Queen attends State Opening of Parliament 2016

Queen attends State Opening of Parliament 2016

Queen Elizabeth attended the State Opening of Parliament yesterday, May 18, with Prince Philip, Prince Charles, and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall in attendance.

The Queen traveled in State to the Palace of Westminster to give the Queen’s Speech, officially opening the new session of parliament. The Queen addressed both Houses, outlining plans and future legislation. The Speech is written by the Government. Once the Queen left, members of both Houses debate the content of the speech and agree an ‘Address in Reply to Her Majesty’s Gracious Speech’.

Here’s a video of the Opening from the Queen’s entrance to exit, and her speech. It’s worth it to watch it just to see the jewels glitter in the lights.

Part of the Opening which I love is the House of Lords’ messenger, known as the “Black Rod”, summoning the House of Commons. The Black Rod is sent to summon the House of Commons, but the door is first slammed in his face, symbolizing the Commons’ independence from the monarchy and their right to exclude everyone including the Sovereign’s messengers. The Black Rod then strikes the door three times with his staff/rod before being allowed into the Commons.

The Imperial State Crown traveled to the Palace of Westminster in its own carriage, having first traveled from the Tower of London – where it is kept – to Buckingham Palace.

Imperial State Crown
[British Monarchy Twitter]

The Imperial State Crown was originally made for Queen Victoria‘s coronation in 1838, and incorporates gemstones including the diamond known as the Second Star of Africa, the Black Prince’s Ruby, the Stuart Sapphire, St. Edward’s Sapphire, and Queen Elizabeth’s Pearls.

Imperial State Crown close up
[British Monarchy Instagram]

The Imperial State Crown also includes a sapphire that once belonged to Edward the Confessor (1003-1066; r. 1042-1066).

Imperial State Crown close up 2
[British Monarchy Instagram]

The Queen wore the Imperial State Crown during the speech and the George IV State Diadem while arriving and leaving. She wore Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee Necklace and Queen Victoria’s Pearl Drop Earrings, as well as the Collar and Great George of the Order of the Garter.

BTW, HM chose to use a lift to get into the House of Lords rather than walk up the 26 stairs at the Sovereign’s Entrance. It’s the first time in her 63 State Openings that she has chosen to do so. A BP spokesman said: “It is a modest adjustment made for the Queen’s comfort.”

Apparently they are also installing a temporary handrail on the steps of St. Paul’s Cathedral for the Queen to use when she attends the service of thanksgiving to mark her 90th birthday on June 10.

Camilla wore the exact same thing she wore in 2015: The same white, beaded gown; the Greville/Boucheron Honeycomb Tiara; her pearl earrings she wears all the time; her pearl choker with large diamond clasp; diamond brooch on her shoulder; the Star and Riband of the Royal Victorian Order; and Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II.

Both Philip and Charles wore the Collar and Great George of the Order of the Garter as well as the dark green Riband of the Order of the Thistle.

Here’s a photo showing the beautiful ceiling and stain glass windows in the House of Lords.

PS. Here’s a link to a YouTube video of the Queen’s 90th birthday Royal Windsor Horse Show celebration.

118 thoughts on “Queen attends State Opening of Parliament 2016

    1. For comparison:

  1. What an amazing lady HM is. She has been on the go all week she must be exhausted. And all that gear including the train must weigh a ton. I don’t think anywhere in the world can surpass us on pomp. The carriages, horses, uniforms and the jewels!!

    1. I love all the pomp too, a great time to see all those amazing jewels, but that crown looks heavy.
      Camilla looks great, I don’t have a problem with her wearing the same thing as last year, afterall how many other occasions would you have to wear a long white satin court dress? Nice to see the ladies in waiting too.
      Imagine what the ceremony would have looked like with candle light bouncing off the jewelry?

    2. I agree with you Birdy, no one does pomp like you guys. It is amazing to see.

      HM looks tired here and it is hard to think that she will not be around forever.

    3. Oh yes, the pomp and ceremonies, the traditions are awesome. Simply grand and so interesting to watch. I’m sure that some of the participants get tired and hot but you’d never know it. (well, aside from the c’s). You are right no one can out pomp the British.

  2. Of course politically it is all potentially rubbish.if we vote Brexit Cameron will resign and God only knows what will happen but potentially a General Election. Then she would have to do it all again later in the year. The vote is apparently very close but our pollsters made an almighty mess in our last GE so who knows!!??

