- Prince Harry is world-famous, and even gets called that by his family.
- But his name is actually Henry – and his formal title is Prince Henry of Wales.
- Official notices – like his engagement today – use his proper name.
- In the unlikely event that he becomes king, he could revert to the name and be Henry IX.
Prince Harry is one of the most famous people on earth – even more so now that he’s officially getting married to actress Meghan Markle.
But, although millions of people around the world recognise his name, it’s worth recalling that he’s not actually called Harry.
The prince, in fact, is named Henry. Harry is an informal nickname, albeit one that has been adopted by almost everybody, including his family.
However, “Henry” is still rolled out for formal occasions, such as today, as part of his full, official title: Prince Henry of Wales.
The official announcement of the engagement has the title “Prince Henry of Wales & Meghan Markle are engaged to be married.” It is hosted on his official website, princehenryofwales.org.
Harry is currently fifth in line to the throne (and will be sixth when William and Kate have their next child), so is very unlikely to ever become king.
But if he did, he would likely become King Henry IX – though royals can choose any of their names, so Henry Charles Albert David could also be Charles III, Albert I, or David I.
Royals named Henry have been known by the nickname Harry for centuries – at least since the time of Shakespeare, who used “Harry” repeatedly to refer to Henry V.
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