Just hours before they tie the knot, the couple has a new name to go by.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Engagement Photo
Credit: Kensington Palace via Instagram

Just hours before Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding, the couple officially have their new titles. This morning, Queen Elizabeth announced what the newlyweds will be known as following their ceremony. As many guessed, Harry and Meghan will now be referred to as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

"The Queen has today been pleased to confer a Dukedom on Prince Henry of Wales. His titles will be Duke of Sussex, Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel," the palace said in a statement early this morning. "Prince Harry thus becomes His Royal Highness The Duke of Sussex, and Ms. Meghan Markle on marriage will become Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Sussex."

Royal watchers assumed that the Queen would choose to dub Harry and Meghan as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, in part because it was one of the last remaining dukedoms available, People reports. The other option was Duke and Duchess of Clarence. Harry will not be the first Duke of Sussex, though. Prince Augustus Frederick, son of King George III, was given the title in 1801. The title has been vacated since 1843, when Augustus died.

The question remains: Why did the Queen choose to give the couple their new titles today? Was it the ultimate wedding gift? Unfortunately, no. People notes that it's a longtime royal tradition to give a couple their new monikers in advance of their ceremony. Prince William and Kate Middleton officially became the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on the morning of their nuptials, too.


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