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Prince Henry of Wales (Henry Charles Albert David; born 15 September 1984), known as Prince Harry, is the younger son of Charles, Prince of Wales, and the late Diana, Princess of Wales, and grandson of Queen Elizabeth II. As such, he is third in the line of succession to the thrones of 16 independent states, though he is resident in and most directly involved with the United Kingdommarker, the oldest realm.

After an education at various schools around the United Kingdom and spending parts of his gap year in Australia and Lesothomarker, Harry, unlike his elder brother, Prince William, eschewed a university education in favour of following in the footsteps of various royal men by enrolling in the military. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant into the Blues and Royals of the Household Cavalry Regiment serving temporarily with his brother and completed his training as a tank commander. He served for 77 days on the front line in the Afghan War, although he was pulled out after an American website revealed his presence.

Early life

Harry was born at St Mary's Hospitalmarker in Paddingtonmarker, Londonmarker, Englandmarker, on 15 September 1984, the second child of Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, and Diana, Princess of Wales, younger brother of Prince William, and fourth grandchild of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Baptised at St George's Chapelmarker, in Windsor Castlemarker, by then Archbishop of Canterbury, Robert Runcie, Harry's godparents were his uncle, Prince Andrew, Duke of York; his first cousin once removed, Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones; Lady Vestey; Mrs William Bartholomew; Bryan Organ; and Gerald Ward.

Diana wanted William and Harry to have a broader range of experiences than previous royal children and took both to venues that ranged from Disneylandmarker and McDonald's to AIDS clinics and shelters for the homeless. Diana, Princess of Wales, who was by then divorced from the Prince of Wales, died in a car accidentmarker in 1997. Harry and his brother and father were staying at Balmoral Castlemarker at the time, and the Prince of Wales waited until early the following morning to tell his sons about their mother's death. At his mother's funeral, Harry accompanied his father, brother, paternal grandfather, and maternal uncle in walking behind the funeral cortège from Kensington Palacemarker to Westminster Abbeymarker.


Continuing on his father's precedent and like his elder brother, Harry was educated at independent school, starting at Jane Mynors' nursery school and the pre-preparatory Wetherby Schoolmarker, both in Londonmarker. Following this, he attended Ludgrove Schoolmarker, and, after passing the entrance exams, was admitted to Eton Collegemarker, where he studied geography, biology, mathematics, and art history at A-Level. The decision to place Harry in Eton went against the family tradition of sending royal children to Gordonstounmarker (Harry's grandfather, father, two uncles, and two cousins all attended); it did, however, make the Prince follow in the Spencer family footsteps, as both Diana's father and brother had attended Eton. In June 2003, he completed his education at Eton with two A-Level, obtaining a B in art, and a D in geography, having decided to drop history of art after AS level. He excelled in sports, however, developing his love for sports, particularly polo and rugby union.

After graduation, the Prince took a gap year, during which he spent time in Australia, working (as his father had done in his youth) on a cattle station and participating in the Young England vs Young Australia Polo Test Match. He also travelled to Lesothomarker, where he worked with orphaned children and produced the documentary film The Forgotten Kingdom, and holidayed in Argentinamarker.

Royal duties and career

Prince Harry began to accompany his parents on official visits at an early age; his first overseas royal tour was with his parents to Italymarker in 1985. The earlier decision made by the Princess of Wales to take an infant William to Australia set the precedent for young royal children going on official visits. Harry then accompanied either both parents or his father on subsequent tours, though he did not begin solo official engagements until after his military training and active service; in 2008, he began to undertake royal visits to schools and organisations in Walesmarker.

Military career

Prince Harry entered the Royal Military Academy Sandhurstmarker on 8 May 2005, where he was known as Officer Cadet Wales, and joined the Alamein Company. Within a year, in April 2006, Harry completed his officer's training and was commissioned as a Cornet in the Blues and Royals, a regiment of the Household Cavalry in the British Army. By April 2008, whereupon he reached two years' seniority, Harry was promoted to the rank of lieutenant.

Officer Cadet Wales (standing to attention next to the horse) on parade at Sandhurst, 21 June 2005.

