Kensington Palace released a new portrait of Prince George for his fifth birthday


Today is Prince George of Cambridge’s birthday! The little king-to-be turns five years old today. I still remember the Great Wait of 2013, that crazy summer where Kensington Palace wouldn’t give any kind of firm timeline as to Kate’s due date. I remember how it felt like all of the royal reporters and royal bloggers and royal-watchers were on edge for months, waiting for the news to break. People were camped outside of the hospital in, like, May of that year. It was crazy. And now the little prince is five years old. He’s outgrown his baby-punching years and he now seems to be going through a shy phase. I used to think he probably wouldn’t like having siblings, but nowadays, I think he probably loves it, having a little sister and a baby brother.

Reportedly, the Cambridges and the Middletons are on vacation together in Mustique. The Cambridges apparently left London early last week, and the idea was to kill a lot of birds with one stone. One, they’re all gathered together to celebrate George’s birthday. Two, this will likely be Pippa’s last big vacation before she gives birth. Three, the Cambridges haven’t been to Mustique in a few years (that we know of) and they were due. An added reason: Mustique is having a huge party for the 50th anniversary of the island becoming a thing, a playground for the rich and famous. That party was last Tuesday, and apparently all the guests at the party wore gold.

Meanwhile, The Sun has a story about how William and Kate are “keeping a huge secret” from George. That secret? That George will be king one day. I mean… they’re not keeping it a secret, nor are they lying to him about it. My guess is that George has been told the basics about his position but they’re not adding a lot of details, because the child is only five years old! The Sun’s sources just reiterate the stuff about Will and Kate wanting their kids to grow up super-normal and all of that and so that’s why they’ve never told George that he’s third in line to the throne. Again, I’m assuming they’ve told him the basics, but no, I doubt they’ve drawn up a chart or anything. I mean, how old were YOU when your parents told you that you would be queen one day??

The Duchess of Cambridge carries Prince Louis as they arrive for his christening service at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace, London

Photos courtesy of Kensington Royal Instagram, WENN and Pacific Coast News.

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87 Responses to “Kensington Palace released a new portrait of Prince George for his fifth birthday”

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  1. Mc says:

    He is super cute but I’d love to see a picture of him in a comfy, muddy tee shirt.

  2. Red Snapper says:

    William needs better underwear STAT! I’m so tired seeing his junk through his pants.

  3. Becks1 says:

    I love that smile on his face. Can’t believe its been 5 years since the great kate wait, haha.

    I am sure they have told him he will be king but probably in a very matter of fact way – to me, that would be the more “normal” way of handling it rather than sitting him down when he’s 10 and being like, btw, you’ll be king one day!

    • Masamf says:

      I personally don’t think they’ve even discussed anything with the kids at all. William remembers very well how being told and “raised as future king” put such a burden on him, like too much pressure. And Harry is on record stating how, from an early age, he being constantly reminded and raised as a spare made him feel second best; like he was and would never be good enough because he was not gonna be king, and how those constant reminders messed him up. Because of how close the brothers are, my belief is the Cambridges don’t want to raise their kids the same way the Waleses boys were raised; like the Cambs don’t want their son to grow up with such unnecessary pressure on him and they certainly don’t want their daughter to grow up feeling “less than her brother” just because of their birth position. I think they’ve just discussed NOTHING with both kids, period.

      • Becks1 says:

        See, I think there is prob a way to discuss it without placing a burden on him. I mean, he’s growing up in palaces with parades and fly-overs etc, seeing his mother wear tiaras, seeing people bow to his great grandmother, etc. He’s not going to have a normal childhood regardless. So I think incorporating being king into that (or at least discussing that Charles will be king, or something) is more normal than just not telling him anything and then being like OH BY THE WAY SURPRISE!!!!!

        I just think there’s probably a middle road as these things go and for all my criticism of them, Will and Kate seem like good parents so I’m sure they’re finding it.

      • LadyT says:

        Seems that telling the facts of their birth as simply as possible actually de-emphasizes it. It is what it is. Now let’s get on with childhood as a family, all in this together. Reminds me a bit of adoption.

