Queen Elizabeth Hated The Name Harry and Meghan Chose for Their Daughter

By: Chris Gorrie | Published: Jan 22, 2024

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry welcomed a daughter into the world on June 4, 2021. They named her “Lilibet Diana” after not only Harry’s late mother, Princess Diana, whose nickname, but also in tribute to Queen Elizabeth.

Apparently, Queen Elizabeth carried the nickname “Lilibet” for much of her life, though only close relatives ever referred to her by the special name.

Where Did the Name “Lilibet” Come From?

The name Lilibet originates from, so the story goes, King George V’s interpretation of the young Queen Elizabeth’s attempts to pronounce her own name.

Black-and-white photo of King George V in military uniform in 1923.

National Portrait Gallery/Wikimedia Commons

As a toddler, the Queen struggled with fully speaking her name, and her version of “Elizabeth” sounded like “Lilibet” to her father. 

Who Called Queen Elizabeth “Lilibet”?

Queen Elizabeth’s nickname stuck. Besides her father, King George V, others called her by the name, including her husband, Prince Philip, who died in April 2021 at the age of 99.

Prince Philip posing for a photograph wearing a suit in 2012. There are two women and two men in view behind him who are milling about.

Titanic Belfast/Wikimedia Commons

Philip used the name endearingly with his wife throughout the 73-year marriage. Apparently, the choice to name the young Lilibet Diana after this nickname was not taken well by Elizabeth II.

Elizabeth Was Not Very Pleased About “Lilibet”

The Queen was known for her formality. While Meghan and Harry meant to honor her and showcase a more approachable side of the royal family, the Queen was not as pleased as they thought she might be.

Queen Elizabeth II wearing a blue hat and blue suit dress, smiling at someone out of frame.

Source: UK Government/Wikimedia Commons

In fact, according to Charles III: New King. New Court. The Inside Story., an upcoming book by journalist Robert Hardman, the Queen did not approve whatsoever. What’s more is that Hardman claims that Elizabeth was “as angry as [he’d] ever seen her.”

Meghan and Harry’s Never Received Elizabeth’s Blessing

Meghan and Harry publicly claimed to have asked Elizabeth’s blessing to name their daughter after her nickname, an event that apparently never transpired.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry walking together. Meghan is wearing a brown hat and light brown coat and Harry is wearing a gray jacket and blue tie.

Source: Mark Jones/Wikimedia Commons

Not long after Lilibet’s birth, royal correspondent Jonny Dymond reported on Radio 4 that “the Queen was not asked by Meghan and Harry over the use of her childhood nickname.”

Why Was the Queen So Mad?

It seems that Harry did make some attempt to get a blessing from Elizabeth, but it never occurred. Instead, he ended up informing his grandmother after the birth.

Watercolor of Queen Elizabeth II

Midjourney AI, prompted by Netha Hussain/Wikimedia Commons

She was not only angry because of this delayed revelation, but because of her notorious formality. The Queen likely felt unfairly exposed by having her father and husband’s nickname for her become the proper name of a royal member.


Meghan and Harry’s Announcement of Lilibet

The royal couple ecstatically announced the birth of their daughter to the world, saying that “She is more than we could have ever imagined, and we remain grateful for the love and prayers we’ve felt from across the globe.”

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in black formal attire, standing in front of a window with drapes drawn back.

Source: GG.Govt.nz/Wikimedia Commons

They confirmed, just as proudly, that the child’s name was a direct tribute to “her great-grandmother, Her Majesty The Queen,” and that her middle name, Diana, “was chosen to honor her beloved late grandmother, The Princess of Wales.”


Buckingham Palace’s Announcement of Lilibet

The royal palace had a much less pronounced proclamation regarding Lilibet’s birth. They did not even mention the child’s name.

Buckingham Palace photographed in daylight from across a roundabout and gardens.

Diliff/Wikimedia Commons

A royal spokesperson stated, in rather neutral terms, that “The Queen, The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, and The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been informed and are delighted with the news of the birth of a daughter for The Duke and Duchess of Sussex.”


The Name Could Heighten Tensions in the Royal Family

Since the Queen passed away in September 2022, and had not made any public statements about her great-granddaughter’s name, we may never fully know her true feelings on the matter.

The royal family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.

Source: Carfax2/Wikimedia Commons

What’s likely, though, is that this has only served to increase already palpable tensions within the royal family between Meghan and Harry and the rest of their ilk.


Drama Between the Sussexes and the Royal Family

Drama seems to continually brew between the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and the rest of their royal relations. 

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in an open-carriage procession after their wedding.

Source: Londisland/Wikimedia Commons

They claim that toxic personal agendas have driven a wedge between them and the rest of the royals, and that members of the family have actively attempted to stir the pot by sending negative information about them to the tabloids.


Meghan and Harry’s Departure From the Family

Amid a storm of controversies, Harry claims to have been betrayed by his family. He believes intimate conversations with family members were leaked to the press, letting the world know how he and Meghan wanted to leave royal life, far before it was appropriate to make any announcement.

A man walking out of an archway onto a pathway covered in gravel. He is pulling a rolling suitcase.

Mantas Hesthaven/Unsplash

The couple wanted to sort things out with the family, but their meeting was canceled in favor of a royal summit that completely excluded Meghan. Eventually enough was enough, and Meghan and Harry decided to exit the royal family, stepping down from the royal duties.


Meghan and Harry Want to Bury the Hatchet

Just recently, Meghan attempted to sit down with King Charles to sort out their issues, but the meeting has not yet taken place. Perhaps it never will. 

A hatchet stuck in a piece of wood.

Clay Banks/Unsplash

Though the Sussexes would like to bury the hatchet with their relatives, they may simply be too modern and too easy going for the rest of the royals. The naming of their daughter Lilibet serves as a reminder of this.