Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 September 2014

Scandalous Prince George of Cambridge - the misdeeds of black sheep Royal ancestor

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with their newborn son (PA)
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with their newborn son (PA)
BALMORAL, UNITED KINGDOM - AUGUST 19: Prince Charles And Princess Diana Holding Hands And Smiling As They Pose During A Honeymoon Photocall By The River Dee. The Princess Is Wearing A Tweed Suit Designed By Bill Pashley With A Pair Of Cream Shoes From The Chelsea Cobbler.
BALMORAL, UNITED KINGDOM - AUGUST 19: Prince Charles And Princess Diana Holding Hands And Smiling As They Pose During A Honeymoon Photocall By The River Dee. The Princess Is Wearing A Tweed Suit Designed By Bill Pashley With A Pair Of Cream Shoes From The Chelsea Cobbler.
Royal babies' names are not usually revealed straight away and the public are often left guessing for several days as speculation mounts.
Royal babies' names are not usually revealed straight away and the public are often left guessing for several days as speculation mounts.

One historian has expressed surprise that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge named their baby George, just like the last Prince of Cambridge.

Judith Rowbotham, a social historian at Nottingham Trent University, said that although George was a traditional royal name and the bookmakers' favourite, the personal life of the other Prince George of Cambridge (pictured right) caused a great deal of scandal.

"It's going to give some mileage for comparison," Dr Rowbotham said. "His personal life was not to the pace of the Victorians, but on the other hand he was a very good military commander and presided over a number of reforms."

The selection of George, despite the particular historical implications linked to the Cambridge title and the use of just three names – George Alexander Louis – rather than four like both William and the Prince of Wales, or even seven like Edward VIII, had demonstrated a more modern approach, Dr Rowbotham suggested.

"It shows how determined they are to go their own way," she said.

The first Prince George of Cambridge, born in 1819 and who was a grandson of George III (below), did not seek the sovereign's approval when he wed actress Sarah Louisa Fairbrother, already the mother of two of his children and pregnant with his third.

The marriage was never recognised, hence his children were not eligible to inherit royal titles.

Miss Fairbrother, who generated considerable scandal – including having a portrait painted in which she showed off her bare legs – was ostracised by the royal family and never given a title, and became known by the nickname Mrs FitzGeorge.

George had a wandering eye and also had a mistress Louisa Beauclerk, who remained his lover for more than 30 years.

He went on to become the 2nd Duke of Cambridge after his father's death.

He was promoted to Commander-in-Chief in 1887, and an equestrian statue of him stands in London's Whitehall.

Charles Kidd, editor of Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage, said George was a "very fine name".

"George really speaks for itself, I'm really pleased," he said. "It's very traditional but it's also a very popular name now for young people naming their children.

"George is the name that features the most amongst the male line descendants of all our sovereigns if you tot up all the middle names as well, particularly since George I, the founder of the House of Hanover."

Siobhan Freegard, founder of Netmums, said the name George means farmer or earthworker.

Its recent poll found mothers believe children with the name are "loyal, honest, talented, independent – but with a rebellious streak".

"Alexanders are credited with being easy-going entertainers while Louis' are leaders – and can be highly intelligent," she added. "When it comes to naming babies, royals are bound by certain protocol so you won't be seeing a Prince Tyler any time soon.

"The upper classes tend to stick to a set of traditional, safe, tried and tested names which this elegantly reflects. George is a classic choice in memory of the Queen's own father King George VI and William's great grandfather. It's popular, classless and solidly royal."

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