King Charles has been accused of hiding his hands to avoid being mocked for his ‘sausage fingers’ in portraits released ahead of his coronation.
In the new pictures, the monarch wore a simple pinstripe suit while his wife Camilla, the Queen Consort, posed in a cobalt blue dress.
But members of the public realised that one detail appeared to be hidden from the photographer – the King’s hands.
In one shot he has them hidden behind his back as he stands alongside Camilla, 75.
A second shot shows the 74-year-old with one hand in his pocket.
King Charles has been accused of hiding his hands in photos to avoid being mocked for his ‘sausage fingers’ in new portraits released just days ahead of the coronation this week
Since taking the throne last September images of his puffy hands – which he jokingly described as his ‘sausage fingers’ during a 2012 Australian tour – went viral online as many zoomed in on the King’s fingers.
It was the seventh most searched term on Google at one point this year.
And so it’s perhaps not surprising that Charles may want to keep his digits concealed during official photos, especially during such a celebratory period.
But social media users have jokingly remarked that the monarch has been ‘bullied’ into keeping his fingers off show.
‘Show us his hands cowards,’ one Twitter user commented under the portraits.
A second joked: ‘We’re never seeing them again brother.’
‘I want to abolish the monarchy but I do still feel bad that we have gang bullied a grown man into never showing his hands again,’ another quipped.
King Charles wore a pinstriped suit and sat in an ornate chair for the new portrait of him unveiled just days ahead of his coronation
Social media users have jokingly remarked that the monarch has been ‘bullied’ into keeping his fingers off show
One person also added: ‘I can’t believe Twitter has bullied the literal king into never showing his hands.’
The King has been pictured with swollen hands and feet many times, noticeably after long periods spent flying or travelling to hot countries.
While the monarch has suffered from the condition for a number of years, conversation around the issue became more widespread when he ascended the throne following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
He was also seen with painfully swollen hands and feet during the first day of his royal tour in India in 2019 when he removed his shoes to step into a Sikh temple in New Delhi.
Observers also pointed out the royals’ swollen hands while he sipped a pint in The Prince of Wales pub in Clapham Old Town in 2021.
The royal has had large hands from a young age – a feature the Queen wrote about in a letter to her music teacher after Charles had been born.
Keen royal watchers may be concerned about a potential health issue King Charles has previously joked about – his swollen fingers
The King has been snapped with swollen fingers on a number of occasions over the years, jokingly referring to them as ‘sausages’ back in 2012
She wrote: ‘The baby is very sweet and we are enormously proud of him. He has an interesting pair of hands for a baby.
‘They are rather large, but with fine long fingers quite unlike mine and certainly unlike his father’s. It will be interesting to see what they become.’
While royal fans have expressed concern over the appearance of the King’s hands, he has not confirmed the reason for the swelling.
According to a doctor, swollen fingers could be due to a number of health concerns, or could be the result of water retention, or simply old age.
Several conditions including oedema or arthritis could be responsible. Other causes could be high blood pressure, or a high salt diet.
Charles’ fingers and toes were noticeably red and swollen on the first day of his royal tour in India in 2019
Royal observers noticed King Charles’ swollen fingers while he sipped a pint in The Prince of Wales pub in Clapham Old Town in 2021
Oedema is a condition where the body starts to retain fluids in the limbs, causing them to swell – and it can also occur in the fingers.
Men are less likely than women to suffer from oedema. This is because the female hormone progesterone tends to cause the condition, leaving some women with puffy ankles just before their period.
Older people develop the disorder if they sit for long periods of time.
However, it could be a result of arthritis, which is a common condition in the over-60s and affects the thumb joint and the joints in the fingers.
Fingers usually become stiff, painful and swollen and although medication can help with the pain, the swelling can remain