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British RoyalsFeatures

Royal Family Christmas Cards through the years


Through the years, the Royal Family has often sent out holiday cards featuring new or rare photos of themselves and their families. Royal Central is taking a look at the tradition that dates back to the days of King George V and Queen Mary.

1914

King George V and Queen Mary, Queen Elizabeth II’s grandparents, sent this greeting to troops fighting in World War I. The card reads, “With our best wishes for Christmas 1914, may God protect you and bring you home safe.”

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1942

Following a similar path of her grandparents, the then, Princess Elizabeth sent cards to the Grenadier Guards regiment of the British Army fighting in World War II.

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1957 and 1965

Auctioneer Paul Fairweather is holding two Christmas cards from the Royal Family. The one on the left is from 1957 and features Queen Elizabeth II, the Duke of Edinburgh, and their children, Prince Charles and Princess Anne.

The card on the right was sent out in 1965. Nearly 10 years later, the card represents how the family has grown with The Queen’s two youngest children, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward being represented.

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1969

The Queen used this image for her personal Christmas card in 1969. The photo features the Royal Family on the Royal Yacht Britannia during a visit to Norway.

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1969 and 1979

Auctioneer Paul Fairweather is sharing Christmas cards from 1969 and 1979. The bottom photo is a colour version of the card sent out in 1969. The top features the family in 1979.

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1987

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1988

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1991 and 1997

The top card is the Prince and Princess of Wales’s Christmas card from 1991. The bottom photo is from 1997, the year Diana died. The photo of Charles and his sons is said to be taken just days before her August death.

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1999

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2005

The newlywed Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall chose this photo from their April wedding to be used as their card. The photo features Charles’s sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, and Camilla’s children, Laura and Tom Parker Bowles.

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2012

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2013

The Prince and Duchess sent a photo of themselves viewing horses at the Royal Ascot that June.

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2014

The Prince and Duchess attend the Invictus Games opening ceremony – Prince Harry’s charity project that uses the power of sport to help wounded, injured, or sick armed services personnel.

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2015

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The Prince and Duchess chose a photo from their August trip to Scotland.

2016

(Photo Credit: Sydney Zatz)
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2017

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This photo is from Camilla’s 70th birthday party in July of that year.

2018

2019

(Photo Credit: Sydney Zatz)
(Photo Credit: Sydney Zatz)
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The Prince and Duchess chose a photo from their visit to Cuba for 2019’s Christmas card.

2020

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About author

My name is Sydney Zatz and I am a University of Iowa graduate. I graduated with a degree in journalism and sports studies, and a minor in sport and recreation management. A highlight of my college career was getting the chance to study abroad in London and experiencing royal history firsthand. I have a passion for royals, royal history, and journalism, which led me to want to write for Royal Central.