The English press was on the lookout, hanging on the reappearance of Prince Harry alongside the Windsor clan. Coming to London without his wife Meghan Markle, the youngest of Charles III will not take part in the other coronation celebrations, except for his brief appearance at Westminster Abbey. In the DailyMail, sources already claimed, at the beginning of the day, that Harry had "not planned" to join the royal family at Buckingham Palace. Nor even to participate in the private family lunch, or to appear in the official photos.
In video - Coronation of Charles III: Prince Harry arrives at Westminster Abbey
Not surprisingly, Harry also did not participate in the procession that followed the coronation, from Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace. And as expected, he didn't join his family on the balcony for the traditional public appearance and flypast.
In any case, the Duke of Sussex stayed in the UK for only 24 hours, in all. Indeed, he had planned to return directly after the two-hour ceremony to join his family in California, and celebrate the fourth birthday of his son Archie.
Prince Harry arrives at Westminster Abbey, surrounded on either side by his cousins, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice, and their husbands. (London, May 6, 2023.) Aaron Chown / AFP
Until then kept secret, the place of Harry, fifth in the order of succession to the throne, was finally revealed this Saturday, after weeks of suspense. As revealed by the media, shortly before the ceremony, the king's youngest son was relegated to the third rank in Westminster Abbey. Far behind his father, brother and the rest of the royal family, he sat between Jack Brooksbank, Princess Eugenie's husband, and Princess Alexandra, Elizabeth II's cousin.
Prince Harry had not been seen in public for several days, and had arrived in the United Kingdom discreetly. Last month, Buckingham Palace confirmed its attendance at the coronation and said Harry was scheduled to fly on the eve of the coronation and spend the night at Frogmore Cottage on the Windsor estate. No one knows, however, whether the heir had the opportunity to speak with his father.
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Act of presence
Why, then, such a media hype? (Very) far from his duties to the Crown since the "Megxit" of January 2020 (when he and Meghan Markle decided to no longer be "active" members of the royal family), Harry is now sticking to the bare minimum. By making an act of presence this Saturday, he supports his father as king, no one will have to reproach him for anything. However, there is no question of doing more. His family remains his priority, the Windsors will wait. Same state of mind on the side of the royal family who did not roll out the red carpet for Harry and did not seek to include him in the coronation. Especially since his recent revelations in his memoirs The Substitute and his Netflix documentary. Draw.