Royal Drama: King’s fractious family on stage at coronation

April 29, 2023 -LONDON (AP) — King Charles III lives in a palace, travels in a chauffeur-driven Bentley and is one of Britain’s richest men, but he’s similar to many of his subjects in one very basic way: His family life is complicated — very complicated.

There’s a second wife, an embarrassing brother, and an angry son and daughter-in-law, all with allies who aren’t shy about whispering family secrets in the ears of friendly reporters.

The new king will hope to keep a lid on those tensions when his royally blended family joins as many as 2,800 guests for Charles’ coronation on May 6 at Westminster Abbey. All except Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, are attending.

How Charles manages his family drama over the coming weeks and years is crucial to the king’s efforts to preserve and protect the 1,000-year-old hereditary monarchy he now embodies. Without the respect of the public, the House of Windsor risks being lumped together with pop stars, social media influencers and reality TV contestants as fodder for the British tabloids, undermining the cachet that underpins its role in public life.

Royal historian Hugo Vickers says people should look past the sensational headlines and focus on what Charles accomplishes now that he is king.

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