Palace workers are said to have raised concerns about Meghan’s attitude towards staff as far back as 2017 (Image: AFP via Getty Images)

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Meghan Markle said "it’s not my job to coddle people" when confronted by a senior aide over her treatment of staff, a royal author has claimed.

The Duchess of Sussex reportedly humiliated palace workers in meetings, shouted at them and "governed by fear", according to a bombshell book.

Her closest friends and former acting colleagues have denied the claims and said they couldn't be more different to the "kind" person they know and love.

Royal author Robert Lacey, who provides historical assistance for Netflix show The Crown, has detailed tensions within the royal household stretching back as far back as 2017.

According to a new version of his book Battle of the Brothers, Prince William believed the Suits actress was "stealing his beloved brother away" and was "very concerned" after finding out about allegations of bullying made against Meghan.

The showdown between Prince Harry and William became so fierce that the older sibling split his household from his brother's, The Times reports.

Tensions bubbled over when Jason Knauf, who worked in communications for both the Cambridges and the Sussexes, submitted an official email in October 2018 making the bullying allegations – which the Sussexes deny.

Prince William was reportedly 'very concerned' after finding out about the bullying claims
(Image: WireImage)

One courtier quoted in the book claimed: “Meghan governed by fear. So many people said it. Nothing was ever good enough for her.

"[She] humiliated staff in meetings, [would] shout at them, [would] cut them off email chains — and then demand to know why they hadn’t done anything.”

The Duchess was confronted about her behaviour as early as 2017, around the time of the Sussexes' engagement, according to the newspaper.

A senior aide is said to have approached the duchess about their concerns around the time of the Sussexes' engagement
(Image: Getty Images)

Yet when the senior aide told Meghan her behaviour was causing difficulties for staff, she reportedly said: "It’s not my job to coddle people."

The allegations against the duchess surfaced publicly in March this year, with Buckingham Palace saying it was "concerned" at reports staff had been bullied.

An official internal investigation into the allegations was launched, but according to reports over the weekend, the probe is still ongoing and a report has been delayed until next year.

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The palace is specifically investigating allegations that the Duchess of Sussex had bullied two PAs out of their jobs in the previous year.

The 2018 document claimed that Meghan seemed intent on "always having someone in her sights", and Knauf said he had received “report after report” from people who witness "unacceptable behaviour” by Meghan towards a member of staff.

When the allegations were first reported, a spokesperson for the Sussexes vehemently denied them.

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They said: “Let's just call this what it is — a calculated smear campaign based on misleading and harmful misinformation.

"We are disappointed to see this defamatory portrayal of the Duchess of Sussex given credibility by a media outlet.

"It's no coincidence that distorted several-year-old accusations aimed at undermining the duchess are being briefed to the British media shortly before she and the duke are due to speak openly and honestly about their experience of recent years.”

Pals of Meghan also blasted the allegations back in March, with one claiming it was "so far from the woman I know".

The 39-year-old friend told Bazaar.com that the duchess was distressed at the accusations, adding: "I hate to say it, but find me a woman of colour in a senior position who has not been accused of being too angry, too scary… in the work place.

Best pal Jessica Mulroney also applauded Meghan for being "kind, empathetic and loving".

Jessica, 41, wrote: "I don’t know that anyone has ever had to deal with the pressure, the politics and the press like this woman.

"In the face of it all, I have never seen her waver from kindness, empathy and love."