Andrew Morton planned to take secret about Princess Diana to his grave

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Andrew Morton Planned To Take This Secret About Princess Diana To His Grave

Famed biographer Andrew Morton is used to scrutiny -- in fact, at this point, "Morton" and "controversy" pretty much go hand in hand.

When Morton's book "Diana: Her True Story" came out in 1992, Morton's life was a "cataclysm," he told HuffPost Live host Caroline Modarressy-Tehrani. "The British establishment ... [tried] to deny the message and denigrate the messenger. I've always said that if you're a sociologist, you want to look at the way I was treated."

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Andrew Morton planned to take secret about Princess Diana to his grave
LONDON - JULY 29: Diana, Princess of Wales and Prince Charles ride in a carriage after their wedding at St. Paul's Cathedral July 29, 1981 in London, England. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage)
LONDON - JULY 29: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Princess Diana, Princess of Wales, kiss on the balcony of Buckingham Palace following their wedding on July 29, 1981 in London, England. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 29: Lady Diana Spencer With Her Father, Earl Spencer (left), And Her Husband, Prince Charles, During Their Wedding Ceremony In St Paul's Cathedral, London. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 01: An informal study of Prince CHARLES, the Prince of Wales, and Lady Diana SPENCER, whose wedding will take place at Saint-Paul's Cathedral, London on 29th July 1981. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)
UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 01: England, Lady Diana And Prince Charles (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 22: Prince And Princess Of Wales Leaving The Lindo Wing Of St Mary's Hospital With Their First Baby Son, Prince William. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - APRIL 18: Princess Diana, Princess of Wales and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales play with their baby son Prince William in the gardens of Government House on April 18, 1983 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/Getty Images)
AUSTRALIA - APRIL 14: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales meet actor Paul Hogan at the Melbourne Concert Hall (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - SEPTEMBER 17: Prince Charles & Princess Diana With The Newly Born Prince Henry (harry) Outside The Lindo Wing. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 29: Prince Charles And Princess Diana Kissing On The Balcony Of Buckingham Palace On Their Wedding Day. (l To R) Lord Nicholas Windsor, Edward Van Cutsem, Sarah Jane Gaselee, Catherine Cameron, Princess Diana, Prince Charles Clementine Hambro And Queen Elizabeth Ll. The Princess Is Wearing A Wedding Dress Designed By David And Elizabeth Emanuel. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 29: Prince Charles And Princess Diana Being Driven In An Open Carriage From St Paul's Cathedral To Buckingham Palace. They Are Escorted By The Household Cavalry. Policemen Line The Streets To Keep The Huge Crowds Under Control. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 29: The Wedding Of The Prince And Princess Of Wales At St Paul's Cathedral In London (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
29th July 1981: Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales (1961 - 1997) in the throne room of Buckingham Palace, after their wedding at St Paul's Cathedral, London. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 29: Prince Charles Whispering To Princess Diana On Their Wedding Day As They Appear On The Balcony Of Buckingham Palace (Photo by Tim Graham Picture Library/Getty Images)
29th July 1981: Charles, Prince of Wales, with his wife, Princess Diana (1961 - 1997), at the altar of St Paul's Cathedral during their marriage ceremony. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
29th July 1981: Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales (1961 - 1997), waving to crowds from the balcony of Buckingham Palace, London after their wedding. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 29: (l To R) Prince Andrew, The Queen Mother, Earl Spencer, Queen Elizabeth Ll, Princess Diana And Prince Charles On The Balcony Of Buckingham Palace On The Wedding Day Of The Prince And Princess Of Wales. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
LONDON - JULY 29: Diana, Princess of Wales and Prince Charles emerge from St. Paul's Cathedral after their wedding July 29, 1981 in London, England. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - APRIL 01: Prince William is seen with his parents HRH Prince Charles and the late Princess Diana (wearing Vanvelden puritan collar) during their 1983 official visit to New Zealand, in April 1983 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage)
WASHINGTON, UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 11: (L To R) Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Princess Diana, Princess of Wales, Vice-President George Bush and his wife Barbara Attending A Dinner At The British Embassy In Washington, USA. Diana's Dress Is By Fashion Designer Murray Arbeid. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
Princess Diana (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Princess Diana during Dawson International Cocktail Party - February 1, 1989 at The Equitable Center in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
The Princess of Wales, wearing a Catherine Walker suit, surrounded by security while visiting the Henry Street settlement in New York City, February 1989. (Photo byTerry Fincher/Getty Images)
Abe Beam, HM Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