    1. Hi Birdy, not to turn this political and I really don’t understand politics anyway. However, with our President encouraging the UK to stay within the EU that’s my stand as well. On another note the picture of the ceiling and windows of Parliament are utterly breath taking. In a way it might not be so bad if the monarchy ends after Charles (I think things would have been so different had he been able to marry Camilla when he wanted to) since waity and wimpy will make a total joke out of a grand institution whose time has come and gone. Charles deserves a chance to be king. It must be terrible to have to wait until your parent dies to have a job. I’m American Birdy so please take that into account if this post offends you in any way because that was not my intent. I have a great love for our British friends and allies. And as an American I can’t know the tenor of the people of Britain or any other country for that matter. I do hope for the best outcome for you guys!!

  3. I love watching the State Opening of Parliament! I thought Camilla looked great. That tiara works well for her given her hair and how she styles it. I don’t think anyone else could wear quite as well as she does. This is one of the few times you can see the queen’s ladies-in-waiting, and they always look so lovely in their white dresses and wearing their different orders.

    It makes me sad the queen didn’t take the stairs only because it shows she’s getting older. I wish we could keep her here indefinitely. She’s such a great example.

  4. Camilla looks gorgeous.

    I love the State Opening. Keeping all those traditions alive that have been going for so very long. Besides, the tiaras make it even better! 😉

  5. I’m sad to hear about the lift and handrails. It’s easy to forget the Queen is 90 with how non stop she is. But smalls adjustments like these reminds me she is getting older and the face of the monarchy may sadly change sooner rather than later. I just hope she doesn’t burn herself out 🙁

  6. Camilla looks absolutely regal – I know she gets a bad press and is disliked by a huge amount of the public still but my goodness, she does look the part! I can absolutely see her as next Queen Consort and I think she’ll be a really good one, unobtrusive but dutiful and rocking the big bling. She really does look wonderful.

    I did hear somewhere that the crown is very heavy to wear, it weighs several pounds and I have to laugh when I think that it might be the only cure for Waity’s hair flicking, although goodness knows I don’t want either if those two muppets anywhere near the throne. Best it ends with Charles.

    Thank you for the pic of the House of Lords. We rarely ever see it from that angle and I didn’t know it was so beautiful!

  7. I love this post so much. This is when the history nerd in me starts to dance the happy dance. I love the traditions here. It reminds me of the continuity of the Parliament and Monarchy. If I could, I would spend hours there taking in every angle, corner, and details. I would do the same with the crown. It is so beautiful. I would ne rendered powerless in front if that big, honking diamond, lol!

    Cam rocks a tiara like no other. She wears it with confidence and with beautiful hair. This post made me a bit sad as we can see HM and the DoE getting older. I like looking at their pics from the years to get a grasp of continuity, but also to relfect what was going on that particular year. There will be a time when they won’t be here and it saddens me.

    While I think that Charles will be a good monarch, but I don’t see this going past him. There is no way I can envision Will and Kate there.

    Thanks for a beautiful and glittering post, KMR!

    1. I thought the same regarding WK. Since they have no respect for tradition, it’s no use going past Charles, which is a shame.

        1. I can’t imagine the Middleton family there, but I bet Carole can.

          I am not a Camilla fan, but I thought she looked lovely. Her gown looked perfect and when she walked up the stairs she looked stunning.

    2. Well Rhiannon, you know that there’s no way Kate would want to be involved in something that would require her yearly attendance, can’t have those pesky expectations now can we?

      1. Don’t forget that Kate will have to sit through the whole thing and can’t dip out after 20-30 minutes…

      2. But if she doesn’t want to create an expectation that she will turn up every year to hand out the shamrocks then we really can’t expect too much of her to turn up to the opening of Parliament, can we?

    3. I agree with you Rhiannon. I love seeing the traditions of the Opening of Parliament. Being a history professor I love seeing traditions beening upheld over the centuries. Also the jewels alone are too die for. HM looks wonderful. We seem to forget that she is ninety years old. Yet her and Duke of Edinburgh keep going. They both have phenomenal work ethic.

