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Wednesday, April 20, 2011


Prince William

This time we won't talk about his upcoming wedding but on breaking royal tradition. 

Did you know that British royals never carry cash when they go out? They never own any credit card too because their finances are handled by the Master Steward of their household who is taking charge with the household budget from the allotment received by the royals from the Civil List.

When they are on tours or public engagement, whenever they want to buy something, they will just turn to their assistants and borrow cash. Most of them never actually shop on the department stores but a catalogue for goods are dispatched to the palace and the royals just choose the items.

But lately, Prince William insisted to carry cash and abandoned the outdated royal tradition. The Prince, determined to steer the monarchy in the modern environment, already broke many royal traditions. Aside from being the first future British King to marry a commoner with no aristocratic background, he is the first senior members of the royal family to carry cash, it is no surprising one of these days he will apply for a credit card.

Prince Harry

He wasn't able to finish the North Pole expedition trek and only stayed four days with the wounded soldiers on the Arctic due to military commitments back home and his preparation for his brother's wedding next week where he will stand as Best Man, but Prince Harry has one reason to celebrate.

The 26-year-old, who has been in the British Army for the past six years, earned a promotion lately with a rank of a Captain in the Army Air Corps after he qualifies as Apache Helicopter pilot.A St. James's Palace spokesman stated that the

Prince's promotion is in recognition for his distinguished service in the Armed Forces and will now progress to the Apache conversion role course. With this promotion, Harry outranked his older brother in the military. Prince William's rank in the Royal Air Force is lieutenant where he currently served as Search and Rescue Operation Pilot.

Royal Maundy

Today is Holy Thursday, April 21 and coincides with Her Majesty's 85th birthday. In Britain there's what they call "Royal Maundy" tradition where a British monarch or an authorized royal official will distribute silver coins known as Maundy Money as symbolic alms to the elderly and poor subjects.

This royal tradition gone many revisions since the middle ages. Prior to the 17th century, British monarchs would go to the church service and washed the feet of the beggars as Jesus Christ did to his disciples (this is also practiced by Catholic Priests during the evening mass on Holy Thursday) then offered gifts and money to the poor.

In 1669, this tradition was abandoned and the monarch no longer attended the service and sent royal officials instead to do the gift giving and the "washing of feet" was discontinued until the present time. 

During the reign of King George V, Queen Elizabeth II's grandfather, his cousin, Princess Marie Louise suggested that he would distribute coins every Maundy Thursday as act of love to his poor subjects, the King agreed and on the following year started another royal tradition of Royal Maundy which became an annual practice of the British Monarch up to these days.

Queen Elizabeth II always attended this service since her reign(according to some sources, the Queen had only four absences in Maundy Thursday service, two occasions were during the birth of his two sons - Prince Andrew and Prince Edward- and another two occasions when she was out of Britain visiting the commonwealth), and personally presented Maundy coins to the recipients.

The elderly recipients were chosen from the poorest of the poor community and would become Maundy money recipients for the rest of their lives, annually, the recipients are added, they are chosen through the recommendations of the clergy and other church officials from the various Christian denominations in Britain. The church service is held in different cathedrals in the United Kingdom. The Queen attends the service with her husband, His Royal Highness, Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh.

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