The Queen told one of her staff members that she was relieved Meghan Markle would not be able to attend Prince Philip's funeral, a new book claims.
Royal author Tom Bower has alleged that the Queen said "thank goodness" after being informed by one of her aides that the Duchess of Sussex would be absent from the funeral, which took place on 17 April 2021.
Buckingham Palace has declined to comment on the claims made in the biography, which is set to hit bookshelves this week.
The funeral of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, came just one month after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle took part in their now-infamous Oprah Winfrey interview.
The combination of allegations were devastating to the Royal Family, including the allegation that "several conversations" were had within the family regarding the colour of their then-unborn son Archie’s skin.
The new book, titled Revenge: Meghan, Harry and the war between the Windsors, is set to add more detail to the aftermath of the bombshell Oprah interview, and has been serialised in a number of newspapers.
Tom Bower writes that the mood was "sombre" on the day of the funeral, adding: "The only uncertainty was the relationship between Harry and his family. How would he cope with his father and brother?
"Meghan had cited her seven months' pregnancy as the reason for not travelling and in Windsor Castle the Queen was preparing to face the public on one of the saddest days of her life. Philip had been her rock for the previous 70 years.
"To comply with Covid restrictions she would grieve alone inside the chapel. 'Thank goodness Meghan is not coming,' the monarch said."
The claims come after Meghan said in the Oprah interview: "In those months when I was pregnant [there were] concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he was born."
Both she and Harry refused to say which royal said it.
"That conversation, I am never going to share," said Harry. "At the time it was awkward, I was a bit shocked."
Meghan also shared the feelings of loneliness she felt after joining the Royal Family, saying: "When I joined that family, that was the last time until we came here that I saw my passport, my driver's licence, my keys, all that gets turned over.
She said her mental health got so bad that she "didn't want to be alive any more".
The Duchess went on: "I went to the institution and I said that I needed to go somewhere to get help, said I had never felt that way before and need to go somewhere, and I was told that I couldn't, that it wouldn't be good for the institution."
At the time, Buckingham Palace released a statement saying they were "saddened" to hear about the issues that the couple went through and the issues raised will "be addressed by the family privately".
The Queen said in a statement: "Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members.
"The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan.
"The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. Whilst some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately."
Revenge: Meghan, Harry and the war between the Windsors will be released on Thursday 21 July.
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