It has come to our attention recently that there is some confusion about Prince William and the Duchess Of Cambridge’s placement in terms of entitlement to titles, in order to try and redress this, here’s our short, yet we hope informative guide, to what Prince William is in line for when his father succeeds to the throne. Apologies for the recent succession of titles and future based posts for those to whom this is already known – we try to cater for everyone.
Firstly, the most notable and questioned title the heir to the throne usually holds is Prince of Wales. However, this is not automatic, in fact this is a title that must be conferred by the sovereign upon the heir. Most heirs apparent in history have held the title of Prince of Wales.
What is automatic, however, is that the moment Prince Charles accedes to the throne, Prince William and Catherine will become ‘Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess Of Cornwall’, or in conjunction with their current titles, ‘His Royal Highness The Prince William, Duke Of Cornwall and Cambridge’ and ‘Her Royal Highness The Duchess Of Cornwall and Cambridge’.
Being Duke Of Cornwall entitled Prince William and his wife to the enormous estate holdings of the Duchy Of Cornwall which for centuries has supplied finance to the Monarch’s eldest son, unlike the Principality Of Wales which is merely a title.
It may even be decided (unlikely) that the title of Prince Of Wales shouldn’t be conferred upon Prince William, in which case he would remain simply as the Duke Of Cornwall and Cambridge.
If Prince William is given the Principality Of Wales, he would become, ‘HRH The Prince Of Wales’ and the present Duchess Of Cambridge would be ‘HRH The Princess Of Wales’ (this might be one of the (admittedly slightly outlandish) reasons why the Principality may not be conferred upon Prince William, though this is unlikely.
There, Prince William would remain as Prince Of Wales until he accedes to the throne to become King William V.
As a side note, Prince Harry would become ‘HRH The Prince Henry’ (HRH The Prince Harry) when Prince Charles accedes as King, essentially just losing the ‘of Wales’ part and accumulating a ‘The’.
photo credit: tsaiproject via photopin cc
Does the change to Prince Harry’s name also include the possibility of being conferred a title by Her Majesty in the occasion of him getting married?
Yes, if he was say made Duke of Sussex, he would (if Prince Charles was King) be ‘HRH The Prince Henry, Duke Of Sussex’.
What titles do you think are likely for Harry?
Some sources say that the title of Duke of Sussex has been already earmarked out for Prince Harry. Whatever it is, it’ll almost certainly be a Dukedom.
Duke of Sussex is, indeed, widely touted. Though let’s not forget it was also widely touted for Prince Edward, who ended up being made (absurdly) Earl of Wessex instead. Once upon a time, the title dukedom of Clarence was customarily bestowed upon second sons. It might, therefore, be appropriate to make Prince Harry the Duke of Clarence instead.
Duke of Clarence for Prince Henry (Harry) gives a ring to it rather than the Duke of Sussex, which gives a naughty sound to it. Although it would be funny for Harry because he lived in Clarence House for so many years then he would become Duke of Clarence? LOL.
Shouldn’t it be Duke of York? When Charles would become King, second sons get the title Duke of York? Or this is not automatic?
The title of Duke of York is not automatic, it must be issued by the reigning Monarch.
No less, wouldn’t it be a trifle awkward to have two Dukes of York?
Prince Edward was created Earl of Wessex until the Dukedom of Edinburgh becomes available. He will be granted the Dukedom of Edinburgh only after the current Duke dies and the Prince of Wales ascends the throne.
Prince Harry = Baron Bum
Providing the new King (Charles) creates his eldest son Prince William, The Prince of Wales, there is no reason why Catherine should not be Princess of Wales (being the wife of the Prince of Wales). With all due respect to the late Diana, Princess of Wales, she was not the only Princess of Wales in history nor should she be the last — no one is that ‘great’ or ‘memorable’. I am sure that Diana herself would not want to see her eldest son’s wife be deprived of her rightful title out of some over done homage to her memory.
Of course, it is also perfectly true that HRH The Duchess of Cornwall IS also the Princess of Wales, though she chooses not to use that title out of deference to her husband’s first wife, the mother of her two step-children. I do hope, however, that they will re-think all this ‘Princess Consort’ nonsense. I see absolutely no reason why, when HRH The Prince of Wales becoming King, his wife should not be known by her correct title as ‘HM The Queen’ or ‘Queen Camilla’.
