Duchess Camilla was appointed to the Order of the Garter, the highest honor

Queen Elizabeth Attends Reception During the G7 Summit

About two weeks after Queen Elizabeth’s “health crisis” began in mid-October, there was a very curious story in the Daily Mail about the royal “counsellors of state.” The counsellors are important in situations where the monarch is ill, in a coma, or in any way incapacitated. The current counsellors of state are: Prince Charles, Prince William, Prince Andrew and Prince Harry. A big part of being “counsellor” is simply “being alive, over the age of 18 and in the country.” During the Queen’s October health crisis, Charles was the only viable one in the country, and when he was in Rome, Andrew was the only other “counsellor” in the UK at the time.

I bring up that story because the Mail’s sources were basically indicating that the Queen would need to make some different arrangements for all of the monarchy’s most important groups/state issues, especially with Andrew’s disgrace and Harry living in America. The sources telegraphed the idea that Camilla was about to be appointed a counsellor of state, but that hasn’t happened yet. It will, however. Especially since Camilla was just added to the Order the Garter, the highest order of knighthood in Great Britain.

Queen Elizabeth has appointed Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall to the Order of the Garter. On Friday night, the Queen announced that the Duchess of Cornwall would become a Royal Lady of the Order of the Garter. Additionally, Baroness Valerie Ann Amos was declared to be a Lady Companion, and former Prime Minister Tony Blair was given the title of Knight Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter.

The Order of the Garter was founded by Edward III in 1348 and is the most senior order of knighthood in the British honors system. The number of companions is limited to 24, although supernumerary members do not count towards this total.

The Order includes the Queen, who is Sovereign of the Garter, several senior members of the royal family, and 24 knights chosen in recognition of their work. Knights of the Garter are chosen personally by the monarch to honor those who have held public office, contributed to national life or personally served the monarch.

Other members of the Order include Prince William, who was made a Knight in what is the most senior order of chivalry in the U.K. in 2008, as well as Prince Charles. Sir Winston Churchill and Prince Philip were also bestowed with the honor in their lifetimes.

A grand procession of the knights takes place at Windsor Castle every June, accompanied by a marching band and Officers of the Order, all in grand ceremonial dress. Hosted by Queen Elizabeth, the Order of the Garter ceremony is one of the grand high points in the royal calendar.

[From People]

Princess Anne is also in the Order of the Garter, as is Prince Edward. Camilla seems to be taking Philip’s old spot? There was some suggestion that this is the kind of honor which should have and probably would have gone to Prince Harry, had he… you know, given up his marriage and stayed in the UK to be his brother’s doormat. That’s probably true, that Harry eventually would have gotten it, but I think Camilla always would have gotten it too, if not under QEII, then definitely under “King Charles.”

Also: interesting to see Tony Blair finally get an honor from QEII. This is truly the first honour she’s bestowed on him. Before Blair, she passed out CBEs and knighthoods to former prime ministers soon after they left office. Blair hasn’t been in office since 2007. She was so mad at him! She held a grudge against him for years. For what it’s worth, she hasn’t given any honours to Gordon Brown, David Cameron or Theresa May either.

Queen Elizabeth Attends Reception During the G7 Summit

Cameron hosts Diamond Jubilee lunch

Photos courtesy of Instar, Avalon Red.

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53 Responses to “Duchess Camilla was appointed to the Order of the Garter, the highest honor”

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  1. Chic says:

    It was Blair who told QEII that she needed to improve her public response to Diana after she died because the British public was not thrilled.

    • Seraphina says:

      Imagine, the mother to her grandchildren, a woman she knew since since Diana was a little girl, dies tragically (chased endlessly due to her being in the BaRF) and is beloved by the public, dies tragically and the PM has to advise her to “improve” her response to her tragic death. What a true empath.

    • harperc says:

      It seemed to have been an unspoken rule that she couldn’t give any honors to any subsequent PMs until she had given something to Blair, because if she had skipped him, then it would be because of partiality, and as The Queen, The Most Impartial, she can’t been seen as partial, so nobody got any honors.

      I’ve heard the Torys have been itching for honors, so I guess the desire to give honors to the Tory PMs has finally overcome her disgust with Tony Blair. (Cameron has apparently been *really* wanting one, and it can’t be a good look that the second woman PM hasn’t had any honors, either.)

