This Is Why Queen Elizabeth II Wasn't in Prince Charles' Birthday Portrait

Emily DiNuzzo
Shutterstock

The royal family celebrated Prince Charles' 70th birthday on November 14 with the release of some new family pictures. One notable royal, however, isn't in the photo op: Queen Elizabeth II.

Although Queen Elizabeth II is absent from the pictures, Prince William, Kate Middleton, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, Prince Louis, Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, Prince Charles, and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall are all grinning happily in the gardens of Clarence House. Here are 19 other official portraits of the royal family.

So why isn't the current reigning monarch front and center in the portraits? Her absence is likely part of a trend beginning earlier this year. The Queen has been slowly but surely relinquishing some of her duties to the rest of the royal family since her 90th birthday.

In June, Meghan Markle took over for one of the Queen's favorite royal duties—working with the Queen's Young Leaders program, Marie Claire reports. Likewise, Prince Charles, Prince William, and Prince Harry have been representing the Queen on royal tours, according to POPSUGAR. There are also around 3,000 organizations listing a member of the royal family as either a patron or president, CNBC reports. So it makes sense that Queen Elizabeth II is utilizing the manpower of her growing family to step into these roles.

The HBO documentary Queen of the World highlights how Queen Elizabeth II has become a global figure—and how she is passing the baton to the younger generations. Next, check out these 23 rarely-seen photos of the royal family throughout the years.