AP: Britain's Prince Charles pays 17th-century debt---
LONDON - Prince Charles has paid off a royal debt from the 17th century, but showed modern-day fiscal prudence by declining to pay the accumulated interest, which would have been substantial after more than 350 years.And this was a nice touch:
Charles made the payment of 453 pounds and 3 shillings — about $900 — during a visit Tuesday to Worcester with his wife, Camilla.
The debt was incurred in 1651 when King Charles II — at the time recognized only as the king of Scotland — was preparing for the Battle of Worcester.
He had asked the Clothiers Company of Worcester to prepare uniforms for his soldiers and pledged to pay afterward. But his forces were defeated and Charles fled to mainland Europe, leaving behind the unpaid bill.
The prince handed the payment — enclosed in a 1650s-style gaming purse made by the Royal Shakespeare Company — to Andrew Grant, master of the Clothiers Company. Charles received a receipt for his payment after the brief ceremony at the Commandery, which served as the royal headquarters during the Battle of Worcester.
"We are very grateful to the Prince of Wales for repaying the debt to the Worcester Clothiers Company," Grant said.
The Clothiers Company, founded in the 13th century, is one the last of the medieval-era guilds still active in the area.