Is Meghan Markle Sending a Bold Message Through Princess Diana’s Iconic Heirloom?

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex is living a whole new life in California, preparing for new projects and spending lots of quality time with Prince Harry and their son, Archie Harrison. Many have speculated that in the wake of her highly-publicized exit from the royal family, she is contemplating entering the entertainment industry again — speculation that has been fueled by her recent work with Disney.

Although Meghan has not spoken out in official interviews, she has been sending plenty of subliminal messages via video chats and rare public appearances. One of her most recent virtual appearances featured a cameo from a stunning piece of jewelry — a gold watch that once belonged to Meghan’s late mother-in-law, Princess Diana. 

The Duchess of Sussex’s claim to fame came before the royal family

Meghan Markle in South Africa
Meghan Markle in South Africa | Samir Hussein/WireImage

Meghan was born in California in 1981. As a child, she was drawn to the entertainment industry, after going to work with her father, who worked as a lighting director for a few popular television shows.

After her college graduation, Markle decided to pursue a career in acting, and in 2011, she landed a leading role in the TV show Suits. In the summer of 2016, while still pursuing an acting career, Meghan met England’s Prince Harry, and the two started a romance.

By late 2017, the two were engaged, and Meghan embarked on a whole new life as a senior member of the royal family. Sadly, her time in the royal ranks was marred by negative tabloid headlines, and in January 2020, Meghan and Prince Harry announced that they would be stepping down as senior royals

Meghan Markle owns a watch that belonged to Princess Diana

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These days, Meghan is able to wear more relaxed clothing during public appearances and isn’t required to follow a strict dress code. Still, when she wants to step it up, she can choose to wear some stunning jewelry that she has been gifted over the years.

Meghan owns several pieces of jewelry that belonged to Prince Harry’s late mother, the beloved Princess Diana. A few of the pieces in the Duchess of Sussex’s collection that were once worn by the People’s Princess include a pair of gold stud earrings, a fabulous aquamarine ring, and a gold bracelet.

Still, one of the most stunning pieces is a gold Cartier watch that was once given to Princess Diana on her 21st birthday. The watch, which is valued at around $22,000, was originally in Prince William’s possession. But he swapped with his brother for Princess Diana’s sapphire engagement ring.

After holding on to the watch for years, Prince Harry gifted the watch to his bride, Meghan. The Duchess of Sussex has been seen wearing the watch on several occasions in recent years. Most recently, she was seen rocking the fabulous timepiece during her virtual appearance on September 29th for the Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit. 

Is Meghan paying tribute to Princess Diana by wearing the watch or sending a message?

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There’s no doubt that Meghan has amazing style, and likely appreciates the gold watch on its own merits. Still, there could be another reason why she likes to flash the watch during public appearances — it could be her way of drawing a direct comparison to Princess Diana’s life and her own.

After all, both she and her late mother-in-law suffered from relentless tabloid attention. Princess Diana retreated from public view after her divorce from Prince Charles, but she still couldn’t escape the limelight. Similarly, Meghan has left the royal fold but continues to be a hot topic for fans around the world.

Additionally, Meghan has a deep love for philanthropic causes, just as Princess Diana did. There’s no doubt that she shares many traits with the late Princess Diana, as Prince Harry himself has recognized. In fact, he has directly compared the two on several occasions, proving that although Princess Diana might be gone, her influence will continue to live on through her family. 

Now that Meghan has stepped away from the royal family, wearing the watch just might be her way of further strengthening the connection between her life trajectory and the one of the late princess.