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How Kate Middleton gracefully diverted signing her autograph

It is against royal protocol to publicly write one’s own name.

It is against royal protocol to publicly write one’s own name.

While on a garden excursion with a group of local schoolchildren, the Princess of Wales was asked by a little girl for her autograph. Rather than break protocol and oblige the child, Kate Middleton drew her a picture instead.

Children from 10 London elementary schools attended an event at the Chelsea Flower Show, where they were surprised with a visit from the princess.

A picture worth more than an autograph

As Middleton toured the gardens, had a picnic, and chatted with the participating children, she was asked by one of them, a little girl named Ruby, who is seven years old, for an autograph to commemorate the occasion.

“I can’t write my name,” Princess Kate said kindly. “My name’s Catherine. I’m not allowed to write my signature, it’s just one of those rules.”

“But I can draw,” she added.

Middleton then drew a flower for Ruby — until everybody wanted one. So the princess drew a tree for one child and some plants surrounding a pond for another.

The reason members of the royal family refrain from signing photos is to avoid the risk of forgery.

All the gardening practice

While at the garden show, Princess Kate revealed that her youngest son, Prince Louis is already learning the joys of gardening — the young prince is involved with a school project growing beans.

“Louis is growing broad beans at school,” Middleton told the children. “You put them in a cup and you can see the roots growing. They get big quickly like sunflowers.”

Later, while touring the flower beds, Middleton joked about how hard it was to remember the names of all the different strands of vegetation.

“Lots of the names are in Latin and I can never remember them,” the princess said. “Is this different to your normal lessons? It’s a different way of learning today.”


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