A subtle tribute. Princess Charlotte kept great-grandmother Queen Elizabeth II close during her state funeral on Monday, September 19.
The 7-year-old attended the service at Westminster Abbey with older brother Prince George and their parents, Prince William and Princess Kate. Like her mother, Charlotte wore a simple black dress, tights and matching hat for the somber occasion. Pinned to the front of the little one’s frock was a silver horseshoe brooch.
Charlotte’s accessory — reportedly a gift from the late monarch herself — appeared to be a subtle shout-out to Elizabeth, whose passion for horses has influenced many British royal family members. The queen’s daughter, Princess Anne, represented England in eventing during the 1976 Olympic Games, riding one of the monarch’s horses for the competition.
Charlotte has also taken up an interest in the animals over the years. When Kate, 40, spoke with Paralympian Natasha Baker in 2018, she gushed over her daughter’s growing fascination with horses.
“I asked her how the children were, and she said Charlotte is really enjoying her riding, which is great to hear,” Baker recalled at the time. “She emphasized that Charlotte has this passion for horses and although she doesn’t echo it, she’ll do her best to champion and encourage it.”
The young princess is far from the first royal to honor Elizabeth through fashion. Lady Louise Windsor, the queen’s youngest granddaughter, wore a horse-shaped charm necklace as she stood guard at Westminster Hall during a vigil on Saturday, September 17.
For Monday’s state funeral service, Kate also used her accessories to honor the late monarch, wearing a pearl-string necklace — a piece from Her Majesty’s royal collection — as a final tribute. The Princess of Wales paired the jewelry with dangling earrings and a veiled fascinator.
Charlotte and George, 9, walked with their parents during the brief procession leading into the historic chapel as the queen’s casket was transported from Westminster Hall on Monday morning. The Cambridge children followed King Charles III, Queen Consort Camilla and more high-ranking royals with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle following closely behind their niece and nephew. Prince Louis, the youngest son of William and Kate, did not attend the funeral.
Earlier this month, the Duchess of Cornwall opened up about how the 4-year-old was coping with the loss of his great-grandmother, who died on September 8 at age 96. “[Louis said,] ‘At least Grannie is with Great-Grandpa now,'” Kate told a group of mourners on September 10 while viewing tributes placed outside of Elizabeth’s Windsor Castle residence.
George, Charlotte and Louis were not involved in the funeral service when Her Majesty’s husband, Prince Philip, died in April 2021. As the little ones continue to mourn the queen, their parents have had to answer some big questions — particularly from Louis.
“The younger one is now asking questions like, ‘Do you think we can still play these games when we go to Balmoral,’ and things like that, because she’s not going to be there,” Governor-General David Hurley of Australia told reporters after speaking with Kate at a reception for dignitaries held at Buckingham Palace on Sunday, September 18. “The older one, [George], is sort of now realizing how important his great-grandmother was and what is going on.”
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Scroll down for a closer look at how Charlotte honored the queen during her funeral: