We Missed Prince William's Secret Gesture In Royal Baby Photos

It says a lot about his real feelings for Kate.
PHOTO: Getty Images

The royal baby's arrival pretttty much shook the entire world with collective "Ooh!"s and "Aww!"s. So you've probably already seen photos of the baby prince's first cameo and the contrast between Kate's glowing smile and Prince William's polite grin:

Although he displays his teeth, his cheeks aren't raised to display genuine joy, and his expression is less enthusiastic than his wife's, all without explanation. Does he feel disconnected to the child or to Kate?! We're left to wonder.

The answer lies in one detail you've probably overlooked, according to body-language expert Blanca Cobb, whose astute observation will make you do a double-take of the now-iconic shot.

Mere mortals may see a mom, a dad, a baby, and those teeny-weeny fingers(!)—but look behind the couple, and you'll see both of their backs reflected in the windows of the doors they stand in front of:

The reflection adds a whole other dimension to the photo, conveying emotions you don't necessarily see in Prince William's subdued expression, according to Cobb, who notes his hand placement.

From this vantage point, Prince William appears to be curving his fingers around Kate's left side.

"I would have been concerned if his hand hung by his own side since you'd expect to see some loving gesture between partners after procreating," Cobb says. "No hand contact would have told me he's putting up an appearance of showing support without actually providing it."

In contrast, Prince William's display of affection projects a genuine connection. "Gripping Kate like that brings her closer than simply laying a hand flat on her back," Cobb says, adding that when you love someone, you often want to draw them toward you.

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Back to the foreground of this photo: You can tell from the relaxed curvature of Prince William's fingers that he appears more confident and comfortable, as third-time dads often do, according to Cobb:

It's a wonder, considering the other door's reflection reveals the royal baby's densely populated welcoming committee:

Because context is key in body language, this explains Prince William's expression: "It has nothing to do with the love he feels for his wife or the baby," Cobb says.

That settles that!

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This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.

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