      • Masamf says:

        @Becks 1, IMO, these kids are far too young to start getting them into the “you are future king” or “you are the spare that might actually never be anything other than well…..the spare” thing. I remember a story that I read about how Julia Roberts’ kids didn’t know she was a mega star till they were old enough to process that info. I said, good for her and her hubby. A time will come when George will learn about his future responsibilities (if the monarchy ever survives that long) but I think the kids are way too young to get them into any of that. Just let them be kids, why complicate their lives with such at this tender ages? It’s too soon to discuss death of his dad at some point, isn’t it?

    • jwoolman says:

      They could just be saying he might possibly be king someday, if he wants to be. Fact is, a lot of things could happen to change that. He also doesn’t have to accept the job. Hopefully they are encouraging him to know that when he grows up, he will need to get a real job. Which he will need to do, if he wants to keep all his options open. Same with the other royal sprouts.

      I think they won’t be mentioning that he will become King only if his dad and granddad and great grandmother all die… Let him figure that out himself when he’s older. He really could be very old before even being offered the top job anyway. Look at Charles. Not something he should worry about.

      • Dixiebells says:

        I agree with @becks1. The Cambridge kids are different than Julia Roberts’s kids because they can’t be hidden. Julia Roberts, like her or hate her, has her family pretty much on lockdown. They probably knew as younger kids that they had a gorgeous house and mom went away to work periodically. The same really can’t be set for George and Charlotte, and eventually Louis. They’ve seen the palaces and tiaras and crowds. And crowds and photographers have seen them. I’d imagine William and Kate put this into age appropriate context for them about the unique nature of their family. I doubt at age 5 it’s an in depth discussion about George’s future. But I think there’s absolutely a way to explain it in kid friendly terms. And the most important thing I think William and Kate can do is be open and receptive as the kids get older and understand more and may experience frustration over it. Honestly I know Kate isn’t popular on CB but I think that is where she will really excel, in private support and keeping things normal for her kids as they grow up with all this pressure. Charles and Diana were so pulled into their own drama, I’m not sure this support was really provided consistently to William and Harry.

      • MrsBump says:

        Agreed.
        As much as i disliked Kate initially, i think now that even though she doesn’t work nearly enough or spends too much, she clearly dotes on those kids and she’s the right person to steer them through what will be a very unusual life. She maybe bad for the taxpayers but she’s definitely the right mother for these kids as she gives them a stability that Diana was never able to provide for her children.

      • Mariposa says:

        Mrs Bell and Dixiebell, I couldn’t agree with you both more! Diana and Charles just had so much drama going on that, although they both loved their boys, they just didn’t provide them with a lot of normalcy.

        I think William has chosen pretty wisely in a partner, because all Kate every really wanted was to be a wife and mother. She isn’t going to create drama, and her focus is on the kids….who never asked to be born into this completely bizarre life. I know she gets dragged for not being super interesting or a hard-worker, but she is going to be a force of stability for those children, and they will need it.

      • Addie says:

        @jwoolman
        I agree. There is no certainty that the monarchy will continue, or even if so, at its present level. It could revert to duties and salary comparable to the President of Ireland, Michael Higgins, or something modest along those lines. The best thing for all royal sprouts is to be made aware that a good education means having choices and opportunities. By ‘good education” I mean actually putting effort in, developing abilities and so on. And being accountable for themselves.

        Unfortunately both William and Kate are pretty strict on deference being given to them by staff etc so I don’t like the kids’ chances. Neither of them were stellar students at university, quite the opposite. They prioritised having a good time because royal.

        Several adult children of European royals take themselves off to New York to work, without anyone being aware of their titles. They seem to be well-educated (actually skilled rather than just having a degree) and able to carve out a life for themselves. I hope the Cambridge kids have good mentors to help steer them into productive lives very early on. They don’t need to be worried at this stage about being royal. Lady Louise was around nine before she understood that her granny and the Queen were one and the same. That seems to be nice, low key approach to take.

