Sophie Wessex and Edward body language ‘shifted’ amid Duke of Edinburgh title row – expert

Prince Edward discusses future Duke of Edinburgh title

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Sophie, Countess of Wessex, 56, and Prince Edward, 57, are dedicated working royals and have shone as they have taken on a more prominent place in the Firm since Megxit. While it has long been understood that Edward would one day inherit Prince Philip’s Duke of Edinburgh title, royal insiders have recently claimed it may not happen.

Earlier this month, two sources told the Sunday Times Prince Charles, 72, who currently holds the Duke of Edinburgh title, had no intention of handing it on to Edward when he becomes king.

One source said: “The prince is the Duke of Edinburgh as it stands, and it is up to him what happens to the title. It will not go to Edward.”

Another added: “Edinburgh won’t go to them [the Wessexes] as far as the prince is concerned.”

The claims are understood to have come as a shock to Edward and Sophie who Prince Philip asked to take on the title in person shortly before their wedding in 1999.

Edward was charged with continuing Philip’s extraordinary Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme legacy following his retirement from public life in 2017.

And on Sunday, Sophie and Edward carried out an engagement linked to the DofE.

The couple attended the British Grand Prix at Silverstone where they met McLaren drivers Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo and their team.

McLaren is joining forces with the DofE to encourage the public to take part in the charity’s new fundraising challenge Do It 4 Youth.

Body language expert and author Judi James analysed the new pictures of Sophie and Edward and shared her insights with Express.co.uk.

According to the analyst, the couple’s mannerisms seemed to have changed amid rumours they may be deprived of the Duke of Edinburgh peerage.

Judi said: “After the rumours of rifts between Charles and Edward over the awarding of the Duke of Edinburgh title there does appear to be a small shift in the body language dynamics of Sophie and Edward here as they pay a visit to honour the memory of the late Duke.

The analyst added: “Edward has embraced his role as head of the Duke of Edinburgh scheme and McLaren are joining forces with their new Do it 4 Youth charity initiative.”

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Judi claimed Edward may have been “crushed” by the thought he might not inherit his father’s title.

She added: “We have no idea how crushing the latest news of his father’s title might have been, but Edward’s body language here shows signs of a desire to look more confident and dominant or authoritative than usual.”

Edward seemed to take the lead during the engagement when it’s usually his wife Sophie who takes charge, Judi claimed.

She added: “We’ve become used to seeing Sophie in a leadership role on royal visits, while Edward has often appeared quieter beside here.”

Judi said: “Here, though he stands in a dominant and assertive ‘splay’ pose with his hands on his hips and his legs splayed, while his cocked head signals intense and very involved listening.”

The Countess appears more “passive” as she lets her husband take the spotlight, Judi explained.

She added: “Sophie appears to have adopted a more passive tone here, with her barrier gestures making her look less open and less assertive than usual.

“She wears her sunglasses throughout, including inside the building and for the official photo, which is an unusual gesture for a royal.

“She also clutches her bag and scarf with both hands in front of her torso in another barrier gesture that is rare for this usually more open and accessible royal.”

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