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17 Things You Didn’t Know About Prince George

His parents, Prince William and Duchess Catherine, keep the life of the future heir to the British throne very private. But check out the tidbits we discovered about the pint-sized prince, who turns seven on July 22

Westminster Abbey in LondonFlavia Morlachetti/Getty Images

He’ll miss out on a royal birthday tradition this year

Like many youngsters in 2020, Prince George will likely be having a low-key birthday during the coronavirus pandemic. And there’s one royal honor he definitely won’t be receiving this year: The tradition of the ringing of the bells at London’s Westminster Abbey will be a no-go, as the Abbey is closed until August. But the young prince might not even notice, as he’s currently spending time with his family away from London at their country estate, Anmer Hall, in Norfolk. His mom, Duchess Catherine, revealed in a podcast that the family enjoys the “simple things” like being “outside in the countryside and we’re all filthy dirty.” A recent pic taken by the Duchess is proof, showing Prince George and his siblings, Prince Louis and Princess Charlotte, roughhousing in the grass with their dad, Prince William. If you didn’t know about the birthday bell-ringing, here are more royal birthday traditions you didn’t know existed.

Princess Charlotte's First Day Of SchoolWPA Pool/Getty Images

He has sibling rivalry with Prince Louis and Princess Charlotte

As with any family, there are squabbles between Prince George and his younger siblings. Duchess Kate recently revealed at a gardening event that the siblings are having a sunflower-growing competition—and Prince George hasn’t exactly been happy with the results. “The children are really enjoying growing their sunflowers—Louis’s is winning so George is a little grumpy about that!” she said. And in typical older-brother fashion, he has also wanted to take over his sister’s school assignments. “George gets very upset because he just wants to do all of Charlotte’s projects,” Duchess Kate told ITV. “Spider sandwiches are far cooler than literacy work!” We’re not sure what spider sandwiches entail, although they do sound enticing for a little boy. But, Prince George has to go along with the strict rules royal children need to follow.

BBC Children In Need and Comic Relief 'Big Night In'Comic Relief/Getty Images

He volunteers

Duchess Catherine and Prince William strive to teach the future king of England about the importance of giving back to those in need. Not even a spring rainstorm could stop Prince George and his family from delivering homemade pasta to the elderly and vulnerable near their Norfolk home, in a photo released for Britain’s Volunteers Week in early June. The young prince had even helped prepare the packages himself, along with his siblings. “They got drenched as it was pouring with the rain but I think they just wanted to do their bit,” one onlooker told The Daily Mail. The Windsors aren’t nearly as extravagant as you might think, as evidenced by the surprisingly frugal habits of the British royal family.

Prince George Attends Thomas's Battersea On His First Day At SchoolWPA Pool/Getty Images

He’s a normal schoolboy

At the school Prince George attends, Thomas’s Battersea in London, the young prince is just like any other student, which is exactly how his parents want it—Prince William and Duchess Catherine haven’t even told Prince George yet he’ll be king one day. “George is really happy at school, [and] his nickname is P.G.,” a classmate’s parent told Vanity Fair. “He’s very popular and has lots of friends, and there’s very little fuss made about who he is,” the parent said. “Either William or Kate do drop-off, and they are always very friendly.” Prince George’s little sister, Princess Charlotte, will join him at the school in the fall of 2019.

'Legoland Live! My First Festival', Windsor, Berkshire, Britain. - 17 Jul 2011Jonathan Hordle/Shutterstock

He loves the British cartoon Fireman Sam

Although Prince George is not allowed to have an iPad, he still gets in screen time while he watches his favorite show, Fireman Sam, as his parents revealed in a BBC radio interview. “Fireman Sam is taking an awful lot of interest,” Prince William said, noting that he has to watch along with his son. “You have to pretend you’re really into [his shows] because George gets very upset if you’re not showing due diligence to the characters.” The creators of Fireman Sam even gave a nod to the young prince in their 30th-anniversary episode, “The Prince of Pontypandy,” in which an unnamed royal family makes an appearance. American kiddos can catch the show on Amazon Prime. You can also find out Prince George’s favorite movie.