    • Original T.C. says:

      People are over thinking this. It’s no different than the numerous children of the rich or children of CEO’s being aware that one day they will have the same job as their parents. Children already assume they will grow up to do what their parents do without having to be told. They read fairytale I assume in which case they know who kings, queens, princes are.

      Anyway it’s a cute picture, like a yearbook picture wearing your school uniform. Which is appropriate for a 5 year old. I still have issues with adults having warm knees trousers while the little boys walk around in short shorts.

      • Justme says:

        Well considering that the picture was taken in July in a heatwave, I’d think that George is a lot more comfortable than his father with his “warm knees” As to when it’s colder — well I wore a skirt with knee socks every day going to school in the Northeastern United States and I was fine – so were generations of British schoolboys and schoolgirls. My knees are fine 50 years later.

    • notasugarhere says:

      William was told as a young child, because there were many stories about him threatening to send kids and adults to the tower to have their heads chopped off if they annoyed him. Yep, he’s been a brat his entire life.

  4. Snap Happy says:

    Cute picture but I can’t with that shirt. Can’t Kate take a blurry photo of him with a different outfit?

  5. MrsBump says:

    Aww he looks adorable! Shirt is a little twee but he’s a cutie pie nonetheless. After the disaster that was william and harry’s childhood, i think the cambridges are doing a great job with providing their kids with a tight knit family circle. This is something they are definitely doing right.
    As for the king thing, 5 is far too young for that. He’s only a little boy, and it makes me sad to see his little anxious face whenever he sees the photographers, he doesn’t need this extra pressure.

    • babypeanut says:

      Yes, he clearly dislikes those cameras. He seems as sensitive as young William was, but he will hopefully have a calmer, more stable childhood. Charlotte seems to have gotten the more carefree Harry personality. Wonder how Louis will be.

      • MissM says:

        After Charlotte’s “you’re not coming” comment about the photographers at the christening and George’s shy demeanor, it makes me wonder what they hear at home from mom and dad. Charlotte was clearly repeating something that she had heard before. Hopefully William isn’t passing on his hatred and paranoia of the press to his children. The healthiest thing to do for kids in that position is encourage them to be comfortable around cameras or it will mess with them as adults.

      • minx says:

        Many kids go through periods where they hate having their picture taken. I don’t know if it’s a control thing on their part…?

      • Nancy says:

        William may be suffering PTSD due to the horrors he went through as a child with the paps chasing his mother unmercifully all the way to the end of her life. I think both children are doing fine and I love George’s big wide grin that will fade away to a smile before you know it.

      • MrsBump says:

        I wouldn’t necessarily blame it on their parents, i imagine many a 5 year old would feel similarly anguished at strangers taking his pictures. I still remember little Suri Cruise hounded by the paparazzi, hiding her face behind her blanket.

  6. TeamAwesome says:

    Meanwhile, I hope Charlotte isn’t disappointed when she finds out she isn’t going to be Queen one day just like Gan Gan.

    • jwoolman says:

      If George dies or just turns down the job, Charlotte can be Queen. So can the littlest one.

      Stuff happens. Elizabeth II didn’t really expect to be Queen, but then stuff happened and her dad was King and he died relatively young. So she ended up being Queen in her mid-twenties instead of her sixties or even seventies (they tend to be a long-lived bunch).

    • Masamf says:

      This is exactly what I’m saying. Telling them any of that would just mess these kids up. Who knows? Maybe that’s why Harry’s adolescence and young adulthood was messed up. That together with loss of his mom at such a young age.

  7. Jess says:

    He is adorable!! That photo was taken at Louis’ christening, it’s the same shirt and photographer.

    About their holiday, Pippa is not there, she was photographed in London on Friday or Saturday I think, so the “sources” are wrong

    • Becks1 says:

      Is Zika a threat in Mustique currently? that was my first thought when I read that she was there.

      • Masamf says:

        @Becks 1, Isn’t Zika a threat during pregnancy? Posters with infectious disease knowledge help me out.

