As King Charles becomes the first British monarch to address the French Senate, what did he say?

As King Charles becomes the first British monarch to address the French Senate, how well can he speak French?

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Although I studied French A-level, I have to admit that I wouldn’t relish the opportunity of showing off my language skills in an address to the French Senate. However, it would seem that King Charles is more than confident when it comes to speaking in French. 

King Charles, who went to Gordonstoun school, achieved five O-levels (GCSEs) and two A-levels and gained a B in History and a C in French. 

After making his speech at the senate, King Charles and Queen Camilla will visit the area of Saint-Denis in the north of Paris where they will meet community sports stars and groups as France hosts the Rugby World Cup.

According to Sky News, “He will later visit the Paris flower market named after queen Elizabeth 11 and rejoin French president Emmanuel Macron-who he was with during a banquet last night-in front of Notre-Dame cathedral to see the ongoing renovation work aimed at reopening the monument by the end of next year, after it was devastated by a fire in 2019.”

King Charles also spoke in French at the banquet that was held in his and Queen Camilla’s honour at the Palace of Versailles in Paris  (on Wednesday 20 September), which was attended by the likes of Sir Mick Jagger and Hugh Grant. In his speech delivered in French, King Charles said: “Your generosity of spirit brings to mind how my family and I were so greatly moved by the tributes paid in France to my Mother. The late Queen, whose funeral took place one year ago yesterday.”

King Charles and Queen Camilla’s trip comes to an end on Friday 22 September, the couple will travel to Bordeaux, which is home to a large British community. King Charles and Queen Camilla were originally intending to visit France in March, but had to postpone their trip because of the widespread riots. 

What did King Charles say in his speech to the Senate?

In his speech to the Senate, King Charles said that the UK will always be one of France's 'best friends.' He also said: "Ours is a partnership forged through shared experience, and one which remains utterly vital as together, we confront the challenges of our world."

What was the meaning behind one of the gifts Emmanuel Macron gave King Charles?

One of the gifts King Charles has received from Emmanuel Macron is a rare original edition of Les Racines du Ciel (The Roots of Heaven) by Romain Gary. According to The Times,  “The 1956 novel, which won the Prix Goncourt, France’s highest literary prize, is the story of an environmentalist’s crusade to save elephants from extinction in French Equatorial Africa.” The article goes on to say that “For a king who regards himself as the original environmentalist and whose sons are passionate advocates for protecting African wildlife, and elephants in particular, this present seemed apposite.”

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