Royal nanny Marion Crawford's book and the others that rocked the royal family ... trends now
She was the royal nanny whose name became a watchword for betrayal - thanks to a touching memoir that recalled the childhood of the future Queen.
When it was published in 1950, Marion Crawford's book The Little Princesses was a national sensation, recounting her 17 years as governess to Princess Elizabeth and her younger sister Margaret.
There were tales of journeys on the London Underground, recollections of the sisters' squabbles when they had to wear hats with elastic, and a first-hand account of the first proper meeting between 13-year-old Elizabeth and her future husband Prince Philip.
Although the revelations provided heartwarming windows into the lives of the nation's favourite princesses, Crawford was shunned and disgraced by the Royal Family, with the Queen Mother insisting she had 'gone off her head' by writing the book.
Marion Crawford (pictured above with Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret as youngsters) was the royal nanny whose name became a title for betrayal - thanks to a touching memoir that recalled the childhood of the future Queen. Above: The nanny with her young charges in the early 1930s
When it was published in 1950, Marion Crawford's book, The Little Princesses, was a national sensation. It recounted her 17 years as governess to Princess Elizabeth and her younger sister Margaret
Despite the Palace's push to make an example of her, Crawford would not be the last member of palace staff - or the royal family itself - to 'do a Crawfie' and break the code of silence.
The year after the release of the Little Princesses and more than seven decades before Prince Harry's incendiary memoir Spare, the Duke of Windsor - who as Edward VIII abdicated in 1936 to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson - published his autobiography, A King's Story.
Five years later, in 1956, Wallis followed suit with her own memoir - which was penned by the same ghostwriter who had been in charge of her husband's tome.
Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, has written two memoirs, the first of which was published in 1996, the year she and Prince Andrew divorced.
The revelations in the work included her admission that she was 'never cut out' for her high-profile role as a working royal.
This confession was perhaps most famously typified by the infamous photographs showing the Duchess having her toes kissed by lover John Bryan.
Sarah also told how she accidentally kicked one of the Queen's corgis during her first meeting with the monarch.
But the impact of the Duchess's book was nothing compared to Andrew Morton's 1992 biography of Princess Diana, which it later emerged was written with the royal's close collaboration.
Prince Charles with his biographer Jonathan Dimbleby at Highgrove
There were tales of journeys on the London Underground, recollections of the sisters' squabbles when they had to wear hats with elastic, and a first-hand account of when a 13-year-old Elizabeth met future husband Prince Philip for the first time. Above: Crawford (right) with Elizabeth, Margaret and Lady Helen Graham - a lady-in-waiting to the Queen Mother - are seen as they take the princesses on their first trip on the London Underground
Princess Elizabeth walking her dog in Hyde Park, London, in 1936. She is accompanied by her governess, Marion Crawford (left)
Princess Elizabeth and her sister Princess Margaret leave the YWCA's HQ with Crawford after their visit
It told the 'true' story of Diana's marriage to the then Prince Charles, which, contrary to the public image at the time, was in deep trouble.
Diana opened up about her intense unhappiness and feelings of depression that led to her attempts to take her own life.
The revelations - condemned by many as sensationalist - were so damaging for the royals' public image that many book shops and supermarkets banned it, totally unaware that Diana was the main source behind the work.
More than a decade later, the princess's former butler, Paul Burrell, who previously worked as a footman for the Queen, scandalised the palace with his memoir, A Royal Duty, in 2003.
Prince William and Prince Harry called it a 'cold and overt betrayal' of their late mother, with the book including a baseless claim that Charles had an affair with nanny Tiggy Legge-Bourke.
More recently, two of the late Queen's cousins, Margaret Rhodes and the Duke of Kent, have gotten in on the act with their own rather less inflammatory books.
Stephen Barry, who was valet to the Charles for 12 years, released his memoir in 1983, before publishing another book two years later.
He had left royal service shortly after the King's marriage to Princess Diana in 1981.
Barry, who died of AIDS in 1986, infuriated the palace with his works, which never found a British publisher and were only released in the United States.
And former royal housekeeper Wendy Berry published her own account of Charles and Diana's married life 'before the breakup'.
Among the revelations in The Housekeeper's Diary was detail on how particular King Charles was when it came to boiled eggs: they had to be boiled for exactly three minutes.
Princess Elizabeth and Margaret's squabbles over hats
But it was Crawford who first entertained the British public - and infuriated the royal household - with her book.
She took up her post in the early 1930s, when Elizabeth and Margaret's father the Duke of York - the future King George VI - had no inkling that he would become the monarch.
For the next 17 years, she shepherded the young princesses through their early lives, collecting anecdotes as she went.
Her book recounted the moment she first met six-year-old Princess Elizabeth, who was sitting up in bed and using two dressing gown cords attached to her bedposts to pretend to drive her horses.
Later, she was the one who first told Elizabeth - then known as Lilibet - and Margaret that their father had unexpectedly become the King.
An 18-year-old Prince Philip is seen meeting Princess Elizabeth, his future wife - then 13 - at Dartmouth Naval College
An advert in the Daily Mail promoting Women's Own's publishing of Marion Crawford's story
In the build-up to the Abdication crisis, it was Crawford who took the minds of the princesses off the stress of their worried parents.
And she recalled rushing the princesses down to the dungeons of Windsor Castle amid the threat of German bombs during the Second World War.
Of the sisters' arguments over hats, Crawford claimed they would pull at each other's chin elastic as they shouted 'you brute, you beast'.
'Neither was above taking a whack at her adversary if roused and Lilibet was quick with her left hook,' she wrote.
'Margaret was more of a close-in fighter, apt to bite on occasions. More than once I have been shown a hand bearing royal teeth marks.'
Elizabeth first met Philip when he was an 18-year-old cadet at Dartmouth Naval College.
Crawford recounted how, due to a mumps outbreak among some of the boys, Elizabeth and Margaret were sent to play with children in the Captain's house.
'Among them was a fair-haired off-handed boy of 18 who showed off to them by jumping the tennis nets and eating several platefuls of shrimps for tea,' she wrote of Philip.
The whole time they were in the same room, Elizabeth is said to have never taken her eyes off him.
Crawford and Lady Helen Graham take Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret to an Underground station on their way to visit the headquarters of the Young Women's Christian Association in May 1939
When Philip began visiting Elizabeth at the palace, she would, according to Crawford, watch through the window to 'see the tall, lean figure coming past the fountain in the centre of the road outside the Palace, or to see his small sports car turn in at the Palace gates. Usually a deal too fast...'
Although she had wanted to leave royal service earlier, Crawford did not retire from her duties until 1949, when she was 40.
Before that, King George VI had insisted: 'Your place is here with us. We really couldn't do without you.'
As a retirement gift, she was allowed to live in Nottingham Cottage, the three-bed home at Kensington Palace where Prince Harry proposed