The Cause Of Prince Eddie’s Death

Posted: January 21, 2010 in Prince Albert Victor
I have never heard of this before:
(London Correspondent "Dunedin Star")
A very strange story is being whispered about the clubs, but has not as yet got into print. I have heard it twice, and in each case the narrator explained that he learnt it from his wife, who was told the tale by one of the royal tradesfolk (presumably a dress maker), who got it – of course in strictest confidence – from the upper servant (the dresser or superiors lady’s maid to the Princess of Wales she said) at Sandringham. The narrative has to do with poor Prince Eddie’s death, which, it alleges, was not the result of natural causes. His Royal Highness, the story goes, had certainly the influenza, as given out, but he was getting over it nicely, when, in a fit of low spirits, he drank some of the carbolic disinfectant placed in the sick room. The doctors stomach-pumped him and did all they could to bring the young man round, but the influenza and the poison combined proved too much for a by no means robust constitution, and he ultimately sank and died, much as described in the newspapers. The yarn goes on that within a few hours of the Prince succumbing, the Princess of Wales, who was in the deepest distress, summoned the women folk of the household, and, besides entreating them as a suffering woman, laid her royal commands on them, one and all, that there should be no gossip either in or outside the house, concerning the duke’s death. Her Royal Highness gave no reason for or explanation of this strange request, which was also, it is said, made by the Prince to the men servant. Amongst the household it was no secret that Prince Eddie had been in wretched spirits for some time previously; ever since, indeed, the suicide of the Gaiety girl with whom the tongue of scandal connected his name. Whether there was or was not any truth in that rumor the servants don’t know. They say, however, that about the same date a violent quarrel took place between the duke and his father at Marlborough House. The two men were locked in the Prince’s sanctum together, and their voices were raised so high in anger that the Princess grew alarmed, and, regardless of the expose, summoned servants to assist her in interrupting them. From that day, Prince Eddie was dull and depressed. I can hardly imagine anybody deliberately or malevolently inventing a tale of this sort, so that I think it must have some foundation. Moreover, one instantly recalls the extraordinary precautions adopted to keep all strangers, especially reporters, outside Sandringham during the days immediately following the Prince’s decease.
Source: West Coast Times, Issue 9601, 14 August 1893, Page 4

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