15 Interesting Things We Learned About the Royal Family Over the Last Year
It's been a busy year for the British royal family, and as they traveled around the globe on royal engagements, we got to learn some exciting new things about our favorite royals.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex welcomed their first child, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor, and took him on his first royal tour, where they gave some very honest and open TV interviews. Princess Beatrice announced her engagement and got into wedding planning, getting us all excited for another royal wedding. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge toured Pakistan and wowed us with their wardrobe, and we celebrated Prince Louis's first birthday and cooed over photos from Princess Charlotte's first day at school. Throughout their various appearances this year, we picked up little tidbits about the family that helped us to get to know them a little bit more. Keep reading for 15 royal facts we learned in 2019.
Prince William and Prince Harry Are "on Different Paths"
Harry surprised everyone in October when he gave a surprisingly honest answer to a question about the suggested rift between him and his older brother. While Harry laughed off the idea of any real "feud," he did address his "job" as a royal and confessed that "inevitably stuff happens." However, he continued, "We're brothers, we'll always be brothers. We're certainly on different paths at the moment but I will always be there for him as I know he'll always be there for me."
Both brothers now have young families, and inevitably their priorities and areas of focus have changed since the days when a single, child-free Harry would accompany William and Kate on royal engagements. However, the brothers are still often seen together at important royal engagements that mean a lot to both of them, like the Remembrance Day events in late November.
Archie Looks Just Like Prince Harry
There was no denying the family resemblance when a 4-month-old Archie Mountbatten-Windsor made an appearance on the royal tour of Southern Africa. People immediately compared the tiny royal to his dad at the same age, and some are already speculating whether Archie may have inherited his dad's red hair — his eyebrows could be a dead giveaway, but a lot can change when you're only a few months old!
Princess Charlotte Has an Undeniable Resemblance to Diana's Family
Since her birth, Princess Charlotte has been compared to everyone from Queen Elizabeth II to her uncle, Prince Harry. But she doesn't just get her looks from the Windsor side of the family. When Lady Kitty Spencer shared a childhood photo on Instagram, it became clear just how much the young royal resembles her paternal grandmother's family, too. A young Kitty (who is Princess Diana's niece) is the spitting image of Charlotte, right down to her cheeky facial expression.
One Wink From Camilla Was All We Needed to Sum Up Trump's State Visit to the UK
President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump made a state visit to the UK in June. They met various members of the royal family, including Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Charles, and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, but it was Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, who was responsible for the most memorable moment of the entire trip. When she was spotted giving a wink to someone off camera as she walked behind Trump, it was quickly described as "the best part about this visit so far." What was she thinking? Maybe we'll never know, but it's great fun to guess.
Meghan Has a Simple and Sweet Nickname For Prince Harry
During the documentary that followed Meghan and Harry's tour of Southern Africa, Meghan revealed during an emotional interview that she calls Harry "H." "I've said for a long time to H," she says in the film, before whispering, "That's what I call him." Journalist Tom Bradby appears to encourage her to continue, quietly reassuring Meghan that "it's OK" as she looks a little flustered and laughs.
Princess Charlotte Has a Nickname, Too
So, her dad is "Pops," her uncle is "H," and her mum "will answer to most things." But it turns out cheeky little Princess Charlotte has a nickname too: Lottie! The Duchess of Cambridge was overheard saying, "Oh! He's the same age as Lottie," upon meeting a little boy during the royal tour of Northern Ireland.
The Queen Has an Entire Floor For Her Wardrobe
As if you needed any further confirmation that being an HRH comes with some amazing perks, apparently Queen Elizabeth II has an entire floor dedicated to her outfits — sorry, costumes. Each day, a royal dresser will present options to her royal highness, using sketches and fabric samples, before locating the actual outfit she chooses from the top floor of the palace. This way, the Queen never has to deal with such mundane things as wardrobes and chests of drawers. Heaven forbid!
Green Is the Cambridge Power Colour
During their royal tour of Pakistan, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge stepped out for a glamorous evening reception in coordinating dark green outfits . . . and we all did a double-take. Who knew this was Prince William's power color? The couple really got tongues wagging in their perfectly chosen finery. Kate's look was an intricately embellished and beaded Jenny Packham gown, while William sported teal brocade sherwani in honor of his hosts. It provided one of the most memorable photo ops from the tour, and had us all googling "emerald green sequin dress."
Harry and Meghan Considered Moving to Africa
Prince Harry's made no secret of his affection and personal connection to Africa, and particularly the country of Botswana, where he travelled following his mother's death in 1997. He later took Meghan to the country for a romantic holiday, and even sourced one of the diamonds for her engagement ring there.
