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On This Day… The King Who Chose Love!

Written by: George Chittenden : 18 Jun 2019

It was on this day, 10th December, back in 1936 when the King of England, Edward VIII, officially abdicated the throne so that he could marry the woman he loved. When Edward VIII proposed to marry Wallis Simpson, an American socialite who was divorced from her first husband and was pursuing a divorce of her second a constitutional crisis in the British Empire arose.

As British monarch, Edward was the nominal head of the Church of England, which did not allow divorced people to remarry in church if their ex-spouses were still alive. Consequently, it was widely believed that Edward could not marry Simpson and remain on the throne.

Despite the opposition, Edward declared that he loved Simpson and intended to marry her whether his governments approved or not. It was on this very day that he signed the Instrument of abdication alongside his three brothers, Albert, Henry and George. He was succeeded by his brother George VI. Edward was given the title His Royal Highness the Duke of Windsor following his abdication, and he married Simpson the following year. They remained married until his death 35 years later.

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