Only Two Senior Royals Publicly Wished King Charles A Happy Birthday

King Charles III is celebrating his first birthday since he ascended the throne, following the heartbreaking death of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II. The new monarch turned 74 and Buckingham Palace commemorated the occasion by releasing a new photograph of the king leaning against a tree in Windsor Great Park (via the official royal website). The shot was accompanied by an announcement confirming that Charles is now The Ranger of Windsor Great Park, an honor that his father, Prince Philip, held before his passing in 2021. 

While there were plenty of birthday festivities at Buckingham Palace — alongside a 62-gun salute at the Tower of London — Charles mostly spent the day celebrating in private, per the BBC. In fact, the king also gifted himself a Prince Harry snub for his birthday by making a surprise request to the British parliament to add Prince Edward and Princess Anne as ​​Counsellors of State. This would give Charles' brother and sister the ability to stand in for him when or if the king is ever unavailable, per Reuters.

With Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, currently residing in the U.S., the move makes sense. However, as royal expert Angela Levin argued to the Daily Mail, "Of course, it is a slight to Harry and Andrew," noting, "Harry and Meghan would be absolutely furious." Still, Levin acknowledged its necessity regardless. As a result, it's probably unsurprising that the royal defectors chose not to publicly send birthday wishes to the king. 

Prince William and Kate Middleton wished Charles a happy birthday on social media

Prince William and Catherine Middleton, the Prince and Princess of Wales, were apparently the only two senior royals who publicly wished King Charles III a happy birthday. "Wishing a very happy birthday to His Majesty The King!" the couple posted on their official Twitter account. It's worth noting several other members of the royal family, including Charles's siblings, Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex and Forfar, and Princess Anne, do not have social media pages, as The Mirror points out. 

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, left Facebook and Twitter after experiencing a barrage of online hatred and have not been active on Instagram since January 2020. While they could have posted well wishes on their Archewell website, the couple has yet to acknowledge the king's birthday online at the time of writing. It is unknown whether Meghan and Harry reached out to Charles privately, but things are reportedly still strained between the Sussexes and the royal family. 

In fact, one expert believes that the king might even strip them of their titles. "I think, perhaps, there might be a question mark over the future of Harry and Meghan's titles potentially if they are seen to be deliberately tarnishing the reputation of the monarchy, absolutely," Katie Nicholl claimed during an appearance on GB News, per Express