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Kate Middleton pays subtle tribute to the queen with key jewelry

The Princess of Wales wore a four-strand pearl and diamond necklace that once belonged to Queen Elizabeth II, and was previously worn by Princess Diana.

Symbolism is always present at royal events, and Queen Elizabeth II's funeral Monday was no exception. 

The first state funeral since that of Winston Churchill was watched by millions around the world, with many focusing on trappings of monarchy like the Imperial State Crown atop the coffin, which sparkles with nearly 3,000 diamonds. 

Also present: Personal symbolism, like a handwritten note from the new king, and choices in attire from the royal family. 


Black veils have long been a staple of traditional mourning attire at royal funerals. Catherine, Princess of Wales -- more commonly known as Kate -- wore a wide-brimmed hat with a veil attached. 

Camilla, wife of King Charles III and now known as the Queen Consort, wore a similar veil. 

Credit: AP
Queen Consort Camilla leaves at the end of the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth II Monday, Sept. 19, 2022. (Jeff Spicer/Pool Photo via AP)

Veils traditionally serve two main purposes: They are a clear symbol of mourning, while also allowing wearers a little more privacy as they grieve. 

Matthew Storey, curator at Historic Royal Palaces, told Express that Queen Victoria set the tone for many traditions in mourning clothes: “When her beloved husband died in 1861 she abandoned the colourful clothes of her married life and, with the rest of the royal court, adopted black clothing as an outward sign of grief." 

Victoria's subjects followed suit, Storey said, leading to "a rush on suppliers of mourning fabrics" across the country.

Veils aren't limited to British public figures: First lady Jackie Kennedy wore one during the funeral of former President John F. Kennedy. 


Kate wore a four-strand pearl choker to the funeral with a diamond clasp. Pearls are used to symbolize mourning and were often worn by the late queen, but this particular necklace had an even more personal connection. 

Credit: AP
Catherine, Princess of Wales and Prince George of Wales are driven to Westminster Abbey for the funeral of her mother, Queen Elizabeth II, in central London Monday Sept. 19, 2022.

According to Harper's Bazaar, the necklace Kate wore had once belonged to Elizabeth. She first loaned it to Kate in 2017, and she later wore it to the funeral of Elizabeth's late husband Prince Philip. She isn't the only royal to have worn the necklace; the queen loaned it to Princess Diana in the 80s. 

Harper's Bazaar said the pearl drop earrings worn by Kate were also part of the late queen's collection. 

Credit: AP
Kate, Duchess of Cambridge attends the funeral of Britain's Prince Philip inside Windsor Castle in Windsor, England, Saturday, April 17, 2021.

Princess Charlotte, Kate and Prince William's daughter, also wore a diamond horseshoe-shaped brooch to the funeral that was reportedly a gift from the queen, according to British media reports.

Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex, also wore a pair of earrings that the queen gave her as a gift after her marriage to Prince Harry

Credit: AP
Kate, Princess of Wales, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, Prince George and Princess Charlotte arrive at the Westminster Abbey for the state funeral of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, in London, Monday Sept. 19, 2022. (Phil Noble/Pool Photo via AP)

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