Confusing detail in Prince Louis’ birth certificate


Prince Louis‘s official birth certificate has been made public after it was signed by his proud dad, Prince William, at Kensington Palace on Tuesday.

The official document gives the newest member of the royal family’s official name (and it’s a mouthful): His Royal Highness Prince Louis Arthur Charles of Cambridge.

Prince Louis was born on April 23 and is fifth in line to the throne. Photo: Getty

And in a somewhat confusing twist, their occupations are listed as the ‘prince and princess of the UK’.

While William is referred to as a ‘prince’ in his name, the same cannot be said for Kate, who – unlike Diana – has never been known as ‘Princess Catherine’ or ‘Princess Kate’.

Although Kate doesn’t go by the name of ‘princess’, she is one by default, as women who marry into the royal family adopt on their husband’s royal rank. So technically, she is ‘Princess William of Wales’, and was listed as a princess on George and Charlotte’s birth certificates too.

Her title remains ‘Duchess of Cambridge’ however, as only people born into the royal family can truly take the title of ‘prince’ or ‘princess’.

The Duke of Cambridge signed the certificate following the birth of his younger son, Louis. Photo: PA

Interestingly, Louis’s famous parents are recorded only by their official titles: ‘His Royal Highness Prince William Arthur Philip Louis Duke of Cambridge’ and ‘Catherine Elizabeth Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cambridge’.

“While Catherine is absolutely a princess, her correct title is ‘Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cambridge,’” CNN royal expert Victoria Arbiter told Yahoo Style last year.

“She wasn’t born a blood princess, so she is not a princess in her own right. When she married William, she took on the rank of her husband, a royal prince. However, referring to her as ‘Princess Kate’ is simply incorrect.”

Another reason we use the title of ‘duchess’ is because it actually holds more weight. Being a royal duke/duchess, is actually higher on the social ladder than being a mere prince/princess believe it or not.

Diana was known as a ‘princess’, even though her daughter-in-law Kate isn’t.

So why did everyone call Diana ‘Princess Di’? The answer comes back to Charles.

At the time he married Diana, he was already a prince twice; firstly because he was born one, and then because in 1969, he was made the Prince of Wales – which was the more important title of the two.

Therefore, just as Kate took on her husband’s more important title of Duke, Diana adopted Charles’ title of Prince.

To complicate things further, when Charles becomes king, his son and daughter-in-law will slip into his former title and Kate will become ‘Her Royal Highness, the Princess of Wales.’

And then the day William is crowned king, Kate’s title will be ‘Queen Consort.’

But more to the point, we really shouldn’t be calling her Kate at all! The Duchess’ preferred name is ‘Catherine’.