      • Somegirl says:

        Zika is a big risk during pregnancy- a big enough risk that the Catholic Church started allowing birth control in affected countries last year until a vaccine is made and countries in Central America warned their entire populations to hold off on having children, if I remember correctly. I don’t know if Zika has been identified in Mustique yet, but if I were Pipa I wouldn’t risk it, because it is spreading and who wants to be the island’s first, you know? She can afford to vacation anywhere, she can choose somewhere without that risk, so I’m not surprised if she skipped out.

    • Josie says:

      More evidence of how thin the Royal reporting is these days. A friend tells a new twitter account (the Teatime with the Cambridges account that reported on the St Lucia sighting only dates to this year) about seeing the Cambridges and the Middletons, there are no secondary sightings, no photographs, and the next thing you know, Hello and The Sun are running in-depth stories about who’s there and why and everyone else is citing them for more stories.

      The palace doesn’t comment and the errors only get revealed when Pippa is seen in London, but three years from now, people will almost certainly be writing about the time that Pippa and her husband took their babymoon with Kate and William (in a story about the tight-knit cousins or how the Middleton circle affects the future monarchy or whatever).

      A surprisingly large number of Royal “facts” go back to similarly unsourced, speculative reporting. It makes me miss the days when Charles and Diana leaked so much that there was new material for a juicy biography almost every year LOL.

  8. Seraphina says:

    Cute pick and I love George. Shows so much character like kids his age should. My negative: the shirt and the brick backdrop.

  9. Other Renee says:

    “ I mean, how old were YOU when you’re parents told you that you would be queen one day?? “

    Kate was probably around 2 years old when her mother, Carole, informed her that she would be queen one day.

  10. minx says:

    Sweet picture.
    Both George and Charlotte look like they will be tall. Understandably.

  11. Kit says:

    In this day and age I think his parents would be wise encouraging an identity and self-worth in him independent of that whole “next in line” thing.

    I mean, there’s a pretty good chance the monarchy will be history by the time it’s Georges turn to be King. Who knows what will happen the next 50 years. I hope they encourage him to pursue a serious education, build some skills and passions apart from polo and pheasant shooting. Something that will give his life meaning and direction even if the monarchy ceases to exist.

  12. Backward says:

    Look at that smile!! Lovely

  13. Enn says:

    The 5 year olds I know want to be pilots and astronauts and firefighters and president of the world, among other things. 😂

    I agree with Dixiebells that Diana and Charles were so absorbed by their own issues and drama that the boys were missing that support and I think it shows in their own choices of wives. Kate has a stable nuclear family that welcomed William in, and Meghan is strong, supportive, and has his back, so she and Harry seem very much like a team. Will is petulant and lazy but as someone who was the older child and exposed to more of my parents’ problems before they divorced, I feel for him. Harry probably felt a little lost in the mix as the younger and less important kid, too. And then they had to navigate their mother’s very public death in a fishbowl.

    I wouldn’t want their lives for all the jewels in the royal vault.

    • minx says:

      Agree with all of this. Both men chose their wives well, they picked women who would give them what they needed.

      • Enn says:

        One of the things I love most about H&M is that they seem like a unit. Their happiness and obvious ease when together makes me smile. OTOH, I think William needs a wife who will stand behind him and support him, and it appears that Kate is happy with that dynamic.

        My marriage is much more the former, but I have friends for whom the latter situation works.

    • LahdidahBaby says:

      Insightful post, Enn.

      • Enn says:

        Thank you. I also think that Harry and William’s generation is sort of transitional, in that the future of the BRF grows a little more uncertain with each passing year, and let’s be honest – I don’t think anyone, including TQ, thought that she would still be sovereign in 2018. My assumption is that William was told relatively early what role he was supposed to play because the Firm figured Charles would be king at this point.

    • Dixiebells says:

      Exactly. I can imagine the Cambridge kids coming to their mom as teens and twenty somethings and feeling safe and secure enough to vent about their roles and restrictions. And I dunno I can see Kate listening and being supportive but obviously she still knows the bottom line. I don’t think Will and Harry ever had that safety because the response was either buck up and stiff upper lip or their parents engaging in attacks about each other. But I actually think it will be great if Kate can maintain a more “Middleton style” private life to balance the kids growing public roles as they get older.

