Since he was born, royal followers have wondered why Archie is not a prince and doesn’t have a royal title. That question was somewhat answered on Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s interview with Oprah Winfrey on Sunday, March 7.
During her tell-all with Oprah, which was titled Oprah With Meghan and Harry: A CBS Primetime Special, Meghan revealed that, while she was pregnant with Archie, the royal family told her that her child wouldn’t be a princes and thus, wouldn’t be given security like other members of the British royal family.
“They didn’t want him to be a prince or a princess, which would be different from protocol,” Meghan said, explaining the conversation happened before she knew her baby’s sex. “It was really hard…This went on for the last few months of our pregnancy where I’m going, ‘Hold on a second. How does that work?…If he’s not gonna be a prince, he needs to be safe.’”
Meghan went on to reveal that she and Harry were given “no explanation” as to why Archie, the great-grandson of Queen Elizabeth II, wouldn’t receive a royal title. “I heard a lot of it through Harry and other parts through conversations with family members. It was a decision they felt was appropriate,” Meghan said, denying that it was her and Harry’s decision not to make Archie a prince.
The Duchess of Sussex also explained that she wanted her son to have a royal title “if it meant he was going to be safe” and receive security. She also told Oprah that denying him a title violated the George V convention. Though Harry and Meghan weren’t given an official answer as to why Archie wasn’t given a royal title or security (while other blood relatives of the royal family have), she did hint to Oprah that the decision may have been because of Archie’s race. As the son of Meghan, who is half-Black, Archie is the first biracial baby to be born into the royal family in contemporary times.
“All around this same time, we had in tandem the conversation of he won’t be given security, he’s not going to be given a title, and also concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he’s born,” Meghan said. “That was relayed to me from Harry, those were conversations that family had with him. And I think it was really hard to be able to see those as compartmentalized conversations.”
During their interview, Oprah asked Meghan if the royals “were concerned that if [Archie] were too brown that that would be a problem?” to which Meghan responded, “I wasn’t able to follow up. If that’s the assumption you’re making…that would be a safe one.” When Oprah asked Meghan which royal family member had concerns about Archie’s skin tone, the Duchess of Sussex declined to name the person, telling Oprah that it would be too “damaging” for them.
When Harry was asked about the skin tone comments later in the interview, the Duke of Sussex said he will “never” share details from the conversation. “That conversation I’m never going to share. It was awkward. I was a bit shocked,” he said. “That was right at the beginning: ‘What will the kids look like?’”
After the special, a source told Us Weekly that Buckingham Palace is insistent that Archie’s lack of a royal title has “nothing to do with race.” “The palace says it’s nothing to do with race,” the insider said. “Under royal protocol established by King George V, only those in the direct line of succession to the throne get the titles [of] prince or princess.”
The source also explained that Archie still has a chance of receiving a royal title in the future once his grandfather, Prince Charles, takes over as the new monarch. “Archie would’ve been given a title when Prince Charles became king,” the insider said.