They share the same name and the same destiny but over seven decades separates them. Prince Charles of Luxembourg, second in line to the throne of Luxembourg, has been christened, surrounded by his family in a low key ceremony which everyone wanted to see. Back in 1948, another baby called Charles, then second in line to the British throne, was baptised in very similar circumstances. He is now the longest serving heir in modern European history. On the day his namesake is baptised, Royal Central looks back at the christening of Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales.
A regal settingEmbed from Getty Images
Prince Charles Philip Arthur George of Edinburgh was christened on December 15th 1948 in the Music Room at Buckingham Palace. He had been born there just a month earlier, making his debut at 9.14pm on November 14th while crowds gathered outside to cheer the arrival of a future monarch. The birth of the first child of the then Princess Elizabeth, heir to the throne, and her husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, was a moment of national celebration following the long years of World War Two.
Royal traditionsEmbed from Getty Images
The baby prince was dressed in the Honiton lace christening gown commissioned by Queen Victoria for the baptism of her first child in 1841 and worn by royal babies ever since. He was baptised with water from the River Jordan, held in the Lily Font, again created on the orders of Victoria and now a traditional part of all royal christenings. Charles was baptised by the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Geoffrey Fisher, and his godparents were King George VI, King Haakon VII of Norway, Prince George of Greece and Denmark, David Bowes-Lyon, Queen Mary, Princess Margaret, the Dowager Marchioness of Milford Haven and Lady Brabourne.
The celebrationsEmbed from Getty Images
The baby prince was photographed with his family and godparents immediately after the christening. Then the cameras went away and the guests celebrated privately with a small reception at Buckingham Palace. The top tier of the baby’s parents’ wedding cake had been kept for the occasion and specially decorated in the days before the christening.