Senior members of the Royal Family are often referred to in a number of ways using titles including HRH and dukedoms. Members of the Firm can also accumulate honours and knighthoods and some even have different titles for when they travel to different parts of the UK.
There is also the question of surnames as while the Royal Family generally doesn’t use last names, they are required for matters such as official documents.
Members of the Royal Family who are lower on the line of succession may not have a royal title so they use a normal surname like the rest of the public.
Relatives of the Queen can use the last name “Mountbatten-Windsor,” a hybrid of the royal House of Windsor and the name Philip assumed when he became a naturalized British citizen.
Some of the monarch’s grandchildren will sometimes use part of a parent’s title for their surname.
Archie Harrison’s surname sparked heated royal row with Queen and Philip
Meghan and Harry’s children use the surname Mountbatten-Windsor
Prince William and Prince Harry used the titles “William Wales” and “Harry Wales” from their father’s title, the Prince of Wales, while serving in the military.
Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis use their parents’ “Cambridge” title as their surname at school in a similar way, however, their cousins Archie and Lilibet use the royal family’s “official” last name – Mountbatten-Windsor.
The surname once caused a massive row in the Royal Family and was even raised in the Houses of Parliament, resulting in a rift between the Queen and her husband.
The surname first appeared on official documentation in 1973, but the name’s complicated story dates back to 1952.
Prior to marrying the Queen, Philip’s official title was Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark of the House of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg.
The surname is said to have caused a massive row between the Queen and Prince Philip
This was not considered to be neutral enough, so instead Philip adopted the surname Mountbatten after his grandparents.
When he and the then Princess Elizabeth had their first child Prince Charles, in 1948, Philip assumed due to tradition their son would take his name.
When she became Queen in 1952, the monarch had to confirm what the official surname of the Royal Family would be.
Many wanted her to continue using Windsor, instead of changing it to Mountbatten as tradition would dictate.
Winston Churchill is said to be among those who advocated for the royals to continue using the name Windsor as was the Queen’s grandmother, Queen Mary.
It is said to have caused such an issue that the matter was even discussed in Parliament.
In the end, the Queen opted to support her family’s views and the name Windsor was used.
In 1960, when the couple were expecting their third child, Philip was still keen for his children to have his surname.
At the time, Her Majesty is said to have gone to see Harold Macmillan, who had taken over as Prime Minister.
She said “she absolutely needed to revisit” the issue and admitted it “had been irritating her husband since 1952”.
Finally, a comprise was met, and on February 8, 1960 – 11 days before Prince Andrew was born – the Queen declared that she had adopted the name Mountbatten-Windsor.
The Royal Family surname was changed just 11 days before Prince Andrew was born
At the time, the monarch said the surname would be used by all her descendants who do not enjoy the title of His or Her Royal Highness.
The official Royal website details this changeover as the surname is still used today.
A statement there reads: “The Royal Family name of Windsor was confirmed by The Queen after her accession in 1952.
“However, in 1960, The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh decided that they would like their own direct descendants to be distinguished from the rest of the Royal Family (without changing the name of the Royal House), as Windsor is the surname used by all the male and unmarried female descendants of George V.
“It was therefore declared in the Privy Council that The Queen’s descendants, other than those with the style of Royal Highness and the title of Prince/Princess, or female descendants who marry, would carry the name of Mountbatten-Windsor.”
Source: EXPRESS CO UK