In royalty, every step is guided by many rules and protocols that the average person might find baffling. From their wardrobes to their vocabularies, the actions of royal family members are often dictated by centuries of tradition and etiquette.
Here are 15 everyday things that, surprisingly, the royals can’t say, wear, or do.
As symbols of national unity, they refrain from publicly expressing political opinions. This policy, rooted in the UK’s constitutional monarchy structure, aims to prevent the monarch and their family from influencing public opinion or government policy.
Harrold, a former royal butler and etiquette expert, said in an interview with the Daily Express, “The Royal Family steers clear of high-risk foods like shellfish due to their work schedules to mitigate the potential risks associated with shellfish poisoning.”
Eating When the Queen is Finished
“When dining with Her Majesty, wait for her to start eating. And when the Queen finishes her meal and places her cutlery in the finished position, others should do the same, no matter how much food is left on their plates,” explained Willam Hanson to the Daily Express in 2022.
Going To Bed Before the Queen
Following tradition (not a rule or law), it is customary for no adult to depart or retire for the night before the Queen does.
Art of Dinner Conversations: “Mastering Direction”
“The hostess starts a conversation with the guest to her right. Other women guests follow suit. During dinner, the hostess then focuses on the guest to her left, and other guests follow suit,” explained Cowan to The Telegraph.
Wearing Bright Lip Colours
While bold colors like red are not officially banned, the emphasis is on maintaining decorum and avoiding anything flashy or attention-grabbing. According to royal makeup artist Mary Greenwell, the aim is to achieve a soft and elegant appearance.
Cleavage is not deemed suitable for a royal family member.
Taking Selfies With Fans
When approached by a couple requesting a selfie, Markle graciously declined, explaining, “We’re not allowed to do selfies.”
Members of the royal family refrain from voting, expressing political opinions, and participating in any form of candidacy. This clear distinction ensures the royal family’s role remains unblemished and impartial.
For security reasons, members of the royal family are prohibited from signing autographs to prevent forgery. It is reported that Prince Charles politely responds, “I’m sorry, they don’t allow me to do that,” when requested to sign.
Wearing Open Toe Shoes
Open footwear is deemed too casual for members of the royal family. Whether they’re out and about representing their esteemed lineage or attending official engagements, closed shoes are always the preferred choice.
“I regret to say this, but garlic is a no no,” replied Bowles, the Duchess of Cornwall, when asked about dietary restrictions for the royal family during her appearance on MasterChef Australia.
Garlic is famously left out of meals served at Buckingham Palace to prevent bad breath.
Crossing Their Leg at the Knee
The “duchess slant” is a sitting posture popularized in royal circles by Kate Middleton. It involves crossing one leg over the other with knees and ankles together, slanted to one side.
This pose helps maintain poise and posture, especially when wearing a skirt.
Open Presents on Christmas Day
On Christmas Eve, the Windsors uphold their German heritage by honoring the tradition of exchanging gifts after afternoon tea, as shared by McGrady. This unique practice diverges from the common custom of opening presents on Christmas Day.
According to reports, Prince Andrew prohibited the game of Monopoly in royal households, citing its excessively competitive nature as the reason.
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