Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, 38, and Prince William, 37, are both equally dedicated to their royal roles and have shone amid the current coronavirus crisis. William is second in line to the throne and will one day succeed his father Prince Charles, 72, to become Britain’s King. When Prince William wears the crown his wife Kate will be Queen Consort and will be expected to observe this royal custom in his presence.
Queen Elizabeth II is Britain’s longest-ever serving monarch and shows no sign of stepping down at the age of 94.
However, the day will come when Prince Charles succeeds her and Prince William will take the throne after him.
While William and Kate are in many ways a modern couple they are still expected to observe certain royal etiquette especially in the Queen’s presence.
Royal tradition dictates the British sovereign is bowed to by all those who meet them including Royal Family members.
This means that male members of the Royal Family, including Prince Philip bow their head upon greeting the Queen while female members of the Royal Family curtsey.
This piece of royal etiquette will extend to Kate, Duchess of Cambridge when Prince William becomes King and she will be expected to curtsey upon greeting him in public.
Whether or not they continue this practice in private will be a matter for them to decide but it is likely it will only be applied to formal public occasions or ceremonies.
While Prince Philip has rarely been seen bowing to the Queen in public during her 68-year reign he had to kneel before her during her coronation in 1953.
The Duke of Edinburgh had to kneel before his wife to pay fealty and homage to the Crown during the Westminster Abbey ceremony.
The same may be expected of Kate, Duchess of Cambridge on the day of Prince William’s coronation.
While Kate, Duchess of Cambridge will have fewer powers than William once he is King, she will still be known as his Queen Consort.
She will provide vital support to William in his role as king.
What does Queen Consort mean?
A Queen consort is the title given to the wife of a ruling King.
Queen consorts usually share their husband’s social rank and status.
But Queen consorts do not usually share their husband’s political and military powers.
So while Kate will be considered William’s equal in terms of royal status, she will not have his political clout.
Queen Elizabeth II, on the other hand, is a queen regent.
A queen regent is a monarch in her own right with all the powers of a monarch.
She became Queen by inheriting the throne upon the death of the previous monarch.
On greeting the Queen Consort royals of lesser rank will be expected to bow or curtsy.
When Queen Consort Kate is accompanied by King William there will be outranked by no other royals.
Prince William and Kate’s children will be expected to bow to their parents upon greeting when they are King and Queen Consort.