Queen Camilla, Hahahaha!
A consort is not entitled to be addressed as HM; that designation applies only to regnant queens
Not true: Queens consort have their style matching their husband, therefore the wife of a King would be ‘Her Majesty The Queen’
When William ascends to the Throne, he won’t necessarily be King William V. He can choose a different regnal name.
It is widely believed that Prince Charles will take the name of King George VII in honor of his grandfather, George VI. I don’t see how Charles could take his own name (Charles III), given its unhappy association with his Stuart predecessor who lost his head.
But William V has a happy ring to it. King William IV (1830-37) may have been a philanderer, but he rose to the occasion of his unexpected kingship by supporting major reforms, including the abolition of slavery and expansion of voting rights which helped save the British Monarchy from the fate of other monarchies on the continent.
May God extend our present Elizabethan age, and may she not be succeeded for many more years to come!
We are aware Prince William could choose a different regnal name, though it’s almost not worth considering as none of his other names have history in the Monarchy and he’ll surely want to keep his own name.
Prince Charles could be King Charles III, there is really no reason he couldn’t be. For example, Edward VIII abdicated in scandal in 1936, though you can guarantee there’ll be more King Edwards.
I think he should be Charles III. It has been over 300 years since the Stuarts. And being the Heir so long has made the name Charles closely associated with him. It would seem foolish to change his name after over 60 years. If he had become a king younger that might have proved a good option, not so late in life.
I would have no problem with ‘King Charles III’ either but it might be a canny move to opt for ‘George VII’, as I think if he sticks with Charles then the popular press will continue to refer to him simply as ‘Charles’ instead of by his correct title as “the King”. You never hear the Queen referred to in the media as ‘Elizabeth’ but it has become commonplace to refer to other members of the Royal Family simply by their Christian names. I actually find this rather impudent and I certainly don’t think the King should ever be referred to as such. I find it hard to believe that, should HRH opt for ‘George VII’ as his regnal name, that the press will start referring to him as ‘George’. A few, may, stick stubbornly with Charles but, actually, I think most would switch to ‘the King’ and we’d finally see an end to references to ‘Charlie Boy’.
i was not aware that HRH Prince Charles was able to take the throne on the grounds that he was divorced and also married a divorcee as they are very steeped in tradition this states that he should abdicate his position to the throne to his heir which is Prince William.
Show me the Act of Parliament that bars divorcees or those married to divorcees from the throne. Just because the Gov’t in 1936 took one view, does not mean that their successors are bound to take the same view. A previous gov’t took the view that Princess Margaret could not marry Group Captain Peter Townsend because he was divorced but, when the Prince of Wales re-married, the gov’t of the day took a different view. Times change and so should we. It was wrong to force King Edward VIII to abdicate in 1936 because he happened to have fallen in love with a woman who was divorced (God knows there were plenty of other good reasons to force him to abdicate, but not that!). I would like to think we have moved on over the last 78 years. Divorce is very common nowadays – sad to say, but it is – and I don’t think we should hold the Royal Family to an impossible standard. Divorce is a reality. It could prove problematic: Don’t forget, three out of four of the current monarch’s children are divorcees. We start excluding all divorcees from the succession, I think we’re going to run into problems very quickly!
You say it’s “not worth considering” but weren’t you as surprised as I when the former Prince of Orange opted to becoming King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands instead of the anticipated ‘King Willem IV’? I know I was. I do agree though, I would think it unlikely that the Duke of Cambridge would choose a different regnal name, for the reason you mention. Though he can choose any name he wants technically. It doesn’t even have to be one of his own given names. He could chose to be ‘King Constantine III’ or ‘King Stephen II’. It’s entirely up to him.
The spouse of the Prince of Wales is the Princess of Wales, despite what the Diana fanatics may think. Camilla is Princess of Wales, automatically, and she will automatically become Queen when Charles ascends the throne.
There is a precedent for creating one’s son Prince of Wales after waiting decades to become King in the form of Edward VII, Prince Charles’ great-great grandfather. Edward VII enjoyed a close relationship with his surviving son, Prince George, the Duke of York, much as the current Prince of Wales enjoys with both his sons. I can definitely see King Charles III creating the Duke of Cambridge the Prince of Wales as a mark of respect, confidence, etc.
To receive the latest Royal Central posts straight to your email inbox, enter your email address below and press subscribe.
Join 379 other subscribers