The royal wedding ceremony was broadcast around the world, but the reception was a private affair for family and friends. On Saturday afternoon, the 600 guests who attended the ceremony joined the newlyweds for a party at Windsor Castle. And at the reception, Prince Harry reportedly gave a speech about Meghan Markle, and his words showed just why the couple is so perfect together.
According to The Sun, Prince Harry told the now Duchess of Sussex that she "navigated everything with such grace". He also reportedly said that they "make a great team", which was just one of the reasons he hoped to marry her. Even more emotional, he reportedly said, "I can't wait to spend the rest of my life with you", which was said to have brought many in the room to tears. Nobody needed more proof that this couple is in love, but this speech sounds like it emphasized what makes them great.
Prince Harry's reported comments may have been, in part, a nod to his bride's recent family struggles. Markle's father faced health problems in the midst of the scandal over his staged paparazzi photos. And before this, her half-brother and sister had both made disparaging comments to the press. Markle handled these difficult situations with dignity, only making a brief public comment via Kensington Palace to confirm her father would not attend and to wish him well.
Fortunately, it doesn't seem the newlyweds lingered too long on the difficult week as Prince Harry's speech reportedly looked ahead, as well. When he called their coupling a "team", it could be a reference not just to their relationship, but to the philanthropic work they plan to do together. Prince Harry is a founding member of the Royal Foundation, which tackles a variety of issues including the welfare of those who are serving in the armed forces, helping young people build skills and confidence, and conservation of the environment.
As for Markle, she is an outspoken feminist and lifelong advocate for women. In 2014, she became an Advocate for Political Participation and Leadership for the women's agency of the UN, according to NBC 4 Los Angeles. As a member of the royal family, Markle will be able to further pursue her advocacy, and the couple will likely commit a significant amount of their life together to the shared commitment to tackling important issues.
On Saturday, the wedding ceremony at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle was broadcast, but the two receptions at Windsor Castle and Frogmore House were private affairs. According to Kensington Palace, Elton John performed several songs during the reception. John's performance had special significance since he is a knighted British icon, and performed at Princess Diana's funeral. Harper's Bazaar also reported that the couple's first dance was to Whitney Houston's "I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)". Guests at the lunchtime reception also reportedly had the opportunity to taste the lemon and elderflower cake by Claire Ptak.
According to People, Prince Harry's speech was a highlight of the first reception. “It was very off-the-cuff, which was lovely,” an anonymous guest told the magazine. “He promised that all the Americans wouldn’t steal the swords and said, ‘Please, when you leave, be quiet as you don’t want to wake the neighbors,’ which was quite fun." The newly-married Prince also reportedly drew cheers when he said "my wife and I" for the first time during the address.
In addition to Prince Harry, Prince Charles is reported to have given moving speech about his son, according to People. "Charles gave a brilliant speech,” an anonymous guest told the publication. “Harry was very emotional." The guest also described the speech, and said it was "heartfelt". "He ended it calling him, ‘My darling old Harry, I’m so happy for you,’ which was very sweet," the source said. Prince Charles walked Markle down the aisle in her father's absence, and reportedly mentioned this honor in his speech, as well.
Markle herself gave a speech during the evening reception, which was a break from tradition. People reported that Kensington Palace confirmed that Markle would make a personal address to the guests. According to teh Daily Mail, the Duchess of Sussex thanked the royal family for their warm welcome.
After watching the royal wedding, few viewers had any doubt that Prince Harry and Markle were a perfect couple. Prince Harry's speech at the reception would make anyone tear up, and it's sure to make fans even more excited for these royals' future.