ALL eyes were on Prince Harry and Prince William this weekend as they were reunited for the first time in over a year at Prince Philip's funeral.
Although the brothers were separated by their cousin Peter Phillips in theDuke of Edinburgh's funeral procession, they later put on a "relaxed show of unity" as they left the ceremony together.
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Here body language expert Judi James examines the brother's changing relationship through the years and explains how they have moved past their "painful" rift.
2003 – PARTNERS IN CRIME
There were only two years between the brothers but in terms of maturity there was a much larger gap that had been created by both their mother’s death and William’s ingrained sense of destiny.
William was already developing a duel role in Harry’s life here: that of a protective paternal figure and a partner in crime when it came to having fun.
We can see William taking the dutiful front spot here, smiling politely as he greets and chats to someone but his smile is also suffering from the ‘Harry effect’, meaning the width of his mouth smile and the intense crinkling around his eyes suggest he is resisting the urge to burst out laughing, egged on by his younger brother.
Harry clearly loved his role as the one who could de-pomp his brother and threaten to make him ‘corpse’.
With no restraints on his behaviour, Harry’s open-mouthed smile and his chin-rub show a mischievous sense of humour.
2010 – STRONG BOND
This pose epitomizes the strong but complex bonds between the two brothers during their earlier years.
With Harry urging his brother on they became a comedy double-act, openly joking and play-fighting in front of the cameras.
Play-fights are a natural feature of sibling relationships but these two took theirs well into their teenage years and beyond.
This ability to romp together showed the strongest of brotherly bonds based on body language tie-signs and banter, but the more competitive signals (Harry clearly enjoying trying to scare William with the snake’s head) would also hint at sibling rivalry, too.
William’s paternal, protective role might have brought out some teen-style rebellion from Harry as he grew older, especially when Harry wanted to be seen as a successful, mature adult and family man in his own right.
2016 – DOUBLE ACT
The body language signals between the brothers here epitomize the William and Harry double-act at its finest.
Their synchronicity is intense but it’s the air of jaunty confidence and shared fun that really resonates, showing bonds that are exceptionally strong, even for siblings.
Their movements look rhythmical, relaxed and intensely mirrored with an air of alpha cockiness in the way their strides are wide and their front toes pointed outward.
They clearly were clearly still enjoying each other’s company as friends, wing-men and brothers at this point.
2019 – DISCONNECTED & DEFENSIVE
Mirroring usually implies like-minded thinking but in this pose the postural and gestural echoes between the brothers hint at something very different.
The ‘Fab Four’ ideal had hit the buffers and although all eyes were focused on Kate and Meghan, looking for proof of a rift, there were signs of a disconnect between the brothers here.
Dressed alike and with their feet in identical positions, both William and Harry hold their hands clasped in front of their torsos in a barrier gesture.
This ‘fig leaf’ pose can suggest feelings of defensiveness and self-protection under perceived ‘attack’.
William is the better masker when it comes to facial expressions and wears a part smile here but Harry’s more openly expressive face wears a frown, while his mouth is pulled into and asymmetric stretch.
2020 – TENSE & ANXIOUS
Of all the body language responses to try to conceal a rift in public the ‘Ignore’ is the most brutal.
It signals the stage in a fall-out where communication has broken down totally and where any bitterness will get entrenched.
This last public outing for the brothers before Harry left for the US was painful to watch and probably even more painful to experience.
All the fun signals had died between the brothers here and there were signs of tension and anxiety from both.
Harry’s eye expression looked haunted or reflective or both. His shoulders had lost their confident alpha splay and his posture looked sunken into his midriff in a look of hopelessness and depleted energy.
William walked ahead with his arms in a barrier ritual as though under ‘attack’.
His eye expression also looked pensive and his lips were sucked in, forming a gesture of regret or sadness.
These ‘Ignore’ rituals also struck a very tragic note as they echoed the ignore signals we saw from both Charles and Diana when they made their last appearances together on their very last tour.
2021 – UNITED FRONT
These poses at the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral showed ice of glacial density being shattered.
The body language ritual of re-integration was so sudden it was less about gradual thawing and more about hacking through layers of resentment to show a united front.
Harry had given hints of his anxiety as he walked into and then out of the chapel, rolling his shoulders as though bracing himself and then tapping his order of service against his leg in a gesture of impatience or tension.
William’s own anxiety rituals came as Harry walked up to join him.
Placing his mask in his pocket, William then checked his order of service and patted his pocket to create a dominant-looking display before turning his head towards his brother.
But there was also something natural-looking about seeing the pair walking and chatting together that hinted this was not their first conversation or meeting since Harry’s arrival back in the UK.
When Harry walked between William and Kate there were no signs that he was seen as an unexpected intruder and Kate melted back to allow the brother to talk.
There were no over-congruent or overkill signals from either brother to suggest over-acting for display purposes and although there were signs of tension from both, their body language together did suggest a reconciliation might be possible further down the line.
In more Royal Family news, fans convinced Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will name their baby girl Lily in touching tribute to The Queen
And this is the adorable nickname Prince Philip’s mum used in loving letters to the Duke revealed – and it will melt your heart.
Plus The Queen could move to Windsor Castle permanently to be closer to Prince Philip, sources have claimed.
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