10+ Times The Queen Broke Her Own Royal Protocol

The royal family is full of royal rebels.

We've got Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle, AND, even the queen. She's broken more rules than you'd think, despite the fact that she comes up with a lot of them herself!

Ready to learn about how the queen is cooler than you'd think? Here are 10+ times she broke her own royal protocol.

1. When she invited Meghan Markle to Christmas before she was married to Prince Harry.

Traditionally, only royal brides are invited to spend Christmas with the royal family in Sandringham.

But the queen made an exception for Meghan in 2017.

That wasn't the only surprising exception the queen made surrounding Meghan and the holidays.

When Meghan was expecting her first child in 2018, she allowed Meghan's mother, Doria, to come and spend the holidays with the royal family.

2. When she hugged Michelle Obama.

If there is anyone to break the whole "no touching a royal" rule for, it's the former First Lady.

Michelle wrote about the surprising experience in her memoir, writing, "I daresay the Queen was okay with it, too."

That's not all. Michelle revealed that the queen broke protocol again in 2016.

That's because she picked up the Obamas personally when they visited for the second time.

"And so the Queen says 'just get in, sit wherever' and she's telling you one thing and you're remembering protocol and she says 'Oh it's all rubbish, just get in.'"

3. When she let Prince William invite whoever he wanted to his wedding to Kate Middleton.

The couple was in for a shock when they were handed a list of 777 names on it of people to invite.

Problem is, they knew almost no one on the list.

In extracts from an interview for an ITV documentary about the 2012 Queen's Jubilee, William revealed how the queen intervened.

"I went to her (the Queen) and said, 'Listen, I've got this list, not one person I know -- what do I do?' and she went, 'Get rid of it. Start from your friends and then we'll add those we need to in due course. It's your day,'" he said.

4. When she commented on Brexit.

Monarchs famously stay non-political. But the queen broke this rule when she commented on the situation that was largely dividing Britain.

She ended up taking a neutral approach by urging Brexit dividers to find "common ground."

The queen also made a subtle commentary on the Scottish vote for independence.

Immediately following the Brexit talks, Scotland also held a referendum on whether or not to secede from the UK.

According to a report made by The Guardian, the queen was quoted as saying "Well, I hope people will think very carefully about the future."

And once again regarding the South African struggle against Apartheid.

This happened all the way back in 1986. Supposedly, the queen and then-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher got into a war of words over Thatcher's refusal to implement sanctions against South Africa.

5. When she gave a soccer fan her autograph.

Royals traditionally skip autographs as a way to prevent forgery incidents.

But the queen broke this rule for one lucky fan in 1998 when she signed a young Malaysian boy's soccer ball.

6. When she became the first (and only) royal to serve in the military.

She urged her parents to let her serve as a mechanic and driver with the Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service in 1945 during WWII.

7. Whenever she attended a funeral.

There is a sad reason monarchs don't attend funerals often: It's said to overshadow the occasion.

But this hasn't stopped the queen from attending several funerals throughout the years, including Winston Churchill's and Margaret Thatcher's.

8. When she accepted flowers from a fan.

Due to safety reasons, the queen never accepts flowers from royal fans.

That is until one fan named Laura Ann Barr brought some to the queen's garden party in Buckingham Palace in 2019.

Barr shared to *People* that she was told the queen wouldn't accept them.

"They did inform me that unfortunately she would not stop to accept them as it's not protocol and if I'm lucky her lady-in-waiting might spot them and accept them on her behalf. I think they were very shocked when it happened," she said.

9. When she has a drink with the royal family's chef every Christmas.

The family's former chef once said that non-royals are not allowed to dine with the family.

The only exception to this is during Christmas. Cheers!

10. When she addressed the surprising news that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were stepping down from their royal roles.

If you remember, the couple first announced their plans to step down back in January.

This was largely due to intense media scrutiny.

The world was surprised when the queen commented on their decision.

That's because she follows the royal tradition of "never complain, never explain."

In her statement, she acknowledged the challenges the couple had faced and wished them well.

11. When she announced that she and Prince Philip wouldn't be spending Christmas at their country home in Norfolk, called the Sandringham Estate.

This is something the royal couple has been doing every Christmas since 1988!

How crazy is that?

Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, they isolated privately at home.

A Buckingham Palace spokesperson confirmed this to Town & Country.

Given the fact that they are both in a high-risk category for the virus, it's a smart decision.

12. When she danced in the street with commoners.

If there was ever a day to break this rule, it was on VE Day, otherwise known as the day the war ended in Europe.

The queen (who was 19 at the time) and her sister snuck out to enjoy the celebrations!

13. When she stood across from the duchess of Cambridge and the duchess of Cornwall during a Remembrance service.

Under normal circumstances, the royal family would have stood together on the same balcony.

But due to the social distancing measures implemented to help stop the spread of COVID-19, it was deemed a health risk to have three royals standing beside one another.

14. When she proclaimed that all of William and Kate's children were princes and princesses.

Before Queen Elizabeth II's proclamation, only the eldest son of the prince of Wales would have the title of His Royal Highness bestowed upon him.

Any other children would have been referred to by the title of lord and lady.

15. When she started the Walkabout Tradition.

Before the reign of Queen Elizabeth II, the royals always kept a healthy distance from their subjects.

At the beginning of the 1970s, sensing that the tides were turning, Queen Elizabeth II began mingling in crowds and shaking hands.

16. When she authorized a ceremonial funeral for the passing of Princess Diana.

To be clear, this was something that the queen was under absolutely no obligation to do. Charles and Diana's divorce was already finalized by this point, which technically meant that Diana was no longer a royal.

More than likely, she did this as an act of compassion for her grandchildren.

During the funeral, Queen Elizabeth bowed her head to Princess Diana.

It might not seem like it, but this was a huge violation of protocol. A monarch bows to absolutely no one!

This was clearly done as an act of respect and shows just how much humility the queen possesses.

She also ensured that Diana's coffin was draped in the Royal Standard Flag.

The Royal Standard Flag is supposed to represent England, Scotland, and Ireland. It is never flown at half-mast, even in the tragic event of a royal family member's passing.

However, the queen did arrange for it to be draped over Diana's coffin as a sign of respect.

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