As Prince Harry and Meghan Markle gear up for their upcoming wedding in May, the royal family is reportedly preparing a special gift for the bride-to-be’s father ahead of the big day.
In a recent report by People, it has been revealed that Thomas Markle is set to receive a meaningful present from the royals to mark his daughter’s special day.
According to the outlet, the reclusive father will be bestowed with a personalized coat of arms that will symbolize his family. Apparently, it has been a longstanding tradition dating back to the Middle Ages.
Typically, the coat of arms is given to the father of the person marrying into the royal family — in this case, Thomas Markle. As part of the practice, the precious coat of arms usually features a personalized crest, motto, and symbols of supporters.
It is also meant to represent something deep and personal to the owner, not only to the father but to the bride as well.
In 2011, the College of Arms designed a special coat of arms for Kate Middleton’s father Michael Middleton in honor of her engagement to Prince William.
Apparently, the royal family presented the coat of arms one week ahead of the couple’s wedding. According to the Express, the family’s crest features three acorns — one representing each of Middleton children.
It has been revealed that the acorns symbolize Oak trees, which is extremely common in their hometown Berkshire. There is also a gold chevron in the middle of the shield that represents the Duchess of Cambridge’s mother, Carole.
There are also symbols of the family’s love of the outdoors and the colors of the U.K. flag as well.
Following their nuptials, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge combined their individual shields and created their own Conjugal Coat of Arms. The couple’s coat of arms now features their separate shields held together by a lion, which represents England, and a unicorn, which represents Scotland.
And while details of Markle’s coat of arms have yet to be unveiled, it is expected that it will include at least a bit of symbolism to represent Meghan’s American heritage. There were even claims that shield is likely to feature the red, white, and blue colors representing the American flag.
Once the family crest is officially given to Meghan’s father, all their family members and descendants will be able to carry it, making the gift remarkably precious.
It is also expected that Prince Harry and Meghan will add their own touch to their Conjugal Coat of Arms once they’re officially married.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are set to tie the knot on May 19 at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle.