Prince Frederick was – if I’m being honest – a bit of a dick. The oldest son and heir to King George II, he was a constant pain in his parents arse.
The newly dubbed Prince of Wales made the most of his royal title; gambling, commissioning great music and of course getting off with as many women as possible (despite supposedly looking like a ‘frog’) …naturally the English loved him for it.
Sadly his parents did not. To say they hated their son would be an understatement; his mum, Queen Caroline, once called Frederick:
‘the greatest ass and the greatest liar and the greatest canaille and the greatest beast in the whole world…and I heartily wish he were out of it. ’
Luckily Frederick wasn’t upset by his Mum actively wanting him dead, because he hated her just as much, if not more!!
The blunt answer is… fuck knows! Nobody at court could see a clear reason for either sides intense loathing. The Royal family just hated each other.
It soon became time for England’s future monarch to marry. Unsurprisingly Frederick and his parents couldn’t agree on who should be his bride, With each side refusing the others suggestions, because you know, hate etc.
Side Bar: Weirdly, Frederick almost married Lady Diana Spencer, whose parents were offering a frankly enormous dowery (which handily would have paid off all of his gambling debts!) unfortunately for Fred his Dad scuppered the unsuitable marriage at the last minute…but we very almost had a Prince of Wales and Princess Diana 200 years early.
With Diana out of the picture, who would be the lucky lady to marry into this shit shack of a family dynamic?
At just 16, Augusta was shipped off (speaking no English, btw!) to become the future Queen of England.
Augusta wasn’t hugely mature; still playing with dolls and not able to notice when Frederick was having affairs literally in front of her. But, somehow, less than a year into the marriage she fell pregnant.
Frederick was thrilled at Augustas news and immediately started plotting ways to ensure his parents stayed out of his child’s life. Because…priorities.
Frederick was adamant that his parents would not be at the birth of his child. To say this was unheard of would be an understatement.
It was protocol for the reigning monarch to be at royal births and doubly expected for senior royal family members to be there…Fred barring his parents was a royal no no.
But Frederick didn’t care about that, he just didn’t want people he hated at the birth of his first born child…which you know, seems fair. Sadly, what happens next is less ok.
On 30th July 1737, Augusta and Frederick were having dinner at Hampton Court Palace (as you do) when Augusta started to have cramps which quickly transpired to be contractions.
It was go time!
Unluckily for the couple, King George II and Queen Caroline lived at Hampton Court Palace; Fredericks plans to block them out of the birth had immediately gone tits up!
But Frederick wasn’t giving up that easily. There was no way his Mum and Dad were wrecking this moment for him!! So he waited until the dead of night and then – whilst trying to keep Augustas cries of pain to a minimum – Frederick bundled the terrified 16 year old into a carriage, which was sent tearing across London for St James Palace.
It was crucial that Augusta only give birth in the Palace – Fredericks heir couldn’t be born on the side of the road!
So though each cobblestone the rickity carriage rode over resulted in a fresh wave of pain and a speedier labour, the teenager would just have to cross her legs until she reached the Palace gates.
And, miraculously Augusta made it to the Palace gates, sans baby between her legs. More miraculously an impromptu high speed midnight dash across London in a rickety wooden box somehow didn’t create a terrible labour and on 31st July Augusta gave birth to a healthy baby girl. Both baby and Mum came out of the labour fighting fit. Great news, right?
Sadly not. See it was a baby girl. Not a boy. Frederick might not have bothered working so hard to bar his parents from the birth if he’d known it would be a girl (eeew girls)
Still, despite the gender, when King George II and Queen Caroline heard that their grandchild had been born without them, they were seriously pissed off.
The royal couple made their way across London to visit the new born, where Queen Caroline earned the title of Grandmother of the year after taking one look at the baby and calling her:
‘poor, ugly little she-mouse’
Frederick, Augusta and their new born were promptly kicked out of court. But that didn’t stop Fred from pissing off his parents! He opened a new court; a younger, cooler court (with sex, booze and awesome music)
Frederick and his parents never made up. Queen Caroline died without speaking to her son. Father and son continued their fight (its what Caroline would have wanted) until Frederick fell desperately ill.
Fred would never get to be the world most petty King. He died in 1751, aged 44. Of course, his eldest born didn’t get the crown (eeew girls) instead, his second eldest George, ascended the throne in 1761, becoming George III …. but thats a story for another day!!