Prince Harry has claimed that his brother, William, lashed out at him in a heated physical attack while he was still working as a senior member of the royal family. In a bombshell excerpt from his hotly anticipated memoir Spare, Harry alleges the altercation took place in 2019 at Nottingham Cottage, where Harry was living with Meghan Markle.
The royal claims he was left with visible “scrapes and bruises” on his back after being thrown onto the floor. The Duke of Sussex is set to release the book on January 10 next week, with an insider saying it will be ‘worse for the royals than they expect’.
The revealing excerpt was published by The Guardian and gives further insight into why the relationship between Harry and William has been damaged.
Harry says that his brother came over to discuss the furore surrounding his relationship with Meghan and the way the couple were being treated by the press.
However, Harry writes that the Prince of Wales was “piping hot” when he arrived and began complaining about Meghan, calling her “difficult”, “rude” and “abrasive”.
After Harry accused William of “parrot[ing] the press narrative” about Meghan, the pair became embroiled in a shouting match before escalating further, Harry says.
Harry then lashed out at William, accusing him of acting as an heir. The pair traded insults, when William told Harry he was attempting to help, Harry writes.
“Are you serious? Help me? Sorry — is that what you call this? Helping me?” Harry recalls telling his brother.
According to Harry, this made William furious, who swore before following him into the kitchen. He claims that he offered his brother a glass of water while trying to calm him down. “Willy, I can’t speak to you when you’re like this,” he recalls saying.
Harry writes: “He set down the water, called me another name, then came at me. It all happened so fast. So very fast. He grabbed me by the collar, ripping my necklace, and he knocked me to the floor.
“I landed on the dog’s bowl, which cracked under my back, the pieces cutting into me. I lay there for a moment, dazed, then got to my feet and told him to get out.”
Harry claims that his brother tried to get him to retaliate physically, but he refused to engage. William ‘looked regretful, and apologised’, but also told Harry not to inform Meghan about their altercation, he writes.
Harry says he asked William: “You mean that you attacked me?”
The royal claims William replied and said: “I didn’t attack you, Harold.”
Harry informed his therapist about the alleged altercation but didn't inform his wife straight away. However, he says that Meghan noticed his “scrapes and bruises” from falling on the dog bowl, and he came clean.
Although she was “terribly sad”, the royal writes that “she wasn’t surprised, and wasn’t all that angry”.
What else do we know about Harry’s memoir?
The title of Harry’s memoir Spare is a nod to the old adage ‘the heir and the spare’, with his brother William being the heir to the throne while Harry is the younger sibling unlikely to ever become king.
A Spanish-language edition of the memoir reveals an even deeper insight into Harry’s feelings about his position in the royal family with the subtitle En La Sombra, translating to ‘in the shadow’.
The release date, January 10, is also significant as the memoir will not only be released four months after Queen Elizabeth II’s death but also two days after the three-year anniversary of Harry and his wife Meghan Markle leaving the royal family. It’s believed that the book was pushed back following the Queen’s passing, but will still be released a few months before King Charles’ coronation.
How much will the memoir cost?
The 416-page memoir will cost $50 AUD for a hardcover version, with the e-book set at half price, and will be released alongside an unabridged audiobook read by Harry himself.
The Duke of Sussex was reportedly paid a $31 million advance for the memoir as part of a three-book deal with Penguin Random House.
His publisher revealed on Thursday that he has already donated $2.3 million to Sentebale, a charity he co-founded that helps children and young people in Lesotho and Botswana affected by HIV/AIDS. He has also donated $530,000 to WellChild, a British charity for disabled children which he has been a patron of for the past 15 years.
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