UNITED STATES - FEBRUARY 02: Princess Diana stands for the National Anthem at Brooklyn Academy of Music, where the Welsh National Opera is putting on Verdi's 'Falstaff.' , (Photo by Richard Corkery/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - FEBRUARY 02: Britain's Princess Diana is all smiles as she arrives in New York City, for a three day visit. (Photo by Richard Corkery/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - FEBRUARY 02: Diana, Princess of Wales wears a dress designed by Victor Edelstein to the Brooklyn Academy of Music to see the Welsh National Opera Gala production of 'Falstaff' (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
UNDATED: Prince Charles, Princess of Wales and Princess Diana, Princess of Wales. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage)
MELBOURNE - 1985: A 1985 photo of Princess Diana, Princess of Wales, in a David Emanuel dress and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, dancing in Melbourne. British designer Emanuel designed the princess's wedding dress. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage)
1980: Children's nanny, Lady Diana Spencer with two of her charges, the year before she married Prince Charles and became the Princess of Wales. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Sport, Horse Racing, The Grand National, Aintree, Liverpool, England, Circa 1980's, HRH the Prince of Wales (Charles) is pictured with his wife Diana the Princess of Wales (Photo by Bob Thomas/Getty Images)
Lady Diana Spencer and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales pose for photographs in the grounds of Buckingham Palace following the announcement of their engagement, 24th February 1981. (Photo by John Downing/Getty Images)
LONDON - FEBRUARY 24: Princess Diana, Princess of Wales and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales pose outside Buckingham Palace as they announce their engagement on February 24, 1981 in London, England. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - FEBRUARY 24: Lady Diana Spencer (later To Become Princess Diana) With Prince Charles Arm In Arm At Buckingham Palace On The Day Of The Announcement Of Their Engagement. She Is Wearing A Royal Blue Suit By Designer Cojana Reported To Have Been Bought From Harrods (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
GREAT BRITAIN - FEBRUARY 24: Lady Diana Spencer (later to become Princess of Wales) reveals her sapphire and diamond engagement ring while she and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales pose for photographs in the grounds of Buckingham Palace following the announcement of their engagement (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
Diana, Princess of Wales (1961 - 1997) with Prince Charles, London, circa 1981. (Photo by Kypros/Getty Images)
UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 06: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales with his fiance Lady Diana Spencer during a photocall before their wedding while staying at Craigowan Lodge on the Balmoral Estate in Scotland (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
10th March 1981: Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales (1961 - 1997), arriving at a banquet held in Goldsmith's Hall, London. (Photo by Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales (1961 -1997) leave Buckingham Palace for their honeymoon after their wedding, London, 29th July 1981. (Photo by Serge Lemoine/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
BALMORAL, UNITED KINGDOM - AUGUST 19: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales with his arm around Princess Diana, Princess of Wales as they sit on a style during their honeymoon at Balmoral in Scotland.The Princess is wearing a suit designed by Bill Pashley. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales (1961 - 1997) pose together during their honeymoon in Balmoral, Scotland, 19th August 1981. (Photo by Serge Lemoine/Getty Images)
GIBRALTAR - AUGUST 01: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales with Diana, Princess of Wales on the Royal Yacht Britannia at the start of their honeymoon cruise, Her outfit is designed by Donald Campbell (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales (1961 - 1997) leave Eastleigh airport in Hampshire at the start of their honeymoon, August 1981. She is wearing a Donald Campbell dress. (Photo by Kypros/Getty Images)
CHELTENHAM, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 17: Princess Diana Pregnant And Prince Charles At Cheltenham Races (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
BRAEMAR, SCOTLAND - SEPTEMBER 04: The Queen, Princess Diana And Prince Charles Watching The Traditional Highland Games At Braemar In Scotland. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
LONDON - JUNE 22: New born Prince William with Diana, Princess of Wales and Prince Charles leave St. Mary's hospital on June 22, 1982 in Paddington, London, England,. He was born in the Lindo Wing of the hospital on June 21. (Photo by David Levenson/Getty Images)
AUSTRALIA - MARCH 29: Prince Charles And Princess Diana Holding Hands While Watching A Diplay In Australia (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
Princess Diana (1961 - 1997) and Prince Charles arrive for a state reception in Hobart, Tasmania, 30th March 1983. The princess is wearing the Spencer family tiara and a dress by Bruce Oldfield. (Photo by Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images)
AUSTRALIA - MARCH 20: Prince Charles And Princess Diana With Prince William Visiting Australia On Her First Overseas Tour. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
UNITED KINGDOM - FEBRUARY 01: Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales with their baby son, Prince William, at home in Kensington Palace (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - APRIL 23: The Prince and Princess of Wales with their son, Prince William during a visit to Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)
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When Morton initially published his biography of Princess Diana, the British journalist planned to protect his most coveted source. Though Morton had talked extensively with the princess, he wanted to keep her as a source used only for background, he told Modarressy-Tehran.

