Kate Middleton sports rare Queen Elizabeth earrings that haven’t been seen in 20 years for Remembrance Sunday

Royal mystery solved.

Kate Middleton brought some special jewels out of the royal vault for London’s annual Remembrance Sunday ceremony over the weekend, wearing a pair of Queen Elizabeth II’s earrings that have only been seen once in public.

The Princess of Wales, 41, looked somber in a black Catherine Walker coat for the memorial service on Sunday, sporting the same bespoke style she wore for the event in 2019.

And while social media was abuzz about her enormous black hat — which Middleton wore for husband Prince William’s 2006 graduation from the Royal Military Academy — the royal also brought back another early aughts style for the occasion in the form of her earrings.

Middleton’s whopping pearl-and-diamond studs caused a bit of confusion after many royal fans thought the jewels might have been new earrings that were reworked from a similar pearl brooch — but it turns out the mysterious jewelry has actually been seen once before.

Queen Elizabeth II wore the pearl earrings just one time during her reign.
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Queen Camilla and the Princess of Wales dressed in black for Sunday’s ceremony.
Queen Elizabeth wore the pearl brooch that matched her earrings during a 1999 party for her 73rd birthday.
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Queen Elizabeth wore the earrings just one time during her reign, as Twitter account Couture and Royals pointed out, sporting the huge pearls to the 2003 Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Nigeria.

The earrings were never been seen in public again until Sunday, when the Princess of Wales joined King Charles III, Queen Camilla, Prince William and other members of the royal family to honor those who have died in the line of duty.

Though we’ve never seen the earrings on anyone but Queen Elizabeth until this week, the Princess of Wales has worn the monarch’s brooch with the same pearl design.

A young Middleton wore the same Philip Treacy hat to her then-boyfriend, Prince William’s, military graduation in 2006.
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Middleton wore Queen Elizabeth’s brooch during a 2017 war memorial ceremony in Belgium.
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She wore one of Queen Elizabeth’s pearl necklaces on Saturday.
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And while the provenance of the jewels are unknown, it’s indeed possible that the studs are pieces of the brooch that can be detached to worn as earrings; many pieces of royal jewelry, such as tiaras, are convertible to worn in different ways.

This isn’t the first time the Princess of Wales has honored her late grandmother-in-law’s memory by wearing pearl jewelry, with the royal donning pieces from Queen Elizabeth’s collection on numerous occasions since her September 2022 death.

Along with her earrings this weekend, the mom of three kept the queen’s memory alive by wearing one of the monarch’s famous triple strand pearl necklaces to the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance on Saturday.

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