Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s first child, Archie, was christened on July 6. And although the christening was a private affair, with a very select guest list, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex shared two gorgeous portraits with the world soon after.
While one of the photos, taken by photographer Chris Allerton, was an intimate shot of the family of three, the second photo featured a close family group, including several members of the royal family. Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip were sadly absent from the occasion due to a prior engagement, which was also the case when Prince Louis was christened in 2018.
Here, we take a look at the main differences and similarities between baby Archie’s christening portraits, and Prince Louis’s, Princess Charlotte’s, and Prince George’s.
Archie’s photos have a lot in common with Prince Louis’s.
Kate Middleton and Prince William’s third child, Prince Louis, was christened on July 9, 2018. Although the guest list for Prince Louis’s christening appeared to be bigger, the official portraits are extremely similar to Archie’s in many ways.
For instance, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip were absent from both christenings and do not feature in the photos. And while we’ve only seen one bigger group portrait of Archie’s christening so far, it’s composed in a similar way to Louis’s photos:
Prince Louis’s family portrait included the closest relatives on the sides of both the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. William’s relatives included in the shot were the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Charles, and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall. Meanwhile, Kate’s mother and father, Carole and Michael Middleton, stood next to Pippa Middleton and her husband James Matthews, and brother James Middleton.
Similarly, Archie’s portrait included just the closest family members of both of his parents. On Prince Harry’s side, Prince Charles, Duchess Camilla, and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were all included. Also in the photo were Princess Diana’s sisters—Lady Jane Fellowes and Lady Sarah McCorquodale—in tribute to Harry’s late mother. Meghan was supported by her mother, Doria Ragland.
The seating and standing arrangements make a big difference.
Alongside mother, father, and baby, Duchess Kate and Duchess Camilla are both seated in Archie’s christening portraits. However, in the portraits of Kate and William’s three children, only the parents, kids, and the Queen take a seat.
Notably, at Princess Charlotte’s christening on July 5, 2015, Kate, William, George, and baby Charlotte were joined on the couch by Queen Elizabeth, while Prince Philip stood behind the Queen. Kate’s family members (parents Carole and Michael Middleton, and siblings Pippa and James Middleton) stood behind the couch with Philip, Prince Charles, and Duchess Camilla.
Similarly, in little Louis’s christening portraits, only the immediate family sits (the Queen was absent), and the rest of the family members stand behind the main group.
Meanwhile, even though the Queen was present at George’s christening on October 23, 2013, his official portraits focus on the new family unit, and don’t include extended family. It’s possible that this is because, as Prince William’s heir, George is much higher in the line of succession and will likely one day be king.
It’s also likely that, as the head of state, the Queen sits because she outranks all other members of the royal family.
Harry, Meghan, and Archie’s informal portrait echoes Prince George’s pictures.
George posed with just his parents in his official christening portraits, showing the first-time parents looking besotted with the little prince. Unsurprisingly, the intimate black-and-white portrait of Harry and Meghan with their first baby is very reminiscent of George’s christening photos, too:
As George and Archie are both the first born children in their families, it makes sense that their christening photos reflect just how special that is.
Kate and Meghan’s outfits.
The Duchess of Cambridge has worn neutral white or cream tones at all three of her children’s christenings. Meghan, too, opted for a chic Dior dress in a very similar style and shade to all of Kate’s christening looks, which she wore on Archie’s special day.
Finally, Archie’s christening portraits were taken in a different location, not previously featured in any of the Cambridge children’s photos. Archie and his family posed for the shots in the Green Drawing Room at Windsor Castle, following his christening in the Private Chapel on site.
Prince George and Prince Louis both had their christening portraits taken at Clarence House, the royal residence of their grandparents, Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla. Meanwhile, Princess Charlotte’s christening photos were captured in Norfolk at Sandringham House.
While all of the royal babies had quite different christenings from one another, each of their portraits has commonality, which is so sweet to see.
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