In late 2019, Prince Charles took a decision with the full-throated support of Prince William that might have destroyed their family forever, and it included his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, and a family portrait.
When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced to the world that they were stepping down from their royal duties, many rumors were flying around, claiming that the Queen was the one who threw the first punch.
When she gave her annual Christmas speech in 2019, many noticed a significant change on her desk.
Her Majesty had several photos of the royal family members, but none of them included The Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
However, what was the most painful was the fact that the Queen opted to exclude her latest great-grandchild — baby Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor — who was six months old at the time in the Christmas broadcast.
In the new book, Battle of Brothers: William & Harry – The Inside Story of a Family in Tumult, Robert Lacey explained that the absence of a photo of Meghan, Harry, and baby Archie sent shockwaves.
The author shared: “It was unheard of for the royal Christmas desk not to feature a cozy image of the latest royal grandchild or great-grandchild. But in 2019, there was no sight of Harry and Meghan’s six-month-old son, Archie.”
After the December blunder, the Queen fired another shot with an official portrait that featured only her heirs to the throne.
Lacey revealed that Prince Charles was the one who pushed for the portrait to sell his idea of a “slimmed-down” monarchy.
The royal expert shared: “The new royal picture that the Queen did release on January 3 to mark the new decade showed Queen Elizabeth II herself, the future King Charles III, the future King William V — and, going even further, King George VII in the shape of little Prince George, just coming up to seven years old.”
He added: “According to insiders, this formal photograph, taken in the Buckingham Palace Throne Room a week before Christmas 2019, was the idea of Prince Charles, anxious to promote his cause of the ‘slimmed-down monarchy.”
Prince William loved the idea because it sent a message to his brother, Prince Harry.
Lacey revealed: “Palace sources have also let it be known that the plan of depicting the direct line of royal succession was enthusiastically supported by Prince William, which might be seen as sending his younger brother a message.”
According to Lacey, Harry got the message like a punch in the gut. He went on to say: “The message was received and it was taken to heart.”
Talking to the Daily Mail, Lacey confessed that “the palace got it wrong” with Harry and Meghan and added: “They always treat the second-born badly, not to say cruelly. It happened with Princess Margaret. It happened with Prince Andrew. They just don’t know what to do with the spare.”
Prince Harry and Meghan have found success as a brand in America after the Megxit.