Kim Kardashian Buying Princess Diana’s Necklace is the Latest Royal Family Moment to Sweep Social Media

Kim Kardashian's purchase is the tip of the iceberg for the royal's controversial press tour.
By Madison E. Goldberg
(Photo by Cindy Ord/MG22/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue )

Yesterday, socialite and businesswoman Kim Kardashian purchased a  diamond lined amethyst Attallah cross necklace previously owned by Princess Diana of Wales. The necklace was auctioned off at Sotheby’s, and was one of Diana’s more untraditional pieces of jewelry.

Kardashian famously wore Marilyn Monroe’s iconic dress from President John F. Kennedy’s birthday celebration to last year’s Met Gala.  Kardashian was criticized for her use of the historic garment, and for her comments on diet culture leading up to the event. Yesterday’s purchase has now become the subject of memes across Twitter, as people satirically guess what her next purchase may be.

The story is the latest news in the ongoing revolution of the British royal family’s interactions with the press. Royal members of the family are yet to comment on this auction, though some anticipate that Harry might, given his many recent press appearances. Here’s a more detailed timeline of all the Harry headlines you may have seen recently.

The Harry and Meghan Documentary

In December 2022, Harry and Meghan dropped on Netflix. The documentary series consisted of six episodes that chronicle Harry and Meghan Markle’s relationship with one another and with the royal family.

The series sparked a lot of conversation–about the British press, racism in the UK, and misogyny against Black women. Some defended the royal family, believing that Meghan could not understand their lifestyle as an outsider, while others came to Meghan Markle’s defense.

@allynoela

Its a big fat no #harryandmeghan #meghanmarkle #netflix #fy #fyp #funny #royalfamily #royals #trending #harrywindsor

♬ original sound – Ally Noel

Markle joining the royal family was a landmark for the monarchy, as there has likely never been a Black person among their ranks (though Queen Charlotte is thought by some historians to have also been of a mixed racial background).

@movies.series8

don’t get the hate #netflix #fyp #meghanmarkle #princeharry

♬ Je te laisserai des mots slowed and reverbe – Faynix

Others cracked jokes about the couple’s surprisingly mundane meeting–Harry saw her photo on a mutual friend’s Instagram account, and he was late to their first date because of traffic.

@itslinklauren

Here are my takeaways from Harry and Meghan’s docuseries. I totally would’ve flown to meet him after two short dates. And I don’t think you have to have all of your family members included in everything. What do y’all think? #harryandmeghan#princeharry#docuseries#harryandmeghannetflix

♬ original sound – Link Lauren

Meghan’s struggle with the British press was compared to rapper Megan the Stallion’s trial against Tory Lanez, which was occurring in court at the same time the documentary dropped. Lanez was charged with shooting her outside of a party in 2020, and some rappers defended Lanez, accusing Meg of lying about the situation. Drake’s “Circo Loco” lyrics alluded to the situation: “This b*tch lie ’bout getting shots, but she still a stallion.”

@foreveralphanso

#greenscreen #megantheestallion #meghanmarkle #fyp #foryou #popculture #celebritynews

♬ original sound – Alphanso | Pop Culture

Others criticized the documentary’s production in the first place, given the couple’s repeated wishes for privacy. Harry’s mother, the late Princess Diana, died in a car crash in Paris after paparazzi chased the car that her and then fianceé Egyptian film producer Dodi Fayed were driving in. Harry has discussed that this is the reason behind his ultimate decision to leave the royal family in order to protect his wife. The documentary, while bringing the couple back into the spotlight they have been trying to avoid, has allowed them to take control of their own narrative, and audiences are invited to perceive that as they will.

The 60 Minutes Interview with Anderson Cooper

About a week ago, journalist Anderson Cooper sat down for a telling interview with Harry. Cooper addressed some of the criticisms that are currently facing the family, and Harry was happy to answer in detail.

