Already have an account?
Get back to the

Why Prince George and Princess Charlotte Must Bow and Curtsy to the Queen but Not Their Parents


When it comes to who bows to whom in the royal family, the rules are a bit confusing. Though the royal kids have some time before they’ll be expected to curtsy or bow to the queen, they’ll soon join their parents and relatives in bending a knee. And it might get even more complicated for Prince George and Princess Charlotte, as they’ll have to remember to curtsy for their great-grandmother but not their parents. 

Now that Prince George has celebrated his fifth birthday, some predict he’ll start bowing to the queen shortly if he hasn’t already. “Certainly by age five [Prince George will start bowing to the queen],” royal historian Marlene Eilers Koenig told Hello! That means Princess Charlotte, who turned three years old in May, has a few more years before she’ll curtsy to her great-grandmother. When he’s of age, Prince Louis will also have to bow.

It gets a little murkier regarding whether royals have to bow or curtsy with each other. “The only person they will curtsy or bow to is the sovereign,” Koening said. “A royal highness does not curtsy to another royal highness. Yes, there are articles that state this, but it is not true.”

Following that logic, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis, who all have “Her Royal Highness” or “His Royal Highness” before their names, do not have to genuflect in front of their parents. They also wouldn’t have to bend for their older relatives either, although we wouldn’t be surprised to see the always-polite Cambridge children curtsy to their grandparents or aunts and uncles.

Princess Charlotte showed off her curtsying skills during a 2015 royal visit to Poland, proving she’s already comfortable following protocol. We haven’t yet seen Prince George practice his bowing, but he’s no doubt already mastered his technique. 

As they get older, we’re sure we’ll see all of the Cambridge kids bow and curtsy. Until then, we’re happy just watching them run around like normal children.

More From Woman’s World

Eating Pears With a Spoon? Former Royal Chef Reveals the Queen’s Odd Meal Habits

9 Times Queen Elizabeth Proved She Had a Wicked Sense of Humor

We Know Queen Elizabeth Loves Her Dogs, But Why Have We Never Seen Her With a Cat?

Use left and right arrow keys to navigate between menu items. Use right arrow key to move into submenus. Use escape to exit the menu. Use up and down arrow keys to explore. Use left arrow key to move back to the parent list.