George V was the second son of King Edward VII. He was known for his vigorous support of the troops during the first world war. George V died through euthanasia, also known as medically assisted suicide. But did you ever wonder what his last words were?
“Bugger Bognor!” were the last words of George V on his deathbed. According to the private journal kept by his physician who performed his assisted suicide, it translated to “God damn you.”
Who was George V?
George V was born George Federick Ernest Albert on June 3, 1865, in London. He was the second son of Alexandra, Queen Consort of Great Britain, and Edward VII, King of Great Britain and Ireland. He got married to Princess Mary of Teck in July 1893, who was also once his brother’s fiancee.
He joined and served in the navy until his elder brother, Prince Albert Victor, died in 1892. George V became the Duke of Cornwall and Prince of Wales in 1901 after his father’s ascension and succeeded King Edward VII on May 6, 1910. He was crowned king on June 22, 1911.
In his early years as the crowned king, he confronted alarming issues with the House of the Lords, also known as the British Government, when it came to managing the power of his throne. And in December 1910, the Liberals won the election, and the House of the Lords compromised and passed Parliament Act in 1911, and the king did not need to fulfill his pledge.
He was greatly respected during World War I. King George visited the war front in France several times to raise his troops’ morale. After the war ended, he was forced to face another tough decision in finding a new Prime Minister when Andrew Bonar Law resigned in 1923. He chose Baldwin to fill in the position due to the support he had from the Conservative Party. (Source: Britannica)
How Did King George V Pass?
He was once a heavy smoker, and at the age of 63, the king started to become ill with a chest infection in 1928. By orders of the royal physician, George V needed to take extreme precautions for his health. The financial crisis which led to the pound losing value also severely affected his medical condition.
After years of fighting his chronic lung issue, the king’s health declined, leading him to make the ultimate decision to plan his death. His planned death was kept in the dark until 1986. It was written in the journal of his physician, Lord Bertrand Dawson, that he injected morphia and cocaine into King George’s distended jugular vein, which resulted in his death. This method was decided in consideration to give him a painless death. The act was done just before midnight on January 20, 1936, at Sandringham, Norfolk, England. He was 70. His passing was announced on the morning of January 20.
It was said that while lying on his deathbed, he was told, Cheer up, your Majesty, you will soon be at Bognor again, to which he responded, Bugger Bognor. Dawson translated the king’s last words based on his understanding of the meaning in his journal to be God damn you. (Source: Britannica)
What Happened After his Passing?
After George V died, Edward VIII became his successor. But he remained on the throne for just a year. Edward renounced his title to marry the divorced American socialite, Wallis Simpson, leaving the throne to the late King George’s second son, George VI. (Source: Britannica)