The British Ministry of Defence and Clarence Housemarker made a joint announcement on 22 February 2007 that Prince Harry would be deployed with his regiment to the front line in Iraqmarker, to serve as part of the 1st Mechanised Brigade of the 3rd Mechanised Division a move supported by Harry, who had stated that he would leave the army if he was told to remain in safety while his regiment went to war; he said: "There's no way I'm going to put myself through Sandhurst and then sit on my arse back home while my boys are out fighting for their country." Then head of the British army, General Sir Richard Dannatt, first said on 30 April 2007 that he had personally decided that the Prince would serve with his unit in Iraqmarker, and Harry was scheduled for deployment in May or June 2007, to patrol the Maysan provincemarker. By 16 May, however, Dannatt announced that Prince Harry would not serve in Iraq; concerns included Harry being a high-value target (as several threats by various groups have already been made against him) and the dangers the soldiers around him would face should any attempt be made on the Prince's life or capture. Clarence House made public the Prince's disappointment with the decision, though he said he would abide by it. In May 2007, Britishmarker soldiers in Iraq were reported to be wearing t-shirts bearing the statement "I'm Harry!"; a reference to the scene in the movie Spartacus in which the survivors of Spartacus's army, defeated by Roman legions, are offered leniency by Crassus if they will identify their leader. Every survivor declares: "I'm Spartacus!"

It was reported in early June 2007 that Prince Harry had arrived in Canadamarker to train, alongside other soldiers of the Canadian Forces and British Army, at CFB Suffieldmarker near Medicine Hat, Albertamarker. It was said that this was in preparation for a tour of duty in Afghanistanmarker, where Canadian and British forces were participating in the NATOmarker led Afghan War; rumours that were confirmed in February the following year, when the British Ministry of Defence revealed that Harry had secretly been deployed as a Forward Air Controller to Helmand Province in the Asian country. The revelation came after the media notably, the Germanmarker newspaper Bild and Australian magazine New Idea breached the blackout placed over the information by the Canadian and British authorities. It was later reported that, while in Afghanistan, Harry had called in United States Air Force air strikes, helped Gurkha troops repel an attack from Taliban insurgents, and performed patrol duty in hostile areas. His tour came 735 years after his ancestor, Edward I of England (then Prince Edward), had also been on military duty in the Middle East during the Ninth crusade, and also made Harry the first member of the Royal Family to have served in a war zone since his uncle, Prince Andrew, Duke of York, flew helicopters during the Falklands War; at the time, Andrew was second in line to the thrones of the Commonwealth realms. For his service, Prince Harry was decorated with the Operational Service Medal for Afghanistan by his aunt, the Princess Royal, at the Combermere Barracksmarker in May 2008.

In October 2008, the news was revealed that Prince Harry was to follow his brother, father, and uncle with the wish to fly military helicopters. After passing the initial aptitude test, he will undertake a month-long course; depending on whether or not he passes this course he may proceed onto full flight training in early 2009. Harry will need to pass his flying assessment at the Army Air Corps Base in Middle Wallop, the result of which will determine if he will pass on to train as a pilot of either the Apache, Lynx, or Gazelle helicopter.

Royal duties

At the age of 23, Prince Harry was appointed as a Counsellor of State, and began his royal duties by first serving in that capacity when the Queen was abroad to attend the 2005 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Maltamarker. The following year, Harry was in Lesothomarker to visit again Mants'ase Children's Home near Mohale's Hoekmarker (which he first toured in 2004), and along with Prince Seeiso of Lesothomarker launched Sentebale: The Princes' Fund for Lesotho, a charity to aid children orphaned by HIV/AIDS. He has also granted his patronage to a number of other organisations, including WellChild, Dolen Cymru, and MapAction. To aid Sentebale, as well as the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund and Centrepoint, Harry and his brother organised the Concert for Diana at Wembley Stadiummarker, on 1 July 2007.

Sports have also been a way that the Prince has helped charities and other organisations, such as when he trained as a Rugby Development Officer for the Rugby Football Union in 2004 and then coached students in schools in order to encourage them to learn the sport. He has also participated in polo matches, like his brother and father, in order to raise money for charitable causes.

