Is There Really Any Drama with Lilibet’s Name?

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in the rain with umbrella.
Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage

If Prince Harry and Meghan Markle leave even the tiniest opening for any potential interpretations of drama, certain corners of the crown-obsessed press and members of the “royal expert” industrial complex will find it. Even, apparently, when it comes to the birth of their daughter Lilibet “Lili” Diana. The last storyline: the infant’s name is somehow “rude” to the queen.

In addition to the obvious Princess Diana tribute, the daughter’s name also includes an homage to Queen Elizabeth II. “Lilibet” is a longtime nickname for the queen used by family and close friends. Reportedly, her own father, George VI, bestowed it onto her as a toddler—based on the way Elizabeth herself first pronounced her own name.

But apparently, some are aghast Harry and Meghan would use the casual name for their daughter.

“I don’t think it’s a good idea—I think it’s quite rude to Her Majesty Her Queen,” Angela Levin, a royal Biographer, told Good Morning Britain. “It was a very private nickname from her husband, who hasn’t been dead for very long.”

When it was pointed out to Levin that Philip actually didn’t give her the name, she still doubled down.

"We knew what it was but it was his name—[the Duke of Edinburgh] wanted that name for her, it was a special name, I think it’s quite demeaning, I really believe that,” she continued. (Philip, by the way, reportedly had a much more intimate nickname for his wife: “cabbage.”)

Regardless, Levin’s comments were picked up by conservative-leaning outlets on both sides of the Atlantic as evidence of more strife within the house of Windsor. Several other commenters and idle Twitter users also attempted to interpret the name as some sort of odd slight to the Queen.

Several other outlets including Vanity Fair and Page Six, however, are now reporting that the Sussexes actually asked the Queen’s direct permission before naming their child.

Elizabeth was also told of the birth well before the public, and the official Royal Family Instagram account certainly seemed excited to announce Lilibet’s arrival while referring to her by her full name.

But even if there is a bit of inner-family confusion about the choice of name, at a certain point, one has to ask themselves: “Who cares?” They’re all very privileged adults. We think they can deal with it. Besides, we’re literally talking about the birth of a child here.