"She was a classic 'Deep Throat,'" he explained, "in the sense that she had total deniability. So I was prepared to go on record and say that she had nothing to do with the book, because she spoke on background ... If she was alive today and she was sitting here ... I would be saying, 'well of course Diana had nothing to do with the book.'"

But despite speaking to Diana extensively for his biography, Morton's work came under attack from critics, especially following Diana's death in 1997. After her tragic loss, Morton re-released his book, this time including notes and transcripts from taped interviews with the princess. Morton had originally planned to reveal that Diana was his source only after his passing, but her tragic loss changed the plan.

"I'd left instructions in my will, because I expected to pre-decease Diana, that it would only be unveiled after we'd both passed on."


The Daily Mail explains: "Those recordings, about seven hours of taped responses, were secretly made in Kensington Palace in 1991 during a series of interviews conducted through an intermediary. In the tapes, the princess talks openly about her life before marrying Prince Charles, her long battle with bulimia, her suicide attempts, the heartache over her husband's long affair with Camilla Parker Bowles and her strained relationships with other members of the Royal family."

Morton told HuffPost Live that people snubbed their noses at where he grew up in Leeds, and that his hometown counted against him. "If I had been some chap from Oxford or Cambridge, I might have got away with it, you know? I didn't. So people found it horrifying that the Princess of Wales had spoken to someone like me."

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Andrew Morton planned to take secret about Princess Diana to his grave

6. Norwegian Royal Family

Back row (L-R) King Harald, Crown Prince Marius Borg Hoiby, Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit, front (L-R) Prince Sverre Magnus, Queen Sonja and Princess Ingrid Alexandra pose during a Christmas photo session at the Royal Palace in Oslo, on December 17, 2014. AFP PHOTO / NTB SCANPIX / POOL / LISE ASERUD

Credit: LISE ASERUD/AFP/Getty Images

5. The Bernadottes of Sweden

STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN - DECEMBER 10: (L-R) Queen Silvia of Sweden, King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden Prince Daniel of Sweden and Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden attend the Nobel Prize Awards Ceremony at Concert Hall on December 10, 2014 in Stockholm, Sweden.

Credit: Pascal Le Segretain/WireImage

4. The Orange-Nassaus of the Netherlands

Dutch Crown Prince Willem-Alexander, right, and his wife Princess Maxima, left, leave the church after the marriage of Prince Johan Friso to Mabel Wisse Smit, at the Oude Kerk, or Old Church, in Delft, the Netherlands, Saturday April 24, 2004. Johan Friso will lose his claim to the throne after his marriage, which wasn't sanctioned by the Dutch government, but will retain the title "Prince of Orange-Nassau." Wisse Smit won't become a noble.

Credit: AP Photo/Bas Czerwinski

3. The Windsors

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, accompanied by members of her family appear on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, during the Trooping The Colour parade, in central London, Saturday, June 14, 2014. From left to right, Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Charles, Princess Eugenie, Sophie, the Duchess of Wessex, Prince Philip, Prince Edward, Prince Harry, Kate, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William. Hundreds of soldiers in ceremonial dress have marched in London in the annual "Trooping the Colour" parade to mark the official birthday of Queen Elizabeth II. "Trooping the Colour" originated from traditional preparations for battle, when flags were carried or "trooped" down the rank for soldiers to see.

Credit: AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis

2. The Grimaldis of Monaco

Prince Albert II of Monaco and Princess Charlene of Monaco present twins Princess Gabriella of Monaco and Prince Jacques of Monaco at the Palace Balcony on January 7, 2015 in Monaco, Monaco.

Credit: Villard/Niviere/PLS Pool/Getty Images

1. The Lichtensteins of Lichtenstein

LUXEMBOURG - OCTOBER 20: Prince Hans-Adam II of Liechtenstein and Princess Marie-Aglae of Liechtenstein attends the wedding ceremony of Prince Guillaume Of Luxembourg and Princess Stephanie of Luxembourg at the Cathedral of our Lady of Luxembourg on October 20, 2012 in Luxembourg, Luxembourg. The 30-year-old hereditary Grand Duke of Luxembourg is the last hereditary Prince in Europe to get married, marrying his 28-year old Belgian Countess bride in a lavish 2-day ceremony.

Credit: Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

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