Prince Charles taking private lessons in Arabic

Understanding Arabic would enable Prince Charles to read the Quran in its original form.

London: Fascinated by the culture and art of the Middle East for long, Prince Charles is taking private tuitions to learn Arabic, according to an aide of the British Royal.

The 64-year-old Prince modestly told guests at a reception in Qatar that the language "goes in one ear and out the other", but an aide disclosed that he is so keen to learn it that he has been having private tuition for more than six months.

Understanding Arabic would enable the Prince, who is passionate about encouraging dialogue between different religions, to read the Quran in its original form, The Telegraph reported.

It would also mean he could decipher Arabic script during visits to mosques and museums of Islamic art.

The Prince was in Doha attending the launch of the Qatar-UK Alumni Network, for Qataris who have attended British universities, when he told a group of guests: "You all speak such good English".

Mohammed Bin Saleh Al-Sada, the chairman of the association and Qatar`s energy minister, asked the Prince if he spoke any Arabic, and the Prince said, "I tried to learn it once but I gave up. It goes in one ear and out the other".

"It`s never too late to learn," Al-Sada told him.

Later, one of the Prince`s aides confirmed that he has been having lessons in Arabic recently, adding: "He is enormously interested in the region".

The Prince speaks good French, some German, and has also had lessons in Welsh.