As with most weddings, the center of attention for Britain’s upcoming royal wedding is the bride. But, what about the groom? Although he’s been in the news his entire life, there are still a number of things you may not know about Prince William of Wales.
1. He was born on the summer solstice.
While many women may feel like the day they give birth is the longest day of their lives, for Princess Diana, the birth of Prince William actually was the longest day of the year. In 1982, he arrived at 9:03 p.m. on June 21 , the day of the summer solstice, when Earth was closest to the sun.
2. He was the first heir born in a hospital.
Only in the decade before his birth did it become common for royal ladies to give birth in the hospital. Prince William was born at St. Mary’s Hospital in Paddington, London. A generation earlier, his father Prince Charles was born at Buckingham Palace while Queen Elizabeth II was born in her maternal grandparent’s London townhouse in Mayfair.
3. He is left-handed.
Every aspect of William’s life has been subjected to public scrutiny. On March 1, 1991, the nine-year-old prince made headlines just by signing a guest book. This was the first time the media noticed that he was left-handed , a trait that had been suppressed in his great-grandfather King George VI and allegedly contributed to the development of his famous stammer, as depicted in the award-winning film, “The King’s Speech.”
4. He went to public school.
Of course, in England, a “public school” is equivalent to an American private school. Even so, William is only the second the heir to go to school at all. Before his father, royal heirs were educated privately by tutors at home. However, perhaps partly because Prince Charles did not entirely enjoy his school experiences, William was sent to different schools, including Eton , which William’s Spencer relatives had attended.
5. He may never be King William.
When he inherits the throne, Prince William Arthur Philip Louis can choose to use whatever regnal name he prefers. His great-grandfather was born Prince Albert but decided to be King George VI in tribute to his father George V. On the other hand, when the current queen was asked what regnal name she would like to use, reportedly said, “My own.” William is unlikely to choose Philip or Louis since they have never been used by an English king. He could decide to be the new King Arthur, but he will most likely select his first name, which would make him King William V.