While it may seem surreal, the last living man to have sat on the throne of England died within many of our lifetimes:
- "The Duke of Windsor, who gave up the British throne in 1936 to marry an American divorcee, died in his home near Paris early today, a Buckingham Palace spokesman announced here....The Duke, who reigned for 10 months as King Edward VIII before abdicating, had been ill for some time. The Duke defied the British Establishment to marry Mrs. Bessie Wallis Warfield Simpson, a twice-divorced American. The couple lived in virtual self-exile from Britain since the abdication....'But you must believe me when I tell you that I have found it impossible to carry the heavy burden of responsibility and to discharge my duties as King, as I would wish to do, without the help and support of the woman I love.' With these words, delivered with sadness over the radio on Dec. 11, 1936, to his subjects in Britain, Edward VIII, later the Duke of Windsor, became the first monarch in British history to voluntarily abdicate his throne" (Reuters, 5/28/72).
A great shortcoming of "The Crown" is that it seems to go back to a glamorized/romanticized vision of divorce/re-marriage.