Charles not permitted to name William and Harry — but DID name Anne’s Zara

Zara Tindall: Husband Mike announces wife’s pregnancy

The Royal Family usually ensure newborns are given more traditional monikers which have been used before, such as Victoria and George, presumably to replicate the sense of continuity the monarchy is famous for. Lord Louis Mountbatten’s name, for instance, lives on through Prince George who has Louis as his middle name as well as through his younger brother, who has the moniker as his first name. Elizabeth is another staple in the royal catalogue of names.

It famously dates back to Queen Elizabeth I, and came back into the spotlight through King George VI’s wife, later known as the Queen Mother.

The current Queen was christened with the same famous moniker and a handful of her female descendants have taken it as one of their middle names, too.

As the heir apparent, Charles undoubtedly expected his children to follow that tradition.

Yet, the Prince of Wales was snubbed by his wife when choosing both of his sons’ names, according to biographer Andrew Morton.

Princess Diana told the author in secret tapes recorded for the 1992 book, ‘Diana: Her True Story’, that it was her name choices which had prevailed with their two children.

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She was asked, “who chose [Harry’s] name?”, and she replied: “I did.”

Diana explained: “I chose William and Harry, but Charles did the rest.

“He wanted Albert and Arthur, and I said no. Too old!”

Albert would have been a nod to Charles’ grandfather King George VI, who went by Bertie among friends and family, while Arthur may have been a gesture to the legend of King Arthur.

Yet, Diana allowed Charles to have his way by allowing him to choose their children’s second names.

The Duke of Cambridge’s full name is William Arthur Philip Louis, while the Duke of Sussex’s is Henry Charles Albert David.

When William ascends the throne, he will be able to use any of his given names just as many previous monarchs have done — for instance, Queen Victoria was born Princess Alexandrina Victoria.

His brother Harry is unlikely to ever start using his formal name Henry, having been known by the more affectionate nickname throughout his life.

Henry is a typical royal name most famously used by King Henry VIII, but even he was called Harry by those close to him.

Although Charles had tried to stick to royal tradition when naming his sons, he actually set a precedent for the monarchy to veer away from convention when he was allowed to name his niece a few years before.

Upon the birth of her second child in 1981, Princess Anne allegedly said: “The baby made a rather sudden and positive arrival.

“And my brother thought Zara was an appropriate name.”

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It’s thought the name means ‘seed’, ‘flower’ or ‘princess’ — the latter would have made most sense, as Zara is the Queen’s eldest granddaughter but has no royal titles.

Another explanation is that Zara arrived so quickly, Charles was looking into the French origins of the moniker which link it to the word “light” — so the royal name was a reference to her “speed of light” arrival into the world.

Anne herself said the name meant “bright as the dawn”.

Interestingly, Diana often said Charles had always hoped they would have a daughter together.

It’s not clear what the Prince of Wales may have wanted to call her but considering his unexpected choice for his niece, he may have ventured past the traditional royal route.

Zara and Mike Tindall have also set off a flurry of speculation over what they may end up calling their third child after announcing they were expecting another little one earlier this week.

The couple’s first two children, Lena and Mia, showed that the pair had followed Charles’ lead and chosen more uncommon names.

Prince William chose typically royal names for his three, Prince George, Princess Charlotte — in honour of her grandfather — and Prince Louis.

However, Prince Harry copied his mother in dodging royal expectations when he named his son with Meghan Markle last year.

Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor does not have any titles, just like Zara’s children, but uses the Royal Family’s surname instead so that he can become a private citizen.

His first name Archie is not short for a more formal moniker such as Archibald and surprised bookmakers’ when it was announced.

It means “genuine”, “bold” or “brave”, while Harrison was originally a surname meaning “son of Harry”.

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