02/23/2011

The Prince, the dukedom ... and Jack the Ripper

It has been something of a tradition that the immediate heirs to the throne are given a royal title upon marriage.

Prince Albert Victor of Wales Prince William will not be an exception, though which title the Queen will bestow on him has been a guessing game. A report of the Daily Mail says it's entirely possible that William will be given the Dukedom of Clarence. That sounds pretty grand, until you look at the history of the title.

The last Duke of Clarence and Avondale was Prince Albert Victor (right), grandson to Queen Victoria and a prime suspect as the infamous Jack the Ripper. Beginning in the 1960s, several authors began putting clues together that linked the Duke with the serial killings of prostitutes in London in 1888. True, by most accounts it seems Albert, second in line to throne at the time, was an oddity in the royal ranks, his intellect and sexuality oft-debated by scholars.

Whether he was responsible for the muder spree has also been debated, but the verdict is anything but conclusive.

Nevertheless, it's an intriguing legacy. The young prince died during the flu epidemic at age 28. Since then, no one has held the title of Duke of Clarence. That the title might be resurrected and given Prince William is, if nothing else, great royal water-cooler talk. The Mail reports that a royal spokeman was, as usual, guarded in his response to the speculation: "We can’t help with historical matters."

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On the wedding invitation front, there may be some doubt about the attendance of David and Victoria Beckham. ShowbizSpy quotes a source close to the Beckhams saying that the couple may pass on the wedding because of Victoria is pregnant with the couple's fourth child, due this summer.

Somehow, it seems unlikely a couple like the Beckhams would pass up the social event of the year.

David and Prince William struck up a friendship when they were involved with Britain's failed bid for the 2014 World Cup. Victoria, the former Spice Girl, is reportedly preparing to give Kate wedding gift that includes dresses from her collection.

Sounds more and more like William and Kate's home will be closet-challenged.

 



 

 

Comments

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Prime suspect?? Hardly a "prime" suspect. He is a fringe suspect along the same vein as Lewis Carroll. He lived in England in 1888 and had been in the area in the past. Apart from that ........

He should be named the Duke of Suffolk, because the Duke of Suffolk is so damn sexy in The Tudors. Yeah I went there. Judge away!

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