Britain's Queen Elizabeth paid a private visit yesterday to Prince William and his wife Kate to meet their newborn son, her great-grandson who will one day inherit the throne.
The 87-year-old spent just over half an hour at Kensington Palace in London where the still unnamed infant, the third in line to the throne, was spending his first day after leaving hospital.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge emerged from St Mary's Hospital in London with the unnamed baby boy in their arms, to huge cheers and a roar from the massed ranks of international media.
Wearing a cornflower-blue polka-dot dress, a beaming Kate said the couple were "very emotional" to have welcomed their son, who is third-in-line to the British throne.
William, meanwhile, said they were still choosing a name for the child dubbed Baby Cambridge, and revealed that he had already changed his first nappies.
The new heir raised a tiny hand above his white blankets - his first royal wave of a lifetime to be spent in the public eye.
He remained peaceful, despite deafening cheers from well-wishers and shouts from journalists who had camped for three weeks outside the hospital.
"It's a special time," said 31-year-old Kate, who wore her long brown hair loose. "I think any new parent would know what this feeling feels like."
Wearing jeans and a casual blue shirt, her 31-year-old husband told reporters: "He's got her looks, thankfully," as Kate giggled and interjected, "No, no, no, I'm not sure about that."
"He's got a good pair of lungs on him," William joked. Speaking of the infant's hair, the prematurely balding William laughed and replied, "He's got more hair than me."
After speaking briefly to the media, the couple returned to the hospital before re-emerging a few minutes later with the baby in a car-seat.
William secured the seat deftly in the back of a black Land Rover parked outside the entrance, and drove his new family himself towards Kensington Palace, where family members were reportedly waiting. Royal aides said the couple had no immediate plans to hire a nanny.
The first public appearance by the new family caused a storm on social media, with Twitter counting more than 18,000 tweets a minute.
The first photographs of Britain's new prince dominated newspaper front pages on Wednesday, with the sapphire engagement ring of William's late mother Diana conspicuous on the hand of new mother Kate.
Kate's empire-line dress, designed by Jenny Packham, also drew strong comparisons with that worn by Diana in 1982 as she stood on the same steps with Prince Charles and presented the newborn William to the world.
Newspapers pored over every detail of the public appearance, from the continued visibility of Kate's baby bump to the car-seat chosen by the couple.
William is taking two weeks' paternity leave from his job as a Royal Air Force search-and-rescue helicopter pilot, and the palace said he and Kate would now spend "private and quiet time for them to get to know their son".
As well as selecting a name, William and Kate will soon choose a photographer for the baby's first official portrait.
Bookmaker William Hill has George - the name of six previous British kings - as the favourite at 2-1 odds, with James at 4-1.
Additional reporting by Associated Press