10:42 | 10/03/2021 Print
|Britain’s Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose during a photocall with their newborn son Archie, in St George’s Hall at Windsor Castle, Windsor, south England.|
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry opened up to the chat show host and discussed everything around the UK as well as the denial of a ‘prince’ title for their firstborn son, Archie.
In the interview, Meghan discussed the situation surrounding her first pregnancy, revealing that she was told that Archie would not get an official title as ‘prince’ or receive royal protection, Standard UK reported.
The members of the BRF who have the title of prince or princess include:
• The Queen’s four children: Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Princess Edward.
• The Queen’s grandchildren: Prince William, Prince Harry, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice
• The Queen’s great-grandchildren and children of future king Prince William: Prince George, Princess Charlotte, Prince Louis.
The Queen’s great-grandchildren including Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s son Archie, Princess Eugenie’s son August Brooksbank, Zara Tindall and Peter Phillips children do not possess the title of ‘prince’ or ‘princess’.
Much like his great-grandson, Prince Charles, King George V was intent on a so-called 'slimmed down monarchy'. As such, he issued a new law, a Letters Patent, in 1917, which limited the number of royal relatives that could use the title of Prince or Princess, Tatler reported.
It reads: 'It is declared by the Letters Patent that the children of any Sovereign of the United Kingdom and the children of the sons of any such Sovereign and the eldest living son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales shall have and at all times hold and enjoy the style, title or attribute of Royal Highness with their titular dignity of Prince or Princess prefixed to their respective Christian names or with their other titles of honour; that save as aforesaid the titles of Royal Highness, Highness or Serene Highness, and the titular dignity of Prince and Princess shall cease except those titles already granted and remaining unrevoked; and that the grandchildren of the sons of any such Sovereign in the direct male line (save only the eldest living son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales) shall have the style and title enjoyed by the children of Dukes'.
What this means is that only the children and grandchildren of the monarch through the male line are automatically given the title of Prince or Princess, as well as the first son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales (Prince George). This meant that Princess Anne's children, Zara Tindall and Peter Phillips, were not given a title at birth, but Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, as the daughters of Prince Andrew, were.
However, Princess Anne was offered the chance to give her children a title, but she refused (as did her husband, Captain Mark Phillips, who had been offered a title on their marriage).
Conversely, Prince Edward's children would also have been Prince and Princess, but he and his wife the Countess of Wessex decided not to give them the title. Instead they are Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn, as opposed to Princess Louise of Wessex and Prince James of Wessex.
Why does Archie not have a title?
Under current guidelines, great-grandchildren of the monarch are not princes or princesses.
Only Prince George - as a great-grandson of the monarch and who has a direct line of succession to the throne - was originally entitled to be a prince.
However, the Queen stepped in ahead of Prince George’s birth to issue a Letters Patent to ensure all the Cambridges’ children would have fitting titles.
Princess Charlotte would have been a Lady and Prince Louis a Lord had the Queen not intervened, and they would have not been HRHs.
Archie, who will turn two in May, was entitled to the ‘courtesy title’ Earl of Dumbarton. However, the couple announced after his birth that they had not given him a courtesy title and he would be known as Archie Mountbatten-Windsor.
Queen Elizabeth II has nine great-grandchildren, including Archie. They are not princes and princesses, apart from the three children of Prince William, who is second in line to the throne and destined to be king one day, according to Washington Post.
A decree issued by King George V in 1917 limits the titles of prince and princess to the children of the monarch, children of the monarch’s sons and “the eldest living son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales” — that’s William’s son Prince George.
Bob Morris from the Constitution Unit at University College London, said the rule was drawn up to trim the increasingly unwieldy number of princely titles.
“Queen Victoria had nine children who were all princes and princesses, and then they had children and so forth, and George V took the view ... that something needed to be done to tidy up the situation,” he said.
The queen has the power to amend the rules, and in 2012 she decreed that all the children of Prince William and his wife, Catherine, not just the eldest, would be princes and princesses.
Under the George V convention, Archie is not a prince, but will become one as the grandchild of a monarch once current heir to the throne Prince Charles is king.
In her interview, Meghan said she was told that “they want to change the convention for Archie.”
It is unclear what she was referring to, but Morris said Prince Charles has let it be known “that he favors a smaller royal family” when he takes the throne.
Archie was eligible for a “courtesy title” at birth, such as Lord Archie Mountbatten-Windsor. At the time, it was reported that Harry and Meghan had chosen not to give him a title.
But Meghan told Winfrey that “it was not our decision to make.”
Buckingham Palace has not responded to specific allegations in the interview. In a statement, it said “the issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning. While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately.”
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