Is Meghan Markle a Princess or a Duchess? Everything We Know About Her Royal Title

Although she wasn’t born into royalty, Meghan Markle is royal by marriage. And, with that comes a fancy official title. However, since she is married to a prince, there is some confusion around Meghan Markle’s royal title. And, fans want to know: Is Meghan Markle a princess or a duchess?

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. | Nick Edwards-WPA Pool/Getty Images

We’ve got all the details on Meghan Markle’s royal title, ahead.

Is Meghan Markle a Princess or a Duchess?

Meghan Markle might have married a royal prince, but that doesn’t automatically grant her princess status. Or, at least that’s what her royal title suggests. According to the royal family’s website, Meghan Markle’s official royal title is Her Royal Highness Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex. However, some consider her a British princess by marriage, but it does not appear recognized by the palace.

On their royal wedding day, Queen Elizabeth II named her grandson the Duke of Sussex, which automatically granted Meghan Markle duchess status. In the royal family, a dukedom is the highest ranking title (other than Her Majesty, of course) and most often given to the sons and grandsons of the monarch upon marriage or majority.

For the most part, dukedoms are recycled in the royal family, so there has been another Duke of Sussex before. However, Meghan Markle is the first ever Duchess of Sussex. Prior to Prince Harry, Prince Augustus Frederick was the Duke of Sussex. And, even though he was married twice, his marriages violated the Royal Marriages Act 1772, since they weren’t approved by King George III (his father). Because of that, his marriages were considered unlawful, so neither of his wives were permitted to adopt his official royal title. Because of that, there has never been an official Duchess of Sussex.

Meghan Markle’s royal title

Meghan Markle’s royal title is a lot less complicated than Kate Middleton’s. Unlike her sister-in-law, she will likely keep the same royal title all her life, as Prince Harry won’t become an heir apparent and monarch like his brother, Prince William. That said, Meghan Markle isn’t only a duchess. In addition to being the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle also holds two other titles, which are used when traveling to Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Curious to know more about Meghan Markle’s royal titles? We’ve got the details, below.

Her Royal Highness Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex

In England and the rest of the world, Meghan Markle goes by Her Royal Highness Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex. She received the title from her grandmother-in-law, Queen Elizabeth II on her royal wedding day.

In the royal family, women don’t typically take the royal family’s last name. After all, those with Her Royal Highness status don’t technically have one. Instead, they inherit their husband’s official royal status. So, because the queen made Prince Harry the Duke of Sussex, Meghan Markle’s royal title is the Duchess of Sussex.

Countess of Dumbarton

When visiting Scotland, Meghan Markle’s royal title changes to Countess of Dumbarton — a peerage that Prince Harry received on their wedding day.

Lady Kilkeel

In Northern Ireland, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle aren’t the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Instead, they are the Baron and Baroness or Lady of Kilkeel.

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