In 2022, Prince Louis went from being the cute youngest son of Prince William and Princess Catherine to becoming one of the best-loved members of the royal family. After the late Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations in June, Louis quickly shot to fame thanks to his hilarious, rambunctious expressions and his adorable interactions with other members of the family. We all remember him covering his ears during the royal flypast and his cheeky moments with his mother.
Later in 2022, Louis made headlines again for his sweet reaction to his great-grandmother’s death, his first day of school, and his fourth birthday portraits. It’s clear that Louis is well on his way to being a respected, entertaining member of the family in years to come. And we can’t wait for his next adorable public appearance.
In the meantime, here are a few things you may not have known about the U.K.’s youngest prince.
Here’s how Prince Louis reacted to the queen’s death
Queen Elizabeth II died on September 8, 2022. For Prince Louis, her four-year-old great-grandson, her death was confusing and difficult to understand. According to some reports, he had a lot of questions about what the family’s future would look like without his great-grandmother. “The younger one is now asking questions like, ‘Do you think we can still play these games when we go to Balmoral’ and things like that, because she’s not going to be there?” said Australia’s Governor-General David Hurley after a conversation with Princess Catherine (via Daily Mail). According to royal expert Roya Nikklah, Louis’ mother told some royal fans who were paying their respects outside of Buckingham Palace that Louis’ reaction was, “At least Grannie is with Great Grandpa now.”
In a statement from Prince William, he explained that Louis and his other two children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, would all miss their great-grandmother. “My three children have got to spend holidays with her and create memories that will last their whole lives,” he wrote on Instagram.
Prince Louis didn’t attend the queen’s funeral
Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral was held on September 19, 2022. While most members of the royal family were there to bid farewell to the late monarch, there was one glaring omission — Prince Louis. According to Hello! Magazine, Louis was likely at home with the family’s nanny, Maria Teresa Turrion Borrallo.
Before the funeral, a source told the Daily Mail that Prince William and Princess Catherine “thought long and hard about whether their children should accompany them. Of course little Louis is too young, but they think George and Charlotte are up to it.”
However, it appears there was a time when Louis was being considered as a potential guest at the funeral. According to the Daily Mail, the original guest list included Louis’ name, along with “to be confirmed” in brackets. Some people also pointed out that there appeared to be an empty seat next to Prince William during the ceremony.
He wears a lot of hand-me-down clothes
Prince Louis may be a prince, but that doesn’t mean he always wears brand new designer baby clothes. In fact, his parents, Prince William and Princess Catherine, appear to be quite thrifty and eco-friendly in their clothing choices for the young prince. According to some sources, he is often dressed in hand-me-downs from his older siblings, Prince George and Princess Charlotte. He’s also been spotted wearing some hand-me-downs from other royals, including his father and his uncle, Prince Harry (via Town & Country). Of course, this shouldn’t come as a huge surprise, as his mother Catherine seems to be a huge fan of repurposing outfits for different occasions.
One of Louis’ latest recycled looks came in his fourth birthday portrait. In the photos, Louis can be seen laughing and playing on the beach wearing a pair of green shorts, a checked shirt, and a grey sweater with stars sewn onto the chest, a piece from Olivier London’s 2017 collection. While the sweater may have been new, Louis’ shirt was previously worn by his brother George, and his sandals were previously worn by both his brother and his sister (via Hello! Magazine).
Prince Louis received a lot of attention during the queen’s Jubilee
One of Prince Louis’ biggest moments in the spotlight came in the summer of 2022 during the queen’s Jubilee celebrations. The young prince was spotted pulling some hilarious faces during the event and he quickly went viral on social media. We all remember the images of him covering his ears and screaming as the planes flew overhead or making faces at his mother. In fact, his antics were so widely reported, Prince William and Princess Catherine even acknowledged it in their statement at the time. “We all had an incredible time, especially Louis …” they tweeted.
Jo Frost, the so-called “supernanny,” weighed in on how Catherine dealt with Louis’ outbursts. “The whole fanfare will become a little too much when you’re young — it was a long day, little moments like this are going to happen, especially if you are strong willed, sensitive and actually I would go as far as to say a highly sensitive child in my professional opinion,” she wrote on Instagram, adding, “The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are a great example, Catherine has never been afraid to tell the kids to stop in public, I love that about her” (via Marie Claire).
