Why Camilla's Title Caused Meghan And Kate To Not Be Referred To As 'Princess'
In late spring of last year, the royal family welcomed its first American-born member, Meghan Markle. When she wed Prince Harry, Queen Elizabeth gave her the title of the ‘Duchess of Sussex’, as she did for Kate Middleton in 2011, when she was declared the ‘Duchess of Cambridge.'
But why, despite them being married to Prince Harry and Prince William, are they not referred to as Princess?
Victoria Arbiter, a royal contributor for CNN told yahoo’s Royal Box that Camilla chose to go as the Duchess of Cornwall rather than Princess of Wales out of respect for Princess Diana.
Following Diana and Charles’ divorce in 1996, public perception of the Duchess of Cornwall was very poor due to her then very public affair with the Prince. Although her image improved when they finally wed in 2005, Camilla nevertheless thought the title ‘Duchess’ would be a better fit for her.
“That’s why it’s Duchesses throughout the Royal Family – because she [Camilla] is a Duchess,” explained historian Kate Williams.
Arbiter added, "Had the Queen not conferred the wedding day dukedoms on William and Harry, their wives would have been known as Princess William of Wales and Princess Henry of Wales in the same way Baroness Marie Christine von Reibnitz became Princess Michael of Kent upon her 1978 marriage to Prince Michael.”
So although it would be easy to point the finger at Camilla for Kate and Meghan not having the official titles of 'Princess,' the Queen has every power to give the duchesses those titles. “The only person able to implement revisions or bestow titles is the sovereign[Queen Elizabeth],” Arbiter said. Adding,
“Should the Queen choose to do either, her decrees are based on a number of factors including changes that have been made to existing royal rules, long-standing tradition and the examples set by kings and queens who have gone before her.”
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