LONDON (AP) - Britain's 3-month-old future monarch, Prince George,
was to be christened Wednesday with water from the River Jordan at a
rare four-generation gathering of the royal family in London.
George, the son of Prince William and his wife,
Kate, will be christened by Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby at the
Chapel Royal at St. James's Palace. The infant will wear a replica of
an intricate lace and satin christening gown made for Queen Victoria's
eldest daughter and first used in 1841.
Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip
plan to attend the event Wednesday, along with Prince Charles, his wife
Camilla, Prince Harry and other royals. Kate's parents Michael and
Carole Middleton and her sister Pippa and brother James are also on the
William and Kate have asked seven people to be
godparents to their son, who was born July 22 and is third in line for
the British throne.
They are: Oliver Baker, a friend from St. Andrews
University; Emilia Jardine-Paterson, who went to the exclusive
Marlborough College with Kate; Hugh Grosvenor, who is the son of the
Duke of Westminster; Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, a former private secretary
to the couple; Julia Samuel, described as a close friend of the late
Princess Diana; Zara Phillips, who is William's cousin; and William van
Cutsem, a childhood friend of William.
Palace officials said tradition would be followed
and water from the River Jordan - where Christians believe Jesus Christ
was baptized - would be used for the christening. The river's waters
have often been used to make the sign of the cross on the heads of royal
Charles and Camilla plan to host a private tea afterward at their Clarence House residence.
Some royal watchers have camped outside the palace
for more than 24 hours to obtain a good vantage point for watching the
guests arrive, but the ceremony will be private.
William and Kate have hired photographer Jason Bell
to take official pictures, which are expected to include a historic
multi-generational photograph of the queen with three future monarchs:
her son Charles, her grandson William and her great-grandson George.
The official photographs are expected to be released to the public the day after the christening.
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