Kate Middleton accidentally let slip that she and Prince William are having a daughter. Now we know the name, and it’s a perfect tribute to the three women who were most important in their lives growing up.
The future potential queen will be called Elizabeth Diana Carole Mountbatten-Windsor.
The three names honor Prince William’s grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II; his mother Princess Diana; and Kate’s mother Carol. Hollywood Life notes Carol is also the Latin variation of Charles, so William’s father gets some respect too, either on purpose or by serendipity. Kate’s mother’s middle name is also Elizabeth.
It would have been a bolder choice if the couple had chosen to put Diana’s name first in the sequence, given Diana’s unfortunate death. Since the girl very well may be crowned queen one day, giving her the name Elizabeth honors the royal family’s history.
The most popular name given to British princesses by birth is Mary, followed by Louise and then Victoria. William and Kate’s daughter, if she ascends to the throne, will be crowned Elizabeth III.
According to the British Royal Family’s website, in 1960, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, decided their direct descendants would have the surname Mountbatten-Windsor. Windsor is the name of the Royal Family, and Mountbatten is the surname assumed by Prince Philip of Greece in 1947 when he became naturalized as a Lieutenant in the Royal Navy.
Prince Charles or Prince William, if one of them becomes king, does not have to respect Elizabeth’s declaration about the surname. They might decide to just go with Windsor: “A proclamation on the Royal Family name by the reigning monarch is not statutory; unlike an Act of Parliament, it does not pass into the law of the land. Such a proclamation is not binding on succeeding reigning sovereigns, nor does it set a precedent which must be followed by reigning sovereigns who come after.”
Prince William and Kate‘s baby is due in July 2013, which turns out to be a beautiful coincidence. Prince Diana’s birthday was also in July.