To his family he was David, to the rest of the world Edward of Wales was a superstar royal
In June 1914 the then Prince of Wales joined the Grenadier Guards. There was a general feeling that a mighty war was coming and the heir to the throne wanted to fight with his country's troops. The government, including the Secretary of State for War Lord Kitchener, were adamant it would never happen as there were grave concerns as to the damage that would be done to the monarchy were the heir to the throne to die in battle. At that point, Edward was the golden boy and the irony is that the concerns of 1914 were that his loss would cause irreparable harm to the British crown. It would make his younger, less able and less gorgeous brother, Bertie, the next king and that wasn't considered the best option a century ago. The irony was that Edward was all but forced to give up his crown and pass it to Bertie just 22 years later in a move that was designed to save the monarchy from harm again. The heir of a century ago saw much change in a very little time but in 1914, Edward of Wales was still a nation's hope in waiting.