Matt Porteous/PA Wire
by Natalie Finn | Wed., Oct. 24, 2018 3:00 AM
Matt Porteous/PA Wire
You don't hear too much about Prince Louisthese days.
There's just so much other royal news stealing the spotlight these days, from Meghan Markle's pregnancy and ever-precarious relationship with her father's side of the family to Princess Eugenie's wedding and the question of who's going to pay for it, that Kate Middleton and Prince William's third child hasn't had a chance to make too many headlines of his own.
Which is great if you're Prince Louis.
And if he can maintain that dearth of news as he gets older, having navigated his first six months of life fairly under the radar, than he's got a better chance than most in the royal family to lead the coveted Normal Existence.
Upon his arrival, Prince Louis Arthur Charles of Cambridge became fifth in line to the throne—two more slots down and he doesn't even have to get the reigning monarch's permission when he finds the person he wants to marry. (Though, since the reigning monarch will probably be his father by then, he'll probably still seek William's blessing.)
Granddad Prince Charlesis first in line, followed by William and then his older brother, Prince George, and big sister, Princess Charlotte. One day, if all goes according to what came before, George's children will knock Charlotte and Louis down a few rungs, as the births of George, Charlotte and Louis did to their uncle Prince Harry.
As the son of a future king of England, Louis' life will never be without its certain pressures or expectations, and he'll never lack for attention when it comes to his major milestones, or any noticeable highs and lows, proud moments and pratfalls. Photos of him will continue to enrapture the Internet whenever his parents choose to release them. And he'll always have a job as a full-time royal should he need one.
But as the even sparer heir of the family, Louis is more likely to be widely embraced for being exactly who he is (like the queen's second child, Princess Anne, or Prince Harry for that matter) than for how much time he spends conforming to a certain ideal. He's unlikely to face accusations that he's shirking his royal duties, as have befallen his father, and he may even end up being allowed to have an outside profession after his unofficially requisite military service, just like...
Anyway, life promises to be pretty sweet for Louis, who in addition to his brother and sister also has a brand-new cousin in auntie Pippa Middleton's son (name still to be revealed) and he'll be the big kid on the block for Meghan and Harry's first child, who's due in the spring.
And his first six months have been as grand as it gets, the little prince none the wiser about just how unusual his family is and just happy to be basking in the affections of his mum and dad.
Like his siblings, Louis was born in the exclusive Lindo Wing at St. Mary's Hospital in Paddington; later that day he was similarly introduced to the world on the hospital's front steps as well wishes poured in from the likes of British Prime Minister Theresa May and Barack and Michelle Obama. Kate once again looked radiant in Jenny Packham for the occasion, and then William helped secure him in his infant carrier for the short ride home to Kensington Palace.
This time, of course, there were a big brother and sister to inform of the happy news—which William made sure to do himself.
At an Anzac Day service at Westminster Abbey just two days later, before the world even known Royal Baby No. 3's name, the tired father of three quipped, "Sleeping's going reasonably well so far. So, he's behaving himself, which is good."
As a full-time royal with the weight of a kingdom soon to be on his shoulders, William was back to work the next day, but Kate was able to take the summer off, minus rather important public outings such as Meghan and Harry's wedding in May. She didn't make her first official appearance until Oct. 2, her maternity leave formally over.
The Duchess of Cambridge at Kensington Palace
In the meantime, Prince Louis was christened, with most of the family in attendance (Queen Elizabeth II had a previously scheduled engagement and Prince Philipdoesn't often go solo to such things), at The Chapel Royal at St. James' Palace
Kate wore ivory McQueen that matched Louis' satin and Honiton lace gown, a handmade replica of the Royal Christening Robe stitched together for Queen Victoria's own baptism in 1841. George and Charlotte also wore the garment at their respective christenings in 2013 and 2015.
While the arrival of Will and Kate's third child was a moment to cherish for the royals, it was going to be impossible to whip a nation into the kind of frenzy that met the arrival of Prince George. Even the response to Charlotte was somewhat muted in comparison, though the first baby princess (who looks so much like the queen, it's crazy) was a major event.
But to Charlotte, Louis' arrival was the be-all and end-all.
The Duchess of Cambridge at Kensington Palace
"Charlotte is really enjoying having a younger brother to play with," a source told Us Weekly. "She's taking her big sister duties very seriously. She won't leave baby Louis' side." (When she requires space, she has four floors and 20 rooms to choose from.)
The toddler's genuine affection for her brother was so palpable that Kate chose a photo she snapped of the two of them to serve as Charlotte's 3rd-birthday portrait, the family traditionally waiting for the kids' birthdays, minus the occasional special event, to release new photos.
George, now 5, had over the years become his little sister's protector, and Charlotte is said to just adore him. Now, according to Us, "a similar connection is growing between Charlotte and Louis."
Matt Holyoak/Camera Press
Louis' coterie of godparents was revealed when he was christened in July, the VIPs including longtime friends of William and/or Kate Guy Pelly, Nicholas van Cutsem, Harry Aubrey-Fletcher, Lady Laura Meade, Hannah Carter (née Gillingham) and Lucy Middleton, Kate's cousin and the only relation among the bunch.
In addition to the official group christening photos, an intimate close-up of just Kate and Louis was also shared, with the palace saying in a statement, "Their Royal Highnesses hope that everyone enjoys this lovely photograph of Prince Louis as much as they do."
The Cambridges unwound from the christening later in July with a family trip to Mustique, one of William and Kate's favorite vacation destinations. They usually stay in a private villa and it's likely there was no change in that privacy-first plan this time around.
Much to royal watchers' dismay, there haven't been any big occasions or royal tours yet to put Louis on extensive display, so aside from whisking the kids away on secret vacations, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been happily enjoying the day-to-day pleasures of family life in the privacy of their own homes.
That includes their preferred getaway spot in the country, Anmer Hall in Norfolk. While out in the country, Kate does crafts with the older kids and there's a pool, tennis court and extensive private grounds for long walks with the family dog, Lupo and, one day soon, for Louis to toddle around.
The family of five reportedly went there in August before the annual sojourn to Balmoral Castle in Scotland, where the many branches of the queen's family gather each summer.
May the next six months be as happily normal for Prince Louis and the not-so-normal family that loves him as the first six were.
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