Clarence House inadvertently confirms Charles went into a sulk over the Pope

“That is an event, not a meeting,” spokesman says.

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Last night, I wrote about how the Prince of Wales has appeared to indulge in one of his characteristic sulks over failing to win a one-to-one meeting with the Pope during the latter's visit to the UK in September. The very notion has caused defenders of the prince to splutter into their teacups.

But proof of the prince's mentality, which seems more geared towards competing with his (admirable) mother than to doing his duties, is summed up in this report of the official reaction by Clarence House:

"There were discussions between the Vatican and Clarence House about the possibility of having a separate meeting while the Pope was in Edinburgh, but there wasn't time in his schedule for that," said the spokesman.

Asked why the Prince could not join the Queen and Prince Philip at Holyrood for the Pope's royal welcome, the spokesman said: "That is an event, not a meeting."

By the way, to those who leave comments asking "Who cares?", I apologise for posting on this subject again, but suggest you consider -- especially if you are republicans, as you imply -- that the bizarre actions of the heir to the throne are, like it or not, of national importance.

James Macintyre is political correspondent for the New Statesman.
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