Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s daughter Lilibet was christened at their California home last week. The revelation was made through a public announcement addressing Lillibet as a princess and thereby confirming that they will use royal titles for their children.
The christening that took place last Friday was presided over by Right Reverend John Harvey Taylor, the Bishop of Los Angeles. Around 20-30 guests joined the family for the intimate gathering including Meghan’s mother, Doria Ragland, and Lilibet’s godfather, Tyler Perry.
The festivities included an afternoon of dining and dancing. Reportedly, Harry and Meghan invited King Charles, Queen Consort Camilla, along with Prince William and Kate Middleton but they did not attend.
Lilibet made history soon after her birth in 2021 by being the first senior royal baby born in the United States, and the first great-grandchild of the queen to be born outside of the United Kingdom.
On Wednesday, the children were still listed as Master Archie Mountbatten-Windsor and Miss Lilibet Mountbatten-Windsor on the palace’s official website. However, the site was updated to Prince Archie of Sussex and Princess Lilibet of Sussex by Thursday morning.
The Historical Context of Royal Titles
It should be noted that Persons born into senior positions of the royal family are automatically granted titles. In 1917, it was decreed by King George V that the grandchildren of any sovereign in the direct male line would be conferred a title.
Queen Elizabeth II updated the centuries-old rule in 2012 to make all the children of Prince William and Kate Middleton prince and princess because only Prince George initially inherited the title, being the eldest great-grandson.
Their children will not be able to style themselves as Her/His royal highness given the right to do so comes from their father and he stopped using it when he stepped back from being a working royal in 2020 and moved to the United States.
In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, the Duchess of Sussex told that while she was still pregnant with Archie, the royal family wanted to change the protocol to make sure that he does not get a royal title. Therefore, Lillibet’s title came up as a surprise for the world.
The spokesman for Harry and Meghan stated that the children’s titles have been a birthright since their grandfather became monarch. The issue of their children’s titles’ has been settled for quite some time in accordance with Buckingham Palace.
While titles come naturally to those belonging to the royal family some have chosen not to give them to their children. For instance, Queen Elizabeth’s only daughter, Princess Anne, refused titles for her two children, Peter and Zara. This was followed by Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex who chose not to give their children, Lady Louise and James, Earl of Wessex; prince, and princess titles.
Also Read- Camilla goes against Queen Elizabeth, refuses Queen Consort title In a letter written in February 2022