The wedding of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, Departures, Windsor, Berkshire, UK - 12 Oct 2018Shutterstock

He’s started wearing long pants

Royal watchers know that following tradition, Prince George had always appeared in public in shorts, even in winter; here’s the real reason why. But the youngster is growing up and has begun breaking this protocol. His first public appearance in long pants was last year at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding. Last December’s Christmas card also featured the young prince in laid-back jeans, described by one British newspaper as a “royal shock.” Then again, Prince William and Kate’s Christmas cards are always fantastic, regardless of what the young prince is wearing.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Christmas card, Norfolk, United KingdomMATT PORTEOUS/PA/HANDOUT/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

His sister wears his hand-me-downs

Like any good big brother, Prince George has passed on his clothes to his little sister, Princess Charlotte. In that same most recent Christmas card, Princess Charlotte is wearing a sweater Prince George wore in a 2016 photo with his great-grandmother Queen Elizabeth II, whom he calls by this precious nickname. Princess Charlotte also wore the same hand-me-down sweater in a photo with their newest sibling, Prince Louis, following his birth last year. And this spring, Princess Charlotte was spotted wearing the exact same sneakers Prince George wore the year before, both without socks, no less—although whether she inherited his stinky shoes or is simply wearing a new pair of the same style has not been revealed.

Prince William and Catherine Duchess of Cambridge visit to Germany - 21 Jul 2017Tim Rooke/Shutterstock

He can be “naughty”

As a toddler, Prince George was something of a handful—so much so that his parents decided to leave him at home when they went on a 2016 trip to India. When asked why the young prince was not with them, Duchess Catherine reportedly replied, “Because George is too naughty. He would be running all over the place.” Maybe now that he’s older, he can accompany them on their next trip there. “The next time we come we will definitely bring them,” the Duchess said. But when they travel as a family, there’s one royal rule Prince William and Kate always break.

Trooping the Colour ceremony, London, Britain - 13 Jun 2015Tim Rooke/Shutterstock

He has seven godparents

There are some ways Prince George is just like any other “normal” boy—and some ways his Royal life is very, very different. For example, at his christening, he received not one, not two, but seven godparents to assist, counsel, and support him in his very important royal role. According to the Prince’s official royal biography, they are: Mr. Oliver Baker, Mrs. David Jardine-Paterson, Earl Grosvenor, Mr. Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, The Hon. Mrs. Michael Samuel, Mrs. Michael Tindall, and Mr. William van Cutsem. Just who are these people? They range from childhood and college friends of Prince William and Duchess Catherine to family and other members of the aristocracy. No Royals, though, made the cut, possibly so that the young prince will have others to turn to outside “the firm” as he grows up. Here’s the entire royal family tree—explained in an easy chart.


He loves dancing, like his late grandmother

Prince George’s grandmother, the late Princess Diana, was known for her dancing, such as when she took to the floor with John Travolta at the White House (here’s the true story behind their famous dance). And the grandson she never got to meet has apparently inherited her skills. “George is doing dancing as well, he loves it,” Prince William shared at an event last fall. “My mother always used to dance, she loved dancing.” Prince George’s school, Thomas’s Battersea, includes ballet class for young students, so he can enhance his natural talent.

King Power Royal Charity Polo Day, Billingbear Polo Club, Wokingham, UK - 10 Jul 2019Tim Rooke/Shutterstock

He tailgates

At a recent polo match with his siblings and new cousin, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor, Prince George looked like any boy having a fun outing. (Even though Harry and Meghan’s baby is being raised differently from the Cambridge children.) While his dad and uncle, Prince Harry, played, Prince George decided he’d rather kick around a soccer ball than watch the game. At one point, his mother, Duchess Catherine, had to take away a polo mallet he was dangerously wielding near Princess Charlotte. Then, he and his sister had an impromptu tailgate, complete with snacks out of the cooler. They hopped up into the back of their SUV as their mom and brother, Prince Louis, lounged on the grass below.

Portrait of Prince George to Mark his Fifth Birthday, Clarence House, London, UK - 09 Jul 2018Matt Porteous/Pa Wire/Shutterstock

He’s a picture-posing pro

From a young age, Prince George was a natural in front of the camera. According to a photographer who took his picture for a special postage stamp when the Prince was only two years old, “he was absolutely charming, as you can see from the picture. You only have a short window of opportunity with small children, but Prince George was on good form and everyone seemed to enjoy seeing him enjoy the day.” Duchess Catherine, an avid photographer herself, also recently revealed her son loves having his picture taken. “Get outside with your camera as well—George and Charlotte love it when we do that,” she advised budding photographers at an event. Can you identify these other British royals by their childhood picture?


