Did Prince Andrew Lose His Royal Titles Like Prince Harry and Meghan Markle?
The members of the royal family are no strangers to scandals, and their history with negative attention from the public stretches back for decades. Still, the royals had to be happy to see 2019 coming to a close as it was filled with high-profile cases that kept bringing them into the headlines for all the wrong reasons.
Now there’s fresh speculation that one of the people at the center of what was arguably the worst scandal for the family has faced new consequences for his actions. Has Prince Andrew lost his royal title just like Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex?
Prince Andrew is still embroiled in controversy
Prince Andrew voluntarily stepped away from his official royal duties back in November of 2019. The shocking move came after months of outrage from the public as Prince Andrew’s past friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein made its way back into the headlines.
Epstein and the Duke of York had become friends after meeting back in 1999. During their years-long friendship, the pair were spotted partying together at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club and at Windsor Castle.
Accusations of sexual assault surfaced against not only Epstein but also Prince Andrew himself. In 2001, Virginia Roberts claims to have had sex with Prince Andrew multiple times and to have been trafficked by Epstein for that purpose.
While those accusations rested just beneath the surface, Prince Andrew seemed to escape most of the fallout as Epstein was later convicted of prostituting minors and sentenced to 18 months in prison. Shortly following his 2010 release, Epstein was spotted with Prince Andrew in New York. Negative press from photographs of the pair together forced Prince Andrew to resign from his U.K. trade envoy role in 2011.
When he was named in legal documents in the United States, the prior allegations against him resurfaced in 2015. The scandal went without major consequences until 2019, when Epstein’s apparent suicide brought renewed attention to the situation, leaving Prince Andrew named in newly surfaced documents about the past crimes.
There have been recent whispers of a potential FBI investigation, and insiders report that the queen and Prince Charles are both bracing for even more scandal.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle lost their royal titles
Meanwhile, a much less crime-filled scandal unfolded when Prince Harry and Meghan announced their decision to step away from their royal duties. Citing concerns for their own privacy and well-being as a family, the pair have worked out a plan to relinquish their responsibilities — and the pay that comes with them — in favor of independent life.
Part of that deal involved the loss of their official royal titles. Prior to this exit, Prince Harry was officially “His Royal Highness” and Meghan was officially “Her Royal Highness.” While the pair remain the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, they are no longer allowed to use the HRH titles, as they are frequently known.
Prince Andrew’s much darker scandal may be providing some cover for Prince Harry and Meghan to make their exit without as much chaotic news coverage as they would normally get, but they are still caught up in a media circus surrounding their decision.
Has Prince Andrew lost his HRH title?
Prince Andrew eventually stepped down from his royal duties as the Epstein scandal continued to worsen, but there was no indication that he had lost the title of His Royal Highness.
The queen has silently supported her son. Prince Andrew’s move to step down has been portrayed as a public relations decision since the negative attention was making it difficult for him to fulfill his roles, and many of the people and companies he had to work with did not want to be associated with him.
Now, though, there is fresh speculation that Prince Andrew may have lost his title after all. The royal family’s official Instagram account posted its annual birthday announcement for the disgraced prince, and the caption left off the “HRH” in the message. This is notable because the title was present in the birthday post for 2018 and 2019.
It’s possible that the missing title is simply an oversight, but it certainly has royal fans wondering if Prince Andrew has faced even more consequences for his scandal.