It’s a well known fact that the Royal Family cares about traditions. Being a royal has its perks and advantages of course, but there are strict rules that have to be followed. The list of rules is long, from specific diets to forbidden board games, to curtsying and bowing to the monarch. And when it comes to weddings, you can’t just do whatever you like. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will have to follow certain rules, just like Prince Charles and Princess Diana did, and many before them.
Here are some of the protocols and practices that are going to be influencing Meghan and Prince Harry, courtesy of Tiphero.
1. Queen’s blessing is required
Northern Ireland Office via Wikimedia Commons
The Royal Marriages Act of 1772 says that the Queen must approve if a royal member wants to propose. For example, she could have objected to Meghan as a worthy wife and has the right to rule their marriage “invalid.”
2. Formal engagement announcement
If someone from the Royal Family gets’s engaged they have to announce the happy news to the world and make a public announcement.
3. Engagement interview
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry spoke to the BBC’s Mishal Husain after their engagement announcement and described how they met and other things. This is normal for the Royal Family, an interview with any couple takes place for the press.
4. Bride must wear white
When Queen Victoria married Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, she wore a white dress which wasn’t the practice back in 1840. Since then it has become a Royal tradition.
5. Catholic marriages are not allowed
United Kingdom Government via Wikimedia Commons
The 1701 Act of Settlement says that royals are not allowed to marry someone who is a Catholic.
6. Invites come from the Queen
The Queen herself is the one who will send you a wedding invitation for a Royal couple wedding.
7. Wedding ceremony seating is to the right
If the groom is royal too, the royal family always sits on the right side of the church.
8. Female guest attire
It’s expected for women to choose their best attire and they have an obligation to wear hats.
9. Each bridal bouquet has a special touch
When Queen Victoria married Prince Albert in 1840, she carried a myrtle in her bouquet. Ever since every British royal bride since carries a bouquet that includes a myrtle.
10. The bride won’t toss the bouquet
The late Queen Mother started a tradition when she got married. In an act of love to honor the armed forces, every Royal bride has to leave her bouquet on the tomb of the Unknown Warrior.
11. No groomsmen
The groom will have pageboys. Young boys who carry the wedding ring or help with the bride’s train.
12. But the groom gets support
Royal bridegrooms usually have supporters but no best man. The Prince is the one who selects them.
13. Bridesmaids are children
Traditionally, royals don’t have bridesmaids like they do in America. The bridesmaids are girls from age 5 to 17.
14. Bridal tiara
All royal brides get to wear a tiara with centuries of tradition behind it, usually from the family’s jewelry collection.
15. Carriage Rides
Robbie Dale via Wikimedia Commons
As per tradition, royal brides arrive at their wedding in a horse-drawn coach. Kate Middleton broke that rule when she decided to ride in a car with her father.
16. A palace wave
The royal wedding crowds get to see the kiss between the newly married couple and the royals smile and wave to the public from Buckingham Palace.
17. Groom wears military regalia
Royal male members serve in the military and wear their uniform at their wedding.
18. Bands of Welsh gold
Comrade King via Flickr
All of the royal women’s wedding bands contain precious Welsh gold. This type of gold is a variety of gold that’s three times more valuable than gold from Australia or South Africa.
19. The cake flavor is standard
You can’t choose a chocolate cake or vanilla cake. The cake is by tradition a fruit cake with dried fruits infused with brandy.
20. Two cakes
The good thing is that the prince can also choose a cake of his liking. Prince William decided to go with a chocolate biscuit cake.
21. Weddings are a daytime affair
You won’t see a royal wedding taking place at night. Actually, most British people hold their weddings at noon.
22. Two Receptions
After the ceremony, there is seated luncheon called a “wedding breakfast” which is followed by an evening reception.
23. Family photo
Joe Haupt | Flickr
It’s a tradition for the royal couple to take an official photo with their families.
24. Royal family pays the tab
Unlike in America where the family of the bride pays for the wedding, in England, the royal family is the one taking care of all the expenses.
25. Mailed memento
If you attend a royal wedding, you will get by mail, a piece of the wedding cake as a thank you for attending the wedding.