Just as the situation between Prince Harry, Meghan Markle and the royal family seemed to calm down, another potential scandal looms.
Everything seemed rosy after the couple announced over the weekend that they had welcomed their second child, a daughter, on Friday and named her Lilibet Diana Mountbatten-Windsor – the first name a long-standing nickname for the Queen.
But now, a BBC report, citing an anonymous source from Buckingham Palace, claims Harry and Markle, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, never sought permission from the Queen to use the nickname.
A spokesman for the Sussexes quickly shot down that source, saying the Queen was the first person Harry reached. The representative also said the couple would never have carried on the name without the queen’s blessing.
“The Duke spoke to his family before the announcement,” said the spokesman. “In fact, his grandmother was the first family member he called. During this conversation he shared her hope of naming her daughter Lilibet in her honor. If she hadn’t supported them, they wouldn’t have used the names. “
Buckingham Palace said it would not make an official statement on naming the child.
The Daily Beast reported on Wednesday that Harry and Markle issued a legal threat through their lawyers after the report was released by the BBC. A UK newspaper source told the outlet that a rare warning had been issued to UK publications and advised them not to reiterate the claim that the former royals had not sought the Queen’s permission.
The Daily Beast also hinted in its report that the Queen is dissatisfied with the chosen name, citing the delay in congratulations from Buckingham Palace, which surfaced almost two hours after the birth announcement on Sunday. Rumors are said to have been “circulated” that the palace was “blind” to the news. None of these claims have been backed up by any other news agency.
The couple named their daughter after Queen Elizabeth, “whose family nickname is Lilibet,” said Harry and Markle’s Sunday statement.
Her middle name, Diana, was “chosen to honor her beloved late grandmother, the Princess of Wales,” according to the statement. Princess Diana, Harry’s mother, died in 1997.
Lili – the shortened version of the name the couple want to call her – is the second child of Harry and Markle. She is now eighth in line to the British throne.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex married in 2018 and welcomed their first child, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, in May 2019.
– With files from Hannah Jackson from News Gob