Royal Wedding Special!

April 29 2011

Image of Royal Wedding Special!

Here at Art History News we bring you all the art historical references to the big day. There's not many, to be honest with you, so bear with me...

The news has just been announced that Prince William will be given the title Duke of Cambridge. If William looks to his left when he comes out of Horse Guards and travels down Whitehall to Westminster Abbey he will see a bronze equestrian statue (above) of the last Duke of Cambridge, Prince George (1819-1904). The Duke was Commander in Chief of the British Army during Queen Victoria's reign - a role that William will one day assume.

The statue is by Adrian Jones, and was unveiled in 1907. Jones also made the four horsed Peace Quadriga atop the Wellington Arch at Hyde Park Corner. Read all about Jones here

One interesting thing to note about William's new title is what form the 'patent' will take. The patent is the document drawn up by the College of Arms and issued by the Queen to make William a Duke. Now, most peerages state specifically in the patent that they are to descend through the holder's 'heirs male' - ie., sons only. But amid all the talk of the laws of royal male primogeniture being changed to allow William and Kate's first child to be monarch - regardless of sex - will the patent to the dukedom of Cambridge be issued to 'heirs general', which will allow a girl to inherit the title? The wording may provide an intriguing glimpse into how the Queen sees the male primogeniture debate playing out... 

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