Anyone who marries into the royal family experiences a steep learning curve during their first months in their new role. The rules followed and traditions kept by the British monarchy are many, and the schedule can be daunting for even the most active individuals when embarking upon their new life as royalty. Express reports that Meghan Markle is using skills learned in the days before she became Duchess of Sussex to adjust to her new role.
As an actress, she learned how to act the part she was given, and she is using those skills to adjust to her role as the wife of Prince Harry. There is one aspect with which Markle seems to be struggling, however, and the royal family is giving her lessons on the subject to help her along. You can’t act your way through royal etiquette, and a royal insider has said that Markle will learn this aspect of her new role through etiquette lessons provided by the royal family.
Markle recently did something non-royals do many times every day, which she is not expected to do as a duchess — she closed her own car door on her first solo outing since her May nuptials, and people all over the world went crazy over the breach of royal etiquette. Some have said that the incident upset the queen and others in the palace and that it is what prompted the etiquette lessons, but a Kensington Palace insider said that it’s normal for someone in Markle’s position to get some help in this area.
“It’s standard practice for anyone entering the Royal Family to receive a few pointers,” the insider explained.
— New York Post (@nypost) September 30, 2018
The insider added, however, that Markle does face some challenges with learning royal etiquette that others have not had to contend with, including Kate Middleton and other British commoners who joined the royal family.
“Because Meghan is American, and has had a very different upbringing, arguably she has more to learn. Advisers have been teaching her everything from the ‘Windsor wave’ and silver-service dining, to pronunciation and exiting a car gracefully.”
If you’re not familiar with the term “Windsor wave,” it’s something millions of viewers saw Markle do on the day of her televised wedding when she waved to the crowd of onlookers. There are very specific guidelines for performing the wave properly. As described by Grant Harold, who is best known as the Royal Butler, a properly executed Windsor wave involves an upward extension of the arm at a right angle followed by a side-to-side movement of the hand in “gentle right-left motions.”
Markle was able to properly perform the wave on her wedding day because of training she received ahead of the milestone event. Said training also included an education on British terms like “rubbish,” that should be used instead of American terms like “trash.” Enunciation was also a topic of pre-wedding training, with tips on things like the proper way to pronounce words like “butter” that Americans pronounce with a “soft t” sound.
Her current training is being conducted by multiple experts on the subject, including politeness expert William Hanson, and the queen’s assistant private secretary Samantha Cohen. It covers proper etiquette for any situation in which a royal may find themselves from charity appearances to state dinners.