Both Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton Gave Inspiring First Speeches as Royals

As a newly-minted royal, Meghan Markle is starting to take on more projects of her own, like her first solo event at the Royal Academy, scheduled for later in September. But today, the Duchess of Sussex celebrated the launch of her new cookbook, her first solo project as a royal. The occasion, a party at Kensington Palace, also marked her first speech as a royal, a key rite of passage for anyone marrying into the the British royal family.

The Duchess of Cambridge, Meghan’s sister-in-law, gave her first speech as a royal at an event at the East Anglia Children’s Hospice in 2012. The two Duchesses’ speeches had a lot in common: both were powerful advocacies for important charitable causes. However, there were a few key differences.

Here’s how their speeches compare and contrast:

Prince William missed Kate’s big speech.

While Harry was on hand to support Meghan during her first solo project, William was unable to attend Kate’s, a fact she mentioned at the beginning of her speech.

“You have all made me feel so welcome and I feel hugely honored to be here to see this wonderful center. I am only sorry that William can’t be here today,” she said, as she smiled and the crowd laughed.

Meghan ditched the notes.

Kate stood at a podium with her notes in front of her, but Meghan went note-free. Either way, it’s likely they both practiced their speeches beforehand.

They both offered their thanks.

Meghan thanked the women of the Hubb Community Kitchen, their publishers, and the team at Kensington Palace, saying that she was “especially grateful because this is my first project.” Kate thanked the hospice for “not only accepting me as a patron, but also for inviting me here today.”

The venues were very different.

Meghan’s event look place under a tent on the grounds of Kensington Palace in London, while Kate’s speech was inside the children’s center in Ipswich, a town in eastern England approximately two hours from London.

They both wore black and blue.

Meghan sported a sleeveless top, a pleated skirt by Misha Nonoo, and a bright blue coat. Kate wore a blue dress with a black belt around her waist that her mom, Carole Middleton, borrowed to wear to the Royal Ascot in 2010. They both topped off their looks with black pumps.

Both speeches were incredibly inspiring.

Meghan spoke about how the cookbook was meant to help people “to really engage and talk and be able to celebrate what connects us rather than what divides us. That, I believe, is the ethos of Together.”

Kate talked about how the children’s hospice encourages “feelings of love and of hope” and also help to “offer a chance to families to live a life they never thought could be possible.”

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