For the past 70 years, it’s been of royal tradition to release Christmas cards to the public, offering a behind-the-scenes peek into royal life. From the early, formal cards of King George V to the new, more modern snapshots featuring Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and even Prince Louis, here’s our favorite royal Christmas cards throughout the years.
1914

Queen Elizabeth II’s grandparents, King George V and Queen Mary, sent this holiday card to the troops fighting in World War I.

1939

A 9-year-old Princess Margaret and a 13-year-old then-Princess Elizabeth pose for a holiday picture!

1942

Just like her grandparents, Queen Elizabeth sent Christmas portraits to the Grenadier Guards regiment of the British Army, who were fighting in World War II.

1982

Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s first Christmas portraits with baby Prince William!

1985

Prince William here is holding his baby brother! T

1986

The royals posed for a fun holiday portrait this year, with Charles in charge of wrangling the boys and Diana just hanging with the dog.

1987

Amidst rumors of marriage problems, Charles, Diana, and the boys still sat down for their annual Christmas portrait.

1988

The royal love for horses is well-known, so it should come as no surprise that this year, they posed for the family portrait in the stables.

1990

The boys are in their best holiday festive gear, while Prince Charles and Princess Diana are a little more formal, but they’re ready for what the new decade will bring.

1991 & 1997

What a difference six years makes! The top photo is one of the last family portraits Diana ever posed for, and the bottom was taken just days before Diana’s death.

2014

The 2014 holiday card from Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla features the couple laughing during the Invictus Games Opening Ceremony.

2015

Taken in Scotland during royal holiday, this portrait of Charles and Camilla is candid.

2016

Prince Charles and Camilla during their royal tour of Croatia, where they met local performers wearing traditional outfits in Tvrda, the old town of the city of Osijek.

2017

By comparison, this year’s portrait is a little subdued and certainly more formal.

2017

The first royal holiday portrait of Prince William, Kate, Prince George and Princess Charlotte is a precious one. This is only the beginning of a future of Cambridge family portraits.

2018

This outdoorsy Christmas card was the first since Prince Louis’ birth. It was also their first formal photograph as a family of five.

2019

Look at how much they’ve all grown!