The hidden meaning behind the royal baby's name

Sarah Carty
Senior Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
The first photo of the royal baby has been released. Photo: AAP

Baby Sussex finally has a name, and it’s a rather unexpected one.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex introduced their son Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor to the world on Wednesday after first taking him to meet the Queen.

Her Royal Highness and Prince Philip were told of the child’s name when the couple and Meghan’s mum Doria Ragland, popped in for a visit following their two-minute interview at Windsor Castle.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex with their baby son, who was born on Monday morning, during a photocall in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Berkshire. Photo: AAP
The royal baby looks exactly like his father, Prince Harry, and mum, Meghan Markle, when they were babies. Photo: Getty Images/Splash

Meaning behind the new name

The name Archie is a boy's name of German origin meaning “truly brave”.

According to Baby Centre, Archie was the 15th most popular name for a baby boy born in the UK in 2018. It’s not as popular in the US; it ranks number 737 for popularity in the US in 2019 so far.

Despite what some might think, it’s actually not a modern name. Archie started out as a short form of Archibald but has been used as an independent name since the 19th century.

There aren’t many famous people called Archie, however Archibald Leach was the birth name of English-born Hollywood actor Cary Grant.

Archie Gemmill (born 1947) is a Scottish footballer; the lead character in hit Netflix show Riverdale is named Archie (based of the Archie comics) and comedian Amy Poehler’s son with Will Arnett is also called Archie.

“The name both reflects their new family make up but also builds bridges across the world,” baby name expert SJ Ljungstrom, from ChannelMum.com, says.

“Archie is a wonderful choice as it encapsulates pomp and tradition while having all the cheeky chappie qualities of Harry himself.”

Experts say the name Archie reflects both pomp and tradition. Photo: AP

Archie’s middle name Harrison is a noble name, which traditionally means 'Son of Harry or Henry’.

“So there is no moniker which could ever be more appropriate for Harry’s firstborn son,” SJ says.

“Harrison also perfectly encapsulates the American and wider Commonwealth trend for using surnames as first names. It’s currently ranked 113 in the US and was made popular by actor Harrison Ford, but expect to see thousands of newborns given the name now it has the Royal seal of approval.”

Harry couldn’t contain his joy

Shortly after the announcement online, Prince Harry appeared in front of the media for an impromptu interview to gush over his ‘to die for’ baby boy.

A beaming Prince Harry said the pair were "absolutely thrilled" and thanked the public for their support.

When asked about a name for the royal tot, Prince Harry said they were ‘still thinking about names’.

“The baby is a little bit overdue, so we've had a little bit of time to think about it,” he said.

“That's the next bit, but for us I think we will be seeing you guys in probably two days' time as planned as a family to be able to share it with you guys and so everyone can see the baby.”

He went on to say that his wife and child were both doing ‘incredibly well’.

“It's been the most amazing experience I could ever have possibly imagined,” he said.

“How any woman does what they do is beyond comprehension, but we're both absolutely thrilled and so grateful to all the love and support from everybody out there.

“As every father and parent will ever say, you know, your baby is absolutely amazing, but this little thing is absolutely to-die-for, so I'm just over the moon.”

Prince Harry appeared in front of the media for an impromptu photocall to gush over his ‘to die for’ baby boy. Photo: Getty Images

Baby name speculation

When the news broke that the newest member to the royal family was a baby boy, fans immediately began to offer ideas for what the new parents should call their son - who is seventh in line to the throne.

The same six names were constantly being thrown around - Albert, Alexander, Arthur, Philip, James and Spencer.

According to The Telegraph, there have been 12 Alberts in the royal family, which made it a hot favourite for bookies.

Arthur is both Prince William’s middle name, as well as that of his second son, Prince Louis’, while Philip is the name of Prince William and Harry’s grandfather and was predicted as being a ‘rogue contender’.

Fans apparently became suspicious of the name James being a contender last week after learning that typing “Royal.uk/Prince-James” (as well as “Royal.uk/Prince-Alexander”) leads back to the Palace’s main page, unlike other names which appear with an error.

The wildcard on the list of potential names was Spencer, a royal name dating back hundreds of years, as well as the last name of the late Princess Diana.

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