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The special meaning behind Princess Kate’s incredible new honour from King Charles

The special meaning behind Princess Kate’s incredible new honour from King Charles

With the appointment of the Princess of Wales as a Royal Companion of The Order of the Companions of Honour, her father-in-law King Charles has bestowed upon her an amazing new role.

The esteemed position is a first for the royal family and was specifically made for Catherine, who is currently receiving prophylactic chemotherapy following a cancer diagnosis.


Sir Elton John with his Order of the Companions of Honour
Photo: © Alamy

The Princess’s service as a member of the royal family, as well as her support and enthusiasm for the arts, are acknowledged by this honor. In the 107-year history of the order, she is the first member of the royal family to be named a Royal Companion.

Catherine is a patron of the Royal Photographic Society, the V&A, and the National Portrait Gallery.

The Princess is in good company as former members Sir Winston Churchill and Professor Stephen Hawking are joined by Sir David Attenborough, Margaret Attwood, Dame Judi Dench, Sir Paul McCartney, and Sir Elton John.

King George V established the Order of the Companions of Honour in 1917 to honor exceptional accomplishments in the fields of public service, science, medicine, and the arts. The order is only open to 65 individuals at a time.

Kate debuted her GCVO at the US state banquet in 2019
Photo: © Getty Images


Watchers of the royal family can probably expect to see Catherine wearing the honor the next time she goes to a formal event, like a state visit or the yearly diplomatic reception.

The emblem consists of a gold medallion with a crown on top, dangling from a red ribbon. It shows an armored knight riding a horse and an oak tree with a Royal Arms shield hanging from it. “In action faithful and in honour clear” is the motto inscribed on the medallion’s blue enamelled border.

What other honours does Catherine have?

Over her thirteen years in the royal family, the Princess of Wales has been bestowed with some truly amazing gifts and honors.

Queen Elizabeth II bestowed upon the Princess the Dame Grand Cross of the Royal Victoria Order (GCVO) in April 2019.


Kate’s Royal Family Order with its yellow ribbon
Photo: © Getty Images


The highest honor bestowed upon a person by a monarch in recognition of their services to the head of state is the award. Queen Victoria founded the knighthood for the first time in 1896, and King Charles, the current monarch, is the order’s sovereign.

Catherine debuted the insignia, which consists of a silver eight-pointed breast star, a cross, and a blue sash, at the US state banquet in June 2019.

Catherine has won more awards than just the GCVO. A title granted to female members of the royal family by the queen, the Royal Family Order was given to her granddaughter-in-law in 2017.

In 2018, the Princess made her Order debut at the Netherlands state banquet. It is made up of a tiny replica of the monarch bound with a yellow silk ribbon.

In support of her husband Prince William’s conservation efforts, she became the first British royal to wear a glass Royal Family Order.

Anmer Hall is close to the Sandringham Estate
Photo: © Getty Images

What other gifts has Catherine received from the royal family?

The late Queen gave William and Catherine their very own country estate when they got married in 2011. The Waleses enjoy spending Christmas and school breaks at Anmer Hall, which is close to the royal family’s Sandringham estate in Norfolk, with their kids.

The Princess has also been gifted exquisite jewelry, such as Prince William’s diamond and sapphire engagement ring from the late Diana, Princess of Wales.

As a wedding gift, Queen Camilla also gave Catherine a gold link charm bracelet that had the initial “C” engraved for Catherine and her coronet.

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