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Will Prince Charles give Prince Edward a new title?

The late Prince Philip expressed his wishes before his death

edward philip
Danielle Stacey
Danielle StaceyOnline Royal CorrespondentLondon
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Prince Philip was given the title of the Duke of Edinburgh when he married Princess Elizabeth in 1947, but following his death on 9 April 2021, it was expected to be passed down to another member of the royal family.

It has always been understood that the Duke wanted his youngest son, the Earl of Wessex to inherit his title, but the decision now lies with Prince Charles, the new King.

When Prince Edward and Sophie Rhys-Jones married in 1999, they were given the titles the Earl and Countess of Wessex.

But Buckingham Palace also announced Edward would eventually one day succeed his father as the Duke of Edinburgh – but not until after the death of both Philip and the Queen.

The palace said at the time: "The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh and Prince of Wales have also agreed that Prince Edward should be given the dukedom of Edinburgh in due course when the present title now held by Prince Philip eventually reverts to the Crown."

READ: Prince Charles' statement following the Queen's death - poignant detail

WATCH: What can we expect from the Queen's state funeral?

In keeping with the Letters Patent issued when George VI gave Philip the title in 1947, the Prince of Wales, as the Duke's eldest son, inherits the title the Duke of Edinburgh, but on Charles's accession to the throne, the title merges with the Crown and can be regranted anew to Edward.

The decision to give Edward the title was taken in recognition of his work with, and commitment to, the Duke of Edinburgh's Award – of which he is a trustee, as well as chairman of The Duke of Edinburgh's International Award.

MORE: Who the Queen was with when she died - revealed

MORE: The Queen's obituary: Her Majesty's extraordinary life of service

edward doe award© Photo: Getty Images

Prince Edward receiving his Duke of Edinburgh from his father in 1986

If given the title, Edward's wife, Sophie, will become the Duchess of Edinburgh – a courtesy title which was held by the Queen.

On his 55th birthday in 2019, the Earl of Wessex was given a new title by the Queen to use in Scotland. The monarch marked the occasion by naming him the Earl of Forfar, and his wife Sophie as Countess of Forfar. 

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