      Price Charles and Camilla looked great as well. I’ve never been a huge Camilla fan. I will give praise where it is due. She looks regal and knows how to act. Unlike someone else we all know. Camilla has come a long way. What I’m curious about how it will all play out. When Charles ascends the throne. Will Camilla be the Queen Consort? Or will the long shadow of Diana still haunt and eclipse Camilla into being a Princess Consort? Time will tell.

      1. I think Camilla deserves to be Queen Consort. Legally, she would be anyway, but she will be a fine queen consort when the time comes. Princess Consort would be an insult, IMO, but it seems to have been done to placate the masses in 2005 and more people are far more accepting of her. Sad when people still dislike her and criticize her and Charles, and want W&K to take over. Aside from the legality of it (can’t happen!), why do people look at W&K and see them as monarchs? They have no respect, gravitas, and don’t give a damn; but I guess being young and glamorous is important in our age. :/

        1. I think when the time comes for Charles to ascend the thrown it will be interesting. Camilla currently uses the title of Duchess of Cornwall. Even though technically she is the Princess of Wales. Yet she doesn’t use it. Due to Diana being known for that title. So it should be interesting. I don’t know if the monarchy is going to throw away there thousand year traditions and titles to appease public sentiment. At the same time, the Heir was allowed to marry a divorcee who was also his mistress during his first marriage. Far cry from 1936. I know times change. Yet will Charles be seen as the Head of the Church of England? Since he is divorced himself. Even though the Archbishop of Canterbury is the Head of the Church of England.

          As for William and Kate. Will she be known as the Duchess of Cornwall like Camilla? For the sheer fact that the title of the Princess of Wales is so ingrained and associated with Diana? Interesting times ahead.

          1. Kate, in her persistent effort to be seen as The People’s Princess 2.0, will no doubt insist on Princess of Wales. Then her sugars can (incorrectly) call her “Princess Kate”. After all she’s got Big Blue so the title will just make it all even more magical. Forget the work ethic and actual empathy that Diana had, it’s all smoke and mirrors for Kate.

          2. William does not automatically become PoW it is in the gift of the sovereign, so he’d better pull his socks up ( buy some nice shoes like Harry!!) and do some proper work.

    4. Oh, yes, Rhiannon, just an amazing post.

      How are you feeling? I hope you are no longer dealing with those horrible stomach pains and the fever.

      Camilla looked absolutely beautiful. So regal and elegance, personified. Oh, that tiara!!!

      HM and Philip are getting older and it saddens me to see that. They keep going, though and put younger members of the family to shame. Well, some younger members. Their sense of duty, their dedication and tireless demeanors are to be applauded.

      The photos were beautiful, KMR. The gorgeous stained glass windows, that amazing ceiling….
      Makes you feel as if you were there — even for just a minute.

      1. Thanks, jenny! I had the most glorious slice of toast and a handful of yummy roasted almonds. It’s amazing how good things taste when you can’t eat. The only drawback is that I might have to drop out of my race this weekend ?

        1. Don’t race if you’re not well it would set you right back – well that’s the mummy advice I would give my sons?

        2. Oh, no! I bet missing the race is the last thing you want to do, but you have been unwell. You are still a trooper. Why kill yourself.

          1. Rhiannon, don’t push yourself too much. Support everyone from the sidelines and be the good cheerleader this weekend. There are many more races to come. And, I can imagine the little bits that you can eat must be appreciated so much. Feel better!

  8. Westminster Abbey is a long walk, St Paul’s Cathedral has a huge amount of steps to go up to get into. This doesn’t bode well. I’m hoping for a sort of Sedgeway type machine with platform Her Majesty can stand on. I don’t want to see her struggling, in pain or in a wheelchair. Something customised that she can zip about on and retain her dignity. Let’s hope BP have something planned for that eventuality.

    Camilla really does rock the rocks doesn’t she? She carries them off like born Royalty.

  9. Thank you for such an informative post KMR!!!

    I am absolutely swooning over Camilla’s dress!!! I love how the outer coat falls to the side, in perfect symmetry, when she’s sitting. That’s some great workmanship there ladies and gentlemen!! And my goodness she can rock a large tiara, of course she has the head shape and hair style to really pull it off. Happy sigh….

    How does the Queen do it?? That crown weighs like 3 pounds plus the cape and other jewels, she is literally weighed down by her role. I’m sorry to hear that her knees are bothering her, chronic pain anywhere in the body is so tough to deal with and can be very draining, physically and emotionally. But the Queen being the Queen just carries on, no drama, no complaint, such an inspiration!

