• The Duke and Duchess of Sussex welcomed their second child, a girl named Lilibet. (AAP)Source: AAP
While there are families like ours who have rejected naming traditions, there are those like the Duke and Duchess of Sussex who have in some ways embraced it.
By
Saman Shad

7 Jun 2021 - 2:34 PM  UPDATED 7 Jun 2021 - 2:57 PM

The world is abuzz with news that Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have welcomed their second child, a baby girl with the adorable name Lilibet 'Lili' Diana Mountbatten-Windsor.

According to a statement released by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Lili was named after her great-grandmother Queen Elizabeth.

"Lili is named after her great-grandmother, Her Majesty The Queen, whose family nickname is Lilibet. Her middle name, Diana, was chosen to honor her beloved late grandmother, The Princess of Wales," the statement read.

Naming conventions, where children are named in memory of grandparents and great-grandparents are commonplace in many parts of the world, including in places like Germany, the Netherlands, Greece, America and the UK.

My husband is Scottish and was named after his great-grandfather, while his middle name was his grandfather’s name.

While this naming convention isn't something we practiced in my family, it's another story for my husband. He is Scottish and was named after his great-grandfather, while his middle name was his grandfather’s name. Meanwhile his father, shares the same name as his father. Coincidentally my husband’s paternal great-grandfather shares the same name as him.

As my husband tells me, it was always expected that the eldest son in his family would take the name of a grandparent or great-grandparent. However, when it came to naming our own children we opted out and chose a name that hasn’t been used in either mine or his family. But then again we have never been the conventional types.

And neither have the Sussexes, which is why some on social media have questioned why they didn’t opt out of a naming convention that seems bound with tradition especially after publicly calling out the Royal family for the mistreatment.

While Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are yet to comment on why they named their daughter after the Queen and Princess Diana, one thing is for sure, the couple hold both women close to their hearts.

The Prince has previously spoken about how he would never “blindside” the Queen when they announced they were quitting the Royal family. In their interview with Oprah Winfrey he also said: “I’ve spoken more to my grandmother in the last year than I have done for many, many years.” Going on to say: “My grandmother and I have a really good relationship and understanding. I have a deep respect for her. She’s my commander-in-chief, right?” 

Markle also told Oprah that when she found out Prince Phillip was hospitalised she picked up the phone and called the Queen straight away to check in.

There has been much written about Prince Harry’s relationship and closeness to his mother and how he has dealt with losing her at such a young age. He also recently revealed that one of Archie’s first words were 'grandma'.

"I got a photo of her [Princess Diana] in his nursery, and it was one of the first words that he said—apart from 'mama,' 'papa,' it was then 'grandma'," he said. 

Choosing a name for your child is no easy task, as any parent would tell you. 

Choosing a name for your child is no easy task, as any parent would tell you. Whatever name you choose, your child will be stuck with it for the rest of their life. 

When we were choosing the names for our children it was important to my husband and I that we chose names  that reflected the diverse background of our family. But for others, names indicate heritage and family lineage. While there are families like ours who have rejected naming traditions, there are those like the Sussexes who have in some ways embraced it.

If they are anything like the many couples I know, they may have debated the choice of name for many months. They may even have had a name different from Lilibet that they kept for their daughter and then at the last minute had a change of heart. It’s something my husband and I did with our last child – we had a name we were convinced we were calling him until we saw him and changed it to another name we had on the list.

Whatever the case maybe, my hope is Lilibet, much like any other child coming into this world, enjoys all the love and happiness it has to offer, and hopefully doesn’t come across the deluge of unwarranted criticism that her parents have had to endure, just because she comes from Royalty.

Saman Shad is a freelance writer. Follow her on Twitter @muminprogress

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