William and Kate welcomed Meghan and Harry back to the royal flock for a public display of unity outside Windsor Castle on Saturday, but some of the not-so-subtle differences between the two couples are sparking heated debate among royal watchers.
The Sussexes joined William and Kate, now known as the Prince and Princess of Wales, as they walked down the driveway to Windsor Castle to greet the mourners.
Harry and Meghan walked hand in hand, but William and Kate did not, and in an unexpected turn of events, William walked closer to his estranged brother than to his own wife, who was shown in some of the photos during the walk. at a conspicuous distance from the other three members of the royal family.
Everyone is an expert on body language when it comes to royalty, where so little is said in public, but much is often thought to be expressed in subtle gestures.
What did it all mean? Did Kate and William feud? Or did Kate want to stay away from Harry and Meghan?
“The Princess of Wales tried to be as far away from Meghan as possible!” one person tweeted.
“Is the tension strong? Poor William and Kate really look like they’re in physical pain because they have to put on this show.” wrote another.
“It looks like Kate and William did what they had to do for the sake of appearances, but they don’t look too happy about it. I think Meghan is doubly outraged that she now has to bow down to William and Kate as the Prince and Princess of Wales.” suggested another.
And, of course, other photos taken during the quartet’s long walk down the driveway of Windsor Castle debunk all of these royal theories – here they are again, and they all appear much more in unison:
Harry and Meghan’s public displays of affection continued as they viewed the hundreds of bouquets left for the queen outside the castle gates. The couple were photographed at various points holding hands and hugging each other, Meghan joining her hand with Harry’s as he received a public outpouring of love for his late grandmother.
William and Kate, on the other hand, took a regal “tough upper lip” approach, with no physical contact, and their hands tightly clasped in front of them:
As some have pointed out on social media, different displays of affection may be a matter of royal protocol – two of the people in these photos are senior working members of the royal family, and two are not.
“William and Kate are members of the royal family. They don’t have to be lovers in front of the cameras,” one person suggested.
“Not everyone needs to hold their husbands hands to feel safe…Katherine can walk without holding on to dear life,” said another.
Elsewhere, during the quartet’s public performance, Meghan seemed to be met with a cold reception as she attempted to snuggle up with the mourners. As Meghan made her way through the crowd, shaking hands with those who offered theirs, several mourners were caught on camera treating her coldly, with one woman even lowering her head to avoid coming face to face with the Duchess of Sussex. .
And another awkward, unrecorded moment shared on social media this weekend, this time with new King Charles III, who was caught on camera expressing his frustration that his desk wasn’t properly cleared as he sat down to sign an oath for his entry ceremony.
Here in Australia, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has confirmed that Australians will be given a day off due to the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
A national day of mourning for the late monarch was declared on September 22, the Thursday following the return of the prime minister from the Queen’s funeral in London.