Prince Harry Participated in the Royal Family's Annual Boxing Day Hunt, Despite Speculation That He Would Skip

And Meghan participated in the hunt tradition, too.

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For the most part, Meghan Markle's acclimation (opens in new tab) into the royal family has been pretty seamless. Her royal in-laws seem to love her (opens in new tab)gushing about her (opens in new tab), and calling her "the best thing" (opens in new tab) to have ever happened to Prince Harry (opens in new tab).

But there have been a few instances where Meghan's beliefs (opens in new tab) have bumped up against royal traditions in a big way—particularly when it comes to the royals' love of hunting. Meghan, a well-known animal rights activist, is understandably not the biggest fan of that tradition. And hunting is a big part of several royal family traditions (opens in new tab), like Boxing Day and the family's annual Balmoral vacation.

Back in 2017, reports surfaced that Harry had skipped (opens in new tab) The Firm's Boxing Day hunt for Meghan when they were engaged. At the time, a source told the Sun :

"The Boxing Day shoot was always going to be a tricky issue. Meghan is a keen animal rights campaigner and doesn’t like hunting in any form. Harry loves it and has always been out there on Boxing Day. But if it means breaking with long-standing royal traditions to avoid upsetting her, so be it."

Then, in September, reports made the rounds that Harry had shocked (opens in new tab) the rest of the royal family by skipping the grouse hunt in Balmoral (opens in new tab), as well.

"If Meghan’s not comfortable with him doing the shoot, he wouldn’t want to upset her," the Sun's royal source said (opens in new tab).

Given all the reports of Harry skipping shoots and giving up his hunting hobby for Meghan (opens in new tab), many assumed he would also skip the 2018 Boxing Day hunt, but you know what they say about when you assume, right?

"There were never any questions that he wouldn’t participate in that," a source told Us Weekly (opens in new tab)The source also added that Meghan accompanied her sister-in-law, Kate Middleton (opens in new tab), to the post-shoot lunch at the log cabin on the royal family’s estate, meaning that even Megs got in on the traditions of the hunt.

Does this mean Harry is a hunter again? Does it mean he never wasn't one? Does it mean we should all just give up on speculating about what the royals are going to do and accept that they're unpredictable human beings just like the rest of us?

Yeah, probably the last one.


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Kayleigh Roberts
Weekend Editor

Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of professional experience. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.