Why Prince William Wore an Oversized Ostrich Feather Hat in Scotland


The Historical Meaning Behind Prince William Massive Ostrich Feather Hat and Ornate Velvet Robe
Jane Barlow – WPA Pool/Getty Images

Prince William just attended the Order of the Thistle service in Edinburgh, Scotland — and his elaborate costume was stepped in historical meaning.

The Order of the Thistle is a prestigious and ancient Scottish order of chivalry, reinstated by King James VII in 1687 to acknowledge distinguished service and honor Scottish knights.

William, 42, attended the installation service at St Giles’ Cathedral on Wednesday, July 3, in an oversized ostrich feather hat and a green velvet robe.

His robe featured a gold collar adorned with thistles, symbolic of Scotland’s lush landscapes and resilience, as well as a star and badge featuring St. Andrew, highlighting the nation’s patron saint. William’s ostrich feather hat and intricate regalia emphasizes nobility and the rich traditions of Scottish heritage.

Prince William Through the Years

Related: Prince William Through the Years: His Royal Life in Photos

Prince William has known since he was young that one day he will become the king of England, but in the meantime, he has made his own way as a high-ranking member of the British royal family. The eldest son of King Charles III and Princess Diana, William was born in June 1982. His brother, […]

William was joined by King Charles, Queen Camila, Prince Edward and Sophie, the Duchess of Edinburgh, all of whom wore identical plume hats and velvet robes. Due to her ongoing chemotherapy treatment, Princess Kate Middleton was not in attendance.

The Historical Meaning Behind Prince William Massive Ostrich Feather Hat and Ornate Velvet Robe
Jane Barlow – WPA Pool/Getty Images

The Order of the Thistle is not to be confused with the Order of the Garter, which was celebrated on June 17 with a ceremony at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle. There, the royal family wore similar traditional costumes consisting of blue velvet robes adorned with the Order’s insignia, accompanied by black velvet hats with white ostrich feathers.

The Order of the Thistle service took place on the second day of King Charles’ trip to Scotland. The 75-year-old monarch spent the previous day participating in the Ceremony of the Keys at the Palace of Holyroodhouse, a symbolic tradition marking the start of his visit.

The British monarch spends one full week in Scotland annually, known as Royal Week. This year, the King’s visit is being cut short due to the UK general election, which is taking place on Thursday, July 4.



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