The day we felt would never come has arrived: King Charles III now rules the commonwealth after the death of Queen Elizabeth. With Charles in charge, titles are about to shift for nearly everyone in the royal family, including Prince Harry’s children.
Officially A Prince
In 1917, King George V established new rules around titles. Children and grandchildren of the reigning sovereign would be eligible to become princes and princesses. This is why there was no ballyhoo over Prince Harry and Prince William securing their own names. It’s their birthright as the grandchildren of Queen Elizabeth.
Elizabeth’s death set the wheels of history in motion instantaneously. Charles immediately did what he’s waited 73 years to do: become king. William and Kate Middleton became the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall. Harry and Markle are still the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, but their children Archie and Lilibet experienced the greatest change of all.
Since they’re now the grandchildren of the reigning sovereign, Archie is now technically Prince Archie. Lilibet is eligible for the title of princess as well. Both could use an HRH title as well if they’d like. The emphasis is on the word technically.
The Ball’s In Harry And Markle’s Court
Just because a century-old document deems it so does not mean Archie will be known as a prince forevermore. It’s up to Harry and Markle which titles their children will use, if any. Since neither uses HRH themselves, that’s almost definitely going out the window. If Harry really wanted Archie to be a prince, he probably could’ve spoken to Elizabeth about it years ago. He didn’t.
Not The First Time
There’s precedent for this in very living history. Elizabeth’s very first grandchild is Peter Phillips, the eldest son of Princess Anne. Elizabeth apparently offered Anne the title of prince multiple times, but Anne refused. This made him the first legitimate grandchild of a monarch in generations to be born without a title.
On top of all that, the final decision maker is Charles. As king, he can pretty much do what he likes with specific titles. There are so many stories about him stripping Harry of titles, but it wasn’t until now that he really got any slice of power to do so. Even then he can’t do much about Harry, but Charles would be well within his rights to deny Archie and Lilibet their princely status. Only time will tell how all the dust settles.