Anna Whitelock, professor of history and director of the Center for the Study of Modern Monarchy at Royal Holloway, University of London, said the palace’s brief message was an attempt to calm the controversy.

“It’s not very long, but it’s very precise and it has a clear intention – and that is to close this as a family matter; to make it clear that this is clearly a family in crisis, that there are family issues to be resolved.” there, but to separate this very clearly from any criticism or discussion of the institution of the monarchy itself, “she told The Associated Press. “And I think time will tell if this is a distinction the public will accept.”

While the palace often tries to stay abreast of controversy by keeping silent and weathering the storm, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s accusations proved so damaging that the family was forced to respond.

The response was likely delayed by the queen’s struggle to balance her sometimes conflicting roles as monarch and grandmother, said Angela Levin, author of “Harry, A Biography of a Prince,” before the statement was released. During past crises, the 94-year-old monarch has usually sided with the 1,000-year-old institution that she has headed since 1952.

“The Queen has a motto: never complain, never explain,” Levin told the AP. “And she has stayed with it for decades. But I think in this climate and in 2021 everything will go everywhere. There is so much social media out there that in this case she really has nothing to say. “