Footage from King Charles III’s coronation in May that highlights the curtsies made by members of the royal family, including the Princess of Wales and the Duchess of Edinburgh, has gone viral on TikTok.
Royal curtsies have become an increasingly popular subject on social media over the past year, amid the change from Queen Elizabeth II to King Charles III, and backlash resulting from Meghan Markle’s reference to the gesture in her Netflix docuseries last December.
Meghan’s recollection that she first thought being asked to curtsy to Prince Harry’s grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, while they were dating was a “joke,” along with an exaggerated reenactment of the gesture, earned her criticism. Though delivered in a self-deprecating manner, rather than being critical of the reverential gesture, the docuseries reference sparked a debate and increased focus on curtsies thereafter.
The most significant royal event following the docuseries was the coronation of King Charles and Queen Camilla, which took place on May 6 at Westminster Abbey in central London.
Throughout the historic ceremony a number of curtsies were made to the king, including one by Queen Camilla after she was crowned. Curtsies are offered by female members of the royal family to the monarch. As she is now queen, Camilla is not expected to be seen to curtsy again in public, with the coronation offering being a symbolic gesture.
Uploaded to TikTok by user princesscharlottedits on August 14, the new viral video shows edited scenes from the coronation ceremony and the coronation concert, which took place at Windsor Castle on the following day.
Edited over an audio recording of Adele’s hit song Skyfall, the video focuses in particular on the curtsies offered by the king’s daughter-in-law, Kate, the Princess of Wales, and his sister-in-law, Sophie, the Duchess of Edinburgh.
The gestures were offered after the king was crowned and made a procession out of Westminster Abbey. For the event, Kate wore an ivory silk gown designed by the fashion house of Alexander McQueen, which also made her wedding dress in 2011.
Though tiaras were not worn for the occasion, the princess wore a dazzling silver headdress made of crystal leaves, which matched a smaller version worn by her daughter, Princess Charlotte.
Kate’s curtsies have become the focus of a number of viral social media posts over the past year, including her first public offerings to Charles and Camilla as sovereigns, during a special Christmas concert on December 15.
The video also features clips of Kate curtsying with Princess Charlotte during the coronation concert, followed by footage of Prince George bowing to his grandfather, and the moment Prince William swore an oath of allegiance to his father during the coronation ceremony.
The TikTok clip has been viewed over 450,000 times and received in excess of 53,000 likes and 150 comments, a number of which have praised the footage.
“Iconic moment in history,” wrote one user, with another adding: “This is so good.”
Curtsies are traditionally offered twice in a day by members of the royal family and their households, once when first greeting the monarch and then again when saying goodbye.
Though in the past people have offered members of the royal family curtsies when introduced, there is no expectation for this to be adhered to today, but some choose to do so of their own accord.
James Crawford-Smith is Newsweek‘s royal reporter, based in London. You can find him on Twitter at @jrcrawfordsmith and read his stories on Newsweek‘s .
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