Mark your calendars, everyone — the date for Prince George’s christening has been officially announced!
“Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are pleased to announce the christening of Prince George will take place on Wednesday, 23rd October at The Chapel Royal, St. James’s Palace,” Kensington Palace said in a statement released earlier today. “Prince George will be christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby.”
While royal christenings are always performed by the standing Archbishop of Canterbury, the choice of venue for Prince George might raise a few eyebrows. William was actually christened in the Music Room of Buckingham Palace back in 1982, as were most royals born in the 20th century. Could the decision to switch to St. James’s Palace be a buck from tradition?
Perhaps not. The Chapel Royal at St. James’s Palace is the site of a few other royal christenings, including that of Princess Beatrice of York. The site also has special significance for the Royal Family — it is the location where Princess Diana’s body was kept until the eve of her funeral, when her coffin was famously moved to Kensington Palace. Whether this was taken into consideration when choosing the location for Prince George’s christening or it happens to be pure coincidence, it’s quite touching to think of St. James’s Palace coming full circle to become a place of joy and the celebration of life once again.
Aside from location, we do know that there is one tradition Will and Kate have already gone against — the choice of christening gown. Instead of wearing the 167-year-old satin gown that the past 30+ royal babies have worn, Prince George will be wearing a replica. After the ancient garment was used back in 2004, it was decided that it was far too delicate to be used again, and thus the replica gown was created. I guess in terms of royal christenings, not wearing centuries-old dresses is considered to be edgy!
The public has only gotten to see the Royal Baby twice since his birth — once when he left the hospital with Will and Kate, and once when new photos of the royal family were released last month. Here’s hoping that we will be graced with some gorgeous photos come christening time. Until then, take a look at these pictures of the adorable Royal Family to tie you over until October 23!