Why Duchess Meghan Markle is being referred to as a “divorced wife”

The Duchess's new title has caused some confusion.
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  • Duchess Meghan Markle’s title is currently under review by the palace. The royal has dropped her HRH title just earlier this week.

    Duchess Meghan Markle’s title is reportedly under review by Buckingham Palace, after she was given a title that is usually used to “express divorce”.

    Upon dropping the HRH from their titles earlier this week, Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan were given new titles: Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex.

    However, palace sources have now confirmed to Sky News that the palace is reviewing how the Duke and Duchess will be referred to in the future, as Duchess Meghan has been given a title that follows the template of a “divorced wife”.

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    “After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution. We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment. We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honour our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages. This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity. We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support.” – The Duke and Duchess of Sussex For more information, please visit sussexroyal.com (link in bio) Image © PA

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    “The palace [on Saturday] made an announcement about what the duke and duchess were to be called,” said Sky events commentator Alastair Bruce.

    “But it inadvertently gives all the wrong messages because, in convention, the style suggested is the one adopted to express divorce.

    “As a result, this will be revisited and I’m sure that the expert, called Garter King of Arms, can provide advice.

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    The issue arises where Duchess Meghan’s new titles includes a comma in the same place as that of women who have divorced royal men.

    “What had been suggested was ‘Meghan, Duchess of Sussex’ but placing the first name and comma before the title is the template for a divorced wife,” continued Alastair.

    “As an example, Harry’s mother was styled after her divorce as ‘Diana, Princess of Wales’ and the same format applies, post-divorce, to ‘Sarah, Duchess of York’”.

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    This comes after the Duke and Duchess dropped their HRH titles earlier this week when it was confirmed by Buckingham Palace that they are ‘no longer working members of the Royal Family’.

    While they will still retain the HRH titles, they will no longer be using them as they have been ‘required to step back from Royal duties, including official military appointments’ and will ‘no longer formally represent The Queen’.

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