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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's festive engagement revealed – and this is why you missed it

Merry Christmas!

Andrea Caamano

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are getting into the festive spirit – if their latest engagement is anything to go by. Just weeks before celebrating their first Christmas as a married couple, the royals, who are expecting their first child together, stepped out on Thursday afternoon to attend a Christmas reception just a five minute drive from their house at Kensington Palace. The unannounced engagement was recorded on the Court Circular.

These unannounced engagements are not rare, but why the secrecy? The reason is simply that, for the most part, these engagements have been regular working meetings. They haven't been announced in advance because there hasn't been a press angle. This has always been the case, but in the past month or so, there have been a cluster of private engagements that Kate, Meghan, William and Harry have carried out, which have caused royal fans to ask the question.

On Wednesday, pregnant Meghan delighted fans by meeting privately with university leaders to discuss how to build a better world through higher education – and later sharing a photo from the event. Meghan visited King's College London on Wednesday to address important issues including human trafficking and modern slavery, gender equality and inclusion, peace and reconciliation, and climate change and resilience. The Duchess had previously made a powerful speech about education during her first royal tour to students at the University of the South Pacific in Fiji in October. At the important event run by The Association of Commonwealth Universities, Meghan kept her hair loose and wore a black outfit as she sat down to join the discussions with key leaders at the university and take notes.

MORE: Duchess Meghan's most stylish outfits of 2018 – all the pictures

Earlier this week, the Duchess attended a charity carol service alongside her husband Prince Harry and some of their closest friends. Royal watchers were delighted to spot her blooming baby bump which had definitely popped since her last public engagement. Meghan showed her support for the cause by reading a beautiful poem as part of the event. The service was held in Chelsea in support of the Henry Van Straubenzee Memorial Fund, which was set up in memory of a school friend of both Princes William and Harry, who died in a tragic car crash in 2002 aged just 18

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