Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Wished Kate Middleton a Happy 40th Birthday Over a "Private" Video Call, Expert Says

Smoothing things over.

The Queen Attends A Service At Westminster Abbey Marking The Centenary Of WW1 Armistice
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Kate Middleton celebrated her 40th birthday on Jan. 9, but kept things on the down-low. Speaking to royal expert Christopher Andersen, Us Weekly's Christina Garibaldi asked the question on all of our lips: Did Meghan Markle and Prince Harry talk to the Duchess of Cambridge on her big day?

Things have reportedly been pretty frosty between the Sussexes and Cambridges in recent months, although royal expert Angela Levin previously told Marie Claire that Middleton has acted like something of a bridge between her husband and his U.S.-based brother. And according to Andersen, it sounds like they all lay down their arms on Jan. 9 and hopped onto Zoom, or Teams, or Google Chat, or another of those infernal, era-defining pieces of software.

"From what I understand, they did a video call," Andersen said. "They wished her a happy birthday, very private, but Harry and Meghan were not about to post anything the way they did two years ago when Kate turned 38. Both Harry and Meghan made a very public display of their affection for Kate, wishing her a happy birthday. This time, they kept private." Probably a sound decision.

kate middleton portrait

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As for how the Cambridges actually celebrated the occasion, it was "a small family affair," Andersen explained. "The birthday party was held at Anmer Hall with family and friends. She only has a very small circle of friends, Kate does, and one of the interesting things they do is bake their own cake, which is the holdover from Carole Middleton's, uh, you know, Carole Middleton has built this empire basically on throwing children's birthday parties, and then turned it into a big online empire." The duchess' mom founded online shop Party Pieces.

The pandemic was one reason for not making a huge deal out of Middleton's 40th, but it wasn't the only reason. "But you know, very, very low-key, and the reason for that is there will be big bashes this year, celebrating the joint birthday of... William turns, in June, turns 40 as well," Andersen continued. "The Queen has a big plan for him, and he is going to throw something as well, so there will be big parties. Again, if COVID allows anything like that."

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Bustle and Shape. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.