Duchess of Cambridge RHS Chelsea Flower Show garden, London, UK - 19 May 2019Matt Porteous/PA/Shutterstock

He goes on spider hunts

Speaking of getting outside, Prince George loves being in nature, as his mother recently opened up about during a visit to a “forest school.” According to the head of the school, the Duchess “said she often takes her children on spider hunts in their garden, which they love. They can spend hours out there.” At another garden visit, Duchess Catherine talked about how much her children love to learn by exploring the outdoors. “That’s where George and Charlotte would love to be is learning outside of the classroom, not inside,” she said. And Prince George’s grandfather, Prince Charles, has said the youngster is “one of those characters who naturally, instinctively likes to be outside.” Here are more secrets the royal nanny won’t tell you.

Hampton Court Palace Garden Festival, London, UK - 01 Jul 2019Tim Rooke/Shutterstock

He helped design his mom’s garden

With his love of nature, it’s not surprising Prince George actually helped Duchess Catherine design her woodland-themed, play-and-learn garden for the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) this year. “We made the stepping stones because Prince George wanted them,” the landscaper the Duchess worked with told Hello!. “The kids loved jumping across [the stream].” Plus, the official Kensington Palace Instagram revealed, “over the past months, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis have helped the Duchess gather moss, leaves, and twigs to help decorate the RHS Back to Nature Garden. Hazel sticks collected by the family were also used to make the garden’s den.” The Duchess said her kids “played [in the garden] last night in a way I hadn’t imagined. They were throwing stones. I hadn’t actually thought that that was what they would be doing. They kicked their shoes off, and wanted to paddle in the stream…using it in a way that I hadn’t anticipated.” Yet, these are the parenting rules the royals have to follow.

Prince William and Catherine Duchess of Cambridge visit to Germany - 20 Jul 2017Shutterstock

He makes pizza dough

What kid doesn’t like pizza? Prince George is no exception and even likes making his own personal pies. At a community center lunch last year, Duchess Catherine said, “I’ve done that with George and Charlotte, making pizza dough. They love it because they can get their hands messy.” At a recent event where she actually made pizzas with children, Kate said of her own kids, “they would love to come and do this with you. They’ll be very sad that I’ve been out here making pizzas with all you and they haven’t been!” The budding chef also likes to make cookies, although the Duchess has said, “when I try to do this with George at home, chocolate and the golden syrup goes everywhere. He makes so much mess. It’s chaos.” So relatable! Read about more times the royal family was brutally honest with the media.

Wimbledon Tennis Championships, Day 13, The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, UK - 14 Jul 2019Ella Ling/BPI/Shutterstock

He plays tennis—with Roger Federer

Another of the sporty Prince’s interests is playing tennis—but not too many almost-six-year-olds get to take lessons from one of its top stars. Recently at Wimbledon, Duchess Catherine said that Prince George has actually played with his favorite player, Roger Federer, according to the tournament’s Wimbledon Morning Coffee. And as reported in The Daily Star, Federer is also a fan of Prince George: “He’s a cute boy. I love to see they’re into tennis or into sport,” noting that George has “a good swing.” The tennis champ also said about being the Prince’s favorite, “I think I have a little advantage that I actually spent some time with him, so maybe I’m the only player he’s ever met. Then you have a little head start into who is your favorite player!” Find out more bizarre perks of the royal family.

lbert Windsor, Prince William, Catherine Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Louis, Prince George and Princess CharlotteGEOFF ROBINSON PHOTOGRAPHY/Shuttersto

He gets totally bored at formal events

The future king may lead an extraordinary life, but he sure exhibits some pretty ordinary—if adorable—kid behavior. At the recent Trooping the Colour, which celebrates the Queen’s birthday, his priceless expressions, including a scrunched-up nose and facepalm, were just like any other bored little boy at a grownup event. Never mind the Royal Air Force fly-by: George is totally over it. This (almost) tops last year’s event, in which his cousin, Savannah Phillips, shushed the giggling Prince and even covered his mouth. Whether smiling or scowling, Prince George steals the show! Check out more candid, rarely seen photos of the Royal family.

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Tina Donvito
Tina Donvito is a regular contributor to’s Culture and Travel sections. She also writes about health and wellness, parenting, and pregnancy. Previously editor-in-chief of Twist magazine, Donvito has also written for Parade Magazine, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Parents Magazine online, among others. Here work was selected by author Elizabeth Gilbert to be included in the anthology Eat Pray Love Made Me Do It: Life Journeys Inspired by the Bestselling Memoir. She earned a BA in English and History from Rutgers University.