Meghan Markle and her husband Prince Harry allegedly rejected the title ‘Earl of Dumbarton’ for their son Archie because it contained the word “dumb”, sources speaking to a major British newspaper have claimed.
Before his marriage to the former TV actress, Harry’s grandmother Queen Elizabeth II bestowed on the prince a dukedom, making him the Duke of Sussex, as well as the two subsidiary titles of Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel, each title reflecting three historic realms that made up the UK, England, Scotland, and Ireland respectively.
Archie has a right to his father Prince Harry’s subsidiary titles, meaning he could have been styled as Lord Archie, Earl of Dumbarton. However, ‘multiple’ sources speaking to The Telegraph claimed that the title was rejected because it contained the word “dumb”.
“They didn’t like the idea of Archie being called the Earl of Dumbarton because it began with the word ‘dumb’ [and] they were worried about how that might look,” one insider told the newspaper, saying the couple feared their son would be bullied or would be lumbered with an unkind nickname.
Another source added: “It wasn’t just Meghan who pointed out the potential pitfalls, it also bothered Harry.”
The claims concerning the title of the Queen’s great-grandson follow conversations between Meghan and American talk show host Oprah Winfrey that appeared to suggest that the Duchess had rejected the title because she did not think it was good enough for Archie.
During a tell-all interview in March with Winfrey, the Duchess of Sussex raised the issue of the offending title, claimed that “they didn’t want him to be a prince”, falsely claiming that would be “different from protocol” and making a tenuous allegation that without the title, her son would be denied taxpayer-funded security.
Meghan Angry Royals Didn’t Break 100 Years of Convention to Make Son a Prince Instead of Lord https://t.co/DFKUa8qW5C
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) March 8, 2021
As Breitbart London noted at the time, despite the American former actress being married to a lifelong member of the Royal Family, she was unaware of the protocol set out over 100 years ago by the Queen’s grandfather, George V, which stipulates that the great-grandson of the Monarch who is not the son of the heir to the throne is entitled to his father’s subsidiary title.
Meanwhile, Prince Harry had sat next to his wife as she made the statements and failed to correct her.
Archie would not be alone in the Royal Family for not having a title, however. The son and daughter of the Princess Royal Princess Anne, Peter Phillips and Zara Tindall — the Queen’s grandchildren — have no titles and Princess Anne’s first husband, a commoner, declined a title on marriage, unlike Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex.
Such complaints had left sources speaking to The Telegraph at the time baffled, saying that the Sussexes, who have been keen to tout their modern and progressive values, had “never raised an issue” about whether their son would be a prince, and rather that Harry had allegedly been “adamant” that his son should be raised without titles like his cousins.
The Duchess of Sussex had also slipped into the conversation with Winfrey the claim that someone in the Royal Family had had “concerns” over “how dark his skin might be when he’s born”.
Meghan and Harry Accuse BBC of Libel Over Report on Baby Lilibet’s Name https://t.co/SyAYQFpysi
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) June 9, 2021
The most damning accusation made during the interview was robustly rejected by Prince William, who told the media: “We are very much not a racist family.” While Queen Elizabeth II had said of the allegations that “some recollections may vary”.
Other claims made during the infamous first Winfrey interview against the Royal Family have been countered in recent days, including that Prince Charles had financially cut off his son in the first quarter of 2020 after the couple stood down from being working royals in January of that year. Representatives for Prince Charles at Clarence House, the Prince of Wales’s official residence, told media on Thursday that the future king had continued to support the Sussexes with a “substantial sum” until the summer of that year.
One claim debunked in recent months was that Harry and Meghan were married privately in their garden by the Archbishop of Canterbury without any witnesses before they were married again in the public Windsor ceremony — in contravention of several church marriage rules and UK laws.
Meghan had told Winfrey in March: “You know, three days before our wedding, we got married.
“No-one knows that. But we just called the Archbishop [of Canterbury, Justin Welby], and we said, ‘Look. This thing. This spectacle is for the world, but we want our union between us’.”
The Duchess of Sussex went on to claim: “So, like, the vows that we have framed in our room are just the two of us in our backyard with the Archbishop of Canterbury.”
Prince Harry corroborated his wife’s assertion, saying it was “just the three of us.”
Meghan and Harry Admit They Weren’t Married in Secret Before Royal Wedding https://t.co/3ymvYjLZyG
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) March 23, 2021