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Last Updated: Thursday, 13 January, 2005, 12:16 GMT
The blunders of Britain's royals
The Queen and Prince Philip
The Duke of Edinburgh has been criticised for inappropriate comments
Prince Harry's outing in Nazi costume is the latest in a series of incidents to put him in the media spotlight.

Last year, the prince faced claims that he had hit a paparazzi photographer at a London nightclub, cutting his lip.

The Crown Prosecution Service considered cautioning Prince Harry, but decided it would not be in the public interest and no action was taken.

In 2002, Prince Charles ordered his son to attend a drug rehabilitation clinic, after Prince Harry admitted smoking cannabis and taking part in heavy under-age drinking sessions.

If you stay here much longer, you'll all be slitty-eyed
Prince Philip

But Prince Harry is not the only royal to have blundered his way into the media spotlight.

Comments by his grandfather, the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, have often been criticised.

In 1996, amid calls to ban firearms after the Dunblane shootings, a comparison by the duke made headlines.

He said: "If a cricketer, for instance, suddenly decided to go into a school and batter a lot of people to death with a cricket bat, which he could do very easily, I mean, are you going to ban cricket bats?"

Charles memo

During a visit to a Bristol nursing home in 2002, Prince Philip asked a woman in a wheelchair whether people tripped over her.

And on a 1986 trip to China, he infamously told a group of UK students: "If you stay here much longer, you'll all be slitty-eyed."

Prince Charles sparked a more recent furore when a memo to a former member of staff emerged, in which he said the UK's "learning culture" gave people hope beyond their capabilities.

Prince Charles
I hardly dare say anything. I don't really want to teach any more grandmothers to suck eggs
Prince Charles

"What is it that makes everyone seem to think they are qualified to do things far beyond their technical capabilities?" he wrote.

He blamed a "child-centred system which admits no failure" and tells people they can achieve greatness without "putting in the necessary effort or having the natural abilities".

The prince later said his comments had been "misrepresented".

He added: "I hardly dare say anything. I don't really want to teach any more grandmothers to suck eggs."

Meanwhile, Princess Michael of Kent recently had to deny claims she told a group of neighbouring noisy diners to "go back to the colonies".

Prince Edward

Then there are Prince Harry's aunt and uncle, the Earl and Countess of Wessex.

Prince Edward's company, Ardent Productions, was accused in 2001 of trying to film Prince William at his university in breach of an understanding reached with all other sections of the news media.

The footage had to be handed back to Buckingham palace.

That same year, the Countess of Wessex was forced to resign from R-JH - the PR firm she founded - after revelations were made in a Sunday newspaper about comments she had made to an undercover reporter.

The countess made unguarded comments about senior politicians and members of the Royal Family during a secretly taped conversation with two News of the World reporters posing as an Arab sheikh and his aide.


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