@cbsnews

#PrinceHarry tells @60minutes he’s tried to speak with the royal family privately about issues, but “every single time…there have been briefings and leakings and planting of stories against me and my wife.” #news #royalfamily

♬ original sound – cbsnews

It was here that he made the explosive allegation that Camilla Parker Bowles, his stepmother who is currently married to King Charles III, sold stories about his reckless behaviors as a teenager to the press.

@thetvandmoviequeen

Prince H sit down 60 Minutes – 3 #princeharryspare #princeharry #camillaparkerbowles #60minutes #spare #fypシ #foryou

♬ original sound – Andrew DeVitre

There have long been conspiracy theories that Princess Diana faked her death to escape the pressures of royal life. Harry confirmed in this interview that he believed in the theories until he was 23 years old, when he finally felt ready to look at the crash photos from the night his mother died.

@60minutes

Prince Harry said that for years after his mother Princess Diana’s death, he believed that she had disappeared and would one day return. Searching for proof, Harry asked to see the police files of the crash that caused his mother’s death.

♬ original sound – 60 Minutes

The interview offered a rare and brutally honest look at what goes on behind closed doors in the royal family. It quickly attracted viral attention and was met with shock on social media. Some handled the shocking interview with humor.

@thejonaedits

Is Spare just a Royal Burn Book?!? #princeharry #meangirls

♬ Shen Yeng Anthem – Shenseea

Others theorized that Harry was suddenly free to speak more on the family (and his alleged falling out with his brother, Prince William) now that Queen Elizabeth II has passed.

Harry’s memoir, Spare

An old saying in the royal family advises women to have an heir and a spare, the spare being essentially the backup child to take on royal responsibilities should anything happen to the first born child. Harry chose this as the title for his memoir given his position as the spare of his family.

The book not only offers a first person perspective on the world events of several royal weddings and his mother’s death, but several other anecdotes that some felt were unnecessary. TikTok could not get enough of Harry referring to his older brother William’s hairline as “alarming.”

@simplysimone

#greenscreen

♬ original sound – Simone Umba

While some users focused on the humorous vulnerability of Harry’s descriptions of his intimate life as a young adult (including a story about accidentally getting frostbite on his genitals) others have chosen to focus on the detailed description of his mother, who passed away when Harry was only 12 years old.

@5arahpop

A love like this #princeharry #princessdiana #spare #royals #royalfamily #diana

♬ original sound – Sarah Pop

The Commentary 

Though Harry and Meghan left the palace in 2021, the royal family was thrust back into the spotlight in September 2022 when Queen Elizabeth II died. The global press has a history of being focused on the royals mostly during big events (like weddings and the Diamond Jubilee) ever since Diana’s death, but Harry’s American press tour surrounding the documentary and memoir is unprecedented.

Stephen Colbert had Harry on his show for a more casual interview. Much of Harry’s press tour has surrounded exposing the British press for its racism and abuse of women, and to clear up misconceptions about the royal family. The interview was a quintessentially American one, which was unprecedented.

@colbertlateshow

Prince Harry went to the North Pole and ended up with a crisis at the “South Pole.” 🥶 #Colbert #Spare

♬ original sound – colbertlateshow

The interview also gave Harry the floor to talk about his relationships with his family from a more personal standpoint.

@hrhladya

Prince Harry Spare | Colbert Interview part 5 – Harry talks about Diana #princeharryspare #princeharry #theroyals #princeharryandmeghanmarkle #DoritosTriangleTryout #royaldrama #meghanmarkle #royaltea #britishtabloids #thebritishroyalfamily #thebritishmonarchy #heirandthespare #princessdiana

♬ original sound – Alyssa

Given the amount of time Harry and Meghan have spent with the press in recent months, it is hard to say that they wish to truly avoid the press. Instead of avoiding it, it seems like they would much rather change the narrative and pave the way for representation. The People’s Princess’ son might be giving the people just what they need–the truth.