How Princess Diana and Prince Charles made the balcony Kiss a royal tradition of marriage



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One might think that the actual traditions have an elaborate and meaningful background story about how they started. While this may be the case with some real traditions, this is not the case at all.

Take the kiss from the balcony of Princess Diana and Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace after the wedding ceremony, for example. It did not have a significant or instigating background story. Continue reading to find out why the royal couple kissed on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, thus starting a new royal tradition.

The Forgotten Marriage Tradition

It is a tradition of marriage to end the ceremony with a kiss. During the marriage of the century, Prince Charles forgot to kiss Princess Diana at the end of his wedding ceremony in St. Paul's Cathedral.

As History.com points out, perhaps the fact that Prince Charles has forgotten to kiss his fiancee has anticipated future events in his marriage, or could have been a scare on the stage. There were 3,500 guests for the ceremony and millions upon millions of people watching on live television.

Princess Diana and Prince Charles kissing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace after the wedding ceremony.
Prince Charles and Princess Diana kissing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace | Tim Graham / Getty Images

The forgotten kiss may have been part of the reason the princess considered her day of her everyday marriage "the worst in her life."

As Prince Charles forgot to kiss his new bride in St. Paul's Cathedral, the couple compensated by kissing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace after the ceremony. Prince Charles and Princess Diana stood at the counter overlooking thousands of supporters, sharing their first kiss as a couple.

His now famous kiss began a royal wedding tradition that Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson followed five years later in their royal wedding.

Prince William followed the tradition

When Prince William married his longtime girlfriend, Kate Middleton, at Westminster Abbey in 2011, they also followed in the footsteps of the prince's parents and shared a kiss on the balcony of Buckingham Palace after the wedding ceremony.

The image of them kissing on the porch has become another iconic image for the royal family. Grace van Cutsem, one of the bridesmaids of the wedding party and Prince William's goddaughter, also made the moment memorable. She covered her ears and looked grumpy beside Middleton and Prince William as they kissed. Images and videos of van Cutsem quickly became viral.

Kate Middleton and Prince William kissing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace after the wedding.
Prince William and Kate Middleton kiss on the balcony at Buckingham Palace on April 29, 2011, in London, England. | Peter Macdiarmid / Getty Images

Prince Harry did not follow the tradition of kissing on the porch.

Prince Harry ignored the tradition of kissing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace when he and Meghan Markle were married in 2018. Why? Because they got married in St. George's Chapel, inside Windsor Castle, which has no balcony.

After the wedding ceremony, Markle and Prince Harry left the chapel together and stayed at the top of the stairs, where they shared their first kiss as a couple.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle first kiss | ABC News YouTube

Now the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and Markle have honored the late Princess Diana in various ways on their wedding day.

They made their engagement photo in Diana's favorite gardens, the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace. And Prince Harry proposed to Markle a ring that he designed using two diamonds from his mother's personal jewelry collection and another Botswana stone, a place close to his heart and a place that matters to him and Markle as a couple.

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