be 1977, Charles concerned stay. He was a friend of mine sister Sarah"s. for a shoot. We type of met in a plowed field."

In The Crown"s fourth season, this meeting is fictionalized, involving Diana wearing a costume for a school production of A Midsummer Night"s Dream. Quickly after Charles meets Diana, he"s shown calling Sarah and also asking for her sister"s contact information. After ~ a searching weekend at Balmoral, Charles call Camilla come tell her the Diana to be "a triumph." he goes on to say that Prince Philip "made the family position painfully clear. They desire me to marry her." Camilla responds, "The right one was always going come come along."

In actual life, Camilla to be a part of Charles"s life during this time, showing up by his next at a polo complement in 1979. "Curiously, and with an ominousness the was to become clear only years later, Andrew and also Camilla Parker Bowles were current at many of Charles and Diana"s courtship venues—Sandringham, Balmoral, Windsor, in ~ the residences of friends," The Telegraph reported in 2005.

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Diana came to be an acquaintance of Camilla’s (in public, anyway). They were photographed with each other attending the Ludlow Races, wherein Charles was competing. The 1992 People post reported the Camilla also served as the Prince’s escort top top an main visit to Zimbabwe. She husband, Andrew Parker Bowles, to be stationed there at the time.