Royals Adjust To Modern Morality

The wedding of Charles and Camilla, while not among the grandest of historic royal occasions, had a significance all its own. It represented a major adjustment to the modern age and contemporary morality, reports CBS News Correspondent Mark Phillips for Sunday Morning.

The queen -- who attended the prayer service but not the actual civil wedding ceremony -- is known to have resisted the idea of this marriage, not because she was not fond of Camilla but because there was still the lingering scent of scandal about her in her role in the break up of Charles' marriage to Diana.

The last royal who chose to marry a divorcee was Prince Charles' great uncle Edward VIII. Marrying the American Wallace Simpson cost him his throne. That was 1936. Today royal ostracism takes a different form.

Instead of abdication and exile, as Edward and Mrs. Simpson had to endure, there's a municipal marriage hall instead of a cathedral, and a wedding without Mummy. The penalties aren't what they used to be.

And as for the constitutional issues, whether Camilla can ever be queen, those are being fudged too. The couple say they "intend" that she be the princess consort, but the legal experts say it would take an act of parliament to keep her from becoming queen.

What everybody seems to be counting on is that Charles' mother -- who comes from a line of long-lived women, her mother lived to 101 -- goes on for decades more. It's not impossible that she may even outlive her son.

In any event, Charles and Camilla seem intent to do what they've been unable to do until now, enjoy each other's company, in public.

  • Chris Hawke

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