In 50 years or so I’ll look back on October 23rd 2013 with great affection. ‘Remember when that cute little Prince George got christened?’ No, no I don’t. Should we care? No we really shouldn’t. Yes it is a tradition, yes the official religion of the country remains to be Christianity and yes it doesn’t really matter. A 2008 study (conducted by the European Social Survey) has revealed to us that no more than 12% go to Church in England on Sundays, showing that events such as the spilling of water over a baby’s head (who we must remember has no idea what’s going on) isn’t a relevant or interesting advent.
Indeed, this is the view of someone who doesn’t go to Church or believe in a higher power, and when it comes to baptisms I thank my parents for allowing me to decide for myself whether or not I wished to join the Church of an organised religion. What actually sparked my interest in this is that it is a wonderful example of the British media looking into something too deeply. Articles such as that posted by the telegraph read as follows, ‘The Duke of Cambridge told his family: “He’s all ready,” adding: “So far, so good”’, as if this baby was about to be launched into space (which in all honesty would be a much better talking point). The article then went on to tell of how the baby Prince ‘was still wearing the same placid expression as when he went into the chapel’; looks like a career in Bollywood is waiting round the corner (the same article also opens with ‘He was, in every sense, the perfect baby’, but I’ll avoid this becoming a critique of the Telegraph and let that one that resonate with you).
The most apt account I found was in The Independent, describing him as ‘standard, requisite baby-shaped’ whilst discrediting every ‘bald-faced fib’ that he is a uniquely beautiful baby. In a Britain that is now highly secularised, it could even have been much more of a statement not to christen his royal splodgeness. Well, at least America doesn’t have a royal family: God knows how an American press would have reacted to the Christening of an American royal, they all get excited enough when one of the Kardashians gets a new nose. (On this note, coverage from FOX News’ blonde bombshells always does make for good entertainment.)
My point is this; kings of old are remembered for great battles, grand leadership and authoritative majesty. In an age where the Royal Family now does little more than appearing on coins, notes and Comic Relief, this is a big deal for them. I’m sure the likes of Closer and OK! will be discussing Kate’s choice of shoelace for the next month, and although this is a menial event I remain envious of Prince George as he is still the only one that can claim to be bathed by Kate Middleton, an accolade I’d break into a French holiday home for.