This Royal Rule May Make Princess Charlotte’s Future Much More Difficult Than Prince George’s
The royal family is no stranger to rules.
It’s no secret that Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and the newest royal child, Prince Louis, get to grow up and live pretty charmed lives. However, there are still some royal rules that Prince William and Kate Middleton’s young children have to follow. In fact, some royal rules are not the same for the two of them.
Here are some of the royal rules the young Cambridge children must follow, and the one seemingly unfair rule that only applies to Princess Charlotte (No. 8). We’ll also take a quick look at some rules the royal family is already breaking (No. 13).
1. They get a lot of gifts, but they can’t always keep them
- Gifts given to royal children don’t technically belong to them.
How can this be? Don’t the royal children get gifts from people all over the world? While this may be true, the gifts don’t technically belong to the children. All gifts actually belong to the monarchy, and Queen Elizabeth has the final say on what gifts stay or go. However, all gifts must be accepted graciously by the recipient.
Next: The popular tradition they don’t particpate in
2. No presents on Christmas day
- Royal kids open their presents on Christmas Eve instead.
Christmas is a big to-do for the royals, as the whole family joins under one roof for the holiday festivities. But unlike the rest of the kids in the U.K., Princess Charlotte and her brothers don’t get to open up presents on Christmas morning. All gifts are unwrapped on Christmas eve, and the following day is spent going to church with the family, and watching the queen’s address.
Next: The strict rule they must follow when dining with the Queen.
3. The queen’s ‘food rule’ applies
- Even kids must stop eating when the Queen is done with her meal.
As part of royal family etiquette, everyone is done eating dinner when the queen is done, even if they aren’t necessarily finished with their own meals. Despite being little tikes — and possibly not even holding their utensils properly — George, Charlotte, and (eventually) their little brother have their plates taken away when their great-grandmother is done eating.
Next: And that’s not the only food-focused protocol.
4. Other food rules
- The royals avoid processed foods and shellfish.
The royal family keeps many foods off their list, from processed foods to shellfish. And as part of the royal family, the children have to follow the strict menu when eating with the family. But to be fair, mom Kate Middleton reportedly breaks protocol and lets her kids eat more fun things like store-bought breakfast cereal and cheeseburgers.
Next: Here’s a royal rule that doesn’t get broken.
5. Following the dress code
- When he’s older, Prince Louis will wear shorts like his older brother Prince George.
Fashion is a huge part of royal family etiquette, from what colors to wear on certain occasions to when it’s appropriate to wear a hat. Even at tender young ages, the children have to obey the dress code. This, of course, means Prince George is always seen wearing shorts with a nice shirt, socks, and buckled leather shoes. Princess Charlotte only wore baby onesies for the first 12 months of her life, and started wearing dresses after she turned 1 year old. And we assume the youngest prince will follow a similar pattern.
Next: When it comes to presenting themselves, it isn’t just about the clothes.
6. Body language rules
- All royals must have good posture.
Posture is a huge part of presenting one’s self, and it’s something that the royal family takes very seriously. (Queen Elizabeth chastised Prince William not that long ago for slouching!) This applies to even the smallest of royals — although we’re sure both George and Charlotte got a pass when they were newborns and couldn’t sit up straight yet, as their new brother will.
Next: The infamous “Windsor Wave.”
- The proper royal greeting is either a head bow or a curtsy.
That’s right — even Prince George and Princess Charlotte have to master the formal wave that their great-grandmother is so well known for. They are also expected to start learning how to formally meet people from a very young age. This is where the rules are a little different for each child: Greetings consist of a head bow for George (and his new brother) and a little curtsy for Charlotte.
Next: How you greet others isn’t the only rule that differs between the young Cambridges.
8. The one unfair rule
- Princess Charlotte’s children won’t get royal titles.
When you’re born into the royal family, you instantly become a prince or a princess, right? Quite the contrary. As the Daily Mail and other outlets revealed in 2017, Princess Charlotte’s future children will not get royal titles because of an outdated royal rule. Prince George’s children, on the other hand, will have the coveted HRH titles before their names. The same is likely true for the youngest prince.
Next: But why is this so?
9. The story behind the rule
- Royal titles are inherited through sons.
According to royal rules, children born from a princess cannot have a royal title. “Royal titles are inherited through sons,” royal etiquette expert Lucy Hume reportedly told Town & Country. “So if Princess Charlotte has children they would not automatically inherit the titles HRH, Prince, or Princess.”
Next: Charlotte isn’t the first royal to encounter this.
10. Other royals affected by this rule
- Princess Margaret and Princess Anne were subject to the same rule.
Being that this is, in fact, an outdated rule, Princess Charlotte will not be the first royal that this protocol has affected. Queen Elizabeth’s daughter, Princess Anne, has children that don’t have royal titles. The same was true for Queen Elizabeth’s late sister, Princess Margaret, and her two children.
Next: But since we’ve said before that some rules get broken …
11. Can this rule be changed?
- The Queen has the power to bend the rules.
Queen Elizabeth has, in fact, bent this old rule on a couple occasions. She actually offered to give Princess Anne’s children, Peter and Zara, HRH status when they were born. Anne and then-husband Captain James Phillips declined the offer. Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex also declined the offer to give their children titles, reportedly saying it was a “clear personal wish” to not give them that status.
Next: Here’s how the rule could potentially affect her.
12. Guesses as to whether Charlotte will buck this rule?
- Royal watchers will have to wait a while to see whether any children of Princess Charlotte’s get titles.
This may sound silly, given that the princess is only 2 years old. But of course, royal watchers are curious as to whether this rule will stand. The only way this rule could hurt her future is if the line of succession changes. Even though Prince George’s children would get titles, Princess Charlotte would technically still be the next heir in line for the throne. If that changed, it would be an uphill battle for Princess Charlotte in the hierarchy, especially with a male heir below her.
Next: Then again, it’s not as if rules haven’t been changed or broken before.
13. Rules already broken for George and Charlotte
- Prince William and Kate Middleton have already broken other royal rules.
The possibility of this rule getting changed in the modern era isn’t all that unlikely, given that Prince William and Kate have already bent royal protocol on numerous occasions for their children. (We already mentioned that they get to eat a little differently.) The youngsters are the first royals to attend public school — although Prince George’s prep school comes with a pretty steep price tag.
Next: Breaking rules is in their genes.
14. Rules broken by their father
- Prince William and Prince George sometimes fly together — a big royal no-no.
The Duke of Cambridge has broken plenty of royal rules as a dad, starting with when he drove the duchess and a newborn Prince George home from the hospital. He also flew in the same plane with George on his first international flight — a big no-no, since heirs are not supposed to travel together in case there is an accident. William and Kate, however, travel with their children regularly.
Next: William didn’t just start breaking rules when he became a dad.
15. The rules Prince William broke when he was younger
- Prince William has been a rule breaker since birth.
Long before Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and the new prince were even a thought, Prince William was paving the way for a more modern, royal rule-bending future. He was the first royal to be born in a hospital instead of at home, and he was the first to attend boarding school instead of being home-schooled.
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