Camilla Is Queen Consort After Elizabeth’s Death: What to Know

Ready to take her crown. Camilla Duchess was officially named Queen Consort following the death of Queen Elizabeth II — and Us Weeklyis deconstructing what the new title actually means.

The U.K. native, 75, immediately received the title after the queen’s death at age 96 on Thursday, September 8. When Buckingham Palace announced the late monarch’s passing, Camilla was referred to as the “Queen Consort” in the official statement, while her husband, Prince Charles, was called the “King.” The former Prince of Wales, 73, is now styled as King Charles III.

“The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon,” read the palace’s statement. “The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.”

The title “Queen Consort” is traditionally given to wives of reigning monarchs. Before Camilla, the most recent woman to hold the title was Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, who was the mother of Elizabeth II and married to Elizabeth’s father, King George VI. The Queen Mother, 101 years old in 2002, died.

While Queens Consort are the wives and husbands to kings are known, Princes Consort are the husbands and wives of queens. This explains why Prince Philip was not referred to as King Consort during his marriage with Elizabeth. The Roman numerals that follow the names of Queens and Princes consort are not used by sovereigns.


Queen Elizabeth II and Duchess Camilla
Arthur Edwards/WPA Pool/Shutterstock, Victoria Jones/WPA Pool/Shutterstock

The job description of the Queen Consort’s role is not yet available. However, the Queen Consort will be expected to support the monarch throughout his reign. Camilla has already been doing this for years, supporting charities and accompanying Charles on royal tours, so in that respect, her role won’t change very much.

Before she passed away, Elizabeth was the longest-reigning monarch in the U.K.’s history, celebrating with her Platinum Jubilee festivitiesIn June. While marking her 70 years on the throne months prior, the queen announced her plans for the future of the monarchy — and her intention for Camilla’s future title.

“When, in the fullness of time, my son Charles becomes King, I know you will give him and his wife Camilla the same support that you have given me,” the sovereign noted in a February statement. “And it is my sincere wish that, when that time comes, Camilla will be known as Queen Consort as she continues her own loyal service.”

Charles and Camilla thanked Elizabeth for her kind words at the time, writing in a statement of their own: “We are deeply conscious of the honor represented by my mother’s wish. As we have sought together to serve and support Her Majesty and the people of our communities, my darling wife has been my own steadfast support throughout.”

Several months later, Camilla opened up about learning to “rise above” the negative criticism she’s faced throughout her time as a member of the royal family. “Oh, I shall carry on as much as I can,” she told British Vogue in June. “You can’t desert things that you’re in the middle of. There’s a lot of things to be done still.”

Camilla was crowned Duchess of Cornwall in 2005 when Charles and she tied the knot. The queen was initially “skeptical” of the newcomer, a source exclusively told Us Weekly in February, but the women improved their “challenging” relationship over time.

“Through her dedication and loyalty to The Firm, she has more than proved to her that she has what it takes,” the insider added. “Camilla has definitely grown on Elizabeth II, more so than ever during the [coronavirus] pandemic. She really upped her game and willingly took a hands-on approach with additional duties.”

A second source also told Use at the time that Charles was “over the moon” that his spouse earned his mother’s approval. Camilla, for her part, told reporters during a royal engagement in February that she felt “very, very honored and very touched” to take on the role.

Both Charles and Camilla tested positive to COVID-19 shortly after the ascension. UseLater, it was confirmed by the palace that the queen was being monitored because she had been in close touch with her son. The palace announced on February 20 that the queen had a “mild” case of the virus and would be following the guidance of healthcare professionals throughout her recovery.

Elizabeth’s health continued to draw attention in May after she pulled out of the annual opening ceremony of British Parliament, which Charles and Camilla attended in her place. One month later, Her Royal Highness skipped the Service of Thanksgiving associated with her Platinum Jubilee celebrations after experiencing “discomfort” at the Trooping the Colour. As the festivities were ending, she made an unexpected appearance on the palace balcony to perform the Jubilee Pageant.

Charles and Elizabeth also shared sons Prince AndrewPrince EdwardPhilip, her late husband, died in April 2021 at the age of 99. The couple had a daughter together after being married for over 70 years. Princess Anne. The royal family tree also includes 12 great-grandchildren and eight grandchildren.