In 2021, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex named their newborn daughter Lilibet Diana. “Lilibet” was Queen Elizabeth II’s family nickname, and it was the name Prince Philip and Princess Margaret tended to call her privately. Prince Harry used the nickname as an homage to the grandmother he adored, and he specifically called QEII and told her about the name. I always had a theory about what happened next: QEII gave her general blessing for the name and then QEII simply didn’t tell her courtiers about it. When the announcement came out about Lili’s name, the courtiers then freaked out because THEY were not informed. The royal establishment then spent weeks throwing a tantrum about “how dare Harry and Meghan use the queen’s nickname!” It was insane. It’s still insane, especially since a new book is still trying to make it into the biggest scandal the monarchy ever faced.

Queen Elizabeth was infuriated by Harry and Meghan’s claim that she had given her blessing to their daughter being named Lilibet, a new book reveals. The illuminating revelation comes in the latest instalment of a fascinating new biography – Charles III: New King, New Court. The Inside Story, by the Mail’s writer Robert Hardman, currently being serialised exclusively in the Daily Mail.

In 2021, his and Meghan’s decision to call their new daughter Lilibet, who was born in California and has only once briefly been to the UK, raised eyebrows.

At the time the BBC reported it had been told by a palace source that the Queen was not asked by the Duke and Duchess as to whether they could use it. Other sources told media, including the Mail, that while the Queen was called by her grandson and his wife, she felt she wasn’t in a position to say no.

But a Sussexes’ spokesperson insisted they would not have used the name had the Queen not been ‘supportive’. They said at the time: ‘The duke spoke with his family in advance of the announcement – in fact his grandmother was the first family member he called. During that conversation, he shared their hope of naming their daughter Lilibet in her honour. Had she not been supportive, they would not have used the name.’ Strongly-worded legal letters were then sent out.

Hardman writes that some of the late monarch’s household were particularly ‘interested’ that amidst a wealth of private family information and criticism of staff members, Harry mysteriously ‘omitted’ the entire incident from his memoir, Spare.

The author says: ‘One privately recalled that Elizabeth II had been “as angry as I’d ever seen her” in 2021 after the Sussexes announced that she had given them her blessing to call their baby daughter “Lilibet”, the Queen’s childhood nickname.

‘The couple subsequently fired off warnings of legal action against anyone who dared to suggest otherwise, as the BBC had done. However, when the Sussexes tried to co-opt the Palace into propping up their version of events, they were rebuffed. Once again, it was a case of “recollections may vary” – the late Queen’s reaction to the Oprah Winfrey interview – as far as Her Majesty was concerned. Those noisy threats of legal action duly evaporated and the libel actions against the BBC never materialised.’

[From The Daily Mail]

I assume Harry didn’t include the story in Spare because he didn’t want to reveal that particular private conversation with his grandmother. I also assume that Harry knew that his grandmother was in poor health and being “managed” by people who hated him and used QEII’s name to make his life hell. If QEII was truly “as angry as I’d ever seen her” about her great-granddaughter’s NAME, then QEII had truly lost the plot. It’s far more likely that QEII didn’t care either way and the people around her were storming around, screaming, crying and throwing up. Also: Harry’s lawyers sent legal threats not to intimidate his grandmother, but to put the courtiers in line so they wouldn’t blatantly lie about him or continue to claim that Harry had not spoken to his grandmother. After those legal notices were sent, those royal sources stopped saying that Harry had not consulted with his grandmother.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Netflix and Misan Harriman for the Sussexes.

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