Queen Elizabeth Leaves out Photos of Meghan Markle, Princes Harry and Andrew in Annual Christmas Message

On Christmas Day, Queen Elizabeth II's annual speech will air, in which the monarch reflects on [...]

On Christmas Day, Queen Elizabeth II's annual speech will air, in which the monarch reflects on the year that has passed. The royal usually delivers the message sitting at her desk next to photographs of her family, and footage shared on Tuesday by Buckingham Palace offered a look at which photographs the Queen chose to place beside her this year.

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On the table are photos of Prince William, Kate Middleton and their family, Prince Philip, Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla, and the Queen's father, George VI, as well as a photo of the Queen with Apollo II astronauts. Noticeably absent is Prince Andrew, who recently stepped down from his royal duties after an interview he gave about Jeffrey Epstein.

There is also no photograph of Prince Harry, Meghan Markle or their son, Archie Harrison, which caused some fans to wonder about the absence. It's possible that Queen Elizabeth II chose to omit a photograph of the family due to the fact that Harry will likely never rule and the family is reportedly considering a slimmed-down monarchy, which would mean that the monarch chose only those directly in line for the throne (or past rulers, like her father) for her desk this year.

The Queen's speech has already been filmed and will see Elizabeth II share that this year has "felt quite bumpy." She will describe how "small steps taken in faith and in hope can overcome long-held differences and deep-seated divisions to bring harmony and understanding," adding, "The path, of course, is not always smooth, and may at times this year have felt quite bumpy, but small steps can make a world of difference."

The caption of Kensington Palace's Instagram post about the message shares that the first Christmas Broadcast was given by Elizabeth II's grandfather George V in 1932. "Each Broadcast carefully reflects current issues and concerns, and shares The Queen's reflections on what Christmas means to her and to many of her listeners," the caption reads.

Before the speech aired on Wednesday, the Queen participated her annual walk to the Christmas Day church service at St. Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham. This year, she was joined by Prince George and Princess Charlotte for the first time, the young royals walking in holding hands with their parents, Prince William and Middleton.

Harry and Markle were absent from the annual walk as the two are spending the holidays in Canada with Archie, a royal spokesperson confirmed last week. They previously spent Thanksgiving in the United States with Markle's mom, Doria Ragland during a six-week break from royal duties.

Photo Credit: Getty / Steve Parsons