The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are said to believe the Prince of Wales plans to change the rules when the Queen dies.
Archie was not born a prince due to an order by King George V in 1917 ruling only royal offspring in the direct line of succession could be made a prince or princess.
Under the Letters Patent the child would still be entitled to be an HRH or a prince when Charles accedes to the throne.
But the Sussexes reportedly fear the Duke of Cornwall will scrap this under plans for a slimmed-down monarchy.
It comes as it was revealed the move to strip the couple and their son of their security had nothing to do with the Palace’s stance on Archie becoming a prince.
Round-the-clock police protection was taken away when they stepped down as working royals after a meeting of the government body that oversees protection.
Prince Charles then reportedly said he would not fund their private security out of his own money.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (pictured in 2019) are said to believe the Prince of Wales plans to change the rules when the Queen dies
The Sussexes reportedly fear the Duke of Cornwall (pictured in London yesterday) will scrap this under plans for a slimmed-down monarchy
In 1917, the then King issued a written order ruling that only grandchildren of the monarch who are in the direct line of succession could be made a prince
Archie’s title – or future title – was at the centre of the Sussexes bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey on Sunday.
Meghan described her ‘pain’ officials had denied him the title of prince and accused Buckingham Palace of failing to protect him by denying him 24/7 security.
She said Archie becoming a prince was neither her nor Harry’s decision and said it was Palace officials who revealed Archie ‘wasn’t going to receive security’.
What is the George V convention?
In 1917, the Queen’s grandfather issued new letters patent that limited the number of royal family members with an HRH title.
These stated that ‘the children of any Sovereign of these Realms and the children of the sons of any such Sovereign and the eldest living son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales shall have and at all times hold and enjoy the style, title or attribute of Royal Highness with their titular dignity of Prince or Princess prefixed to their respective Christian names or with their other titles of honour’.
In 1917, the Queen’s grandfather issued new letters patent that limited the number of royal family members with an HRH title
This means that when Prince Charles become King, his grandchildren – including Archie – will all automatically become princes or princesses.
It was also decreed that ‘grandchildren of the sons of any such Sovereign in the direct male line … shall have and enjoy in all occasions the style and title enjoyed by the children of Dukes of these Our Realms’ (i.e., Lord or Lady before their Christian name).’
In addition the letters stated ‘save as aforesaid the style title or attribute of Royal Highness, Highness or Serene Highness and the titular dignity of Prince or Princess shall not henceforth be assumed or borne by any descendant of any Sovereign of these Realms.
When asked if it was ‘important’ for Meghan that Archie be called a prince, she said she does not have any attachment to the ‘grandeur’ of official titles.
She said it was about ‘the idea of our son not being safe’ and the idea ‘the first member of colour in this family not being titled in the same way’.
In 1917, King George V – the Queen’s grandfather – issued a written order ruling only royal offspring in the direct line of succession could be made a prince or princess.
The Letters Patent read: ‘…the grandchildren of the sons of any such sovereign in the direct male line (save only the eldest living son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales) shall have and enjoy in all occasions the style and title enjoyed by the children of dukes of these our realms.’
Under the rules, only Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge’s eldest son Prince George – as a great-grandson of the monarch down the direct line of succession to the throne – was originally entitled to be a prince.
The Queen stepped in ahead of George’s birth in 2013 to issue a Letters Patent to ensure all George’s siblings – as the children of future monarch William – would have fitting titles.
Under the George V rules, Archie would still be entitled to be an HRH or a prince when his grandfather Charles, the Prince of Wales, accedes to the throne.
But the Times reports the Sussexes are concerned Prince Charles will change the rules when he is king – meaning their son will not carry the title.
The newspaper cited a section of Meghan’s chat with Oprah, in which the Duchess said: ‘While I was pregnant they said they want to change the convention for Archie.’
It said her claims have not been verified by sources in the Palace, with one saying they had not heard about these talks.
Prince Charles is said to have long had a desire to have a ‘slimmed-down’ Royal Family, with a greater focus on the direct line of succession.
Constitutional expert Craig Prescott outlined the George V convention to MailOnline yesterday.
He said: ‘The Letters Patent of 1917 established the practice that sons and daughters of the monarch, and those whose father is a son of the monarch, are entitled to be called Prince.
‘The Queen issued further Letters Patent in 2012 so that all children of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge would become Princes or Princesses, because one day, they will be children of a future monarch.
‘The Queen could have made the same decision for the children of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.’
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have insisted their interview with Oprah Winfrey would be the ‘last word’ on them quitting as senior royals
Mr Prescott added it was Charles’s hopes for fewer working rules that made it ‘always’ unlikely Archie would have a major role as a royal.
He added: ‘It’s notable that the Sussexes have decided not to use the title Earl of Dumbarton, for Archie, which they could have done.
‘However, once Charles becomes King, Archie, if he wished could then be given the title of HRH and Prince.’
Meanwhile it was revealed the move to strip the couple and their son of their security had nothing to do with the Palace’s stance on Archie becoming a prince.
Prince Harry claimed in the Oprah chat that when the Sussexes were in Canada he was told ‘at short notice security was going to be removed’.
Meghan also claimed the decision not to make her son a prince meant he would not get police protection.
But sources told the Telegraph the reason the couple lost their security privileges was because they stepped down as working royals.
An insider told the newspaper: ‘Security was a big issue for them because there had been specific threats made against them.’
They were escorted from Canada to California last March by UK police, but the officers were then summoned back to London.
Media mogul Tyler Perry, whose house they used in LA, then brought in private security for them.
They now pay for their own protection after moving into their own mansion in Montecito.
The couples friends are reported to have said the cost of the bodyguards is ‘exorbitant’.
They are believed to have said the couple are annoyed Prince Andrew’s children Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie get treated differently.
The Royal and VIP Executive Committee authorises the budget for security for royals, VIPs and former PMs.
The government committee’s control over it means the Queen does not have the right to dish out protection.
A former senior officer in the Met told the Telegraph the move was made by senior police and Homes Office staff after consulting with the Palace.