William and Kate’s Children to be Princes and Princesses

  January 9, 2013 at 1:19 pm by

The Queen issued the first Letters Patent of 2013 by granting all the future children of William and Kate the style of Royal Highness and titles of Princes and Princesses.

The Letters Patent was issued on December 31, 2012 and made public on January 9, 2013 – the birthday of the Duchess of Cambridge. The text reads: “The Queen has been pleased by Letters Patent under the Great Seal of the Realm dated 31 December 2012 to declare that all the children of the eldest son of The Prince of Wales should have and enjoy the style, title and attribute of Royal Highness with the titular dignity of Prince or Princess prefixed to their Christian names or with such other titles of honour.”

Under the Letters Patent of 1917 regulating the usage of the Princely title and the style of Royal Highness, only the eldest son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales would otherwise be entitled to be titled a Prince and styled as a Royal Highness; younger children of the Duke of Cambridge would have been styled as Lords and Ladies.

Such Letters Patent are not unusual; a year after Princess Elizabeth married the Duke of Edinburgh, George VI issued Letters Patent granting all the future children of the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh a royal and princely status. Letters Patent were necessary to be issued because female-line grandchildren of the Monarch are not entitled to the titles of a British Prince or Princess, or the style of Royal Highness. Had the King not made the proclamation, Prince Charles and Princess Anne – both born during their grandfather’s reign – would have been known as respectively Earl of Merioneth and Lady Anne Mountbatten, despite being children of the Heiress Presumptive to the Throne.

You can read the ongoing discussion about the new Letters Patent in this thread – The Queen issues new Letters Patent – 9.1.2013


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