Body language expert weighs in on Macron's charm offensive

Macron’s charm offensive! French President’s affectionate display with King Charles and Queen Camilla signals ‘underlying power’, body language expert claims

  • Judi James analysed the body language of the President of France in Versailles
  • READ MORE: A fashion power duo! Brigitte Macron helps Queen Camilla adjust her cape ahead of State Banquet at the Palace of Versailles – as the pair dazzle in navy Dior gowns

King Charles and Queen Camilla put on a friendly display with their hosts Emmanuel Macron and his wife Brigitte in Versailles at the State Banquet – but according to a body language expert, there may be signs of an underlying power play.

Judi James told FEMAIL that the French President’s affectionate gestures towards the King and Queen as he hosts them in his home country actually showed he was the driving force in their relationship as a bid for power may have emerged.

The body language expert said that the foursome engaged in ‘industrial-strength displays’ of ‘camaraderie’ with their body language during the four-course dinner.

As President Macron carried out his charm offensive on the British royal couple, Judi suggested there was an ‘underlying power’ on display from ‘subliminal signals’.

While she admits there is no doubt the couples share an ‘intimate friendship’, Macron’s body language throughout the evening may have been a bid to show ‘who is really in charge’.

Body language expert Judi James told FEMAIL President Macron showed a ‘mutual affection’ towards the King and Queen during the State Banquet last night

Ms James said: ‘Macron’s very tactile body language and beaming smiles of what looked like pride towards the King suggested he was hosting elderly parents around his manor. 

‘The head tilts and beaming smiles with lifted and rounded cheeks as the couples clinked glasses in a toast registered nothing but mutual affection and, as intentional gestures, i.e. a headline display to the world, Macron was all about friendship and warm hosting. ‘

As the couples arrived on the red carpet at the Palace of Versailles, Ms James noted the greetings President Macron gave to both the King and Queen.

‘It is possible that Macron’s patting of Charles and his kissing of Camilla’s hand served a dual purpose in terms of suggesting he is the real power-broker? 

The French President greeted the King with a handshake and a pat on the hand as he arrved in Versailles

President Macron greeted Queen Camilla with a kiss on the hand, which Ms James argued could be off-putting for a modern woman

‘Patting is a gesture of affection but done like this it is parental-style affection, gently steering, rewarding and reassuring the person being patted. 

‘A thumping pat might be more confrontational and suggest a battle between equals but this non-reciprocal back-patting tends to be used in politics around the world to suggest some form of superiority.

‘Even factoring in cultural differences, Macron’s patting of Charles was enthusiastic. You can argue that his kissing of the back of Camilla’s hand was just ‘being French’ but this Jurassic ritual has generally been replaced by the handshake in France, except by Macron who even planted his lips on the back of Melania Trump’s hand too. 

‘Macron shares his passion for the hand kiss with Charles but as a gesture it puts the modern woman at a disadvantage, left with the option of giggling in embarrassment or accepting the kiss like some ancient Grande Dame.’

Ms James also noted a tender moment between Brigitte Macron and Queen Camilla in which the French First Lady adjusted the Queen’s statement cape on her navy Dior gown, before they headed into the Hall of Mirrors to dine.

As Brigitte also opted for a navy Dior gown, the pair coordinated their evening outfits – although their dresses were different enough not to amount to a full twinning effect.

Much like Brigitte’s sheer sleeve on her long Dior dress with bejewelled collar, Camilla’s cape allowed a flattering flash of flesh without revealing too much. And the cape’s trailing tails provided the drama befitting a new monarch.

Inside the Hall of Mirrors, the President clinked glasses with the royal couple and engaged in animated conversation throughout the evening. 

Ms James noted this shows there is obviously a close friendship between the King and Queen and the Macrons.

‘There are so may signals of close and even intimate friendship between the two couples, that Charles’s crinkled smiles and shared laughter or chuckling responses seemed to rubber stamp as authentic, but those steering pats and touches could also be Macron’s way of silently signalling who is really in charge,’ she said.

As the King and Queen touched down in Paris on Wednesday afternoon, Ms James said Charles and President Macron showed an ‘unexpected closeness’ which went beyond ‘regular small talk’.

‘There was an unexpectedly potent air on bonhomie from these two men as they met, despite the fact they might actually have very little in common,’ she said.

‘Their greeting rituals involved some close, head-to-head eye contact, chuckling and authentic smiles and Charles in particular spent much longer chatting intimately to Macron, suggesting their greeting conversations went far beyond the stages of the usual royal small-talk,’ she added.

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