Fact Check-Goat pictured with British marching band is the mascot of a Welsh military unit

A photo of a billy goat leading a marching band through Cardiff, Wales has been misinterpreted by social media users to be a moment for Britain’s royal family to pay respect to Satan.

According to a widely shared meme, the photo was captured on the day of Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral (here ).

“Did you all wonder why there was a goat leading the way at the Queen’s funeral procession?” the accompanying caption asks. “The symbol to pay homage to their God! Everything is as clear as the sun shining in the sky for those who have eyes to see and ears to here.”

Also incorporated in the meme is the 19th century drawing by French occultist Eliphas Levi of a goat-headed Baphomet. More information on the Baphomet, a symbol of satanism, can be found here .

The photo of the marching band, however, has nothing to do with worshipping Satan. It was captured on Sept. 11 ahead of the proclamation of King Charles III (not the queen’s funeral, which was held on Sept. 19), and shows the 3rd Battalion The Royal Welsh with their billy goat mascot trooping to Cardiff Castle (here ).

The goat as a mascot is a tradition of the Royal Welsh regiment dating back hundreds of years, according to the Royal Welsh Museum and the National Army Museum (here) , (here ). There are different stories as to why the animal was formally adopted, though these involve stories of good luck rather than Satan.

Queen Victoria is also said to have presented the Royal Welsh with a goat from the royal herd in 1884, beginning a tradition in which the regiment informs the reigning monarch when a mascot dies and requests permission for a new one (here , here and here ).

Another picture of the 3rd Battalion’s mascot can be seen in the photo gallery here .


False. The goat is a long-time mascot of the Royal Welsh regiment, not a sign of respect to Satan.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here.