Royal Blues: British royal family’s split widens after Prince Harry & Meghan’s interview and naming of daughter

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June 20, 2021 2:00 AM

Be it Prince Harry and Meghan’s split from the family or dealing with Diana’s iconic status, there have been countless occasions when the British royal family has gone through unhappiness

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in conversation with Oprah Winfrey earlier this year APPrince Harry and Meghan Markle in conversation with Oprah Winfrey earlier this year (Image: AP)

Earlier this month, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle sparked controversy when they announced the name of their newborn daughter. Lilibet ‘Lili’ Diana Mountbatten-Windsor has been named after Queen Elizabeth and Harry’s mother Princess Diana.

However, a report published in The Daily Mail, which quotes a royal expert says that the Queen would be “desperately unhappy” at Harry and Meghan naming their child as Lilibet ‘Lili’, as the name is special and private to her and was used only by George V and Prince Philip. The report, which questions the “irony” of the name after “trashing the Royal Family” says it has been “demeaning” for the royal family.

This is not the first time though that the royal family has been reported to be unhappy. Be it Prince Harry and Meghan’s split from the family or dealing with Diana’s iconic status, there have been countless occasions when the family has gone through unhappiness. Then there are the various controversies that it has had to face over the years.

Interestingly, the name ‘Lili’ is a variation of the flower lily, which symbolises purity, commitment and rebirth. While the Queen’s persona in public life is that of a true and committed leader yet her emotional side is quite evident in public outings—she was seen wiping a tear during the 2019 Remembrance Sunday service in honour of Britain’s war heroes at the Cenotaph.

Prince Philip’s death has taken a toll too. Author and body language expert Judi James stated in a news report in The Evening Standard, a daily newspaper in London, that the royals appeared “surprised at how hard Philip’s death had hit them” during the service. The monarch looked “very vulnerable and frail” as she arrived for the service, but remained “the most animated royal”, James said.

Coming back to Harry and Meghan, it is quite evident how miserable they have been too. The couple’s interview with Oprah Winfrey showed how unhappy the couple was as they complained about royal life and their mental health. In October last year, in fact, the Duchess of Sussex began legal action against British tabloid The Mail on Sunday over its unlawful publishing of one of her private letters. Harry termed it a “ruthless campaign”. Meghan has also spoken about how motherhood has been a “struggle” due to intense interest from newspapers.

But there have been some lighter moments as well. Last year’s book Finding Freedom by Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand talks about the amazing food Harry and Meghan enjoyed at key moments of their courtship and during the 20 months of their working together as senior royals before stepping down. A decision which resulted in a deluge of desi memes going viral on the royals—for instance, a mash-up video of Queen Elizabeth as a savage desi mom talking about #Megxit.

The couple’s decision to step down from their royal roles and move to the US, however, hurt many Britishers and the monarchy. Queen Elizabeth issued a statement saying “the whole family was saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan.”

The couple has also reportedly made Prince William unhappy. Royal expert and author Phil Dampier told Daily Mail that William “will be unhappy” as Harry is “exploiting Princess Diana’s iconic status” on his new Archewell foundation website. William might be “worried” about the 2021 letter Harry and Meghan shared on the Archewell website, Dampier said. “I don’t think he would be happy if Harry appears to be exploiting his mother’s iconic status.”

The Queen was also unhappy about the 1969 Royal Family, a British TV documentary about Queen Elizabeth II’s family, and forbade it to be shown online, as per The Guardian. Princess Anne, the Queen’s daughter, also spoke of her unhappiness with the programme as she “never liked the idea of the royal family film… it was a rotten idea,” she was quoted as saying by CNN.

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