While Catherine seemed to deal with Louis well, royal expert Ingrid Seward believed that all of the attention would have concerned her. “I think it’s extremely hard to keep their little feet on the ground … I think this is a danger Kate’s very aware of,” she told True Royalty TV. “Louis at the Jubilee became a superstar, but that would have probably worried her a bit” (via Cambridge News).
Here’s what Prince Louis might have said to the queen during the Jubilee
One moment at the queen’s Platinum Jubilee really caught the public’s attention. When the family attended the RAF Flypast at Trooping the Color, Prince Louis stood on the balcony of Buckingham Palace next to his great-grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. At one point during the ceremony (when Louis wasn’t covering his ears due to the noise) he turned to his great-grandmother and the pair appeared to share a sweet moment.
As Jeremy Freeman, a lipreader, told the Mirror, Louis was eager to see the planes. “Are the Red Arrows coming?” Louis appeared to say. The queen then replied, “I hope so.” As the planes approached, Louis reportedly said, “Yes yes yes” excitedly. The queen then said, “There it is,” as Louis said, “Oh Red Arrows — whoah.” As the planes roared overhead, Louis reportedly said, “Whoah — that was loud.” How adorable!
The young prince reportedly showed confidence and determination on his first day of school
Prince Louis’ first day of school was on September 7, 2022 (incidentally, just a day before the queen, his great-grandmother, passed away). On his first day, Louis wasn’t nervous or anxious. In fact, according to body language expert Judi James, Louis appeared to be more than ready to begin his education. “Louis’ eyes are fixed forward but his expression is one of determination rather than nervousness about a first day at school,” she told The Sun, adding, “He’s happy to be in the spotlight and keen to entertain everyone, as we saw at the Jubilee. His arrival is so much different to his brother’s.” She explained that Louis displayed more confidence than his two older siblings did on their first days of school.
James also told the Mirror, “Louis might be the youngest sibling but he looks determined to set the tone for the group with this display of confidence, bravery and determination. Spurning the offer of his dad’s hand he sets off with the kind of arm swing you normally only see on parade grounds and his eye gaze remains fixed ahead, rather than looking up to check his parents in any gesture of a need for reassurance.” It seems that Louis isn’t just the cheekiest; he might also be the bravest.
Prince Louis reportedly has a great relationship with his grandfather, King Charles III
So, what is Prince Louis’ relationship like with his grandfather, King Charles III? Well, according to most accounts, it couldn’t be better. In fact, according to one source, the king has a special soft spot for his youngest grandson. “Charles adores his cheeky little grandson,” the source told New Idea. “No one makes Charles laugh like Louis, with his bombastic ways and bursts of energy. Equally, no one can calm Louis down like ‘Grandpa Wales’ can. They have a special bond.”
It seems that Charles did help Louis to relax a little during the Jubilee celebrations. After his outburst with Princess Catherine when he pulled faces at her, he was sent to sit with his grandfather. “Kate was amazed, he settled right down and watched the show happily,” the source said. “Charles was pretty tickled by that as he loves Louis. He’s had lots of practice wrangling cheeky little boys thanks to Prince Harry, who was similarly naughty when he was four years old.” Apparently, Charles thinks that George is just like Prince William, while Louis is more like Harry. The source concluded, “Having Louis around has been just the tonic for Charles, who’s devastated at how it’s all gone wrong with Harry, but there’s a sense he’s getting another chance with his grandson.”
Prince Louis’ future is already all mapped out for him
Unlike a “normal” child, Prince Louis probably won’t be able to do just anything he wants once he grows up. He may be only four years old (as of 2022), but his life trajectory has already been planned out. As royal commentator Carmen Sandi told the Express, he will likely be joining the military. “Prince William joined the Army, Prince Charles joined the Navy and Prince Harry served in the Air Force,” Sandi said. “If you’re sensing a theme, you’d be absolutely right. Men in the Royal Family aren’t just encouraged to join the military, it’s expected of them. They may not have to worry about that now, with George and Louis still being as young as they are but, eventually, this is something they will have to consider doing as they get older.” In other words, Louis will likely need to choose a branch of the U.K.’s army to join after he leaves university.
As for his more immediate future, some sources report that it’s likely that Louis and his brother Prince George might attend Eton College like their father before them.
Prince Louis’ education isn’t exactly cheap
As of 2022, Prince Louis and his two siblings are attending Lambrook, a prep school in Berkshire. Prior to this, Louis had attended a nursery school in London. According to the Daily Express, his nursery cost a staggering £14,500 ($16,227) a year, while his primary school costs £17,556 (419,655). Clearly, his parents aren’t sparing any expense when it comes to his education.