    1. I’m swooning over Camilla’s whole outfit. She really does look beautiful! Her hair makes her the only royal lady (other than the Queen, of course) who can pull off these large tiaras, IMO. I would love to see her mix it up a bit, but this tiara works great with her hair. and she looks radiant! She seems to have such a good attitude and enjoy her duties. It’s amazing how that shines through in contrast to her daughter-in-law, who seems to be the Duchess of Grumpy

      1. Camilla could teach Kate a thing or two or thirty. Watch and learn Kate: 1) head up 2) shoulders back 3) leave the manic grin at home.

  10. This is the first time I’ve seen this ceremony and I’m really moved. I don’t have any special ties with the UK, but it’s like watching a piece of history.

    Question: why must other members of the RF attend besides the Queen and DoE? Is it just tradition or there’s a reason?

    1. Charles lost his membership to the House of Lords in 1999. Due to reform acts in the House. He was offered a lifetime peerage, but declined. I think we are seeing at least Charles and Camilla more at the Opening of Parliament is because of course he will be King. I believe it is part of getting him ready for when he ascends the throne. Along with Camilla.

        1. There was one famous year where Diana debuted a new hair do at the opening of Parliament and she was given more attention than HM. That was back in the 80’s, so Charles has been going for a while.

  11. Camilla looks regal & beautiful but couldn’t she wear another tiara? The honeycomb tiara looks stunning but couldn’t she wear the Delhi Durbar tiara? Too heavy for her? How about the crescent tiara, rumored to be at her disposal? How about Queen Mother’s other favorite tiara: the ruby circlet tiara? Maybe Camiila is thinking more on comfort ( tiaras that doesn’t cause headaches) rather than wearing other gorgeous tiaras. So I’m a little disappointed.

    1. Im not certain on this, but aren’t there many factors regarding Tiaras?
      Comfort of course,. And occasion. Also, circulation and being pulled out for repairs. Just some thoughts.

      Still, it looks good on her.

      1. I think Birdy won’t like me saying this but once Camilla is Queen Consort she can wear the Queen’s tiaras & maybe wear the tiaras that haven’t been seen for years. I’ve gone to the Royal tiara exhibition in London but the real beauty of the tiara can only be appreciated when it is being worn. Camilla really looks amazing wearing them. Sorry Birdiy.

          1. That bad ?! Then the govt has to come up with what to do about her status when Charles becomes king. Charles is the queen’s successor, NOT WILLIAM!! Should Camilla be Princess Consort? So sorry that you feel so strongly about this.

          2. I have so much respect for cam as she’s taken her post and made real good with it. She’s not just taking up space. And they seem truly loved up together.
            She will be Queen consort. And will be accepted because she will work. If she did any less I feel people would be more justified past the groundwork laid by WoW, but that isn’t the case IMO. The 3 people involved all made peace. The peanut gallery kept the torches lit.
            Just my take on this whole thing… Back to it.
            Cam will be Queen consort, but like princess of Wales will she use the title? I have a feeling Charles will insist on it.

        1. What if Camilla is Princess Consort? Will she still have disposal to the Queen’s tiaras? I would think yes, if they are passed to Charles.

          1. Actually it’s a title to appease the Camilla Haters. Whatever title she’s given she still has the privileges of a Queen Consort. Like right now even though her title is the Duchess of Cornwall, she has the privileges of the Princes of Wales ( which actually should be her title since she is married to Charles). People don’t want to call her that ‘cos of its association with Diana.

          2. IDA she and Charles made the decision not to take the PoW title and also assured us she would not be ‘styled’ queen. I really don’t see how he can call himself head of the church, so maybe that is another thing to change – it’s a very outdated title anyway and purely symbolic. Archbishop of Canterbury is really head of the church.

          3. Birdy, the Palace said she would be known as duchess of Cornwall rather than Princess of Wales. Not that she didn’t acquire Princess of Wales title. At the time, lots of Palace driven leaks said they chose the lesser title to appease the Diana haters who strongly associated Princess of Wales with Diana and completely glossed over that Diana was also Duchess of Cornwall in her time too.

