In general, being a modern-day princess sounds like a pretty plum gig: Your job is essentially to visit far-off places with your hubby and get all dressed up and go to fancy dinners and support good causes. So we're usually pretty jealous of Kate Middleton's charmed life. But there is one aspect of a princess's life that straight-up sucks. And that is that people think it's okay to take pictures of you tanning topless with a huge telephoto lens and then sell them to just about anyone. Which is, unfortunately, precisely what has happened to Kate Middleton.

While Middleton and Prince William were visiting Malaysia as part of the Jubilee Far East tour (she looked gorgeous, obviously, but more on that later), a French celebrity gossip magazine Closer hit newsstands with pictures of the Royal couple visiting relative David Linley's chateau in the south of France–and many of them feature Kate without her swimsuit top on, the BBC is reporting.

We aren't the only ones disgusted by this. St. James's Palace recently issued a statement saying:

"Their Royal Highnesses have been hugely saddened to learn that a French publication and a photographer have invaded their privacy in such a grotesque and totally unjustifiable manner.The incident is reminiscent of the worst excesses of the press and paparazzi during the life of Diana, Princess of Wales, and all the more upsetting to the Duke and Duchess for being so...It is unthinkable that anyone should take such photographs, let alone publish them."

More recently, a spokesman for the couple told the Daily Mail:

"Their sadness has turned to anger and disbelief as we have learnt more about the photographs. We believe a red line has been crossed and we are consulting the French lawyers to see what, if any, action can be taken."

Considering that all this was going on, it's truly amazing how gorgeous and composed Kate Middleton continues to look on her Far East Tour. (We would have probably locked ourselves in a bathroom somewhere and emerged puffy-eyed).

She looked every inch a queen (even if she is only, technically, a duchess) in a gold embroidered Alexander McQueen dress, and later stunned in a blue lace Alice Temperley dress, which she accessorized with very fashion-forward pearl pins in her hair.

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Photo: Chris Jackson, Getty Images