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To celebrate her 40th birthday on January 9, Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, released three stunning portrait photographs taken of her by Italian photographer Paolo Roversi.

The three photos feature Kate in three different, but equally mesmerising, dresses and poses. The first, in black and white, shows her in an off-the-shoulder white gown, her body facing away from the camera, looking incredibly regal, calling to mind portraits from the Victorian era.

The second, also in black and white, is much more candid, featuring a close up of Kate’s brilliant smile, showing just the top half of a second white gown with ruffled sleeves.

The third is in full colour, and features the Duchess in an off-the-shoulder red gown with a single puffy sleeve, standing up and smiling at the camera.

The photos, which were taken in November 2021, will become part of the National Portrait Gallery’s permanent collection.

One of the photos was posted to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s Instagram account, and fans were quick to flood their comments with praise.

One commenter wrote, “Queen! Gorgeous! Stunning! Beautiful! This exactly what we have been begging for!!!”, while another pointed out, “It looks Victorian”. Another noted a detail people may have missed, writing, “Stunning! Love how Princess Diana’s ring is shown to prominently too. Happy birthday!!”

As for birthday celebrations, it is believed the Duchess kept things low-key this year, with royal expert Duncan Larcombe telling OK! that he believes Kate will have “no fuss” around her birthday, instead preferring to focus on her responsibilities to the monarchy and family. He told the magazine, “It’s just not Kate’s style to want to throw a lavish party for friends and family”.

Image: Paolo Roversi

This article first appeared on OverSixty.

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