What we know so far about Prince Harry’s claims in Spare and a physical fight with his brother

Home Arts What we know so far about Prince Harry’s claims in Spare and a physical fight with his brother
What we know so far about Prince Harry’s claims in Spare and a physical fight with his brother

Prince Harry is starting the year with another volley in his battle with the royal family, as palace watchers get their first glimpse of his new autobiography, Spare — and an insight into how bad things have got between the two brothers.

In addition to previews of two interviews with Prince Harry to run within days, we’ve now seen a report from The Guardian saying it has managed to obtain an early copy of the autobiography, despite the stringent security around the book ahead of its January 11 launch.

The report — which hasn’t been confirmed nor denied by Team Harry — contains bombshell allegations about the disintegrating relationship between the King’s two sons.

What we’ve heard so far

Bearing in mind that this hasn’t been confirmed by either brother, the article raised this allegation, particularly about one scene from 2019.

The physical altercation: The Guardian says Harry writes about a 2019 physical altercation with Prince William at Nottingham Cottage, Harry’s London home at the time. After the argument got heated, Harry says he moved into the kitchen and gave his brother a glass of water:

“He set down the water, called me another name, then came at me. It all happened so fast. So very fast. He grabbed me by the collar, ripping my necklace, and he knocked me to the floor. I landed on the dog’s bowl, which cracked under my back, the pieces cutting into me. I lay there for a moment, dazed, then got to my feet and told him to get out.”

The aftermath: The report says Harry called his therapist after the fight, but didn’t immediately tell his wife. Later, she noticed “scrapes and bruises” on his back and then he told her about the altercation. Harry says she “wasn’t that surprised, and wasn’t all that angry. She was terribly sad.”

Insulting Meghan: Harry says William called Meghan “difficult”, “rude” and “abrasive”. Harry told him he was “parroting” the press narrative and that he expected better.

Willy and Harold: During that retelling of the 2019 altercation, “Willy” apparently called his brother “Harold”, when his given name is actually Henry. It’s unclear why he used that name from the reporting so far.

Charles’s reaction to their fighting: This was at the time of an argument at their grandfather Prince Phillip’s funeral in September 2021. Harry says the then-Prince Charles stood between his fighting sons. Charles, he says, “looking up at our flushed faces”. “Please, boys,” Harry quotes his father as saying, “don’t make my final years a misery.”

King Charles, Prince William, Kate, Prince Harry and Meghan walk together.
Bad blood looks set to continue at the top of the royal family. (Reuters: Hannah McKay/File)

What we know about next week’s interviews

Ahead of the book’s launch next week, the UK’s ITV and the US version of 60 Minutes have recorded interviews with Prince Harry that will go to air on Monday morning, Australian time.

In a 20-second teaser for the 90-minute Harry: The Interview, British broadcaster ITV edits together lines from what they say was a “long” interview with the prince:

“It never needed to be this way … The leaking and the planting … I want a family, not an institution … They feel as though it’s better to keep us, somehow, as the villains … They’ve shown absolutely no willingness to reconcile … I would like to get my father back. I would like to have my brother back.”

US 60 Minutes released a minute-long preview of Prince Harry’s interview with reporter Anderson Cooper, to be broadcast the same day.

The snippet also covers Harry’s allegations about his family leaking and planting stories about the couple, including how it is done.

“There comes a point where silence is betrayal,” Harry says.

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