On 6 January 2009, Harry and his brother, Prince William, were granted their own royal household from their grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. The household the two princes will share will have three main staff members, supported by a "small" team. Sir David Manning, the former British ambassador to Washington, will work as a part-time adviser to the princes. Previously, William and Harry's affairs had been handled by the office of their father at Clarence Housemarker in central London. The brothers' new household released a statement complete with their own cypher at the top announcing that they have established their own office at nearby St. James's Palacemarker to look after their public, military, and charitable activities. Harry's cypher is similar to his brother's, but displays an H in a shade of blue similar to that used by his mother.

Personal life and relationships

Prince Harry has spent much of his free time in sporting activities, playing competitive polo, as well as skiing (at Klostersmarker, Switzerlandmarker, and Whistlermarker, British Columbiamarker), and motocross. Harry also earned a reputation in his youth for being rebellious, leading the tabloid press to label him as a "wild child". He was found at age 17 smoking cannabis and partaking in under-age drinking with his friends, would clash physically with paparazzi outside nightclubs, and was photographed at Highgrove Housemarker at a "Colonial and Native" themed costume party wearing a German Afrika Korps uniform, usually referred to as a Nazi uniform. He later issued a public statement apologising for his actions.

In January 2009, the British tabloid News of the World revealed a video made by Harry three years previously, in which he referred to a Pakistanimarker fellow officer cadet as "our little Paki friend," and later called a soldier wearing a cloth on his head a "raghead". These terms, were described by David Cameron as "unacceptable", and by The Daily Telegraph as "racist", and a British Muslim youth organisation called the Prince a "thug", a statement that was later retracted. Clarence Housemarker immediately issued an apology from Harry, who stated that no malice was intended in his remarks. While the cadet's father refused to accept Harry's apology, a former British MP and Royal Marine, Rod Richards, said that such nicknames were common amongst military comrades, stating "in the Armed Forces people often used to call me Taffy. Others were called Yankie, Oz or Kiwi or whatever. I consider Paki as an abbreviation for Pakistani. I don't think on this occasion it was intended to be offensive." It later emerged that Prince Harry had personally apologised to the soldier.

Harry's personal relationships have not been followed as much as those of his brother; the most media attention has been focused on his relationship with Chelsy Davy. In an interview conducted for his 21st birthday, Harry referred to Davy as his girlfriend, and the press reported at that time that the couple had been together for 18 months, contradicting earlier reports that they were no longer together. Harry and Davy were also seen together publicly at the Concert for Diana, though in 2009 it was again reported in the media that the pair had parted ways. Having said this, later in 2009 it became clear that the pair were once again more than friends. In November the pair were photgraphed together at a rugby match, seemingly going public with their relationship.

Titles, styles, honours, and arms

Titles and styles

  • 15 September 1984 : His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Wales

The Prince's style and title in full: His Royal Highness Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales. As a British prince, Harry holds no surname; however, as with the other male-line grandchildren of Elizabeth II, he uses the name of the area over which his father holds title, i.e. Wales (as Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie use York, per their father, Prince Andrew, Duke of York). Past precedent is that such surnames are dropped from usage in adulthood, after which either title alone, or Mountbatten-Windsor is used when necessary. When his father succeeds to the throne he will be known as His Royal Highness The Prince Henry.

Military ranks



Honorary military appointments


United Kingdom



Through his maternal grandfather, Prince Harry is descended from King Henry IV, King Charles II and King James II and VII. Through his mother, Harry is of English descent and of remote Irish and Scottishmarker descent.

Prince Harry is descended from all kings and queens of Englandmarker, Great Britainmarker, and the United Kingdommarker with surviving offspring from William I onwards except for these five: King Henry V, King Henry VIII (their lines are both extinct), King George IV and King William IV (neither of whom had any surviving legitimate children) and King Edward VIII. He is also descended from many of the pre-Union monarchs of Scotland and the pre-Conquest monarchs of England.

See also



External links

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