When You Turn Up Late For Royal Easter…

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This morning the British Royal Family turned out for an Easter service at St George’s Chapel, Windsor – the same venue at which everyone will be on May 19 for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding. While the groom and bride-to-be weren’t on hand today, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Zara Tindall, Peter Phillips, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York and the Earl of Wessex were.

…Except, not everyone was there by the time the Queen turned up, who is meant to arrive last. William and Kate, who are spending Easter this year with Kate’s parents in Bucklebury, showed up a few minutes too late to make the receiving line.

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Kate & Sophie Hold Court at the Commonwealth Fashion Exchange

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Say what you will about the Duchess of Cambridge lately, but this has been a very dramatic winter of fashion. Between the floral Erdems, fur and the controversial green Jenny Packham last night, I have a feeling Kate is looking forward to the days when she can don her skinnies and a Breton-striped top in peace and call it a day. Everything else aside, it’s worth noting that Kate has been turning up at event after event, including a number of evening engagements requiring formal wear, with a smile on her face at seven months pregnant. That’s no mean feat.

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Royal Roundup: Autumn Dates, Possible Tours & the Yorks

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I have gone out of my way to mostly ignore Sarah, Duchess of York (Prince Andrew’s ex-wife) due to the old adage, “If you don’t have anything nice to say…” Indeed, it’s for this same reason that I usually only reference Andrew when he happens to have attended a large family event. The only exception to this is a post from early last year that covered memorable public statements made by Andrew pertaining to the roles of his daughters in the “slimmed down” monarchy model that the Prince of Wales is said to favor.

My reason for writing that post was that it was particularly newsworthy and it is for that same reason I find myself circling back to the York family again today. So, here we go:

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Ascot 2017 & the Tangled Windsor Web (Updated)

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Observing a moment of silence for the victims of recent terror attacks

Surprise! The Duchess of Cambridge made an appearance at Ascot today alongside her husband, the Duke of Cambridge, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie and Zara Tindall, among others. It was such a family affair that even Michael and Carole Middleton were seen in the Royal enclosure. But the true star of the show was the Queen herself, who has been attending the event annually alongside her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, since the ’50s. True to form, she was there today, rocking a lime green coat and hat, handbag and gloves properly in place.

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Victoria Eugenie: The English Queen of Spain

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In honor of King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia’s upcoming trip to the UK for an official state visit at the invitation of the Queen, we’re taking a beat to take a look at the ties between the two royal families, of which there are a few. While French and German blood have permeated the English line far and above everything else, there have been a few notable Anglo-Spanish alliances over the course of history.

The first was that of Eleanor of Castile to Edward I in 1254. Then there was the famous union of Katherine of Aragon and Henry VIII, cemented in 1509. Finally, there was the inauspicious marriage of their daughter, Mary I, to Philip II of Spain in 1554. These were supplemented by the reverse, too – English princess who became Castilian or Spanish queen consorts. Henry II’s daughter, Eleanor, married Alfonso VIII in 1177. And Edward III’s granddaughter, Katherine of Lancaster, ended a civil war by marrying  Henry III in 1388.

The last of these matches worth noting was not between an “English princess,” per se, but she was an Englishwoman all the same, and one with deep-rooted familial ties to the Houses of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha and Windsor. Her name was Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg and she was the only daughter of Princess Beatrice, youngest daughter of Queen Victoria. She was born on October 24, 1887 at Balmoral Castle in Scotland, the same year her grandmother was celebrating 50 years on the throne. Victoria referred to her as “my little Jubilee grandchild.”

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Kate Recycles Catherine Walker Coat for Easter Service

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Image by Adam Gray

Happy Easter! The Duchess of Cambridge gifted us a surprise appearance this morning by joining the Royal Family for an Easter service at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor. She and the Duke joined the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, Peter and Autumn Phillips, the Wessexes, the Princess Royal and Timothy Laurence for what became quite the family affair.

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Royal Roundup April 2-8: Sounds Like an Engagement is Coming

You guys, a lot has been happening. Let’s get into it:

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  • Perhaps of most importance, Prince Harry’s girlfriend of about a year, Meghan Markle, has shut down her website, The Tig. In a farewell note, Meghan only said that it was “time to say goodbye,” as rumors swirl that she is ready to leave acting behind her and focus on…well, probably marrying Harry. Honestly, all signs point to an engagement coming within months, if not weeks. There’s already speculation and hints being dropped in the press that Harry is eagerly looking to move house from his “bachelor pad” at Kensington Palace to a full apartment that can serve as a family home. Meghan, too, has been spending considerable time in London, limiting her Instagram posts and toeing the rather bizarre line she’ll have to if she becomes a full-blown member of the Royal Family. The shutdown of Meghan’s website, which seemed to be her passion project, is the most definitive sign that an announcement is forthcoming. At the beginning of the year I would have said 1) It was too soon to tell and 2) If an announcement was made it wouldn’t be until the summer. I would revise that now to say it’s entirely possible it’ll be confirmed in mid to late spring with a wedding in the autumn. That said, what do I know? But unlike the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge who were in their 20s when engagement rumors began swirling, Meghan is 35 and may be looking to begin a family sooner rather than later, while Harry is 32 and seems more than ready to settle down. It might happen, it might not, but if it does, I don’t think anyone will be shocked.

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Andrew v. Charles: The Case of the York Girls

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On Friday we discussed the press release Kensington Palace issued on Prince Harry’s behalf regarding his relationship with Meghan Markle. But that was only the first part of “Strange Statements From the Royal Family in 2016.” The second part came less than a month later when Andrew, Duke of York, the second son and reportedly favorite child of Elizabeth II, took to Twitter to address press speculation that he was feuding with his elder brother, Charles, Prince of Wales over the role of his daughters, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie.

The tweet was a simple link signed “AY,” denoting that it came from Andrew himself and not a member of his staff.

Specifically, Andrew said it was inaccurate to claim that he had ever asked that future husbands of his daughters be given titles upon marrying into the royal family, and that there was no dispute with Charles over them. The full statement can be read here.

But let’s back up and discuss these “fabrications.”

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