Seeing William with a protective arm around George might seem unremarkable by the standards of today.
Why wouldn’t a father hold on to his son in a strange rugby changing room surrounded by giant athletes after they have just lost a rugby world cup quarter final to Argentina?
But this is the Royal Family we’re talking about, where outward gestures of warmth had not been notably encouraged down the years.
Until, that is, the arrival of William’s mother, Lady Diana Spencer.
Prince William and his son Prince George chatting with a Welsh rugby player following the Wales versus Argentina match in the quarter-final of the Rugby World Cup on Saturday
Diana, the late Princess of Wales, and her son Prince William outside Wetherby School in London, after dropping off Prince Harry, in September 1991
‘I live for my sons. I would be lost without them,’ Diana once said. Not a sentiment associated with Queen Elizabeth II – let alone with her formidable grandmother, Queen Mary.
In November 1985, Diana had said: ‘Most importantly, [my role is] being a mother and a wife. That’s what I try to achieve; whether I do is another thing, but I do try.’
While others had prioritised duty, Diana made a point of being a – literally – hands-on parent. Today, is seems as though her son, The Prince of Wales, is following her example.
George – a future Prince of Wales – had attended the Wales – Argentina game with his father, who is patron of the Welsh Rugby Union, while his mother watched the corresponding England.
He was dressed as a mini-me of William, with both wearing matching navy suits and red ties – the latter seemingly a patriotic nod to the Welsh side.
Afterwards, father and son duo met some of the Welsh rugby players to commiserate at their loss.
Trooping the Colour has offered another series of echos down the years, with William’s body language often seeming reminiscent of his late mother’s.
Whether she was in the public eye or in private, Princess Diana was often pictured holding Prince Harry and Prince William were young.
And while William might not cuddle his children publicly as often as the late Princess of Wales did, he will never turn down the opportunity to comfort his children.
Prince Harry, Princess Diana, The Queen Mother and Prince William on the balcony of Buckingham Palace following the Trooping the Colour ceremony in London in June 1989
Prince William seems to repeat his own mother’s gesture in June 2022
The Princess of Wales with her sons after their arrival at Aberdeen Airport in August 1989
The Prince of Wales and his two eldest children, George and Charlotte, visiting Cardiff Castle in June 2022
The then Prince Charles passing an infant Prince Harry to Diana during the 1985 Trooping of the Colour ceremony on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. Diana’s informality marked quite a contrast when she arrived in the Royal Family
Prince Louis reaches out to his father Prince William, as Princess Charlotte waves at crowds below during Trooping The Colour in 2019
Diana and Prince William watching Prince Charles playing polo at Smith’s Lawn in May 1987
William and Prince George attend the traditional Easter Sunday Church service at St George’s Chapel in the grounds of Windsor Castle in April 2022
The love between Diana and her sons was obvious in photos, as seen in a snapshot of the late Princess of Wales and William during a polo match in May 1987.
The young royal is pictured holding tightly onto his mother’s hand as she holds her hand on his forehead.
George, who is second in line to the throne, stayed close to his father who rested his hands on George’s shoulders during the traditional Easter Sunday Church service at St Georges Chapel in April of last year.
With the fast-paced nature of royal life, the support of their parents is essential.
Prince William and Prince Harry greeting their mother, Diana, on the deck of the Royal Yacht ‘Britannia’ in Toronto, Canada, in October 1991
Prince William comforting his daughter Princess Charlotte as the royals attend the hockey at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games in August 2022
Diana with Prince Harry on holiday in Majorca, Spain, in August 1987
Prince William embracing Prince George during a children’s party for Military families during the Royal Tour of Canada in September 2016 in Victoria, Canada