Prince William Joked About Coronavirus During His Royal Tour of Ireland

Prince William and Kate Middleton visited the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin Tuesday, where William joked about the coronavirus.

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  • Prince William and Kate Middleton are currently on a royal tour of Ireland, and visited the Gravity bar at the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin on Tuesday.
  • There, William joked about spreading the coronavirus, and asked a paramedic if people were being "dramatic" about the disease or if it was being "hyped up" in the media.
  • The current novel coronavirus outbreak has now killed over 3,300 people, CNN reports, while 95,000 cases have been reported globally.

Well, I can't say I love this, Prince William. On Tuesday, William and Kate visited the Gravity bar at Dublin's Guinness Storehouse, as People reports. There, they met with "Irish people from across the creative arts, sport, business and charity sector," according to the Kensington Royal official Instagram. William spoke to a paramedic from the National Ambulance Service during the visit, and made flippant comments about the novel coronavirus—which, according to CNN, has now killed 3,300 and sickened 95,000 across more than 80 countries. 

“I bet everyone’s like, 'I’ve got coronavirus, I’m dying,' and you’re like, 'No, you’ve just got a cough,'" William said to the paramedic, before asking, "Does it seem quite dramatic about coronavirus at the moment? Is it being a little bit hyped up do you think in the media?"

And then, the ill-advised joke: "By the way, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are spreading coronavirus!" he said, continuing, "Sorry! We’re keeping an eye on that, so do tell us if we need to stop!"

In the U.K., there have been 51 cases of coronavirus thus far; Ireland has two, per Reuters. However, William and Kate have been following advice from Public Health England, which has encouraged them to carry on "business as usual."

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Emily Dixon is a British journalist who’s contributed to CNN, Teen Vogue, Time, Glamour, The Guardian, Wonderland, The Big Roundtable, Bust, and more, on everything from mental health to fashion to political activism to feminist zine collectives. She’s also a committed Beyoncé, Kacey Musgraves, and Tracee Ellis Ross fan, an enthusiastic but terrible ballet dancer, and a proud Geordie lass.