            Legally, the wife of the prince of Wales *is* the Princess of Wales, so it was a sop and a fudge, but it doesn’t negate the fact that Camilla didn’t decline the title and only chooses not to use it for PR reasons.

      1. So we’re stuck in always seeing Camilla in the honeycomb tiara. Not that I mind, she still looks wonderfully regal.

  12. Tiara’s have to be fixed into the hair don’t they?

    HM looks tired. Phillip is still by her side. It is remarkable that they are both still around. I wonder if Charles will come to the throne. Charles looks defeated and Camilla does rock the tiara. I like the traditions such as Black Rod, ladies in waiting and the crown looks specular. It has lasted since Queen Victoria. I remember seeing a post that showed Sophie showing Louise from a window of BP ,who was a toddler HM going to make a speech in the House of Lords.

    1. As much as I like Charles I have this odd feeling he won’t be king because he won’t live long enough. I hate saying that. I think he will make a great king. In a very different mold than the queen, but he is more forward-thinking and more open and warm. People don’t appreciate that about him, or Camilla, I think. Whereas W&K are lauded and are cold, rude, and lock themselves up–and William has made it obvious he intends to keep them all locked up int heir ivory tower when he ascends to the throne.

      1. I agree and think that Charles will be a wonderful king. He and Camilla have proven their commitment to the monarchy and their ability to work hard. The Prince’s Trust is an amazing organization. I’m a huge animal lover, so I’m partial to Camilla’s work with animals. They can actually talk to people and seem much more down to earth. It’s ironic, you would think it would be the younger generation of royals who would be more connected to the public. However, in this family, it seems to be the opposite.

        1. I think the general consensus of people is that W&K are modern, young, amazing, wonderful when we all know the truth how ill prepared, lazy, boorish, and rude they are, amongst other things. I mean, jeez, William was taking pictures at his recent engagement at the Royal Marsden Hospital on his phone! Classless.

          Just because Charles and Camilla are older doesn’t mean they can’t connect with young people.

          1. oh, yes. I saw Charles connect extremely well with a group of mostly Pacific Islander teenagers on his last visit. I can see where Harry gets that skill from!

        2. He interferes in political issues which as a constitutional monarch he must not. If he tries to influence once King as he has done while POW it will be the end of the monarchy I think. Hopefully he understands that and will change but time will tell.

          1. When I was watching HM I was thinking about PC in the same position possibly sighing and shaking his head at parts he didn’t agree with. 🙂 I imagine he’ll have to learn to bite his tongue or he could set a very bad precedent for William who tends to come off as reacting before thinking things through.

          2. Charles has said multiple times as king he knows he won’t be able to have a voice or make an opinion, so he does what he can now so people know what he is about, what he cares about, that kind of thing. I don’t see him voicing his opinion or even discussing things or writing to ministers as meddling, as we all have that right; he being the Prince of Wales just might get listened to. He is well aware he shall bite his tongue and do his job.

            Try checking out Catherine Mayer’s biography. It’s pretty interesting and his views on being the monarch and just in general how he’s created a role as Prince of Wales, and his belief that he monarchy should question things and use their position to help others. And how he dreads becoming king because he knows he feels he won’t be able to help as much because he will be essentially gagged.

          3. Unfortunately Ellie his position is not for him to question just because he thinks he could do it better by stating his opinion. We are governed by elected members of parliament, many have an issue with our non elected House of Lords, and the last thing we need is a party political King stating his non elected opinion. I really think he is arrogant and out of place to write to MP’s about his views.

        3. I could be totally off here, but I’m not entirely surprised. Charles & Camilla’s generation was raised that you need to put your face out there and talk to people in order to connect to them. The younger generation was raised on social media. Look at kids nowadays, they all have their heads down staring at a screen of some sort. They don’t learn or develop social skills needed to get through life. They all have entitlement issues. I’m a few years younger than Kate and find that even I start saying “when I was a kid, I played outside.” Kids these days don’t play outside. They don’t connect with people on a face to face level. Everything is done behind a screen. Unfortunately, that’s the way things are now, so I can’t fault them for turning to social media, but it doesn’t work well with the monarchy.

          1. I have to admit being as old as Diana yet if I leave home without my phone I feel lost and I worry! Totally pathetic I didn’t get my first phone tile I was 35 and had two kids and amazingly I survived!!

