William and Harry's mirrored body language shows their deep bond, expert says

2 July 2021, 00:04

Prince William and Prince Harry unveiled a statue of their mother on Thursday
Prince William and Prince Harry unveiled a statue of their mother on Thursday. Picture: PA
Nick Hardinges

By Nick Hardinges

Prince William and Prince Harry's mirrored body language while unveiling a statue of their mother showed their "deeper bonds of love" for one another, an expert has said.

The Dukes of Cambridge and Sussex entered the Kensington Palace garden side by side on Thursday to unveil the new memorial of their mother Diana, Princess of Wales.

While strolling into the backyard of the royal residence, the two brothers appeared to copy each other by walking with their left hands touching their stomachs.

Discussing the occasion, body language expert Judi James said of the dukes, whose rift has long been documented: "Their smiles, when they emerged, were a little bit rigid, but they did emerge side by side.

"And I think what was more important was that their body language was very mirrored as they arrived - a sort of subliminal bonding.

"The mirroring would very much show their deeper bonds of love for one another."

Read more: William and Harry pictured together again at unveiling of Diana statue

LBC Views: Shelagh Fogarty reflects on relationship of dukes as statue is unveiled

The statue was unveiled in the garden of Kensington Palace
The statue was unveiled in the garden of Kensington Palace. Picture: PA

Ms James also touched on the pair's mannerisms and interaction with one another: "There was little in the way of anxiety rituals which, considering they were very wary of the fact that people were going to be reading their body language, I think they managed it extremely well.

"There was no real tension in their posture. Harry fiddled with his wedding ring which is clearly a reference to seeing his family as a source of comfort under pressure."

The body language expert said the Duke of Sussex appeared to put more effort into making his brother laugh, but added that this behaviour was typical of their previous public interactions.

"Harry was more energetic. I think he was maybe putting in a little more effort to make William laugh. He was a bit more animated. He threw probably more glances at William.

"But that's very much how their relationship always was in the good old days."

Read more: Harry makes surprise visit to WellChild award winners before statue reveal

Read more: Duke of Sussex speaks movingly about mother in video for Diana Awards

Ms James then said Harry gave quite a few wide grins and William kept his slightly rounded cheeks of good humour when they caught one another's eye.

"There were no little dark glances exchanged or anything like that," she added.

She also pointed towards a poignant moment when the brothers were both stood looking at the memorial after pulling away the cloth to reveal it for the first time.

"There was a slight moment of reflection and then Harry glanced straight across at William," she said.

"In a way that was probably the most profound gesture. It was as though Harry did want to share that moment with his brother."

William and Harry were just 15 and 12 when their mother was killed in a car crash in 1997.

The ceremony on Thursday was the first time they had been together since the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral in April.

Their rift stretches back to before the Duke of Sussex's wedding to Meghan Markle.

Harry, who has quit as a senior working royal and accused the royal family of racism in his Oprah interview, now lives thousands of miles away with the Duchess of Sussex in California.