So the new royal baby is coming in ‘Spring 2019’, and as Lainey pointed out earlier, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s child won’t necessarily be a prince or princess – unless the Queen decides they will be. Protocol, you know. Protocol also says they also won’t be announcing the sex of the baby until it’s born, even if they find out privately. So predicting names at this point is a wide-open field… but we can make some educated guesses. 

First of all, unlike William, Harry has virtually never used his first given name. People forget all the time that it actually says Henry (fine, Henry Charles Albert David) on the official documents. Harry’s always been his name, and shrugging off formality and fussiness has been his brand since day one, something he and Meghan continued right up to their wedding. Plus, Meghan’s a stealth-first-name too – even though her real first name is Rachel, she’s styled ‘Meghan, Duchess of Sussex’. Call it the benefits of being the spare(s) or of getting married that much later – these two have always been who they are. 

So while the baby’s name is going to be formal and ‘classical’ and probably at least three names long, I’d wager it’s not gonna be so traditional – one of the joys of being Not The Heir. Beatrice is common these days, but it was straight up unusual when she was born, not to mention Eugenie and …Zara! 

Trust that Meghan and Harry are going to make some moves here. Remember, they reminded the world at their wedding that, yes, Meghan was proud to be a black woman. The Kingdom Choir performed "Stand By Me", Bishop Michael Curry referenced Dr. Martin Luther King. My gut says we’re going to hear a name that reminds us that Meghan brings a new cultural perspective to the family. One that is unique and still remarkable – lest we forget about certain assholes in the family who proudly wore racist jewelry less than a year ago. 

So I would expect a name that is still ‘classical’, or otherwise somewhat known – possibly biblical – but not one of the usual 10 or 12 suspects given to British Royals. Not necessarily a name that is traditionally African-American, but one more used in black families throughout the years. Gabrielle, perhaps, or Jeremiah. Elias or Phoebe or Daphne. James is a safe bet, but I wouldn’t be surprised at something like Lawrence or Lionel or Ephraim. 

Don’t get me wrong - the name will still have all the usual decorations and traditions for middles of second middles. Elizabeth may well make its way in there if it’s a girl, or maybe Henry somewhere in the mix, or, be still my heart, Harriet! They’re not going to reinvent the wheel, but I’d bet a lot of money it will be a ‘new’ name in the family, and that nobody should count on the first name being the actual name the child is called. The possibilities are endless. While I think they’ll stay away from trends, unusual ‘old names’ will be the order of the day. Felicity is happening lately, or we could see Doria Ragland’s middle name Loyce in the mix, or there may be a nod to Botswana, Harry’s ‘second home’ (but not a place name, we’re still talking about the royals here). 

I have yawned my way through three Cambridge baby names, but this is where we’ll get to see some style – and maybe a nickname first-name. And if I’m being honest, even though these two have done everything, from their wedding to shutting their own car doors with easy style and grace, I would lay a lot of money that they are feeling some pressure, which may make you love them even more. 

I should say, there are many names that could directly honour the people they want to while leaving out certain others, ahem – Dorothea Frances, or Frederick John, or etc – but I think part of the game here is that they’re not just going to go with tradition. Their whole role is to do their own thing, which breaks the field wide open.