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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Rebecca Russell

Sophie Wessex ‘could have been Queen’ after Prince Edward was sent strange request

The Line of Succession to the throne is something that is set in stone and cannot be altered by personal preference.

While the British royals understand this, it would seem that one foreign country had not grasped this as they made a rather strange request of The Earl of Wessex in 1994. Huge socio-political change in the country at the time prompted them to ask The Queen's youngest son, Prince Edward, to serve as their head of state.

The unusual offer was called "charming" but had to be sensibly declined by Buckingham Palace. However, had the unique offer been accepted, it would have changed everything that has unfolded since.

The strange request was sent to The Earl of Wessex (Getty Images)

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1994, several new countries were created in Eastern Europe, one of which was Estonia.

During Estonia's first elections, the Independent Royalist Party wished for the country to be a monarchy. They won eight seats in Parliament and went about trying to find someone to take on the top job.

The Sunday Telegraph revealed at the time that the leader of the party had written to the Royal Family to ask if Prince Edward would become their king as they thought he was "perfect" for the role.

It was further said that the country would be honoured if he would accept as the party admired him "enormously". Following the unusual request, Buckingham Palace are reputed to have written back, saying that it was "a charming idea but a rather unlikely one".

The request was politely declined by Buckingham Palace (PA)
Prince Edward was asked to be the King of Estonia (Getty Images)

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While Prince Edward could have found himself coming to a throne before his elder brother, it is hoped that he will be given a new title now that King Charles has succeeded his mother.

Ahead of their wedding in 1999, the palace announced that Prince Edward and Sophie would be styled as The Earl and Countess of Wessex.

The news came as a surprise to the public as it was expected he would be given a traditional Dukedom. It later came to light that the Queen had offered Edward the Dukedom of Cambridge - the title which was ultimately given to The Prince and Princess of Wales when they married in 2011.

The Earldom of Wessex had not been in use since the 11th century, however Edward reportedly asked the Queen to be named after a character called Lord Wessex in his favourite film, Shakespeare in Love.

A royal insider told the Telegraph in 2010 why Edward chose that name, explaining: “He liked the sound of it and asked the Queen if he could have that instead.”

When the news came of the surprising title, it was revealed that the Royal Family intended for Edward to be created Duke of Edinburgh upon both the death of his father and accession of elder brother. This decision still lies with The King and it is hoped he will bestow it upon his brother and sister-in-law.

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