Thursday, December 8, 2016

Still no Family Order for Catherine



This is the first time that a formal photograph of Queen and other members of the royal family who attend the annual Diplomatic Reception.

From Left to right:  The Duchess of Cornwall (Greville Tiara), the Prince of Wales, the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

The three royal men are wearing the Order of the Garter, which explains the knee breeches and sashes.  The Duchess of Cornwall is wearing the Royal Family Order, given to distaff members of the Royal Family.  This Order is a personal gift of the Sovereign, and an announcement of when it is given is never made.

The Duchess of Cornwall received it two years after her marriage to the Prince of Wales.

The Queen is wearing the Royal Family Orders for George V and George VI (her grandfather and her father.)  She received the first order when she was an infant.

Oh, look, at the lady in the stunning red gown!  The Duchess of Cambridge, wearing Queen Mary's Lovers Knot tiara (it is NOT the Cambridge Lovers Knot tiara, which is now in the possession of the Waldburg zu Zeil family)  that her late mother-in-law, Diana, Princess of Wales often wore ... but after 5 and a half years of marriage, she has yet to receive the Order.   It seems the Queen does not think she is ready for the order.

Sarah, Duchess of York, did not receive the Order.  Nor does Princess Michael have it.

The Duchesses of  Kent and Gloucester received theirs shortly after their marriages in 1961 and 1972, respectively.   Diana received hers within the first few months of her marriage to the Prince of Wales in 1981.   The Countess of Wessex was first seen wearing the Order in 2004, five years after her marriage to Prince Edward.

There is a precedent for the wife of a grandson of the reigning Sovereign to receive the family order.  Shortly after her marriage to Prince George, Duke of York in 1893,  Princess Mary (nee of Teck) received the  Royal Order of Victoria & Albert (First Class.)

The Order is not given to loyal staff  The Mistress of Robes badge looks similar to the Family Order, but it is not the Family Order.

http://royalmusingsblogspotcom.blogspot.com/2015/10/no-family-order-for-catherine.html

15 comments:

Richard Griffith said...

They're a beautiful couple, but a lot of missed opportunities to be a working part of the monarchy. Blowing off the presentation of shamrocks to the Irish Guards is only the most recent example. I'm sure HM doesn't miss those things.

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

Press went overboard regarding Catherine and Irish Guards. I wrote about this last year

http://royalmusingsblogspotcom.blogspot.com/2016/03/oh-what-utter-tosh-or-research-matters.html

www.maltagenealogy.com said...

Does Catherine have any Orders from the UK or abroad as yet ?

She has a life time to receive such distinctions, so at least it be something to look forward..

The Queen looks to step back from showering Catherine with too many honours till such time, or maybe when Charles is King, and Catherine is Princess of Wales..

Matthew Plooster said...

The larger issue at hand - the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge playing their part - has been absolutely fascinating for me, a researcher of royal philanthropic activity, to watch. And how the Queen's royal family order plays into the picture is very interesting, too. Americans don't understand the importance of symbols to the same degree as our European counterparts. And the fact that the Duchess of Cambridge is completely undecorated is very interesting after five and a half years of marriage, and it is rather telling. I recall reading a journal (or letter to her aunt, Augusta) excerpt from Queen Mary, then Duchess of Cornwall and York, who was so worried that her father-in-law was upset with her or her husband as it took eleven months for Edward VII to bestow the Prince of Wales title on George. A lack of royal family order in that day would have led to a lot of consternation within royal circles. Of course, that was an age when those marrying into the royal family understood the importance of these symbols and honors. (Comparing to today where among the top trainings princesses-in-waiting receive prior to their marriage is how to deal with the media.)

It is unfortunate that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge aren't doing more. Especially as the cousins are aging and slowing down, like Princess Alexandra. What an opportunity to take on a new patronage; after all, continuity is one of the great arguments for a constitutional monarchy! :) With the Cambridge's program, it's said their view is to do more with fewer organizations, than minimal with a larger number of organizations. That'd be a great argument if they were doing more with organizations with deeper roots in the British culture. I appreciate William's zeal toward ending the ivory trade and wildlife trafficking, which appear to take up a large portion of his time, and Tusk Trust and United for Wildlife are UK-based organizations (United for Wildlife was created by his foundation); his title and royal gravitas certainly do make a positive difference! But with doing more for fewer organizations, I'd like to see him increase his work with BAFTA, Centrepoint, the Football Association, and Royal Marsden Hospital, among others. As President of BAFTA, he declined invitations to the annual awards ceremony two years in a row. I don't believe that's taking public service and royal duty seriously. Had there been a pre-planned pressing engagement (state dinner, royal tour, etc.), BAFTA and their president ('s office) would have worked together to find a date that works for both.

