KATE MIDDLETON did not know one key thing before she married Prince William that she now will understand very well, according to a royal expert.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge dated for around eight years before getting engaged, and in that period, Kate could start to comprehend what it would really mean for her to join the Royal Family. For example, she will have experienced how being a royal impedes your ability to have a private life. She had much longer than other royal brides to get used to the idea and to decide whether that was really what she wanted for herself.
By contrast, Princess Diana had been dating Charles for less than a year before he proposed and Meghan and Harry only knew each other for around 18 months before they got engaged.
However, Kate did not know all there was to know, in fact one key factor was missing, claimed journalist and author Catherine Mayer.
Ms Mayor spoke to the 2017 ITV documentary ‘Kate: The Making of a Modern Queen’ on the subject.
She said: “The one thing I suppose she may not have known, and will now know, is just how peculiar royal life is.
Kate may not have known about all the pecularities of royal life (Image: GETTY)
Journalist and author Catherine Mayer (Image: YouTube – Timeline: World History Documentaries)
“It’s the strangest place I have ever spent time ‒ the palace.
“Just that sense of never ever really being alone and the palaces are sort of strange old buildings that are all about actually being built for show, for people to look inwards, and so they’re really not about comfort, they’re really not about family life.”
She added that, only now, is Kate likely to understand all the complexities and peculiarities of royal life, the strange etiquette and formality involved in every aspect of their lives.
That said, she admitted Kate had still been very well placed to take on her role and attributed this in particular to the couple’s brief break-up in 2007.
Kate spoke about the temporary break up in their engagement video (Image: YouTube – On Demand News)
Kate herself said in the engagement interview in 2010 that, while the break up had upset her at the time, it made her a stronger person.
Many commentators have seen those few months the royal couple were apart as a “testing period”, which seemed to reveal they in fact did not like being apart very much at all.
Ms Mayer said: “I don’t think there’s anything at this stage that I could teach Kate about being a member of the Royal Family, because she clearly took to it very quickly.
“But she also had this very interesting period in her relationship with the prince where they split up and got back together again, which was very clearly a testing period, a proving period, something where she had already been through the baptism of fire in terms of what it meant for destroying any chance of a private life she would ever had, and she went into it in that sense with her eyes open.”
The royal couple rekindled their romance at the Concert for Diana, where Kate was two rows behind (Image: GETTY)
Ms Mayer added that Kate and William are, in some ways, modernising the idea of monarchy.
For example, they have dismissed swathes of royal protocol that some of the older royals, like Prince Charles, still insist must remain.
She said: “The young royals have dispensed with some of it in the way that Prince Charles, for example, has not.
“He still insists that, not only his staff call him ‘sir’ and curtsy or bow, but also many of his friends do.”
This may all come rather more naturally to Kate, because she is from a normal, middle-class family, and so did not grow up with the pains and privileges of being a royal.
She and William had an unusually organic beginning to their relationship, meeting in their student accommodation at St Andrews’ University and were able to have a period of time where they could get to know each other outside the limelight.
Source: EXPRESS CO UK