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Kate Middleton received a historical new royal title from her father-in-law, King Charles, for her work within the royal family. The appointment was made on April 23.

The Princess of Wales is the first royal to be named a Companion of Honor

Kate Middleton achieved an appointment to Royal Companion of the Order of the Companions of Honor. Subsequently, she is the first Royal Companion named to this order.

According to the official royal website, Kate’s new appointment recognizes outstanding achievements in the arts, sciences, medicine, and public service. The Order of the Companions of Honor was founded by King George V in 1917. The website highlights that this is a new appointment.

The members, who number 65 at any one time, currently include actress Dame Maggie Smith, Lord Coe, Stephen Hawking, John Major, and Desmond Tutu. The Order of the Companions of Honor was founded to recognize services of national importance.

Also, non-British nationals, including Commonwealth figures, can be honorary members of the Order. The Order’s motto is “In action faithful and in honor clear.”

Kate Middleton received the honor while on leave from royal duties

In March 2024, Kate Middleton announced she was battling cancer. This news came on the heels of a planned abdominal surgery that was scheduled for January of this year.

Since her announcement, Kate has been receiving treatment and recuperating at home. She has not taken any forward-facing engagements within the royal family.

Around the same time Kate was diagnosed with cancer, King Charles also revealed that he too, was battling the disease. Vanity Fair sources claim their shared health struggles made Charles and Kate “closer than ever” as they support each other.

“To be honest, [the king] and William speak very regularly. But now the king calls daily to check in and make sure Catherine is doing OK,” said a source to the publication.

“Charles adores Kate and has so much respect for her and the courage she has shown in all of this. He was fully behind her, recording the message. He has been buoyed by the many messages of support he has received, and he knew that Kate would get the same support from the public,” the source concluded.

Kate Middleton was not the only royal given a new appointment

Camilla Parker Bowles and Prince William photographed in March 2024.
Camilla Parker Bowles and Prince William photographed in March 2024 | Henry Nicholls – WPA Pool/Getty Images

Alongside Kate Middleton, two other senior royals were also given new appointments. Prince William and Camilla, Queen Consort, were presented with additional high-ranking titles.

Prince William was nominated to be the Great Master of the Most Honorable Order of the Bath, established by King George I in 1725. This title is awarded to members of the military or civil service for exemplary service.

William’s appointment fills the role vacated by his father, who held the title from 1974 to 2022. Previously, Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester, and Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught and Strathearn, held the positions.

King Charles appointed his wife, Camilla, Queen Consort, to Grand Master and First or Principal Dame Grand Cross of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. Founded in 1917, this Order grants recipients the title knight or dame.

The king also named four new members to the Order of the Garter, the UK’s oldest Order of Chivalry, established in the 14th century. The Duchess of Gloucester, wife of Queen Elizabeth II’s cousin, notably became the first non-blood royal outside spouses and heirs to receive this honor.

Kate Middleton continues to receive cancer treatment. She is recovering at the home she shares with Prince William and their three children: Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis.