As you’ve no doubt heard by now, Prince Harry’s long-awaited memoir, Spare, has been making nonstop headlines this week.
Fans who were disappointed by the lack of scathing allegations and high-stakes drama in Harry and Meghan Markle’s recent Netflix series have no doubt been placated by the abundance of both in Harry’s literary debut.
And of course, most of the shocking revelations have had to do with Harry’s strained relationship with his father and brother.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the situation has led many to question why Harry has always been such an outsider in his own family.
And those questions have led to the resurgence of an old rumor — that Harry is not the biological son of Prince Charles, but is instead the product of an affair between Princess Diana and her longtime friend Major James Hewitt.
Yes, that oddly specific claim has been circulating since Harry was a boy.
And the Duke of Sussex addressed it for the first time in his memoir.
“Pa liked telling stories, and this was one of the best in his repertoire,” Harry wrote, adding that Charles used to joke about the situation:
“‘Who knows if I’m really the Prince of Wales? Who knows if I’m even your real father? Maybe your real father is in Broadmoor, darling boy!'”
According to Harry Charles would “laugh and laugh,” even though it was “a remarkably unfunny joke, given the rumor circulating just then that my actual father was one of Mummy’s former lovers: Major James Hewitt.”
“One cause of this rumor was Major Hewitt’s flaming ginger hair, but another cause was sadism,” Harry wrote.
“Tabloid readers were delighted by the idea that the younger child of Prince Charles wasn’t the child of Prince Charles,” he continued.
“They couldn’t get enough of this ‘joke,’ for some reason. Maybe it made them feel better about their lives that a young prince’s life was laughable.”
Hopefully clearing things up once and for all, Harry added:
“Never mind that my mother didn’t meet Major Hewitt until long after I was born, the story was simply too good to drop.”
Perhaps the Duke of Sussex can take a bit of solace in the fact that this particular tendency appears to be universal:
Folks have been speculating about the paternity of royal offspring for hundreds of years, and for much of that time,. even the risk of beheading couldn’t get them to stop talking!
So Harry’s in good company, but he’s clearly fed up with these reports.
As for Hewitt, he’s also denied the rumors, speculating that the claim resurfaces every few years merely because it “sells papers.”
“It’s worse for him probably, poor chap,” Hewitt added, referring to Harry.
It’s probably a difficult topic for Harry to address.
But on the bright side, at least there’s a viral excerpt from Spare that won’t completely piss Charles off!