Why Kate and Camilla are wearing black veils for the Queen's funeral

·1-min read
Photo credit: OLI SCARFF - Getty Images
Photo credit: OLI SCARFF - Getty Images

As is the customary, the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II is laden with history and tradition. Today (19 September), members of the Royal Family made their way to Westminster Abbey for Her Majesty's state funeral. During the funereal procession, and over the course of the national mourning period, both Queen Consort Camilla and Catherine, Princess of Wales could be seen wearing black veils.

In addition to selecting all-black attire, it is tradition (although not compulsory) for female members of the royal family to also wear black veils for state funerals. Known as the mourning veil, the piece is both a practical and symbolic item that signifies sorrow. The accessory, often made from either lace or netting, typically covers the face, offering the wearer an element of privacy while grieving.

Both Kate Middleton and Camilla's netted mourning veils are attached to the front of their hats and extend down to the chin, sitting slightly away from the face.

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

Mourning veils have a long history. Within the Royal Family specifically, mourners have worn the piece for several funerals over the years. Princess Anne wore a mourning veil to her father, Prince Philip's funeral, in 2021.

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

In 1952, Queen Elizabeth II wore a longer, more traditional veil that covered both the front and back of the head, for the funeral of her own father, King George VI.

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

Going further back, Queen Victoria wore a mourning veil for the rest of her life (40 years) following the death of her husband, Prince Albert, in 1861.

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