Due to the ancient rule of the “privilege of white”, currently only seven women in the world can wear white before the Pope
“Today we dressed the same”he jokingly commented Pope francesco at the sight of Giorgia Meloni with a white business suit. And, indeed, the glance of theirs two blank, next to each other, it does not go unnoticed. In fact, the prime minister presented herself on the stage of the Auditorium della Conciliazione in Rome, on the occasion of the States General of the Natality, with powder beige trousers and a tailored overcoat, in a point of warm white decidedly very, too similar to that of the Holy Father’s cassock. And if Bergoglio ironically pointed this out at the end of the conference, in an atmosphere of relaxation and confidence, criticism was immediately unleashed on social networks.
In fact, many have readily cited the ancient rule of the so-called “white privilege”, i.e. the Vatican protocol for papal audiences. And, although its application has not been mandatory since the 1980s, it has always been respected so far (with some rare exceptions). What is it about? It is a handbook that regulates the dress code in the Vatican, requiring a precise color range when one arrives in the presence of the Pope and granting “candid” dresses only to queens and the consorts of Catholic kings. So, currently, only seven women in the world can wear white before the Pope: Queen Letizia of Spain and the former Queen Sofia of Spain, Queen Mathilde of Belgium and the former Sovereign Paola of Belgium, Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg, Princess Charlène of Monaco and Princess Marina of Savoy. For all the others – both non-Catholic queens and heads of state or wives of heads of state and political exponentsi – the rule of dark clothing applies, preferably black and with the head covered. Not only that: formal, sober, long-sleeved garments with the hem strictly below the knee are required; combined with equally rigorous accessories and, even better, a veil on the head. In this sense, the look of Melania Trump was masterful when she visited Pope Francis with her husband Donald as First Lady of the United States. You rules which, as we have said, have become optional since the eighties but which have in any case always been respected in all these years because they are in any case considered a form of respect not only for etiquette in general but above all for the place and the personality is meeting.
It must also be said that Giorgia Meloni and Pope Francis were not in the Vatican today and it was not a papal audience but, in fact, a public conference at the Rome Auditorium, which can be an easy objection to criticism. In any case, that of the premier was, however, an unfortunate choice: any other color would have been enough (for example the lilac chosen by the then Queen Elizabeth in 2014) to avoid controversy. Especially since from her election to today she has always been very attentive to the care of her image and her looks. And in a moment, like the present one, in which the symbolic power of clothes is particularly in the spotlightafter the declarations of the new Pd secretary Elly Schlein on thecolor matching.