However, Harry was honest when he spoke to ITV's Tom Bradby about the practicalities of moving somewhere on the continent. "I don't know where we could live in Africa at the moment," he said, citing Cape Town in South Africa as an example of somewhere he loves, but could probably not base his family. "It's a very hard place to live when you know what's going on, but then you're sort of slightly disconnected from it," he admitted. However, though it's unlikely the royal couple will ever move there, Africa will still feature heavily in their work from now on. "The rest of our lives, our life's work will be predominately focused on Africa, on conservation. There are 19 Commonwealth countries across this continent so there's a lot of things to be done, but there's also huge potential."
Prince George Is an Aston Villa Fan, Just Like His Dad
You'd probably assume, living in southwest London, that Prince George would be a Chelsea fan, or perhaps his allegiances would lie with a team that plays close to the family estate of Anmer Hall in Norfolk. But nope, the young Prince actually supports a team based in . . . Birmingham! It seems the young Prince has chosen to follow in the footsteps of his dad Prince William, and he was recently spotted wearing a claret and blue shirt, cheering for Aston Villa at an away match against Norwich City in October.
Back in 2015, William explained to Gary Lineker that he became a Villa fan during his school days because he wanted the "emotional rollercoaster moments" of supporting a mid-table club. He went on to praise Villa fans for the atmosphere and camaraderie he's witnessed at games, something George looks like he's now enjoying just as much as his dad!
You Don't Mess With Uncle Elton
Elton John has always been close to both William and Harry, having also had a close relationship with Princess Diana. This year, the singer has been particularly outspoken in his support of Harry and Meghan in the face of constant criticism from the British press. First, Elton spoke out when Harry and Meghan were accused of being hypocrites for taking a private jet to the south of France. "After a hectic year continuing their hard work and dedication to charity, David and I wanted the young family to have a private holiday inside the safety and tranquility of our home," he said, confirming that he actually paid for their travel and also made a donation to offset the carbon footprint of the journey.
A couple of months later, Elton once again made a statement about the couple, commending Harry for taking legal action against British Associated Newspapers. "I've always lived my life fighting injustice with the press," he told NPR. "I like the press, there's a need for the press, but sometimes they step out of their bounds, and hacking phones is not acceptable. If your phone is hacked, you've got to take action because the press cannot do that. So I have to say bravo."
Kate Wears the Trousers — Literally!
The Duchess of Cambridge's wardrobe seemed to take a more modern turn in 2019, and she increasingly swapped her usual coats and heavy wool dresses for more breezy tea dresses and high-waisted trousers. In fact, we'd wager Kate has worn more pairs of trousers this year than the last few years combined.
Many speculated that this was because Kate's usual stylist, Natasha Archer, was on maternity leave, but reports suggested she was still very much involved in the duchess's sartorial choices. The pair were reunited officially just before the royal tour of Pakistan, and Archer was said to have had a hand in one of our favorite Kate looks of the year: a $50 scalloped Warehouse sweater worn with olive Joseph culottes and block-heeled shoes. Whatever the reason for this modern wardrobe update, we approve!
Meghan Will Go a Long Way to Support Her Friends
Though little Archie was only 4 months old at the time and leaving him must have been tough, Meghan flew to New York in September to support her close friend Serena Williams when she played in the US Open. The duchess sat next to Serena's mother Oracene Price for the match, and was spotted hugging Serena's husband, Alexis Ohanian, as she arrived on court. Williams later said in an interview that Meghan flew straight home after the match, showing not only her dedication to her friends, but also to her family.
Archie Might Have a Very Different Education to His Dad and Uncle
Though it'll be a while before we find out where Archie will go to school, rumor has it Harry and Meghan are already considering the American Community School (ACS) in Egham, Surrey, close to Windsor, where the family is based at Frogmore Cottage. If they do choose the school, it'll be worlds apart from the schools that Harry and William attended, not just because it's a mixed curriculum, but because it offers the chance to study for international qualifications.
The school accepts pupils aged four to 18, so Archie could end up attending for his entire education, though it's also possible that he'll attend until he's 13 before heading to Eton like his dad.
Prince William Won't Be Doing Princess Charlotte's Hair Anytime Soon
"Never try to do a ponytail! Nightmare," William apparently said to a group of fellow dads when he was discussing the perils of fatherhood during a royal engagement. In contrast, the Duchess of Cambridge showed off her plaiting skills during a trip to northern Ireland, when she helped out during a hair and makeup demonstration.