It’s no secret that Queen Elizabeth just updated the royal family’s official Instagram photo…again. But did you know there’s a heartbreaking meaning behind the new image?

It all started earlier this month when the British royals announced that Prince Philip had passed away at age 99. (Still not over it.) Shortly after the news broke, the entire family—including the monarch—gave their social media pages a temporary makeover, displaying a black-and-white picture of the queen’s coat of arms as the avatar (or in the case of Kate Middleton and Prince William, their personal cypher).

royal family social media

Now that Her Majesty’s eight-day mourning period has concluded, the photo on her page has been updated to feature a close-up shot of Queen Elizabeth (see above). It was taken back in February 2020 during a visit to the MI5 headquarters at Thames House.

The change is bittersweet, since the original picture (see below) featured a cameo by Prince Philip in the background.

royal family social media 2

We aren’t the only ones who noticed the image swap. “Lovely picture, but a sad reason for change,” one person wrote, according to Hello! magazine. Another follower added, “Very beautiful pic, very beautiful Queen, but…so sad, so sad.”

We understand why the queen’s social media team would make such an update. However, we feel like Her Majesty could use a really big hug.

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