The Royal Family's Official Website Made A Drastic Change To Honor The Queen's Death

The death of Queen Elizabeth II on September 8 wasn't unexpected, but it will cause significant changes in Britain's culture and politics nonetheless. At least one change was very visible on the royal family's official website. The entire website is currently shut down. Links to every separate page — such as the website's "About" or "The role of the monarchy" pages — lead back to the home page, which currently features a black background with the queen's coronation picture superimposed on it with faded edges. At the bottom, on a gray background, is a small amount of text explaining that the website will be "temporarily unavailable while appropriate changes are made." That means that if you're interested in learning more about the royal family in light of this huge change, you'll have to look elsewhere. One place to start is the family's official Twitter account and associated accounts like the one shared between the new king, his wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, his son Prince William, and his daughter-in-law Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. 

The website's currently limited text also says, "The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow." Balmoral is the royal family's castle and estate located in Aberdeenshire, northeastern Scotland (via Historic Environment Scotland). This is where the queen spent her last days and died on the afternoon of September 8 (via the Royal Family's website).

What else the website currently tells us

As the website indicates, Prince Charles became king immediately upon his mother's death. However, according to ABC News, he will have to be officially proclaimed king by the Accession Council, which will soon meet at St. James' Palace in London. Technically, Parliament can intervene in the royal succession, removing a monarch if they think the person has "misgoverned" the country.

Other rules regarding succession include the heir being followed by their first-born child and that person's children. That's why Prince William, Prince Harry, and their children are ahead of Prince Andrew — the queen's next oldest son — as well as the queen's other descendants. In 2013, a new rule declared that daughters would no longer be surpassed in the succession by their younger brothers. That means Princess Charlotte is now third in line to the throne, ahead of her brother Prince Louis. This law also overturned the previous rule that a person married to a Catholic could not ascend the throne. However, a British monarch is still expected to be Protestant (via ABC News).

The royal family's website shows that Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, now has a new title of queen consort. This indicates that she is not the country's ruler but the ruler's spouse. In February of this year, the late queen said she wanted that to be Camilla's title when Charles became king. Camilla will likely be crowned along with Charles, according to i News.