As you might have guessed, Louis’ school has plenty to offer, including scuba diving, cooking, theater, filmmaking, soccer, a pool, bee farming, polo, and golf. The school teaches children based on ability rather than age and classes are reportedly only 35 minutes long. One source told People that Prince William and Princess Catherine chose the rural school because it was so outdoorsy. “They are such an outdoorsy family, London just wasn’t working for them anymore,” the source said. “The countryside is definitely their happy place.”
The youngest royal receives plenty of extravagant gifts
Prince Louis is, as we know, from one of the most famous, well-off families in the world. So, it comes as no surprise to learn that he has already received a number of very extravagant gifts. In 2021, The Times reported that he and his siblings had all been given their first ponies. Apparently, the three children spent much of lockdown learning to ride and taking a “hands-on” approach to taking care of the horses. The ponies reportedly came shortly after the death of the family’s cocker spaniel, Lupo.
But a pony isn’t the only special gift Louis has received. According Hello! Magazine, he and his siblings were given a life-sized playhouse that belonged to the queen, their great-grandmother.
And, according to The Sun, Louis’ uncle, Prince Harry, gave him a first edition of A. A. Milne’s “Winnie the Pooh” for his second birthday — apparently, the book was worth £8,000 ($7,137) (via Marie Claire).
Prince Louis was too young to understand the COVID lockdown
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the U.K. in 2020, Prince Louis was just one and a half years old. Naturally, he was a little too young to really understand what was going on. He and his family spent the lockdown in their home in Norfolk. “Louis doesn’t understand social distancing,” Princess Catherine told the BBC. “So he goes out wanting to cuddle everything, particularly any babies younger than him” (via New Idea).
She also explained that her older children understood things a little better. “George is a lot older than Louis is, but they are aware,” she said to the BBC. “I think I’m always surprised. Although you don’t want to scare them and make it too overwhelming, I think it is appropriate to acknowledge it in simple and age-appropriate ways.”
Because of the pandemic, Louis also missed his first months of nursery school, which would have started in January 2021, according to Hello! Magazine.
Prince Louis is growing up to love sports and the outdoors
At four years old, Prince Louis is beginning to develop his own personality and interests. And according to his father, Prince William, Louis’ main passion is simply being outside. “Louis just enjoys playing outside the whole time,” he told the BBC. “He lives outside.” However, as William went on to explain, his children are beginning to understand that the climate crisis is threatening the outdoors that they love so much. “I think it is slowly dawning on them that these things matter,” he said. “But I think when you’re that young, you just want to have fun and enjoy it. And I feel bad. I don’t want to give them the burden of that worry.”
During a conversation with the Mirror, Princess Catherine revealed that Louis is also pretty sporty. In fact, apparently, he’s already playing tennis. “George is playing. They’re all playing, even Louis who’s four. They’re all keen,” she said.
His parents are trying to make his life as normal as possible
Let’s face it — life as a member of the royal family is never going to be “normal.” But apparently, Prince William and Princess Catherine are doing their best to give their children a normal upbringing. In the book “Courtiers: The Hidden Power Behind the Crown,” by royal reporter Valentine Low, a royal staff member explained that the parents try not to fill their home with too much pomp and circumstance. “He [Prince William] wants it [the home’s atmosphere] to be casual,” the staff member said. “The kids run around the office, and he does not want it to be stuffy. If we have important meetings, or are going to Buckingham Palace, then of course we [wear suits]” (via Good To Know).
Another royal insider confirmed this staff member’s story. “William and Kate very much prioritize bringing up the children in as normal an environment as possible over anything else,” a royal insider said to Us Weekly. “They haven’t lost sight of that.”
Prince Louis was named after this famous member of the royal family
Ever wondered where Prince Louis got his name? While you might think that Louis sounds more French than English, there is actually a history of the name within the royal family. According to the Mirror, Louis was named after Lord Louis Mountbatten, who was a grandson of Queen Victoria and (as fans of “The Crown” will remember) a mentor for King Charles III when he was younger. In fact, Charles actually chose Louis as one of Prince William’s middle names.
While Louis may be named after a famous member of the family, he seems to have made the name his own. According to Reader’s Digest, his is often called Lou Lou by his siblings.