Last month, Meghan Markle celebrated her 39th birthday, and to the surprise of many, she received warm wishes from the Queen, and from Prince William and Kate Middleton.
The social media tributes were more than a little unexpected, as the Duchess of Sussex hasn’t always been on the greatest terms with her royal in-laws.
Rumors of bad blood between Meghan and the royals have been circulating for years, and neither side seems especially eager to put a stop to them.
When Will and Kate offered boilerplate birthday wishes to Meghan, many assumed that the rift was beginning to heal.
But yesterday was Harry’s birthday, and it looks as though the Cambridges have used the occasion to remind the world that they’re still not fans of his American wife.
The couple posted the above photo of themselves and Harry at London’s Olympic Stadium in 2017.
“‘Wishing a very happy birthday to Prince Harry today!” they captioned the pic.
It was not long before fans pointed out that Will and Kate seemed to have gone out of their way to find a relatively recent photo in which both of them were featured, but Harry was by himself.
“There must have been hundreds of photos you could have picked, but you chose to post one of Harry, William and Kate,” one follower commented.
“I’m sure not including Meghan wasn’t unintentional.”
The Queen’s post for Harry’s big day also featured a conspicuously Meg-less pic …
… but a grandmother posting a photo of herself and her grandson on his birthday and failing to include his wife isn’t really all that weird.
William and Kate’s pic, on the other hand, is a little awkward.
The two of them have been photographed in the company of Harry and Meghan countless times in the past three years.
Posting a pic of the “fab four” as they’ve been dubbed by the British press would’ve been easier and less controversial — and yet, the Cambridges decided to go this route instead.
In the comments section, Instagram users were divided over Will and Kate’s photo selection.
“Interesting photo selection… No Meghan.”
According to the Daily Mail, others threw shade by suggesting that Harry looked “much happier” than he has in more recent pics.
“I miss these happier times,” one commenter stated.
Others argued that this is all much ado about nothing, and fans are reading far too much into what was meant to be an innocuous birthday post.
“It’s Harry’s birthday, not Meghan’s. He was born alone and not attached to her. I think this is a perfect pic,” one commenter wrote.
“When it was princess annes 70th they posted pics of themselves with princess anne not with her and her husband, so why is it wrong that they post a pic of themselves with Harry on his birthday without meghan??” another defender chimed in, adding:
“Simple answer.. It isn’t wrong.”
It’s a valid point, but the fact is, the Cambridges were never involved in a scandal with Princess Anne that shook the British Royal Family to its very core.
It’s hard to imagine that it never occurred to Will and Kate that this photo would ignite some controversy … and yet, they posted it anyway.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that they profoundly dislike Meghan, but it seems to suggest, at the very least, a palpable indifference toward Harry’s bride.