          2. Miss, K, I agree with you
            Mary Elizabeth and I are starting a program for the summer, called Face Time. We will be working with teens on issues that will help them move away from their phones — for hopefully, some time each day.

            We pitched this idea to a town official last year and it went nowhere. This year, we have been given a chance.

            It is our firm belief, as well, that kids need play time. I guarantee you that my daughter will be playing outside and inside with or without friends. Just as M.E.’s kids do.

            Something is very wrong when kids don’t know how to hold a conversation with their friends. Texting is the norm and it is a travesty, if you ask me.

            Have a good day, all.

          3. It’s amazing how much of an issue this is. We’ve been trying to hire summer interns at my firm. They are great via email, but have no idea how to speak with people, especially people older than them, in person.

          4. Wow, you have given us something to weave into our lesson plans. It’s so sad that interns cannot interact better with their co-workers, or with clients or others who call.

  13. Thank you for the link to the video KMR, I love watching things like this. I got incredibly sad watching it though thinking about the history behind it all, the pomp and rituals and what William might do away with should he get to the throne because he simply can’t be bothered.

    The crown is just flat out amazing. I spent a good deal of time looking at the gold work and the embroidery of the thrones they were on. Craftsmanship like that is so hard to find these days. I truly wish we had some kind of apprenticeship system where people could learn crafts from masters. Not the old kind where they were practically owned by the masters, but something where the craft could be passed on.

    I kind of wish Philip had a little crown or something he could wear just for the look. I mean the women get their tiaras, or maybe there is one and he just refuses…lol

    Camilla looked fabulous as always. She has managed to find a hair stylist who understands tiara hair and a dresser/stylist who knows what works for her and how to coordinate the big jewels. I always like seeing PC in any kind of uniform. Oh heck, I love his every day suits too, he’s just always impeccably groomed.

    I’m trying not to think about the Deadly Dull Duo and the damage they could do to these rituals (for lack of a better word). Some things don’t need modernizing and I believe this is one of them. It’s good for everyone concerned to look back at what was and where they are now.

    As for the MIddleton’s, Carole will be standing in the ladies in waiting position. Kate won’t actually have any (unless she promotes Tash and Rebecca) so Carole will claim that position. It would be her prime moment to lord it over every one. I’m so glad we aren’t seeing a lot of her lately.

    Great post KMR, love the history you include with your posts. Keep up the great work!

    1. Do commoners typically serve in a ladies in waiting position or would that be something new? I’d always thought they were members of the aristocracy, but that could be an outdated notion in my head.

      1. Traditionally it is aristocracy , family or close personal friends ( likely to be aristocrats anyway, certainly in the queen’s era.)

        1. And since Kate doesn’t seem to have any close friends and doesn’t hang with aristocracy that much it will be Carole and/or Pippa.

      2. It’s evolved in a way that aristocatic ladies tend to the position, but there is no law that says they have to be from that class. As much as we don’t like to think about it or even say it, the royals surround themselves with people of a particular class and rarely outside it, and naturally that devolves into those people getting the prime jobs.

        It has caused a few rukus along the way. Remember the scandal of a prime minister insist that Victoria change her ladies from those who might influence her according to his enemies in parliament?

        The scandal of Elizabeth Woodville and all the Woodvilles filling up prime postions in Edward 4’s govt.

        All the Tudors, barring Mary 1, Edward 6 and Lady Jane Grey preferred regular people that were promoted on merit rather than aristocracy, most famously Cromwell and Cecil, and that extended to the ladies at court. One of the unsung women of the Tudor/Stewart era who was very close to Elizabeth was Bess of Hardwicke who built up the fortune enjoyed by the Dukes of Devonshire. She also built all their famous houses eg Chatsworth, yet she was a self made woman who didn’t just marry advantageously, although she did that 4 times, she was also very involved and very astute business woman which is how she built the Devonshire fortune.

        In time, as we’ve devolved to a constitutional monarchy, regular people have been aloowed to govern whilst the royals have retreated into a cucoon as far as the royal households which is a shame.

        Btw, considering Diana wanted her sons to see how the other half lived, and to be more aware than their father who was brought up in a complete isolating bubble, isn’t it ironic that her son William has deliberately gone the other way such that he is now a throwback to the 19th century? Heck, we’d probably find people in that centure more enlightened than he is.

