Today marks a very special day for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s son Archie – it is his third birthday. And in the three years since he arrived in the world – Archie has had a life like no other royal before him. Exactly three years ago today, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle welcomed their first child into the world. They named their son Archie Harrison and days after his birth, he was introduced to the world – and his great-grandmother the Queen.
But at just a few months old, his parents made the shock decision to quit as senior royals and pack up their lives in the UK and start a new life in America. Now he lives in California with his mum and dad and younger sister Lilibet, enjoying a life no other royal toddler has ever lived before. So what does life for Archie look like now he has turned three? And how does it differ from his royal cousins back in the UK? Here we take a look… Archie might be seventh in line to throne, but unlike his royal cousins Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, he does not have a royal title. He is simply known as Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor.
It was originally believed that Harry and Meghan were involved in the discussions about how Archie’s would be styled, with suggestions they didn’t want him to have a title to allow him to have a more ‘normal’ life. But in their bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey, Meghan said this wasn’t the case and said they wanted him to have a title for protection reasons.
However, Debretts explained that Meghan and Harry did have the option to give their son a title if they wanted to.It said: “In accordance with the 1917 order, Archie could now use his father’s title of the Earl of Dumbarton and could be referred to as Lord Dumbarton.” However, it was reported last year that Harry and Meghan weren’t keen to give Archie this name. Growing up in California means Archie is on the other side of the Atlantic from the rest of his royal relatives.
The distance means he’s not been able to enjoy the company of his grandad Prince Charles and his wife Camilla, nor his Uncle Prince William or Auntie Kate since leaving the UK. However Archie has reportedly been able to enjoy video calls with his great-grandmother the Queen and Prince Philip before his death last year.
And even though Harry and Meghan have not yet spent a Christmas with Archie in the UK, the Queen seemingly still makes sure he receives a present. Harry once revealed the Christmas present she bought the toddler two years ago – and it was just what he wanted. As Harry took an open-top bus tour of LA during an interview with James Corden, he was asked about family life.
Speaking about the Queen’s gift, he said: “My grandmother asked us what Archie wanted for Christmas, and Meg said a waffle maker. “So she sent us a waffle maker for Archie, so breakfast now Meg makes up a beautiful organic mix, in the waffle maker, flip it, out it comes. “He loves it. And now I have waffles for breakfast, bit of yoghurt, bit of jam on top. I don’t know if that’s the right thing to do. Berries, bit of honey.” While Kate and William release photos of their children, Meghan and Harry have shared far fewer images of their son since quitting royal life.
The couple decided against the tradition of posing for photos on the hospital steps following the birth and instead arranged a photocall for a small group of the media a few days later. The couple also kept the christening as a private celebration but released two official photos from the day.
Before shutting down their Sussex Royal Instagram page they shared a handful of snaps, including a picture of his foot in front of Princess Diana’s favourite flowers to mark Mother’s Day and one of Archie and Charles on the Prince of Wales’s birthday. The most recent snap of Archie was released last Christmas in a beautiful family photo with his parents and sister Lilibet – and after it was released, fans were amazed by his gorgeous red hair.
Earlier this year, it was revealed that Archie had started nursery – and the school teaches things such as “emotional literacy”, mindfulness and how to be kind and look after the environment. Meghan was spotted driving Archie to the school, then carrying his green backpack and a space-themed lunchbox.
A parent of one of Archie’s classmates said: “Harry often drops Archie off and picks him up, and seems like a good dad. All the parents have been laidback in welcoming Harry and Meghan, without making a fuss. And to the other kids, Archie is just one of them. “They don’t know his parents are royalty, and probably wouldn’t care – unless Meghan was a Disney princess.”
The school has small class sizes and puts great stress on the environment – with gardens that have fruit trees, plants, butterflies, bees and hummingbirds. Students get close to nature by helping to grow and harvest vegetables.It also teaches Spanish, music, dance, theatre and coding.
Like many other royals, Archie shares his home with two pet dogs – a beagle called Guy and a younger pooch called Pula. But in their bombshell chat with Oprah Winfrey, Meghan revealed that rchie also has some more unusual pets – chickens. A coop, shown to viewers as the couple gave Oprah a tour, boasts a sign reading: “Archie’s Chick Inn. Established 2021.” The chickens were saved from a factory farm.
Given Archie has no royal title, it’s unclear what, if any, role he will play in royal life in the future. But according to dad Harry, Archie has already started talking about what he wants to be when he grows up. Harry let slip the fun insight at the Invictus Games opening ceremony, where he praised the competitors strength and courage.He said: “To be role models, or the role models, that each of you are takes strength and it takes courage.
“When I talk to my son Archie about what he wants to be when he grows up, some days it’s an astronaut, other days it’s a pilot – a helicopter pilot obviously. Or Kwazii from Octonauts. If you’re laughing then you’ve seen that.“But what I remind him is that no matter what you want to be when you grow up, it’s your character that matters most, and nothing would make his mum and me prouder than to see him have the character of what we see before us today.”