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What you should never say in the presence of royalty

It goes without saying that all royals live a decidedly grander life than the rest of the world. They don’t know the feeling of worry or anxiety when they go to use their credit cards. They won’t ever be declined. And living quarters? Forget one small apartment or cozy house; they live in palaces with servants and staff to do their every bidding. Let’s not forget vacations; it’s no drive to a cottage on a lake or quick weekend cruise for them. They’ll rent an entire island, villa or two or resort for their holiday use. And commercial flights? Maybe they’ll take one whilst working to save money, but privately? No. They’ll use a friend’s jet or plane.

As if these things wern’t enviable enough, royals, in particular the Windsors set themselves apart from the rest of us by NEVER using certain words. So take note, royal enthusiasts. Here are words you are to never speak in the presence of Her Majesty or any member of the British Royal Family for that matter.

Social anthropoligist and author of Watching the English, Kate Fox revealed to the Mirror what you shouldn’t say if you ever find yourself at Buckingham Palace or in the presence of royalty.

Pardon: Yes, that is usually the correct response if you don’t hear what was said or asked of you. Not in the case when conversing with a royal. The proper response is ‘sorry?’ You could also say ‘Sorry, what?’ Or just to be safe, you could nodd and smile and pretend you’ve heard. The latter might be the safest option.

Never use the word toilet in their presence. It is a French word. The correct term to use when you need to use the facilities is ‘loo’.

I love perfumes. If I enjoy a particular smell, I’ll ask a friend what they’re wearing. I couldn’t do that if I happened to catch a whiff of The Duchess of Cambridge’s perfume. Royals don’t use the word perfume; they say ‘scent’. I couldn’t ask Catherine, “What scent are you wearing?” Not to mention I couldn’t exactly compliment her properly either without it coming across in an awkward way. I’d sound rather creepy and she might look at me strangely.

As an America, we usually don’t refer to a room as a lounge. We have living rooms where everyone hangs out to watch TV or play card or board games. Depending on where you live in the world, this room is a lounge. Not to the royals. They say ‘drawing room or sitting room’ instead.

Even if you aren’t British, you know the royals are posh; and you know who is posh just by looking at them or conversing with them. Moreover, you would never refer to yourself as being posh. That would be gauche. You are ‘smart’ according to Kate.

If you’re fortunate to extend an invitation for a meal to Her Majesty, it would be for dinner or supper, not tea. She’ll drink a cup of tea.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this mini primer on how to sound blue blood even if you’re not. And if this sounds too confusing or difficult, The Duchess of Cambridge who was once a commoner had, at some point, to learn this too. So take heart.

  • RCan

    Absolute nonsense. Noboubt written by an American.

    • Doodle

      It’s a very amusing article from the American prospective ! Lovely jubbly!

  • Fr Alexander Lane

    this is absolute tosh! Especially the word Loo!

    • PennieP.

      I can just imagine asking The Queen : ‘WHERE IS THE LOO ‘? crazy….

  • Martin Newman

    What utter rubbish.

  • Gail Hall

    Lavatory is the correct word, loo if you are young.
    Lounge is correct in an hotel or on a cruise liner, nowhere else.

  • RJD

    I’ve been myself in front of royals, I couldn’t help it I was drunk but it was all taken in good humour and I still get mocked by it.

  • Prince Dudley

    I think the limiting vocabulary of royals (even if it is true, which I highly doubt ) does not show the “poshness” and “class” rather it shows the bureaucracy and the lack of practicality to make conversation with another person, thus adding to the disparity between the top and lower levels of society, which does make very little sense in terms of strengthening the governance of the land.

  • Mhoira White

    My favourite expression is one used by The Princess Royal, Princess Anne when she told someone to “naff off”. What a classic put down.

  • PrinceHarrysDad

    Just ask the parasites what justification they have for their existence and then politely ask if they would like to visit Ekaterinberg for some ‘tidying up’

    • Lady Martha

      Oh, for heaven’s sake! What kind of out-of-line, covertly violent allusion is this? I cannot believe I just read something like this in the blog, British Royals. This article was less serious than many have taken it and simply serves as a way of showing how different people have different preferred terms for things. In America, “toilet” is considered gauche and in the U.K., it seemed as if everyone used “loo” for the lavatory. What’s the problem? We are losing all sorts of charming local dialects in North America because of so many having labeled them “ignorant,” “unschooled,” etc. Actually they are remnants of historical national roots and simple preferences.

  • Helen Blackburn

    Utter nonsense!! They are no better than anyone else.

  • Lynn Taylor

    Well we all use the loo, don’t we ?……

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