7 strange royal birth facts

It is said of the upper classes that they are born with silver spoons in their mouth, figuratively, of course. If you take a closer look at the history books, there are some royal birthing stories far more curious and interesting than oral cutlery. Take a look at how some princes and princesses made their royal debuts:

One is actually rather amused

Queen Victoria wasn’t a fan of pregnancy or birth, despite having nine living children. She reportedly suffered from post-natal depression and preferred to bathe her beloved corgis rather than her babies. That said, she was the first royal to give birth, in the mid-1800s, under the influence of chloroform. Such was her enthusiasm for the experience, that chloroform births were seen as a status symbol for some time after.

Buckingham Maternity Hospital

King George lll’s wife, Queen Charlotte, gave birth to 14 out of 15 of his children in Buckingham Palace. All but two children survived to adulthood. Charlotte later founded a hospital for expectant mothers. Despite her fondness for Buck House, births at the Palace were uncommon, although Prince Charles was also born there.

The Queen of tragedy

Anne, Queen of Britain, 1665-1714, was pregnant 17 times, but outlived any surviving children. Most of the babies (many of whom were stillborn or miscarried) were delivered at either St James Palace or Windsor Castle. Such was the obsession with the delivery of an heir to the throne that, in order to avoid fake pregnancies or substituted babies, witnesses were told to stand at the door when a potential heir was being born.

Bastard claimants to the throne

Throughout the entire colourful history of the British Royal Family, there have been speculations about illegitimate children, pretenders to the throne and tales of pregnant concubines which would supply story lines for a hundred years to the juiciest of soap operas. Although many of the stories are just based on rumours, there’s always the remote chance that the person sitting next to you in your office canteen has blue blood…

The suicide of the Royal Obstetrician

Princess Charlotte of Wales, 1796-1817, daughter of George (who later became George lV), died after delivering a stillborn infant at the age of 21. She had reportedly refused the use of forceps by the Royal Obstetrician, Sir Richard Croft, who had also put her on a restricted diet in order to “reduce the size of the baby in her womb”. Croft, consumed with guilt over the death of the princess, shot himself three months after her death. The sad affair became known as the "triple obstetric tragedy" which resulted in the deaths of mother, child and physician.

Baby X

William and Kate’s baby won’t have a surname. Members of the Royal Family with titles such as Prince or Princess rarely use the accepted family surname of Mountbatten-Windsor. According to an ambiguous-sounding proclamation, they simply use their titles. Prince William and Prince Harry, for example, used the surname “Wales” during their schooling. This means that if Will and Kate call their kid “Blue” after Beyoncé’s child, her full name would be “Blue Wales”.

The Royal Instagram?

Prince William, according to sources, is said to be preparing to reject tradition and be present during the birth of his baby. Could this lead to live-Tweeted Royal Births or regal Pinterest accounts?

What's the craziest birth rumour you've ever heard?
We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
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