Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s engagement photos are like no other royal couple’s
Britain’s Prince Harry and American actress Meghan Markle dished up some fresh gossip-fodder for fans Thursday when they released their official engagement photos.
The pictures, by fashion photographer Alexi Lubomirski, present the couple in a modern and intimate light — a sign of the times and a far cry from the engagement shots of many of their forebears in the British royal family.
Here’s how royal couples preparing to say, “I do,” have been captured through the lens.
Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip
The engagement of Princess Elizabeth to Prince Philip of Greece was announced on July 10, 1947. Philip, who was a first lieutenant in the British Navy at the time of the engagement, became known upon their marriage as His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
The bride became Queen Elizabeth II on February 6, 1952, after the death of her father, King George VI.
Together, Elizabeth and Philip had four children — Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Andrew, Duke of York, and Edward, Earl of Wessex.
Princess Margaret and Antony Armstrong-Jones
The engagement of Elizabeth’s sister, Princess Margaret, to Antony Armstrong-Jones was announced in February 1960, months before their wedding at Westminster Abbey on May 6.
Together, Margaret and Armstrong-Jones — who took the title of Earl of Snowdon and Viscount Linley — had two children: a son, Lord Linley, christened David Albert Charles, and a daughter, Lady Sarah Frances Elizabeth.
Margaret and Lord Snowdon divorced in May 1978.
Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips
On May 29, 1973, the Royal family announced the engagement of Princess Anne, the second child and only daughter of Elizabeth and Philip, to Captain Mark Phillips. They would have two children, Peter and Zara Phillips.
Princess Anne and Phillips divorced in 1992.
Lady Diana Spencer and Prince Charles
The engagement of Lady Diana Spencer and Prince Charles — the oldest son of Queen Elizabeth and heir to the throne — was announced in February 1981. After they married, Diana assumed the title of Her Royal Highness, Princess of Wales.
They would have two sons, Princes William and Harry, but their marriage would be rocked by controversy surrounding Charles’ infidelity and his relationship with Camilla Parker-Bowles. Diana and Charles’ divorce was finalized in August 1996.
Within months, Diana would die following a car wreck in Paris.
Sarah Ferguson and Prince Andrew
Elizabeth and Philip’s third child, Andrew, was engaged to Sarah Ferguson — known as “Fergie” — in March 1986. In marriage, they became the Duke and Duchess of York.
The couple had two daughters, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, before they separated in 1992, then divorced in 1996.
Sophie Rhys-Jones and Prince Edward
The engagement of Edward — Elizabeth and Philip’s youngest child — and Sophie Rhys-Jones was announced in January 1999. Upon wedding that June, the couple became the Earl and Countess of Wessex.
They have two children: Lady Louise Windsor and James Windsor, Viscount Severn.
Camilla Parker-Bowles and Prince Charles
After a long relationship, Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles announced their engagement in February 2005, after Charles received his mother’s blessing.
When they married on April 9, Parker-Bowles became known as Her Royal Highness, the Duchess of Cornwall.
Autumn Patricia Kelly and Peter Phillips
In July 2007, the royal family announced the engagement of Autumn Kelly and Peter Phillips, the son of Anne and Phillips.
The couple has two daughters, Savannah and Isla.
Kate Middleton and Prince William
Charles announced the engagement of his son, William, and Kate Middleton on November 16, 2010, after they became engaged a month earlier during a trip to Kenya.
William, second in line to the throne, had been dating Middleton since 2003.
William and Middleton were married on April 29, 2011, in a highly anticipated royal wedding at Westminster Abbey, after which they were given the titles of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
They have two children: Prince George and Princess Charlotte of Cambridge.