        1. “… isn’t it ironic that her son William has deliberately gone the other way such that he is now a throwback to the 19th century? Heck, we’d probably find people in that centure more enlightened than he is.”

          Oh Herazeus Diana would probably be appalled at the attitude William currently has.

  14. Who are the two women taking a seat to the right of Prince Philip in the first photo? Ladies in Waiting? If so, what a prominent place for them to be seated!

  15. This is an amazing tradition! I can’t see w&k in this role. Ever. They are too “normal” and “just like us”. I can just imagine Will with his clenched jaw grumpy face looking board and Kate with her maniacle Cheshire Cat grin on her face role playing for the cameras. God save the Queen.

  16. Lauri from CA would wearing a crown force Kate to stand up straight or would the crown simply fall off?

    1. I imagine to have the Crown stay on you would have to have perfect posture. William would be wearing the crown that HM is wearing and Kate would be wearing a tiara? The role of lady in waiting is a privilege. What exactly does the role require may I ask? It will be sad if Charles doesn’t get to be King. He has been waiting for the role his entire life.

      1. Queen consorts have crowns , not sure if she were not styled queen. It’s an area of sexism that will no doubt have to be addressed when we next have a queen as monarch.

    2. Well, considering the Windsor longevity Will might not be crowned for 30 years yet and hopefully by that time the Duchess will have learned how to walk upright, if not with the added weight of the crown, cape, etc her chin will be dragging on the red carpet.

      1. OMG chin dragging the carpet hahahahahahaha. What a visual!!!!! Reminds me of that polar bear video circulating on facebook

  17. KMR: The State crown is taken to Westminster together with other crown jewels and ermine NOT to Buckingham Palace. The Queen travels to Westminster wearing the George 4 state diadem. She tends to travel to/from Parliament wearing the diadem and changes that to Imperial state crown (per your picture, with the purple cloth). The diadem is the tiara she’s wearing in the coach whilst the state crown is what she wears as she’s reading her speech.

    For Historians, the tradition of Black Rod being refused entry to the commons goes back to Charles 1 or rather, was created as a result of Charles 1’s actions when he went to parliament with his personal guard and tried to arrest members of parliament for not following his wishes.

    The commons were outraged, shut the door to him, prompting war to be declared by the two sides ( the commons aka roundheads vs the King and his allies aka Cavaliers )which devolved into the English Civil war that ended with Charles 1 getting beheaded.

    Black Rod being refused entry to the commons is a renactment of Charles 1 being refused entry to the commons.

    1. Other bits of random information:

      1. The guy who leads the procession, holding the white rod, with red jacket and gold braided jacket is the Lord Great Chamberlain of UK, otherwise known as the Marquess of Cholmondeley. He is hosting the big EACH dinner with Kate Middleton at his home Houghton Hall during the summer.

      2. The pages holding HM’s ermine train her include her grand nephews ie grandsons of her sister Princess Margaret. They include Lady Sarah Chatto’s 2 sons and Viscount Linley’s son.

      1. Herazeus wrote: 2. The pages holding HM’s ermine train her include her grand nephews ie grandsons of her sister Princess Margaret. They include Lady Sarah Chatto’s 2 sons and Viscount Linley’s son.

        Sorry, but no. The three pages who carried her train were:
        1) Lachlan Legge-Bourke [probably Lochy b 29 March 2003, himself son of Capt Harry Legge-Bourke,the only son of Mr William and the Hon Mrs Legge-Bourke (of the Earls of Dartmouth and Barons Glanusk, &c.), & is brother of “Tiggy” Pettifer, nee Legge-Bourke, who took care of the young princes for some time in the 1990s. Lachlan or Lochy’s mother Iona nee Maclean is niece of the 4th Baron Rowallan. Prince Harry attended the wedding (2000) of Harry Legge-Bourke and Iona Maclean. Lachlan’s cousin, Tom Pettifer, a godson of Prince William, was a page at the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in 2011.

        2) The Marquess of Lorne [Archibald Frederick Campbell, or Archie Frederick b 9 March 2004], elder son and heir to the Duke of Argyll [the 13th Duke of Argyll, himself born 19 May 1968]; and

        3) Thomas Halle. I know nothing about him.

