Skip Nav

Who Does Meghan Markle Have to Curtsy to?

Yes, Meghan Markle Will Have to Curtsy to Kate Middleton

Now that Meghan Markle is about to join the royal family, she's knee-deep in a lot of new etiquette rules — literally. No amount of binge-watching The Crown is going to prepare her for how to meet, greet, and show respect to members of her new extended family, which includes the age-old and slightly confusing curtsy.

Female members of the family are given lower rank than male members, and until recently, wives of the queen's sons were given higher rank than her daughters and granddaughters.

There's no law that enforces a curtsy, and just a few years ago, Queen Elizabeth II herself admitted that she doesn't expect to be curtsyed to by the women she meets in public. But it is considered a sign of great respect, which is why it's remained such a tradition, whether the family is at a state function, official event, or celebrating Christmas in Sandringham.

Female members of the family are given lower rank than male members, and until recently, wives of the queen's sons were given higher rank than her daughters and granddaughters. However, now "blood princesses" like Anne, Beatrice, Eugenie, Alexandra, and even 3-year-old Charlotte are given precedence over women who have married into the royal family, like Sophie, Countess of Wessex, Kate Middleton, and soon, Meghan Markle.

So, who will Meghan be curtsying to? Her sister-in-law Kate, for one, as she's married to a future king. Same goes for Prince Charles's wife, Camilla Parker Bowles. Meghan will also curtsy to "blood princesses" like Anne, the daughter of the sovereign, as well as Prince Andrew's daughters, Beatrice and Eugenie. When it comes to men in the family, Meghan should curtsy to anyone with a prince title. No title, no curtsy. But because of a pretty outdated rule that states that a woman's status is "validated by her royal husband," Meghan won't have to curtsy to Sophie, Countess of Wessex unless her husband, Prince Edward, is in the room. And if Harry is around, even blood princesses like Beatrice, Eugenie, and Anne's daughter Zara Tindall should curtsy to Meghan. Are you royally confused yet?

Image Source: Getty / Christopher Furlong
Kate Middleton Wears Red Needle & Thread Dress 2020
Prince Harry Announces Rugby League Mental Fitness Charter
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to Step Down as Senior Royals
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Visit Canada House 2020
Meghan Markle's Best Repeat Outfits Over the Years
The Royal Family at Remembrance Day Sunday Service 2019
The Royal Family at the Festival of Remembrance 2019
Meghan Markle Rewears Purple Dress at One Young World Summit
Kate Middleton Owns These Strappy Flats in 2 Colors
Meghan Markle Rewears Her Green Engagement Dress
Prince William's Quotes About Princess Diana in Pakistan
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry at the 2019 WellChild Awards
Latest Celebrity and Entertainment
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds