On the 27 October 1936, Mrs Wallis Simpson’s divorce from her second husband, shipping executive Ernest Simpson, was granted, eventually allowing her to marry King Edward VIII and forcing his abdication from the throne.
Edward, Prince of Wales, as eldest son of King George V and Queen Mary was heir apparent and he ascended the throne in 1936 on the death of his father. But, when his choice of wife fell on a twice-divorced American, Mrs Wallis Simpson, constitutional problems arose. The new King Edward VIII had to choose between Mrs Simpson and the Crown – in the event, Edward VIII became the only British sovereign to resign the throne of his own will.
As a result of his infamous romance with Wallis, Edward reigned for less than a year and was never crowned, the Crown passing to his brother, Albert, who reigned as King George VI.
“Of course, I do have a slight advantage over the rest of you. It helps in a pinch to be able to remind your bride that you gave up a throne for her.”Edward VIII, Duke of Windsor