Prince Charles Refused to Break This Rule for Prince William and Kate Middleton for 5 Years

It is difficult to imagine a time when Kate Middleton was not part of the royal family. In the years since her 2011 wedding to Prince William, Kate has become a fixture at royal engagements and events, and we look forward to seeing her smiling face along with the rest of the family. She and William have been together since their college days at the University of Saint Andrews in Scotland.

They dated for quite some time before Kate received that iconic sapphire ring, and at one point, the news media even dubbed her “Waity Katie” since she had been so patiently waiting for a proposal. Although the couple was obviously very serious even before the engagement finally came, what rule did Prince Charles refuse to break for five years?

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales | Jeff Spicer/Getty Images

Back to the beginning

The royal romance began all the way back in 2001 when William and Kate were young students navigating their way through college. Many people do not realize that when they first met, Kate was actually dating someone else, and she and the prince were nothing more than friends.

It wasn’t long until William famously paid a large sum of money to be seated front and center as he watched Kate walk down the runway in a fashion show, wearing a very sheer dress. Soon after, the two announced that they were officially dating.

A slow introduction into the royal family

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The Duke & Duchess celebrated St Patrick’s Day at the 1st Battalion base at Cavalry Barracks in Hounslow, where they handed out shamrocks to the Irish Guards. Saint Patrick's Day is an Irish national holiday celebrating the patron saint of Ireland, and is observed with parades and celebrations worldwide. Every year, a member of the Royal Family — typically a female — hands out shamrocks to the Irish Guards, a tradition started by Queen Alexandra in 1901, except for during wartime. Elizabeth II is the Irish Guards’ Colonel-in-Chief, and The Duke has been Colonel of the Irish Guards since early 2011. The Duchess of Cambridge currently holds the responsibility of presenting the shamrocks. Before her, Princess Anne and the Queen Mother held this responsibility. Shamrocks came to be seen as a symbol of Saint Patrick, who would use the shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity where the three leaves represent Father, Son and Holy Sprit. They also symbolise love, faith and hope, with a fourth leaf symbolising luck. A minutes silence was held for the victims of the New Zealand terror attack before the parade. The Duke & Duchess were reunited with Domhnall today, an Irish wolfhound and mascot they have met several times previously at the event. He lead 350 soldiers as they marched on the Parade Square at Cavalry Barracks. The Duchess then presented the shamrock to officers and warrant officers, before a march past where The Duke takes the salute. The couple then attended the Guardsman’s lunch where they were given a drink of Guinness.

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Over the months, Kate was slowly introduced to various members of William’s family. She began attending important events with them and was seen more often by William’s side during royal engagements.

Although it took some time before Kate became a permanent fixture within the family, not meeting the queen for over seven years, it seems that it was all well worth it, as they get along wonderfully with her now. The duchess fits in with the royals perfectly, and she has close relationships with Prince Harry, Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla, and of course, Queen Elizabeth.

What rule did Prince Charles refuse to break?

It turns out that although the royal family has been adapting to modern ways in recent years, there is still one old-fashioned rule that Prince Charles adheres to. For the first five years of their relationship, Charles would not allow William and Kate to stay in the same room when they visited his home.

The couple had to respect Charles’s wishes by staying in separate rooms of the house when they were visiting since they were not yet engaged.

What does royal tradition dictate?

According to the royal rule book, couples should not be living together before they become engaged. William and Kate obviously broke this rule during their time at college, when they were roommates for over a year.

While they never publicly spoke about whether they shared a bedroom or just the common spaces of the apartment during that time, we can only assume that they did as they pleased since there was no parental supervision.

Do William and Kate respect the beliefs of Prince Charles?

They certainly do! Being royal does not mean that someone is exempt from obeying the rules of their parents. Prince Charles may be next in line to be the king of England, but he is a father before anything else. It is only natural that there are certain things he would expect his sons to do, especially at a young age.

We must remember that at this point, William and Kate were still fairly young, and Charles may have had his reservations about breaking the rules for them. Even so, it is a known fact that everything worked out perfectly in the end, so William and Kate probably don’t even give the situation a second thought.