Prince Harry And Meghan Markle's New Royal Titles Have Been Announced
By Katie Rosseinsky Posted on 3 Mar 2017
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s new titles have been announced by the Queen ahead of the royal wedding.
The couple will become the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, as many royal commentators previously predicted.
‘The Queen has today been pleased to confer a Dukedom on Prince Henry of Wales,’ a Palace statement read. ‘His titles will be Duke of Sussex, Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel.’
‘Prince Harry thus becomes His Royal Highness, The Duke of Sussex, and Ms. Meghan Markle on marriage will become Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Sussex.’
Royal protocol dictates that, as fifth in line to the throne, the Prince must seek permission from his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, before his marriage. After he received the royal green light - in the form of the official Instrument of Consent, signed by Her Majesty - Harry and his soon-to-be wife have received new titles on the morning of their wedding, just as Prince William and Kate Middleton were officially announced as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge shortly before their marriage in 2011.
Sussex has long been considered the most likely dukedom for Prince Harry, though the peerages that were available for the taking included Clarence, Connaught, Windsor, Albany, and Cumberland and Teviotdale. Back in 2011, it was rumoured that William would receive the title upon his marriage; as he became the Duke of Cambridge instead, we can assume that Sussex was kept back for Harry. ‘They’re quite limited in the titles that are available,’ Charles Kidd, editor of Debrett’s Peerage and Baronetcy, explained to the Press Association several months before this official announcement. ‘The Duke of Sussex is the front-runner without any doubt.’
‘Connaught, with its links to the Republic of Ireland, might not be suitable at the moment. The dukedoms of Cumberland, Albany and Teviotdale are all suspended, meaning there could be claims to those titles,’ he said.
“I think the others are highly unlikely. Clarence hasn’t been used for a long time and it’s been sort of tainted by bad luck,’ he added. ‘One Duke of Clarence was the eldest son of Edward VII and there have been a lot of fairly salacious stories surrounding him. Another Duke of Clarence was executed for treason and allegedly drowned in a butt of Malmsey wine.’
The title of Duke of Sussex was last held by Prince Augustus Frederick, the sixth son of King George III, and has not been claimed since his death in 1843. As this Duke married for love, and did not gain the permission of the monarch, his wife was never officially given a title, meaning that Meghan will make royal history as the first royal to be styled as Duchess of Sussex.
And as for the question on everyone’s lips: will Meghan become a Princess? Royal protocol dictates that, in the UK, a wife automatically takes on her husband’s title - but Meghan would not become Princess Meghan. Instead, she would become Her Royal Highness Princess Henry of Wales, which doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue. Princess, after all, is a title reserved for those born into the British monarchy: so while Princesses Charlotte, Eugenie and Beatrice may use it, Kate Middleton does not. Similarly, ‘Princess Diana’ was never really an official title (she was actually HRH Diana, Princess of Wales).
Should the couple have children, their offspring will not be Prince or Princess either: instead, they’ll most likely take the title of Lord or Lady Mountbatten-Windsor.
Will you be tuning in for the royal wedding? Here’s your definitive guide to what will be happening on the day…
9:30am: Wedding guests begin to arrive
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9:30am: Wedding guests begin to arrive
Wedding guests will begin to arrive – by coach, no less – from 9.30am until 11am, and will walk over to the South Door of St George’s Chapel. Prepare to spot assorted Suits stars, Priyanka Chopra, Jessica Mulroney and the Beckhams.
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11:20am: The royal family arrive in Windsor
Keep your eyes peeled from 11.20am as members of the Royal Family start to arrive at the Chapel, some on foot, others by car.
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11:45am: Harry and William will arrive together
Prince Harry will arrive at St George’s Chapel by foot, accompanied by his best man the Duke of Cambridge, and will enter via the West Steps. Here, they’ll take the time to greet the members of the public gathered in the Castle precinct, including the charity representatives positioned at the Horseshoe Cloister (just outside the Chapel).
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11:50am: Meghan will travel to Windsor Castle with her mother
At around the same time, Meghan and her mother, Doria, will leave their overnight location and travel to the Castle by car, passing through the Long Walk where members of the public are expected to gather. They’ll briefly stop at the Castle, allowing Doria to travel on to the Chapel while Meghan is joined by bridesmaids and page boys ahead of her big entrance to the Chapel.
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12pm: Meghan walks down the aisle
After Thomas Markle confirmed that he would no longer be walking his daughter down the aisle, having suffered a heart attack last week, it’s assumed that Doria will accompany her daughter.
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12pm: The wedding service begins
The wedding service itself will take about an hour, with a full order of service set to be unveiled to the public on Saturday morning. We already know that Lady Jane Fellowes, Harry’s aunt and the elder sister of the late Princess of Wales will give the reading. All three of Diana’s siblings will attend the ceremony, and Harry and Meghan have expressed happiness that they’ll be able to celebrate her memory on the day.
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1pm: The couple will greet charity representatives
Once they’ve officially tied the knot, the first thing that Harry and Meghan will do is to greet the 200 representatives from Prince Harry’s chosen charities, who’ll be gathered in the Horseshoe Cloister. In doing so, the couple are acknowledging how important these organisations will be in their future work; according to the Palace, they are ‘delighted that these people who will be such an important part of their official work in the years to come will be the first people they see after the wedding.’
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1:05pm: The carriage procession
Then, close family members will gather on the Chapel’s steps to wave the couple off, as it’s time for Harry and Meghan to step into their carriage (that’s the same Ascot Landau that Pippa Middleton rode in at Will and Kate’s wedding, in case you needed a refresher) and embark on a 25-minute procession around the castle and town. Hopefully neither of them have previous history with RSI, because all that royal waving could get very tiring. Meghan and Harry’s guests will then file out of the church to catch the start of the carriage procession, before heading on to St George’s Hall for the reception.
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7pm: The couple head to Frogmore House
For all the national excitement, the wedding is a private event, and after the carriage procession, there won’t be much left for us to see. The last thing that we’ll be able to catch will be the moment that the bride and groom leave the Castle for Frogmore House, where the evening reception will take place.
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