Harry's desire for normal life for Archie

Harry's desire for normal life for Archie.jpg

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex with their baby son, who was born on Monday morning, during a photocall in St George's Hall at Windsor Castle in Winsdor, Britain, 08 May 2019. EPA/Domic Lipinski

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's decision not to use a title for their son will have been inspired by Harry's own struggles growing up as a royal, an expert has said.

Royal author Penny Junor said Harry would have "dearly liked to have been a normal boy" and wanted to give his baby the opportunities of an ordinary life that he never had.

Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor is not an earl or a lord, but will be known simply as Archie, with Master as a prefix when required.

Harry and Meghan's son is not entitled to be a prince or an HRH, but could have used the courtesy title Earl of Dumbarton, or been Lord Archie Mountbatten-Windsor.

Junor said of the decision: "It's exactly what I would have expected from Harry.

"He would have dearly liked to have been a normal boy growing up and found his title very difficult.

"I think that his choice for his son is to let him have the kind of life that he didn't have."

Harry has always stressed the importance of wanting to be seen as normal.

He confessed in 2017 that he once "wanted out" of the royal family.

The former soldier said the time he spent in the Army, when he was "just Harry", was "the best escape I've ever had" and he once considered giving up his title.

"I felt I wanted out but then decided to stay in and work out a role for myself," he said.

The duke is close to his cousins Zara Tindall and Peter Phillips, and may have taken their experiences on board.

"We knew nothing about Zara or Peter Phillips when they growing up because they were ordinary children going to ordinary schools and were not being treated in any special way," Junor said.

Zara, who was Miss Zara Phillips and not entitled to be an HRH as she was born in the female line as the offspring of the daughter of a sovereign, has said not having a title was a blessing.

"I've been very lucky. My parents didn't give us titles, so we've been able to have a slightly more normal upbringing. As soon as you've got a title, it's very difficult to shed it," she said.

The Earl and Countess of Wessex's daughter Lady Louise Windsor and son Viscount Severn, as the children of the son of a monarch, were allowed to be known as princess and prince.

Edward and Sophie, with the Queen's permission, decided to use the courtesy titles of an earl instead.

But Harry and Meghan have gone even further by personally deciding their son should simply be Master Archie Mountbatten-Windsor - demonstrating how they are making their own more modern way within the royal family.

The baby will be entitled to be an HRH or a prince when the Prince of Wales accedes to the throne.

But the Sussexes could decide that Archie will not use the title prince, just like the Wessexes did.

A royal source said the couple had chosen not to give him a courtesy title "at this time".

Eventually he will also be entitled to succeed Harry as the Duke of Sussex.

© PAA 2019