Royal etiquette, often referred to as a protocol, is the set of rules the family follows in formal situations. You might see different examples or hear about certain family members breaking the traditions but first let’s look at what it really means.
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What Is Royal Protocol?
While it certainly looks like a glamorous life, being a member of the royal family has its rules and restrictions too. Royal protocol tells each member of the family how to act in a particular situation. It’s designed to uphold their reputation by guaranteeing that royals sit, speak, dress, and move in a certain way.
The Queen, as the head of the family, is always first during any procession or event. You can see this example, and others, in action in this collection of royal documentaries.
Public Speaking: The Dos
An important role of being a royal is public speaking. Royals must know who the organisers are, any other sponsors involved, and have an idea about the event attendees. Invitations should include a dress code too. Family members typically have causes and issues that are close to their hearts and can speak publicly on these topics, although often the royal household will review any text before the event.
Public Speaking: The Don’ts
Although royals can speak about subjects that are important to them, certain topics are out of bounds. That’s why you won’t hear any political commentary from the royal family. Anything they say should not put the reputation of the family at stake. When asked a question by journalists the response should be ‘no comment’, unless a statement has been approved.
The Main Rules About Dress
Clothing is the most noticeable form of protocol. Royals are expected to wear hats to formal occasions, and women should not show cleavage. Tiaras can only be worn by married women, and all royals travel with an all-black outfit, in case of a serious situation where mourning attire is required.