Kate Middleton and Prince William: Their Relationship in Photos

Let’s go back to the beginning. The beginning of the relationship between Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. They became husband and wife in 2011 but have been a couple for much longer. Ahead, we’re taking a look back at their relationship that started in 2001 when the two were college students at Scotland’s University of St. Andrews. 

Kate Middleton and Prince William holding drinks
Kate Middleton and Prince William | Pool/Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage

They started out as friends 

Sparks didn’t fly right away between the future Duke and Duchess of Cambridge when they were in college together. The two started out as friends and reportedly a year after they first met is when a relationship began to develop.

During their sophomore year, they lived in an apartment together with two other friends and that’s when their romance supposedly began.

Below, see them on the day of their college graduation in 2005. The British royal family released the below photo taken by the Middleton family ahead of Catherine and William’s royal wedding in 2011. 

Kate Middleton and Prince William on the day of their college graduation
Kate Middleton and Prince William on the day of their college graduation | Handout

According to what Catherine said during a 2019 holiday special with British chef and food writer, Mary Berry, William tried to impress her in the early days of their relationship by cooking elaborate dishes

Kate Middleton and Prince William broke up twice 

Like any other couple, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have had rough patches in their relationship. They briefly broke up in 2004 but their most notable split happened in the spring of 2007. At the time, the public had been expecting the two to get engaged not go their separate ways.

Kate Middleton and Prince William in 2007
Kate Middleton and Prince William, 2007 | Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Reports vary on why exactly they broke up but reasons range from increasing pressure to marry and the media following Catherine’s every move to an absence of fun in their relationship. Whatever the exact reasons were, we know Catherine had been less than pleased with the turn of events.

“At the time, I wasn’t very happy about it but actually it made me a stronger person,” she said about the 2007 breakup in her and William’s 2010 engagement interview. “I really valued that time for me as well although I didn’t think it at the time, looking back on it.”

During that time, Catherine moved in with her younger sister, Pippa Middleton, and the two were often seen at bars or clubs. Below see a smiling Catherine entering what appears to be a car on May 11, 2007.

Kate Middleton on May 11, 2007, entering a car
Kate Middleton on May 11, 2007 | Mark Milan/FilmMagic

By July of that year, William had reportedly asked Catherine to take him back after seeing her at a costume party.  Below, see the couple at a wedding in October of that year.

Kate Middleton and Prince William in 2010 at a wedding
Kate Middleton and Prince William in 2010 | Indigo/Getty Images

Prince William and Kate Middleton got engaged in 2010

During a trip to Kenya three years later, William proposed to his longtime girlfriend. He proposed to Catherine using the engagement ring that once belonged to his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.

Kate Middleton and Prince William walk on a beach in 2019
Kate Middleton and Prince William, 2019 | Paul Ellis – WPA Pool /Getty Images

William’s younger brother, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex gave the ring, which had been in his possession, to William ahead of the proposal. Less than a year later in April 2011, Catherine and William got married. Despite the challenges that come with any royal marriage, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been going strong.