A very royal Christmas! The best festive cards ever sent by the royal family

Dec 26, 2019
The Christmas card is something that the royals never miss out on! Source: Getty.

Sending the annual Christmas card is a tradition almost as old and grand as the royal family themselves. Nowadays the senior royals even select their favourite shot of the year to take centre stage on the front of the card they send out.

So, now that we’ve been treated to this year’s festive selections, let’s take a look at what made the cut over the past century of the beloved tradition!

1914 – King George V and his wife Mary

Over a century ago, one of the first royal Christmas cards known to the world was created by King George V and his wife Mary. It was addressed to the British troops as a way for the royals to send the soldiers their best wishes as well as hope for a safe return home. The post card is a stoic representation of the monarchy in the early twentieth century and still to this day acts as a rich piece of history.

post card royal card from 1914
King George V and Mary from 1914. Source: Getty.

1942 – Princess Elizabeth

Ten years before she was crowned as queen, then-Princess Elizabeth sent out her yearly Christmas card at the ripe age of 16. Her message is addressed to the Grenadier Guards regiment of the British Army as she became the Colonel on her birthday earlier that year.

princess elizabeth christmas card 1942
Princess Elizabeth in 1942. Source: Getty.

1979 – Queen Elizabeth, Prince Phillip and their children

This more relaxed family photo was taken at Balmoral Castle with Queen Elizabeth, Prince Phillip and their four children Princess Anne, Prince Charles, Prince Edward and Prince Andrew. And if you look a bit closer, you’ll notice a young Peter Phillips, Anne’s son, standing in the background.

royal family together in 1979
Queen Elizabeth with her family in 1979. Source: Getty.

2005 – Prince Charles, the Duchess of Cornwall and their children

Despite their lengthy and very public romance, this was the first year that Camilla appeared on the annual Christmas cards. The photo was taken from their wedding in April of that year and includes the newlyweds and their collective children Prince William, Prince Harry and Laura and Tom Parker Bowles.

royal family together in 2005
Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles with their family in 2005. Source: Getty.

2015 – Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall

This cozy photo for the personal Christmas card from the couple was taken by a friend during their summer holiday in Scotland on a private estate. The sweet snap definitely shows off the loving side to the couple’s relationship.

charles and camilla christmas card
Prince Charles and Camilla for their Christmas card in 2015. Source: Getty.

2015 – The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their children

Despite being an absolutely adorable photo of the family, 2015 was made even more special as it marked Princess Charlotte’s first Christmas. The beautiful candid shot also shows a toothless young Prince George enjoying his time in the park.

2017 – The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their children

In this shot, the family decided to go for a more formal photo with a now much older Prince George and Princess Charlotte posing front and centre in their cute blue outfits. Although less candid, the portrait is nonetheless a charming snap of the young royals.

2018 – Duke and Duchess of Sussex

Last year the newly weds handed out their first solo Christmas card with a picturesque shot of the pair in a close embrace as they looked over fireworks. The shot was taken from their wedding earlier that year at Frogmore House and shows the Duchess still in her stunning white reception gown.

2019 – Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their children

This year sees the royal family continue their tradition of laid-back portraits with the family of five seen posing around a vintage motorcycle. The adorable shot stars a significantly older Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis and of course their proud parents, Will and Kate.

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What is your favourite royal Christmas shot? Did you like the photo that was chosen this year?

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