Name Guru to the Stars: Harry and Meghan's Baby Name
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, aka Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, announced during their interview with Oprah Sunday night that their second child, due this summer, is a girl, setting off a fresh round of royal baby name speculation.
In the UK, royal baby names are gambling fodder. The bets for Meghan and Harry’s baby name are rolling in, with choices like Alice, Alexandra, and Diana coming out on top. To which I say:
Step aside bettors, this is my domain.
Harry and Meghan have stepped down from their royal roles and moved to California, making them bona fide American celebrities. And I’m pretty good at predicting what celebrities name their babies.
After choosing Archie for their son, Meghan and Harry have proven that they aren’t going to go with the ultra-traditional royal baby names we came to expect from Will and Kate. It’ll be traditional, sure, but definitely not conventional. Alice and Alexandra are probably out.
Likewise, Diana is probably off the table. If Harry and Meghan do decide to honor his late mother, it’ll likely be in a subtler, clever way, like how they honored Harry with Archie’s middle name, Harrison.
So, sorry bettors, but I think you’ve got it all wrong. Take a look at my predictions for Meghan and Harry’s baby name:
Cleo: Equal in strength and style, Cleo and Archie are one of my favorite potential pairs for this royal sibset. Much like Archie, Cleo is an established choice in the UK that’s only starting to heat up in the US. It would be an unexpected choice, the way Archie was, but Meghan and Harry love to surprise.
Daphne: Do you think Harry and Meghan watched Bridgerton? They certainly wouldn’t admit to it as a source of baby name inspiration, but the set-up is eerily similar to Archie’s — a neglected name showing signs of revival that is attracting American attention thanks to a television show (in Archie’s case, Riverdale). Daphne is about to hit it big regardless, but a royal endorsement would only strengthen her clout.
Evie: Evie would be a crowd-pleaser of a choice — it’s been a Top 20 name in England for over a decade and has had an impressive rise in the US in recent years. It’s even more popular among American babies than the stats would suggest — Evie is often used as a nickname for the many Evelyns, Evas, and Genevieves that are born each year. For Harry and Meghan, I’d classify Evie as playing it safe, but it remains a worthy option.
Margot: Despite being more formal than Archie, Margot would be a great choice for Meghan and Harry’s daughter. Archie Harrison is a shoutout to Dad (Harrison = Harry’s son), so it’s only fair that Mom (Mum?) gets her due. Both Meghan and Margot are international variations of Margaret — Meghan is Welsh, Margot is French — but they’re highly distinctive and wouldn’t cause unnecessary confusion.
Millie: Sweet Millie has a British aura (it’s that -ie ending!) and American cachet — it’s currently among the fastest rising girl names in the US. Harry and Meghan reportedly take meaning into account when choosing a name, and Millie has a great one — “gentle strength.” Does that make it perfect for a Mountbatten-Windsor daughter? It’s certainly hard to argue with.
Nellie: Nellie is hot hot hot at home and abroad, and it’s about time — with Ellie all the rage and the Stella-Bella-Ella craze now past its peak, Nellie is overdue for its comeback. Archie was in a similar position to Nellie when Meghan and Harry chose it in 2019 — a rising star that had just broken through on the American charts. If chosen, the Duke and Duchess could be the ones to propel this name to the top.
Phoebe: I may have suggested Phoebe to Harry and Meghan based on its stylish nature alone, but the real reason I love it for them is because it’s a subtle nod to Diana. Phoebe and Diana are both epithets of Artemis, the Greek goddess of hunting, the Moon, and wild animals. And I really don’t see them using Artemis for their daughter.
Sloane: Princess Diana is the archetype of a Sloane Ranger, a British term describing preppy (if bougie) men and women. Perhaps that’s why the name hasn’t taken off in the UK, where it ranks well below the Top 1000. But Americans love the name Sloane — it’s currently at Number 190 — and it would be a cheeky way to reference Harry’s mum. Maybe as a middle?
Spencer: Spencer was a top choice for Archie’s name among bettors, who thought Meghan and Harry would honor the late Princess Diana by using her surname for a son. But since they passed it up for their oldest son, it doesn’t seem likely that it was on the list for a second. On a girl, Spencer is fresher, more exciting. It also feels very American, the trend of adopting traditional masculine names for girls. Taken all together, a daughter named Spencer might make the very sort of statement Harry and Meghan desire.
Sylvie: To the French, Sylvie is très démodé (it’s been described as the French equivalent of Karen), but she’s fresh on the lips of Brits and Americans alike. Sylvie oozes with charm — and while it might not be a popular pick among their French fans, rest assured that Meghan and Harry’s devotees in the US and UK would be pleased (and may be inspired to name little Sylvies of their own).
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