  2. Mira says:

    Not entirely sure if this is what Edward III had in mind.

  3. Tessa says:

    I think it was Charles who of course wanted this. He and Camilla may be fed up with the Kate as future Queen spin. I hope Kate does not get this Order of the Garter anytime soon.

    • Lady Digby says:

      Exactly Camilla gets the top award and all Call me Catherine gets is a 2 page puff piece in the Fail.

    • Becks1 says:

      I definitely think this is all Charles here.

    • Nic919 says:

      I think there may also be an unspoken limit on how many royals can be given the order of the garter and so Camilla was added because Philip was no longer alive and he was the monarch’s consort. So this is coming from Charles. He’s not going to give it to William’s spouse.

  4. Tessa says:

    Andrew still has his “Order”?

    • Haylie says:

      I guess in order to get one, you have to sex traffick kids and/or threaten media outlets who attempt to expose these crimes. Will and Kate should have their honors any day now.

  5. ellie says:

    I know it’s supposedly a huge honor and everything but lawwd this is all so silly. Reading the People article felt like reading a children’s storybook. The little kid in me loves it, the taxpayer in me thinks maybe it’s time to retire these institutions and start living in 2022.

    • Chaine says:

      Right? They’re always playing at dress up by giving out new sashes and medals and trinkets. In reality it is about as meaningful as being named Pumpkin Princess at the county fair.

    • Lorelei says:

      @Ellie, that is exactly what it was like reading it! Ditto to everything you said. And William always looks embarrassed in his “grand ceremonial dress.” He knows how ridiculous it all looks, lol.

  6. Lauren says:

    I wonder why they haven’t made Edward and Anne Counselors of State. They are the most obvious ones to do it, and they’ve done it before. They need to take Andrew and Harry off (Andrew for obvious reasons, Harry purely because he’s not in the UK, not that he doesn’t deserve to be one). I’m sure both Edward and Anne would do it. I

    • Nic919 says:

      It goes by order of succession and so Beatrice and Eugenie are the next ones to be counsellor of state as they are higher in the succession line than Edward or Anne. Louise would actually rank above Anne now that she’s 18.

      • Tessa says:

        I think Louise always was ahead of Anne (line of succession). She is of age but when she was born she moved Anne down a notch on the line of succession.

      • Becks1 says:

        She has always outranked Anne for the line of succession but not for the counselors of state bc you have to be over 18 or 21 or whatever it is.

    • Tessa says:

      I tend to think that William would have kept Harry off the Honors list and as Counselor of State even if he had stayed. It would be just like him. And his father and grandmother would have just let him.

  7. Southern Fried says:

    Good lord. Giving that mean & nasty cow an award of any kind tells you exactly how worthless the monarchy is.

    • Tessa says:

      And the royals cast aside Diana which was a huge mistake. And then they cast aside two people with genuine interest in charity work, Harry and Meghan. The royals get it wrong.

  8. canichangemyname says:

    Gawd, this all sounds so tedious, pretentious, and pointless. I continue to wonder why this institution even still exists.

  9. Amy Bee says:

    The DM made it a point to say that Diana never got any honours from the Queen except the Family Order. I think this is Charles, behind the scenes, ensuring that the public knows how much the Queen loves and respects Camilla by making her give Camilla this new order.

    • Tessa says:

      Diana should have gotten honors after she had the children. IMO. I am not sure that the Queen “loves” Camilla though or “respects her.” I think she accepts her but there have been some moments between the Queen and Camilla (like at William’s wedding when she ignored Camilla’s overtures to her). Charles has pushed this agenda for years and years. And I never had any doubts Camilla would get Queen Consort title.

      • Becks1 says:

        Tessa I agree, she was always going to be Queen Consort, but I do think this is another sign that Charles does intend to make that happen and he’s not being subtle about it.

  10. Izzy says:

    Woo-hoo. Another celebration of mediocrity.

  11. Zut Alors says:

    They sure like to award themselves with all these grandiose titles, don’t they?

    • RoyalBlue says:

      they bestow these ribbons and medals on themselves, their friends and their servants. hoodwinking us all into believing this is some great honor and worthy reward.

