Meghan Markle may not be a royal just yet, but she’s already impacted the royal family in major ways. Some of which have even made history!
With that in mind, her official royal title could be a reflection of the influence she’s already had on her in-laws. Find out what Meghan Markle’s royal title will probably be (page 5) and why it will make history (page 6), plus other surprising details about her name, ahead.
1. She will receive her official royal title once she’s married
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry will receive matching royal titles. | Kensington Royal via Instagram
By royal family tradition, the groom is appointed a new name upon marriage and the bride takes the feminine equivalent of her husband’s official title. Sort of like taking someone’s last name, only fancier!
That said, following their marriage, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will receive matching royal titles. Any guesses on what they might be? (Psst: We share the answer on page 5.)
Next: The real reason she won’t ever be called princess
2. She won’t ever be a princess
She’ll likely be a duchess like Kate Middleton. | Chris Jackson-WPA Pool/Getty Images
Think marrying a prince automatically makes you a princess? Think again. Even after marrying Prince Harry, Meghan Markle will probably never be considered a princess. That said, like her future sister-in-law, she will most likely become a duchess.
Next: Her real name isn’t actually Meghan.
3. Her real name is Rachel
She clearly doesn’t go by her first name. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images
Before we get into her official royal title, let’s go over a key piece of information: Meghan’s name isn’t actually Meghan.
Born Rachel Meghan Markle, there’s no telling why the royal-to-be goes by her middle name. However, it could have something to do with her acting career. After all, alliterations are great for stage names and Meghan Markle has a nice ring to it.
Next: The royal family made an exception to this rule for Meghan’s name.
4. She might have to change her first name
Royals aren’t allowed to have nicknames. | Jack Taylor/Getty Images
Names are important to the royal family, and not just official titles. In fact, members of the royal family are not allowed to have nicknames. While, “Meghan” isn’t exactly a nickname, it isn’t her given first name — which means the palace could make her go by Rachel.
But, according to their official engagement announcement, that’s highly unlikely. In the announcement, the palace referred to Ms. Markle as “Meghan” and will most likely continue to do so after the wedding.
Next: Royal experts believe this will be her official royal title.
5. Duchess of Sussex
They’ll both receive their titles upon marriage. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images
Rumor has it, Prince Harry will be named the Duke of Sussex, which means Meghan Markle will become the Duchess of Sussex.
Next: The reason why Duchess of Sussex is such a big deal
6. She will be the first Duchess of Sussex
There has been a duke but never a duchess. | Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images
If the queen names Prince Harry and Meghan Markle the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Meghan will be the first Duchess of Sussex.
Before Harry, Prince Augustus Frederick was the Duke of Sussex. Although he had been married twice, his marriages weren’t approved by his father (King George III) and violated the Royal Marriages Act 1772. Therefore, they were considered unlawful. As a result, neither of his “wives” were allowed to adopt his royal title, so there has never been a Duchess of Sussex.
Next: Her new name isn’t the only thing making history.
7. Her future name isn’t the only historic thing about her
She’s making history in several ways. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images
From the moment her engagement to Prince Harry was announced, Meghan has been making history. Here are some of the ways the royal-to-be has already made history:
- She’s the first mixed raced royal family member.
- She’s the first American to marry a member of the British royal family.
- She was raised Catholic (but was baptized by the Church of England ahead of her royal wedding).
- She’s divorced (something that was once forbidden).
- She’s the first fiancée to spend Christmas with the royal family.
- She started her royal duties before her wedding.
- She will be married on a Saturday (royal weddings typically happen during the week).
Before she joins the British royal family and receives her title, Meghan has some homework to do. In addition to etiquette classes and learning all of the royal family rules, Markle has to take a U.K. citizenship test. And that test covers some pretty specific topics.
Next: Here’s what Meghan Markle will need to know about her future in-laws before she becomes a royal.
The famous poem is a national legacy. | Wikimedia Commons
You might be wondering what poetry has to do with her future in-laws, and the answer is a lot. Many poems in the U.K. tell the stories of kings and queens, and Meghan might find herself answering questions about the most famous ones.
For example, she might be quizzed on Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, a famous English poem about King Arthur’s infamous knights of the round table.
Next: Can she recognize this?
The House of Tudor is technically over, but she’ll still have to know the symbol. | Sodacan/Wikimedia Commons
Although the House of Tudor ended its royal reign with Queen Elizabeth I, U.K. citizens — or those hoping to become citizens — are still required to know some specific information. That includes the symbol of the House of Tudor.
The symbol consists of a red rose with a white rose in the center. King Henry VII adopted it after uniting both the House of York and the House of Lancaster.
Next: The family tree
Meghan Markle will obviously need to know her family tree. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images
Marrying into a big family can be overwhelming — especially if they’re royal. Not only will Meghan need to learn the names of everyone in Prince Harry’s living family, she will also need to learn about his family lineage.
After all, she might be faced with some tough questions about his family tree, including who Queen Elizabeth I’s father was and who is married to Queen Elizabeth II. (We hope she can get that one right.)
Next: What street do they live on?
She’ll need to know specifics about family-owned buildings. | iStock/Getty Images
From castles to estates to historic properties, the British royal family is responsible for quite a bit of property. And to pass her U.K. citizenship test, Meghan will need to know some of the specifics. For instance, she might be asked who built the Tower of London in 1078.
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