How Meghan and Harry's baby will make history in the royal family

Sarah Carty
Senior Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s baby will make history in the royal family. Photo: Getty Images

Baby Sussex might not even be born yet, but it seems the tot is already smashing records.

This will be the first time in history that a senior member of the UK royal family’s child will have both a British parent and an American-born parent.

That means that the baby will automatically hold British citizenship, after being born in the UK, but they may be able to hold dual US citizenship – depending on Meghan Markle’s citizenship status.

At the moment, Meghan is in the midst of applying for British citizenship – which can take years to come through.

A spokesperson for the couple previously said that Meghan will be ‘compliant with immigration requirements at all times’.

If Meghan holds dual citizenship, that would leave the door open for her child to also apply for a US passport.

While it’s not clear whether the baby will be a dual citizen, It’s widely expected that when the baby is born, he or she will not be referred to as ‘His or Her Royal Highness (HRH)’, and unlike cousins George, Charlotte and Louis, won’t be called ‘prince’ or ‘princess’.

History of royal titles

In 1917, George V limited titles within the royal family so prince and princess titles and the HRH status are now only reserved for children or grandchildren of the Monarch.

Prince George was the exception as his father, Prince William is in line to be king.

The Queen actually issued a new Letters Patent when Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis were born to give them the same title as their older brother.

If she didn’t, the now Princess and Prince would have been known as Lady Charlotte Mountbatten-Windsor and Earl Louis Mountbatten-Windsor.

While it’s not clear whether the baby will be a dual citizen, It’s widely expected that when the baby is born, he or she will not be referred to as ‘His or Her Royal Highness (HRH)’, and unlike cousins George, Charlotte and Louis, won’t be called ‘prince’ or ‘princess’. Photo: Getty Images

Now that Prince Harry has been pushed down to sixth in the line of succession, it’s highly unlikely his child (who will be seventh in line to the throne) will one day be the Monarch.

However, the rule also means that should Prince Charles take over from his mother, Queen Elizabeth, Prince Harry and Meghan’s future kids could eventually become a prince or princess, as their grandfather would be king.

And at the end of the day, the Queen has the final say and can intervene where titles are concerned.

So, what will Harry and Meghan’s children’s royal titles be?

Given Prince Harry was gifted a Dukedom on his wedding day, and he and Meghan are now known as Duke and Duchess of Sussex, their children will likely be given lord, earl or lady titles.

If this first baby is a boy, he will likely be known as Earl of Dumbarton – because a first son of a duke is allowed to use one of his father’s other lesser titles as a courtesy title.

Harry was also made the Earl of Dumbarton on the morning of his wedding, as well as being given a dukedom.

However if the baby is a girl, she would be Lady (first name) Mountbatten-Windsor.

Although Harry and Meghan’s child will be George, Charlotte and Louis’ cousin on their father’s side, the royal kids will not share the same surname. Photo: Getty Images

What surname will they have?

Although Harry and Meghan’s child will be George, Charlotte and Louis’ cousin on their father’s side, the royal kids will not share the same surname.

Last year, it was announced that Prince George would be known officially as ‘George Cambridge’ when he started school at Thomas’ Battersea in London – a name which stems from his father being the Duke of Cambridge.

It mirrored the announcement made years ago when Prince William and Prince Harry started school and revealed they would be known as ‘William Wales’ and ‘Harry Wales’ – due to their father, Prince Charles, being known as the Prince of Wales.

The royal brothers kept that surname as they moved into adulthood, with Prince William using the name ‘William Wales ‘during his career as an air ambulance pilot and Prince Harry going by ‘Harry Wales’ when he served in the army.

Likewise, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice are reported to go by the names ‘Eugenie York’ and ‘Beatrice York’ from time-to-time.

Therefore, if Harry and Meghan’s child so wished, they could go by the surname ‘Sussex’ instead of ‘Windsor’ or ‘Mountbatten-Windsor’.

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