Did Queen Elizabeth Forbid Prince Harry From Marrying Long-Term Girlfriend Chelsy Davy?

It was a lifetime ago and also not so long ago at all that Prince Harry was automatically pictured alongside his on-again, off-again girlfriend Chelsy Davy. It’s undeniable that these two looked good together—with her classic blonde looks and his rugged prince-next-door appeal, it was easy to see them committing to a future together.

But then all of the sudden they were split for good and Prince Harry was single for a while, content to hang out in a trio with his older brother and sister-in-law on a regular basis. Everything changed when Meghan Markle came along and now it’s hard to image the Duke of Sussex marrying anyone else.

Would he have married Chelsy Davy, or did something—or someone—inspire them to call it quits?

Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy
Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy | Indigo/Getty Images

Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy had an instant attraction

The Duke of Sussex is a man who knows what he wants. Just like he supposedly fell in love with Meghan Markle at first sight, he also fell for Chelsy within a few days of meeting her. This couple met in 2004 back when Prince Harry had just finished his studies at Eton College and was enrolled at military academy in Sandhurst.

And who is Chelsy Davy? She’s the daughter as a Zimbabwean billionaire and the target of Prince Harry’s affection for years. The two dated off and on until 2009, though there were rumors of future hook-ups even beyond that until 2015.

Davy even spent time hanging out with Kate Middleton while the two were dating brothers. It sounds like she would have fit in well with the royal family. So why didn’t these two get married?

Harry and Chelsy
Harry and Chelsy | Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

The Queen may have told Prince Harry not to marry Chelsy Davy

There’s a very good reason why the Queen didn’t want Prince Harry to marry Chelsy Davy and it had nothing to do with her personally.

In terms of a suitable mate, Chelsy Davy had a lot going for her: looks, money, youth. No scandalous background. But the main reason Queen Elizabeth disapproved was because of all the breaking up. Before Prince Harry popped the question, she would have needed to ensure that her grandson was serious about making a permanent commitment.

Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy
Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy | Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty Images

It all goes back to some comments she made about divorce in the past. “She now feels, to put it bluntly, that enough is enough. She does not want to name names, but she is adamant that there are going to be no further royal divorces during her reign,” a palace aide told the Sunday Express.

“The Queen is the head of the Church, and so from a point of principle, she is opposed to royal divorces. However, she has witnessed the divorces not just of her sister Princess Margaret, but also, those of her three eldest children,” the source continued.

“The concept of divorce goes against the Queen’s whole upbringing, which is about duty and about soldiering on in the face of adversity.”

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Harry
Queen Elizabeth and Prince Harry | Julian Simmonds – WPA Pool / Getty Images

She wanted Prince Harry to grow up a bit

The breakups, the partying, the mini scandals—all over Prince Harry’s behaviors over the years led Queen Elizabeth to believe that Prince Harry simply wasn’t ready to settle down yet at the time he was dating Chelsy Davy. And since she wanted to avoid a royal family divorce no matter what, that meant talking him out of marriage until he was really ready.

Chelsy Davy wasn’t thrilled with the royal life anyway

Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy
Prince Harry and Chelsy Davy | MJ Kim/Getty Images

But if Prince Harry had proposed, would Chelsy Davy have said yes? There’s a chance she wouldn’t have. Like so many other royal ex-girlfriends, she later expressed her discomfort with constantly being in the spotlight as Prince Harry’s girlfriend. “It was so full-on: Crazy and scary and uncomfortable,” Davy once said in an interview with Harper’s Bazaar. “I found it very difficult when it was bad. I couldn’t cope.”

Regardless of why they broke up, it ended up working out in the end. Prince Harry and Chelsea Davy remained friendly and she was even invited to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s wedding in May 2018.