Britain's House of Windsor has had a year of family celebrations, most recently Princess Eugenie's wedding and the baby announcement of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, better known as Prince Harry and Meghan. With these events, comes a lot of public attention and photographs, much of it focused on what the royals are wearing.
Modern media allows the public unprecedented access to royal families and royal fashion during major life events. Prior to World War I, members of Britains' royal family married privately in royal chapels or palaces. In an effort to strengthen their connection to the British people and minimize their relations with Germany after World War I, the royal family began using Westminster Abbey—a location that could house for more guests than a small royal chapel—as a wedding venue. The 1953 coronation of Queen Elizabeth II was the first to be televised, giving the wider public of the solemnity of the ceremony, the splendor of the queen's gown, and the magnificence of the crown jewels.
These grand celebrations and public presentations are by no means exclusive to the British crown, though. Elaborate costumes and regalia have long marked the lives of royalty from countries of all shapes and sizes. These historic photos offer a glimpse of well-dressed royals from around the globe—some on their wedding days, some in their military attire, and some in traditional status-signifying garb—pulling back the veil of mystery that sometimes shrouds monarchs and their children. While some of the images are missing the date that they were taken, the embellishments of royal life still shine through, showing examples of royalty through the ages.
This story was updated on October 18, 2018.