        More at this website:

        According to this source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3597968/SEBASTIAN-SHAKESPEARE-Solved-mystery-Majesty-s-missing-Page-boy.html
        one page was unwell.
        “The Queen always has four pages to carry the lengthy train of her 18ft Robe of State, but three of them had to manage the task yesterday after ten-year-old Augustus Stanhope withdrew. Augustus is the Earl of Harrington’s grandson and nephew of Viscountess Linley, whose husband, David, is Princess Margaret’s son. A friend tells me: ‘Augustus felt unwell.'”

    2. According to the official royal family Twitter account, the Imperial State Crown is taken to Buckingham Palace first before being taken to the Palace of Westminster. It travels to BP then gets in the carriage for the ride to Parliament.

      I know that the Queen wears the George IV diadem for the ride to and from Parliament and changes into the State Crown once there, that’s what I said: “The Queen wore the Imperial State Crown during the speech and the George IV State Diadem while arriving and leaving.”

      1. I’m with you on this one KMR the crown has its own carriage .. She couldn’t get into the carriage without it falling off I imagine, but I actually prefer her in the Diadem which is stunning and looks like an ‘everyday crown’, if there is such a thing!! I find it amazing that HM still has so much hair. My mother is the same age and her hair is extremely thin now.

          1. Well Birdy, my husband insists that I did marry a prince 🙂 Oh geez I just noticed the missing word in my comment, I meant we “all” should have one.

        1. Even the Queen has thicker hair than the Queen Mother at the same age. Now the Queen looks more like her grandmother, Queen Mary but has outlived her. Queen Mary died at 86.

          1. Do we have anybpictures of Queen Mary without a hat in her final years?

            Given the Edwardian penchant for wigs and OTT hair arrangements, i’m not sure we saw her hair in as much detail as we did the QM.

  18. Great post. Reading the comments above, does anyone know what will happen to the Prince’s Trust once Charles becomes king? He won’t be able to keep working for it, I assume. Will William and/or Harry take it over? It does so much good (from what I hear), it would be a shame for it to end.

    1. I think that he has been trying to get Wills and Harry to take it over but they don’t seem interested in it. I really hope that Harry takes it over. I can see him carrying on the great work that Prince Charles has done with it.

  19. Also, looking at the photos makes me think the purpose of the order of the Garter, RVO and others is to make the BRF look prestigious. After all, they didn’t do anything to earn those medals and sashes other than be related to the sovereign. They aren’t for acts of heroism, or promoting GB. They just make the BRF look a little more important, like they earned military honors, except they didn’t.

    1. They are rooted in ancient tradition, but you are right. In modern times, they shoar up the prestige of the monarchy. It’s a deliberate part of the PR of monarchy.

    1. Thank you Miss K I’ve been worried about Rhiannon but this will make her soooo much better. I love dogs and working dogs get so much respect from me …and apparently from Harry.

      1. This is adorable. I always look at how kids and animals respond to people. They can spot a bad egg in a heartbeat.

    2. Thanks Miss K! Wonderful photos of darling Prince Harry. Looking at these photos of Harry with the dogs, you can see he leans in, touches and makes a connection. It is surprising Harry does not have a dog, but you know, HE is busy working.

    3. Miss K, this made my day. Thank you! Harry is as lovable as the dogs are! And, my heart is still enthralled by the two little girls, wearing the adorable dresses and those cute shoes and socks. The children with their father and the assistance dog. So cute — everyone in the photo!

    4. Adorable pictures. I love especially the one with the Mini Schnauzer as I’m partial to them. As I write this I have 3 minis on the bed with me. My furry girls.

      Now, I have a question. Did I read or just imagine that I read that it isn’t a given that Billy Midds becomes POW? It’s an honor? Optional? In my opinion the queen is a push over(and very old and probably tired) but is Charles? I suppose that he is since it is his son but none the less totally mind blowing that it’s not a given. **If** it’s not.

    1. Sophie really looks trim, healthy and radiant. Nice look for the two events. The heels were a little tricky for the stone path, but I would not have liked wedges with her dress and jacket.

    2. Lauri, this article is just fantastic. Sophie is so elegant and yet, so real. I love the picture of her with the cookie in her hand. The half-eaten cookie, I may add. Also, when she is with the kids, she is just so sweet and welcoming. She is a most likeable and hard-working lady. She always looks as if she is enjoying herself when relating to others.

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