    • notasugarhere says:

      Always always with the underlying idea that working parents cannot be good parents, that a working wife cannot also be a loving and supportive partner, etc.

      How regressive can W&K and their fans get?

  14. Nichole says:

    Do you think he understands he’s going to be King someday? Or probably not yet?

    • Citresse says:

      I think George understands he is a special person but certainly doesn’t understand all of it. Meeting people such as Pres Obama would’ve been explained to George at a basic level for his age. William didn’t really begin to understand it until around the age of 8 or 9 and certainly when Diana brought William for engagements, especially in Wales, his future responsibilities became clearer.

      • Nic919 says:

        They probably have explained something to him because he is at school and his schoolmates will certainly be saying something soon. Five year olds are quite perceptive and pick up on what the adults around them say far more than adults realize.

      • Masamf says:

        I view this very differently, obviously. I don’t think the Cambridges, and especially William, are telling George how special he is. They seem to be raising their kids to have as normal a life as possible and telling yr 4-5 year old son that he is special while you don’t tell yr daughter the same thing is something I don’t think the Cambridges are subjecting their kids to. As I already mentioned, Harry is a perfect example of why they wouldn’t want Charlotte to grow up thinking she isn’t special enough to be queen. Even royal biographers are on record admitting how cruel it was to Harry that he was constantly reminded everyday by his parents and everyone else that he was the spare even though those comments were made as “a joke”. The Cambridges wouldn’t want any of that for any of their kids. I think they just tell the kids that gan gan is the queen, grand pa, daddy, uncle Harry and George’s are the princes, Charlotte is the princess, and the fairy tale is complete and that’s that. They don’t need to explain who will succeed who and when, it’s just not necessary at this point in time.

  15. Skylark says:

    I much prefer the pic of him in the thumbnails where he’s happily galloping about and being a typical 5yr old, rather than the obviously posed one which is poorly-framed and says nothing at all about the little 5yr old George and everything about the ‘arty’ photographer,

  16. perplexed says:

    I actually think George and Charlotte might have a concept of Kings and Queens and princesses and princes because of their presence in kids’ stories, but it might be a fairy-tale version of what those things are. The reality is probably going to be disappointing to them as they get older.

    Yeah, George is adorable.

  17. paddingtonjr says:

    What a cutie! The Cambridges certainly seem to make adorable, happy children. I wonder if they sneak the family history in casually, as in “this is why Mummy wears a tiara sometimes” or “this is why we dress up to watch the planes every year.”

  18. TheOriginalMia says:

    Cute picture. George is all Middleton.

    I doubt W&K have explained the whole thing to George.

  19. Lizabeth says:

    I doubt they have explained it all to him. But as @Nic mentioned, they have to have explained some of it. Now that George is in school, if they don’t explain it, his classmates will! There is only so much the palace can do to control the behavior/speech of the other 500 or so students at his school. George seems intelligent enough and it can’t have escaped his notice that he has POs and most of his classmates don’t, for example. And given all the many pictures of nervous children presenting flowers to female members of the BRF it seems the concept of royalty is one shared with children in the UK. Will seems to have so many resentments about the way he was raised it almost seems his way of doing things will be based only on not doing what Charles and Diana did (unless it’s a Diana celebration time– then she did no wrong)

  20. Deedee says:

    “For of those to whom much is given, much is required.” One of the most important things they should be teaching him.

  21. MeghanNotMarkle says:

    I guess they really do have that shirt for George in every size. We’ll see it on him when he’s 16. He’s a cutie even if his mother’s clothing choices for him leave him in perpetual William throwback mode.

    I don’t think he knows or understands just what his role is. He knows he’s different and likely that he’ll have certain responsibilities, but it won’t be like when Will and Harry were younger and constantly reminded of their importance (or lack thereof).