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Revealed: five British royals who definitely slept with underage girls

...350 or more years ago. Plus: the oil price rollercoaster, the most valuable lost cargoes, and doomed animal rescues

10 January 2015

9:00 AM

10 January 2015

9:00 AM

Teen queens

The Duke of York denied allegations in court papers that he had had sexual relations with a girl in Florida aged 17, below the age of consent there. Some of his ancestors who might now be in trouble:
— King John, who married Isabella of Angoulême in 1200 when she was 12.
— Henry VI, who married Margaret of Anjou in 1445 when she was 15.
— James I, who married Anne of Denmark in 1589 when she was 14.
— Charles I, who married Henrietta Maria of France in 1624 when she was 15.
— William III, who married his cousin Mary in 1677 when she was 15.


Crude estimates

The price of oil fell below $60 a barrel. There is nothing new about volatile oil prices. Some of the peaks and troughs in crude oil, at today’s prices

Jun 1973 $19
Jan 1974 $51
Apr 1980 $115
Jan 1999 $18
Jun 2008 $145
Feb 2009 $44
May 2011 $105
Jan 2015 $51


Sunk costs

A listing cargo ship was beached on a sandbank in the Solent, its £35m cargo of Jaguars, BMWs and JCBs leaning at 52 degrees. Some precious cargos lost:
£130m SS Gairsoppa, torpedoed off the Irish coast in 1941 carrying silver bars.
£4m Value of 14 tonnes of cigarettes which washed up in Devon last February after being washed off the Svendberg Maersk.
£475,000 SS Central America, sank off South Carolina in 1857 carrying gold.


Pet projects

A seal found stranded in a field 20 miles up a Lancashire estuary and taken to a sanctuary in Norfolk was revealed to be close to death from pneumonia. Some more futile attempts to save wayward animals:
— In 2006 a seven-tonne whale swam up the Thames as far as Albert Bridge, where she was lifted by crane onto a barge. Plans to ship her to the Atlantic were abandoned in favour of releasing her off Margate, but she died on the barge.
— In 2011 a young emperor penguin arrived on a beach in New Zealand. It was taken to Wellington zoo and had an operation to remove sand and sticks from its stomach. It was released 400 miles south of New Zealand, but a week later its transmitter stopped working, possibly as a result of the penguin being eaten.

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