Monday, November 29, 2010

Royal Scoop Monday

As promised here is my next tidbit of royal info leading up to the wedding on April 29th. I'm annoyed about their choice of date as I'll be at the Malice Domestic convention on that day, so I'd better let them know that there is no point in sending me an invitation :)

Anyway last week the newspapers in England were coming up with evil little snippets to hint that future princess Kate came from the lowliest of lowly families. Her great grandmother worked in a jam factory while her grandfather had to look after his 6 siblings.

Well, it turns out that was only one part of the story. On her father's side the family were rich industrialists who built the first shopping center in the city of Leeds and helped to found Leeds University..and left a hefty trust so that Kate went to one of the most expensive private schools, Marlborough College.  However, they were always commoners and to the British aristocracy that is a gap that can never be breached.

Small example: I was at a sherry party in the Cotswolds once (snooty area of England) and the hostess beckoned us all closer and said, "My dears, you'll never guess who bought that house across the valley."
And everyone said, "Do tell!"
and she said, "My dears, he's a grocer."
And everyone made expressions of surprise, disgust, horror etc.
And the point is that even if he owned Safeway, he'd still be a grocer to them.

So poor Kate. Let's hope the rules are finally breaking down for her sake.


  1. Well, you'd think that people would realize that it's what the person accomplishes not their ancesters' had done... But then that would preclude most of the 'aristocracy' from a group of accomplishmented people.

  2. Boy, did I enjoy your post...for many reasons. The snobs in England make me laugh and then you mention the hostess putting someone down because he was of all things...a grocer. My father owned a grocery store and did quite well. He mentioned once that, "No matter how hard times get, folks still have to eat." But in my father's case, he also dealt in real estate and did quite well there, also; so I got my heartiest chuckle at the remark about a grocer.

  3. I'd like to add that not all snobs live in England. We have a notable one right here in my hometown...named Barbara Bush. I am sure many have read her recent remark about Sarah Palin being happy in Alaska and that she hopes Sarah stays there. Sarah might be a competitor to a certain Jeb Bush. My opinion is that Barbara Bush has a sharp tongue, but a dull brain, a malady contagious among snobs.

  4. This post reminds me of the caste system in India. In India, they live by the prejudices you mention in your post. I was there recently, and learned that when a person is born into a caste, that is their "birthrite" and classification life. An "untouchable" can get a job as a doctor or someother higher caste profession, and will always be considered an untouchable. I have learned that this is why many smart professionals in India move abroad. Higher castes are given their choice of jobs, and the lower castes get the leftovers. Even government run jobs. People in India are registered by their castes, and list their caste on many official docs.

  5. Your post made me smile -it's one of the reasons I love America. Yes, there is a class system but nothing like the British. My first husband was very wealthy but was "in trade." His great grandfather started a coal delivery business that he eventually inherited. Even though he didn't physically deliver the coal himself - he was still a "tradesman." Many large estates still have a separate driveway marked "Tradesman Entrance."