Members of the Royal Family are often subjected to people pointing out how similar they look to their historical ancestors. Whether it is how eerily alike Princess Beatrice and Queen Victoria look or just how much Zara Tindall looks like the Queen’s aunt, there are certainly a huge number of royal doppelgangers.
But if there was one living royal who shares the biggest likeness with a late relative, it is without a doubt The King and his paternal great-grandmother. King Charles Philip Arthur George was born on November 14, 1948, at Buckingham Palace to then Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh.
When it comes to his looks, The King has subsequently become well-known for his prominent ears – a long-running joke which even prompted the Queen to say: “Thank heavens he hasn’t ears like his father” when Prince William was born in 1982.
But if there was one historical figure to look to for an idea of where King Charles’ genetics come from, it would certainly be Prince Philip’s grandmother, Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine.
Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine (later known as The Marchioness of Milford Haven) was born at Windsor Castle in 1863 and was a granddaughter of Queen Victoria. She would go on to marry Prince Louis of Battenberg and have four children, Princess Alice (Prince Philip’s mother), Queen Louise of Sweden, George Mountbatten, 2nd Marquess of Milford Haven and Lord Louis Mountbatten.
During World War One, the Battenberg family abandoned their German surname and took up the more English-sounding Mountbatten. Princess Victoria became a widow in 1921 and ultimately ended up helping to raise and educate Prince Philip following his mother’s institutionalisation and subsequent divorce.
Prince Philip would later recall: “I liked my grandmother very much and she was always helpful. She was very good with children… she took the practical approach to them. She treated them in the right way – the right combination of the rational and the emotional.”
Victoria spent much of her life living at Kensington Palace and died there on September 24, 1950. She is buried next to her husband at St. Mildred’s Church on the Isle of Wight.
Another relative that King Charles is a dead ringer for is his great-great-grandfather, King Edward VII. Albert Edward was born in 1841 and was the second child and eldest son of Queen Victoria and her husband Prince Albert. He was born at Buckingham Palace and grew up to be known for his rotund figure and enormous sexual appetite.
‘Bertie’ – as he was known by his family – had to wait over 60 years before he eventually came to the throne as King Edward VII following the death of his mother on January 22, 1901, but his reign was relatively short lasting as he died in 1910.
Much like King Edward, Charles also had to wait an incredibly long time to succeed his mother and was heir to the throne for over 70 years. In fact, The King is both the longest serving Prince of Wales in history and the eldest person ever to become sovereign.
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