  12. HandforthParish says:

    I don’t know if it was anything to do with being mad at Tony Blair? As far as I understand the Queen doesn’t decide on the Honour list, merely bestows it.
    I am surprised Blair got knighted, to be honest; he is a massively controversial figure in the UK because of the illegal Iraq war- there is an uproar and a huge petition asking for his knighthood to be reviewed right now.

    • Nem says:

      I remember reading months ago, an british conservative piece of news about Blair not being anoblished because petty Betty hating him on personal basis.
      it was becoming a problem as it was blocking any following former prime minister from accessing lordship as it was the tradition until John major.
      so it has prevent conservative favorite Cameron from accessing it

      • Nic919 says:

        This is exactly it. And seeing as how Boris has helped Brexit happened and let thousands be killed through his handling of Covid it’s pretty hard to say that Blair remains the worst PM out there. (And he’s not the only PM to send the UK in needless wars but since he’s Labour and not Tory the media targeted him much more)

    • Simmons says:

      For most part, yes, but the two most senior honours (Order of Garter and Order of Thistle; there is actually a third one for the Irish: Order of St Patrick, but since Ireland became independent, it fell into disuse) are always the sovereign’s gifts. Politicians have no say in it, whatsoever. In the case of Tony Blair, I think it has less to do with Diana, but more with the mess he created for the whole country while he was in office: devolution utterly destabilises the power structure of her kingdom to the point that Scotland almost left 7 years ago; half-assed the reformation of the upper house where her lords were sacrificed but didn’t really build a well balanced alternative to the lower house; the controversy of the Iraq War involvement, etc.
      As for other prime ministers since him, well, the Queen really couldn’t gift them without honouring Blair first, else a huge political scandal will be created at her hands. For the similar reason as Blair’s, I also suspect Cameron will wait for a long time.

  13. Sofia says:

    I think this is a message from the queen that she accepts Camilla as the future consort hence why the award. Not every single working royal has it, the Duchess of Gloucester, Sophie and Kate don’t have it. I imagine Kate will get it when Charles is King and certainly when William is King but don’t know if DoG or Sophie will get it.

    • HandforthParish says:

      Here they are saying that it is a sign Camilla will be addressed as Queen (consort), not just Duchess (as was initially reported to placate public opinion after Charles and Camilla’s wedding) when Charles becomes king.

    • Tessa says:

      I think Kate will have a long wait when Charles becomes King. He may award it to Sophie first. Even though they are not close.

    • Tessa says:

      I think that was established already. I think Charles wanted her to give Camilla the honors now. And she did. I wonder if the spin as Kate as the “next Queen” will stop then?

  14. aquarius64 says:

    Kate should never be counsellor of state. Full stop.

  15. TeamMeg says:

    Queen Elizabeth looks so pretty smiling in that white, pink and green floral dress. Love that photo!

    • Julia K says:

      Agree. This is a pretty dress for her. Camilla is also wearing a summery print which is flattering. Why is Kate wearing that heavy coat dress? She must have had something cute and lighter in her vast closet.

  16. MerlinsMom1018 says:

    Off topic but I am digging Camilla in red!!!!

  17. Eurydice says:

    To paraphrase my grandfather – that and $2.50 will buy you a cup of coffee.

  18. Chaine says:

    I don’t care how many knighthoods they give her, the first thing I think when I hear her name is always the tampon scandal. Who’d ever have thought she would go from that low point to being given the highest order of the empire for her supposed service to the queen, lol. Surely there are thousands of more deserving citizens who have put in lifetimes of actual service.

  19. Gubbinal says:

    Duchess Camilla, KG, has provided the best of services to the Crown; she knows how to massage the tender ego of Charles and how to channel and direct his narcissism. The Keen one will never learn she should be emulating Camilla.

    • Tessa says:

      Kate has enabled William for years. Kate should do more work, she does a lot less than Camilla does (who is nearly twice Kate’s age).

  20. Mrs.Krabapple says:

    As an American, it seems ridiculous that the queen gives out ribbons and medals at whim, including to her family members just for . . . staying married? And the public is actually supposed to be impressed by that? To me, when I see the royal family wearing their various sashes and ribbons, I’m not impressed, and it reminds me of my dogs’ conformation shows. Actually, my dogs’ ribbons are more impressive.

  21. Liz Version 700 says:

    Thinking about all of this makes my eyes roll c by ack in my head. So tedious.