Will Camilla Parker-Bowles Be Queen Now?

Now that the Queen has passed away at the age of 96, Camilla's husband, Charles, is poised to serve as king.

Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall
(Image credit: Getty)

Following the death of Queen Elizabeth II at the age of 96, Camilla Parker-Bowles is the wife of a king. Camilla has been known as the Duchess of Cornwall since her marriage to Prince Charles in 2005, but that title will automatically be transferred onto Kate Middleton as Charles becomes King Charles III—so where does that leave Parker-Bowles?

Well, after a groundbreaking statement released by Queen Elizabeth II in Feb. 2022, Camilla will have "Queen" in her new title when her husband takes the throne, and will be known as Camilla, Queen Consort

“When, in the fullness of time, my son Charles becomes King, I know you will give him and his wife Camilla the same support that you have given me,” the queen's statement said. “And it is my sincere wish that, when that time comes, Camilla will be known as Queen Consort as she continues her own loyal service.”

Historically speaking, this is a pretty big deal. Typically, the wife of a king becomes “Queen Consort," if she wasn't born into royalty herself, but that wasn't initially the case with Parker-Bowles. Because Prince Charles and his wife had an affair while he was still married to Princess Diana, and ostensibly, because this is both of their second marriages, before Queen Elizabeth's statement it was believed that Parker-Bowles would take the title of "Princess Consort" instead. This was similar to Prince Philip, whose official title was Prince consort.

2005: Camilla Parker Bowles

(Image credit: Anwar Hussein)

There had been rumors over the years that Prince Charles wanted to make his longtime wife Queen Consort, the latest having been published by The Sun in 2021. But Clarence House had previously denied the legitimacy of these rumors, issuing the following statement in 2020: "The intention is for the Duchess to be known as Princess Consort when the Prince accedes to the throne. This was announced at the time of the marriage and there has been absolutely no change at all."

Despite rocky beginnings, it's now clearer than ever where Parker-Bowles stands within the palace, thanks to the Queen's 2022 blessing.

Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of British Vogue, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Refinery29 and SELF. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.