The Duke of Cambridge, 36, was asked about his brother’s impending arrival while talking to well-wishers during a visit to Christchurch, New Zealand, on Saturday, April 27.
“Any signs of the royal baby?” a fan asked in a video shared on Instagram.
“I haven’t got my phone on me — I have no idea,” William replied. “You guys will find out before I do at this rate.”
The question came as British press speculated that the former Suits actress’ due date was Sunday, April 28. But as the royal baby watch ramped up a notch, the father-to-be left his wife’s side to attend the London Marathon on Sunday.
As previously reported, Harry, 34, was in high spirits as he posed with runners and ambulance team members at the event.
Traditionally speaking, all royal babies are named after the royals before them. That’s why mini-royal Prince George (5) has the middle names Arthur and Charles and Princess Charlotte (3) has the middle names Elizabeth and Diana. Interestingly enough, all royals have at least three names. (Prince Harry, Prince William and Prince Charles have four, however.)
Since members of the family don’t technically have last names, they often use their parents’ titles as surnames. This is why Prince George goes by George Cambridge at school. It’s expected that Markle and Harry’s baby will use Sussex as a last name.
Royal protocol states that Queen Elizabeth must be the first person to be given details about a royal-baby birth. So before anyone knows the deets about Baby Sussex, Gan-Gan Queen Elizabeth will. After that, royals are welcome to tell the rest of the family and eventually a statement is released to the press.
The royal family celebrates each birth by issuing a statement, which includes gender and arrival time details, outside of Buckingham Palace. The statement is of course issued online as well. A town crier has also been traditionally used to announce the news. However, since Markle and Prince Harry intend to make Baby Sussex’s arrival private, this likely won’t occur.
The official documents
They might be royal, but even the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will have to fill out a birth certificate. Prince William famously listed his job title as “Prince of the United Kingdom” when Prince Louis (11 months) was born.
G.H. Hurt Son has been responsible for making the baby blankets that royal newborns make their first debut in since 1948. Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip started the tradition when Prince Charles was born and Princess Diana followed suit with the birth of Prince William and Prince Harry. Kate Middleton also introduced Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis to the world wrapped in a G.H. Hurt Son blanket.
Presents from well-wishers and unknown dignitaries alike are donated to charity, because let’s be honest—the Sussexes have enough money to buy their own Diaper Genies. The couple proactively asked fans to donate to their favorite charities in lieu of sending gifts.
The gun salutes
Now, this is a rather unconventional one. At the birth of a royal baby, 62 rounds are fired at the Tower of London to harken the arrival. A traditional salute is 21 rounds, but since these are royals, they get 41 extra. Meanwhile, another 41 rounds are shot off at Green Park, which is known as the official royal park. The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery also celebrates occasions like the queen’s birthday in the same way. How…loud.
The U.K. introduced statutory paternity leave in 2003 and all men are able to participate—even royals. When Princess Charlotte was born, Prince William took six weeks off from his then-job as an air ambulance pilot to be with her and the rest of his family. Historically, royal mothers have also taken several months of maternity leave to bond with their children.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, the most senior bishop in the Church of England, always performs the christening ceremony for little royals. He uses water from the River of Jordan to baptize the children, as it’s supposedly the same water Jesus was baptized in by Saint John. Newborn princes or princesses always wear a gown made of Honiton lace that’s modeled after the original version Queen Victoria commissioned. But that’s not all. They’re also all dipped into the same bowl, which is an ornate gold fountain with cherubs seated at its base, that was created around 1840.
We plebeians usually only get two godparents. Royals, on the other hand, get a gaggle. Princess Charlotte has five, Prince George has seven and Prince Louis has six. That’s a lot of cooks in the christening kitchen. Time will tell who Baby Sussex’s godparents are. Until then, we’re crossing our fingers for the dream team of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Nick and Priyanka (Chopra) Jonas.
With the baby due any day now, Meghan, 37, is resting up at home and has been absent from recent royal engagements. Just a few days before his appearance on Sunday, Harry attended an Anzac Day service at Westminster Abbey with his sister-in-law Duchess Kateon Thursday, April 25. And on April 21, he stepped out with Kate, 37, and William for Easter Sunday services.
Harry and Meghan, who will celebrate their first wedding anniversary on May 19, revealed earlier this month that they plan to keep the news of their baby’s arrival private as they start their new life as a family of three.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are very grateful for the goodwill they have received from people throughout the United Kingdom and around the world as they prepare to welcome their baby,” Buckingham Palace said in a statement on April 11. “Their Royal Highnesses have taken a personal decision to keep the plans around the arrival of their baby private. The duke and duchess look forward to sharing the exciting news with everyone once they have had an opportunity to celebrate privately as a new family.”