Daily Office: Vespers
You Never Know
Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Let the naysayers cavil, but British monarchy’s aura of grandeur remains blinding enough for many happy observers of next week’s royal nuptials to behave as if some sort of coronation were in the offing. Why else speculate on the hopes that the bride’s stepmother, the Duchess of Cornwall, may harbor for parking her own derrière on the throne?

How much Camilla cares is a matter of debate. Some of her friends believe her concern is mostly for Charles, who has always said that he sees it as his destiny to become king, and has worked restlessly to that end, with a schedule of public duties that far outstrip any other royal family member, including his mother. Others say Camilla herself is not as come-what-may about the issue as she has sometimes suggested to friends, and would like one day to be back in the abbey, seated beside Charles, as crowns are placed on their heads.

Twice in recent months, the couple has hinted that they remain hopeful of turning the tide of public favor their way on the issue of Camilla’s becoming queen. In an interview in November with Brian Williams of NBC, Charles answered hopefully when asked whether Camilla would ever be the queen. “You know, I mean, we’ll see,” he replied, as if ambushed by the question. “That could be.”

In February, it was Camilla’s turn. “Are you going to be queen one day?” a little girl asked her on a visit to a children’s center in the Wiltshire town of Chippenham. “You never know,” Camilla replied, smiling.