Of course, while the Duke also participates in investitures and other state duties, there's a great deal of room for the Duchess to be more involved. It's interesting to see her peers in other royal houses (age, not in precedence) doing more than she does. The crown princesses of Sweden, Norway, and Denmark go straight to the top of the list.

Shame...

Nancy said...

Marlene, do you think it is at all possible that The Duchess of Cambridge hasn't received the Family Order because of The Duke of Cambridge, and his feelings about ivory? It occurred to me today when reading a description of the order being hand-painted on ivory. There had been prior reports that he at some point lobbied his father to get rid of everything ivory but was reminded of the history behind these items... Just a thought.

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

Absolutely not at all. She has not received it because the queen thinks she is not worthy yet. This is a personal gift of the sovereign. One does not turn it down.

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

each sovereign has its own order -so a royal woman can usually receive one per reign. Elizabeth has two as does her cousin Alexandra. Catherine has no foreign orders. She has not been a part of any state visit where orders would be given. The fact that she does not have the family order after 5.5 years of marriage is telling. Sophie went the longest - five year before receiving it. Of course, Princess Michael does not have it ...

(maddy) said...

I don't think it's telling at all.

William has a full time job as an air ambulance pilot. Catherine is focused on raising her two young children away from London. They are not full time working royals. They haven't needed to be. The Queen is strict when giving out any kind of order, hence why Princess Michael has never received it. She and Prince Michael very, very rarely represent the Queen in official duties.

I think The Cambridges are most likely done with having any further children and that next year they will move back to London for George to start prep school and then they will be full time working members of the royal family as Elizabeth, Philip and Elizabeth's cousins get older and scale back their engagements.

William is NOT the crown prince. Catherine is NOT the crown princess. Just because they're similar in age to the heirs of Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Luxembourg, does not mean they have the same expectations on them from their monarch. The British Royal Family is huge, they have more working members than any other monarchy in Europe. The Cambridges and Harry aren't really needed to fill the ranks right now.

Marymol said...

Is it possible it relates also to the generational politics in the British Royal family? So far, no female in the next generation has been awarded the honor, including Princesses B&E. Giving the honor to Kate could open some major family politics.

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

The problem is that they are needed (and the focus is on Charles and his family - made clear at the time of the Diamond Jubilee) William does not work full time as a pilot. Catherine has a nanny and household help. They are their mid 30s, not young kids. They receive tax supported housing, security, and so on. Taxpayers paid for renovations to their KP apartment. No one is a Crown Prince in the UK. No such title. As for Beatrice and Eugenie, we do not know if they have received the Order because no announcement is never made. Prince and Michael of Kent have carried out engagements on occasion for the Queen. They also are invited to state dinners. Prince Michael has received the KCVO and the higher ranked GCVO, a personal order from the Sovereign. The only honor Marie Christine has received is the Diamond Jubilee medal.

Furkat Yuldashev said...

Ptincess Michael of Kent have a several non-regin dynastic order.

Marlene Eilers Koenig said...

Yes, Princess Michael has several non dynastic such as the Starry Cross ... not in the same league these days.

Furkat Yuldashev said...

But whay Marie Cristine still dosent reсevied Family Order?

Carlos Rodriguez said...

Today as I watched pictures of Nobel Awards ceremony I realized Princess Sofia was wearing her Royal Family Order. She married her prince just one and a half year ago. I guess King Carl Gustav is more generous than his british cousin.

Matthew Plooster said...

According to the Order of Sartorial Splendor (a well-researched writer on the topic), the Swedish order isn't a royal family order as it is in other countries (http://orderofsplendor.blogspot.com/2011/09/royal-splendor-101-royal-family-orders.html). However, Sweden is a country that bestows orders early on. With his grandchildren, the King of Sweden bestowed the Order of the Seraphim at their christenings.