Queen Elizabeth II’s younger sister, Princess Margaret, was one of the most controversial members of the royal family. From her tumultuous marriage, steamy affairs, and wild parties, she never failed to make headlines.
She met her match in her husband, Antony “Tony” Armstrong-Jones, best known as Lord Snowdon, and they both became subjects of numerous controversies and rumors even before their wedding.
Here are 7 wild but true facts about the complicated relationship Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon had:
1. He was the first commoner in 400 years to marry a royal
Armstrong-Jones, was the son of a senior lawyer and a socialite, who took up a career as a photographer. After meeting and falling in love with the Queen’s sister, Princess Margaret, he proposed to her at a “safe house” that belonged to his friends, Camilla and Jeremy Fry. A year after their marriage, he became the 1st Earl of Snowdon, also commonly known as Lord Snowdon, a title given to him by the Queen.
2. Jones-Armstrong was not Margaret’s rebound
Contrary to popular belief, Princess Margaret no longer had feelings for Peter Townsend before marrying Armstrong-Jones. According to her biographer, Christopher Warwick, the claims that the princess wasn’t over her former flame is “utter nonsense.” When he asked her about it, she replied, “I married Tony five years after the end of Peter Townsend.”
3. Armstrong-Jones fathered an illegitimate child before their wedding
A few years ago, a woman named Polly Fry came forward with the claim that Armstrong-Jones was her father. Polly, who was born just a few weeks after the royal wedding in 1960, was the result of an affair Armstrong-Jones had with Camilla Fry. She took a DNA test in 2004 to prove paternity.
“Although we may like to think of our own generation as being wild and wonderful, in comparison to what our parents got up to in the swinging 60s we are mere innocents caught up in the aftermath of the postwar free-love era,” Polly wrote in a 2008 article for the Daily Mail.
There are even more scandalous facts about the royal couple…