It was the surprise baby name that no one saw coming. Forgoing the more traditional options of Arthur, James, Philip, and Albert, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle shocked the world by calling their baby Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor. So, why did the royal couple pick a name that was so unexpected?
The name Archie means “bold,” “genuine,” or “brave,” and although it was once considered a shortened version of Archibald, it now is a name on its own. In fact, it came in at number 18 in the list of most popular boys’ names in England and Wales in 2017.
While there are no known ties to the British royal family, Princess Diana had an ancestor named Archibald Campbell, 9th Earl of Argyll of Scotland.
“Harrison” meanwhile, means “son of Harry” — an apt choice given the baby’s father. Some royal commentators are also speculating that the name could be a reference to “Harrison Ford” as a nod to Meghan’s acting past but that seems unlikely.
“It may well be it’s a name that Meghan is familiar with and again that’s why they are using it,” Majesty Magazine‘s managing editor Joe Little said. “Archie has a British feel to it, whereas Harrison is more of an American name. The first Harrison that springs to mind is Harrison Ford. They have wanted to do something a little bit different, and they have done.”
However according to a source speaking to HELLO!, it simply came down to taste. “They just liked them,” an insider told the publication of the unique selection of names.
As for the surname “Mountbatten-Windsor,” this is a family name passed down to descendants of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip. “Mountbatten-Windsor” is a relatively recent royal tradition, only emerging in the 1960s when the Duke of Edinburgh felt strongly about his surname being passed down to his children.
Mountbatten comes from Phillip’s uncle Louis Mountbatten, while Windsor was the queen’s family name, picked by her grandfather George V. He decided to change the family name from Saxe-Coburg and Gotha to Windsor after the castle bearing the same title.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Now to Love.