Lines of Succession

In Swaziland, royalty has its price. despite the perks of office — which include palatial dwellings, royal estates, numerous feast days, knee-bending courtiers and eight wives, with the prospect of a whole lot more to come — 33-year-old Mswati III of Swaziland, Africa's only absolute monarch, is finding out that being King isn't much fun.

What was to have been a celebratory birthday occasion for Mswati last month was called off indefinitely, with Mswati stricken by a mysterious illness and a spate of rumors highlighting the dark intrigues of the royal house. What was of equal concern to...

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