Prince Philip, Queen Elizabeth's longtime husband, passed away last week at age 99. This Saturday marks his funeral, a small, private affair due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Though the event will be televised, only thirty guests will attend in person. Given that this ceremony will be quite different from past royal funerals, there have been many questions about the event's logistics and protocols, including the dress code.
The palace just announced that the event attire will be mourning dress, usually defined by suits and dark colors. This statement is notable, as it is often customary for royal family members who hold military rank—such as Prince Charles, Prince William, Princess Anne, and Prince Edward—to wear uniforms to state events rather than suits.
However, the palace made clear that no family members will be in uniform. “Members of the Royal Family will be wearing Morning Coat with medals or Day Dress. That’s to say Members of the Royal Family will not be in military uniform,” a spokesman said.
This decision comes amidst questions surrounding Prince Harry's dress. The Duke of Sussex, who served in the British Army for a decade, was stripped of his honorary military titles when he chose to step back from royal duties. Had the dress code been different, Prince Harry might have attended the funeral in a suit, while other royals wore uniforms reflecting their honorary appointments.
After a year away from the U.K., Prince Harry recently returned for the funeral. His wife, the Duchess of Sussex, stayed behind in California, as she is in the third trimester of her pregnancy. Preceding the ceremony, Princes William and Harry will walk behind Prince Philip's coffin in a procession around the Windsor Castle grounds. However, the brothers will not stand side by side, as their cousin Peter Phillips is slated to stand between them.
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