The news has officially been broken, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expecting their first child and huge congratulations are in order.
The announcement was made via the Kensington Palace Instagram account on Monday morning, stating: ‘Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Sussex is expecting a baby in the Spring of 2019. Their Royal Highnesses have appreciated all of the support they have received from people around the world since their wedding in May and are delighted to be able to share this happy news with the public.’
Naturally, we’re over the moon to hear that a mini Markle will be joining the royal family in Spring 2019. But where exactly will Harry and Meghan’s little one fit into the line of succession? As bets are being placed for the sex of the baby, potential names and possible titles, we thought we’d make the guessing game a lot easier by revealing what we do know about the royal baby so far.
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Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Sussex is expecting a baby in the Spring of 2019. Their Royal Highnesses have appreciated all of the support they have received from people around the world since their wedding in May and are delighted to be able to share this happy news with the public. 📷PA
They’ve got three built-in best friends already
The Duchess of Cambridge has expressed her joy about the arrival of Harry and Meghan’s first child, telling the crowd at a recent event: ‘Yeah, absolutely, [I’m excited for Meghan and her new baby].’
‘It’s such a special time to have all the kiddies and a cousin for George and Charlotte, as well as Louis, so it’ll be really special,’ she added – so it sounds like the new royal baby will have plenty of playdates scheduled for them as soon as they arrive!
Meghan and Harry’s baby won’t be a Prince or Princess
As reported by Metro, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s baby will not be a prince nor a princess unless the Queen steps in. This is because King George V (Harry’s great great grandfather) limited titles within the royal family in 1917, meaning that as a great-grandchild of the sovereign, Harry and Meghan’s child is too far down the line of succession to be an HRH.
They won’t have ‘custody’ of their child
That’s right. Harry and Meghan won’t actually have custody of their son or daughter when they arrive due to an interesting royal rule. According royal expert, Marlene Koenig, the Royal Family have an agreement whereby the Queen has full legal custody over all minor royals. This includes Prince George, Princess Charlotte and little Prince Louis, meaning Duke and Duchess of Cambridge don’t actually technically have custody over their children either.
Speaking to The Sun, Koeing explained: ‘The sovereign has legal custody of the minor grandchildren. Legislation passed during the reign of George I. It was known as The Grand Opinion for the Prerogative Concerning the Royal Family and it was about the King’s control over the education, the raising and the marriage of his grandchildren.’
The baby will be seventh in line for the throne
Harry and Meghan’s child will be seventh in line for the throne, following Prince Harry who is sixth in line. Harry’s father, Prince Charles is of course first in line, followed by Prince William who is second and thereafter his children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, who are third, fourth and fifth in line to be King or Queen.
The new arrival will either be a Duke or a Lady
As you’ll know, Harry and Meghan were renamed the Duke and Duchess of Sussex after their wedding. And since their child will be too far done the line of succession to be a Prince or Princess, the baby’s likely title will either be Duke (if they have a boy) or Lady, if they have a girl – this is because a dukedom can only be inherited by a male heir.
The baby will (probably) live at Kensington Palace
Harry and Meghan currently live in the two-bedroom Nottingham Cottage at Kensington Palace and it is believed that the newly-weds will continue to live there when they welcome their first child together. However, nothing has been confirmed yet so they could very well decide to upsize like Prince William and Kate did when they expanded their family.