Marriage in Malta

On 6 July 1893, Prince George, Duke of York (later King George V), and Princess Victoria Mary of Teck (later Queen Mary) were married at the Chapel Royal, St. James’s Palace, in London, England. However, almost twenty years later, rumours persisted that this was not George’s first marriage, and that he was in fact still legally married to another woman.

In a 1910 edition of the journal ‘The Liberator’, Edward Mylius reported on rumours he had heard that recently crowned King George V had married the daughter of a British Admiral in Malta in 1890, and that the marriage had also produced three children. As well as being a major scandal, this would have also been illegal, breaking the Royal Marriages Act of 1772.

Under the advice of then Home Secretary Winston Churchill, George began proceedings against Mylius for criminal libel. Mylius, representing himself, did not mount a defence, but instead argued that he had not been given a chance to face his accuser. Mylius was convicted in 1911.

Writing about the affair, King George V stated “The whole story is a damnable lie and has been in existence now for over twenty years. I trust that this will settle it once and for all.”