Prince William and Kate release family snapshots of baby George

Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:12pm EDT
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By Belinda Goldsmith

LONDON (Reuters) - Prince William and his wife Kate released two informal family snapshots as the first official photos of their son, Prince George, on Tuesday, disappointing royal fans hoping to get a good look at Britain's newest royal heir.

George, the third in line to the British throne, was born on July 22 amid a global media frenzy, reflecting the international popularity of his parents and ongoing fascination with the British royal family.

The royal couple, known as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge since their spectacular wedding in April 2011, gave the world the first glimpse of their newborn son when they left a London hospital the day after his birth but he has not been seen since.

However, instead of a traditional formal photograph for George's first official photo shoot, the couple released two shots taken by the duchess's father, Michael Middleton, in early August in the garden of her family home in Berkshire.

One photo shows Prince William, in a blue, open-necked shirt and jeans, with his arm around Kate, dressed in a fuchsia-colored dress and holding their sleeping son wrapped in a crocheted, white blanket.

The second photo shows the couple sitting on a picnic blanket with Kate again holding a sleeping Prince George. With them is their beloved black cocker spaniel, Lupo, while the Middleton family's golden retriever, Tilly, lolls at one side.

The photos are a far cry from the formal photographs released of Prince William a month after his birth in 1982 in which he was alert and wearing a long, laced gown. The pictures with his mother, the late Princess Diana, and father Prince Charles were taken by his great-uncle, photographer Lord Snowden.

Some royal watchers were disappointed that the first photos released of Prince George failed to show his face and were not of a professional quality.   Continued...

Britain's Prince William and his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, pose in the garden of the Middleton family home in Bucklebury, southern England, with their son Prince George, cocker spaniel Lupo (R) and Middleton family pet Tilly, in this undated photograph released in London August 19, 2013. REUTERS/Michael Middleton/The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge/Handout via Reuters