Prince George, 5, now expected to bow to Queen Elizabeth

By @chelean on
Prince George
Prince George, the son of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, sucks a sweet as he leaves following the morning Christmas Day service at St Mark's Church in Englefield, near Bucklebury in southern England, Britain, December 25, 2016. Reuters/Andrew Matthews/Pool

Prince George doesn’t wear long pants yet, but at age 5, he is now expected to follow the elders’ lead in paying respects to his “gan-gan.” The future king is apparently now at the right age to bow to Queen Elizabeth, while his little sister, Princess Charlotte, will have to wait a couple of years more before she starts curtsying to her.

George, who turned 5 on July 22, may not be aware that he is the third in line to the throne yet. His parents, Prince William and Kate Middleton, perhaps still haven’t told him of his future role and duties in a bid to give him a normal childhood as long as possible. But there are things that George must still learn even at an early age, such as bowing to the sovereign.

And at age 5, he is now expected to bow to the Queen in public, according to historian Marlene Eilers Koenig. She told Hello! that royal children start the tradition of bowing or curtsying to the Queen by that age.

“Certainly by age five. The only person they will be expected to curtsy to bow to is the sovereign. A Royal Highness does not curtsy to another Royal Highness,” Koenig told the paper. “Yes, there are articles that state this, but it is not true.”

Prince George of Cambridge talks to Queen Elizabeth Prince George of Cambridge talks to Queen Elizabeth outside the Church of St Mary Magdalene on the Sandringham Estate for the Christening of Princess Charlotte of Cambridge on July 5, 2015 in King's Lynn, England.  Reuters/Chris Jackson/Pool

Bowing is for men, while curtsying is for women. They do that as a greeting to the Queen the first time they see her for the day and again when the Queen leaves. Marlene of the blog Royal Musings further explained, “Curtsying and bowing is etiquette, nothing to do with precedence. You bow or curtsy the first time you see the sovereign and then again when you leave.”

She added, “At Christmas at church, we saw the Cambridges and Prince Harry and Meghan curtsy and bow when the Queen arrived and left. Other royals including Charles did not because they had come from Sandringham and had already seen the Queen.”

George hasn’t been seen bowing to his great-grandmother in public yet, but he may have done so in private already. But in any case, he is apparently the right age now to bow to the Queen.

Charlotte, on the other hand, is only 3 years old and has two more years before she is expected to curtsy to Her Majesty.

Britain's Prince William arrives at the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital with his children Prince George and Princess Charlotte Britain's Prince William arrives at the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital with his children Prince George and Princess Charlotte after his wife Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, gave birth to a son, in London, April 23, 2018.  Reuters/Henry Nicholls

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