The latest season of The Crown introduces a long-awaited character, the Princess of Wales. We see her enjoy a (surprisingly short) romance with Prince Charles, and gain the approval of the royal family, before the big moment: the Prince's proposal. Except it's not actually that big of a moment on screen—Charles doesn't even get down on one knee.
So, is that really how it went down? Charles not bothering to bend down, Diana nervously laughing, all very unromantic? Well, it's not that far off from the truth—but it's not clear that Charles stood up straight the whole time.
In Andrew Morton's biography of Diana, which Princess reportedly participated in, the proposal is described as brief. Morton has it that the duo were in the nursery at Windsor Castle when he "asked her simply to marry him." She giggled in surprise, thinking it might be a joke. "The Prince was deadly serious, emphasizing the earnestness of his proposal by reminding her that one day she would be Queen," Morton wrote.
"While a small voice inside her head told her that she would never become Queen but would have a tough life, she founding herself accepting his offer and telling him repeatedly how much she loved him. 'Whatever love means,' he replied." Charles then went upstairs to call the Queen and tell her the news: they were engaged.
The 2017 documentary Diana: In Her Own Words used audio from Morton's interview with the Princess, allowing viewers to hear about the proposal from Diana herself. "I remember thinking, 'This is a joke,'" she said, per Entertainment Weekly. "In my immaturity, which was enormous, I thought that he was very much in love with me, which he was. He sort of had the besotted look about him, looking back at it, but it wasn’t the genuine sort. You know, ‘Who is this girl who’s so different?’ But he couldn’t understand it. It was like a call to duty, really. Go and work with people."
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