These Royal Family Christmas Cards Over the Years Are Incredible

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Christmas is a time to spread joy and cheer, and that extends to the royal family across the pond. For the past 70 years, it's been of royal tradition to release Christmas cards to the public, offering a behind-the-scenes peek into royal life. From the early, formal cards of King George V to the new, more modern snapshots featuring Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and even Prince Louis (!), we're warmed by the royal cheer. Here's a few of our favorite royal Christmas cards throughout the years.

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1 1914
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Queen Elizabeth II's grandparents, King George V and Queen Mary, sent this holiday card to the troops fighting in World War I.

2 1939
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A 9-year-old Princess Margaret and a 13-year-old then-Princess Elizabeth pose for the holiday portrait, a practice started by the Queen’s parents, George VI and Queen Elizabeth.

3 1942
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Just like her grandparents, Queen Elizabeth sent Christmas portraits to the Grenadier Guards regiment of the British Army, who were fighting in World War II.

4 1969 & 1979
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The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh posed for family portraits with the whole family ten years apart, featuring Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, and Prince Edward.

5 1982
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Prince Charles and Princess Diana's first Christmas portraits with a baby Prince William!

6 1985
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Check out Prince William holding his baby brother! This year's edition may have been an early insight as to inner turmoil in Prince Charles and Princess Diana's marriage—check how she's not looking into the camera.

7 1986
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Look at the puppy! The royals posed for a fun holiday portrait this year, with Charles in charge of wrangling the boys and Diana just hanging with the dog. Look how happy Prince Harry is!

8 1987
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Amidst rumors of marital strife, Charles, Diana, and the boys still sat down for their annual Christmas portrait.

9 1988
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The royal love for horses is well-known and well-documented, so it should come as no surprise that this year, they posed for the family portrait in the stables.

10 1990
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The boys are in their best holiday festive gear, while Prince Charles and Princess Diana are a little more formal, but they're ready for what the new decade will bring.

11 1991 & 1997
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What a difference six years makes! The top photo is one of the last family portraits Diana ever posed for, and the bottom was taken just days before Diana's death.

12 2014
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A candid moment! The 2014 holiday card from Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla features the couple laughing during the Invictus Games Opening Ceremony.

13 2015
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Taken in Scotland during royal holiday, this portrait of Charles and Camilla is too sweet for words.

14 2016
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This year's card shows Prince Charles and Camilla during their royal tour of Croatia, where they met local performers wearing traditional outfits in Tvrda, the old town of the city of Osijek.

15 2017
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By comparison, this year's portrait is a little subdued and certainly more formal. But it's still adorable, we love a Prince Charles and Camilla moment.

16 2017
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The first royal holiday portrait of Prince William, Kate, Prince George and Princess Charlotte is a precious one. Look at how they all coordinate! This is only the beginning of a future of Cambridge family portraits.

17 2018
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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle nailed it with their first Christmas card, thanks to a behind-the-scenes shot of their 2018 wedding. It's artistic and bold—we don't see their faces, but there can be no mistake about who it is.

18 2018
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This outdoorsy Christmas card was the first since Prince Louis' birth. It was also their first formal photograph as a family of five.

19 2019
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This gorgeous sneak peek from the Cambridges' Christmas card came courtesy of Air Commodore Dawn McCafferty, who shared it to Twitter. Look at how much they've all grown!

20 2019
The 2019 Christmas Card Of The Prince Of Wales And Duchess Of Cornwall
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Charles and Camilla chose to release their card ahead of the Cambridges and Sussexes—potentially due to his status as heir to the throne. The photo shows them in one of their gorgeous classic cars, which they drove in their historic trip to Cuba in March 2019. Casual, just like most of their Christmas cards!

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