Jenni McKnightFind out everything you need to know about Archie Harrison's christening
The Duke andDuchess of Sussex are christening their first child Archie Harrison on Saturday, two months after his arrival. The ceremony will be held in the Private Chapel at Windsor Castle and will be kept very intimate, attended by fewer than 25 guests. Only immediate family members and close friends made it onto the guestlist, gathering in the very place that Prince Harry and Meghan got married in just over a year ago.
In a statement this week, Buckingham Palace confirmed: "Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor will be christened in a small private ceremony by the Archbishop of Canterbury in the Private Chapel at Windsor Castle on Saturday 6th July. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex look forward to sharing some images taken on the day by photographer Chris Allerton. The godparents, in keeping with their wishes, will remain private." Check out all of the live updates from Archie's special day here...
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were among the first guests to arrive, and were spotted driving to Windsor Castle's private chapel - but it looks like they have left their three children, George, Charlotte and little Louis at home on the special occasion! Royal fans caught a glimpse of the royal couple as they made their way to the ceremony, with Kate looking lovely and summery in pink.
Crowds have been gathering in Windsor in order to celebrate with the Sussexes! Onlookers excitedly took pictures as the Changing of the Guard took place ahead of the royal christening.
Keep scrolling for more photos of Archie's christening...
Tiggy Legge-Bourke, who was a beloved nanny to both Princes William and Harry in their childhood, is pictured arriving for the ceremony. She is known to have been a very important influence in Harry's life, so we're not surprised she is one of his special guests.
Archie was christened in the Private Chapel at Windsor Castle, rather than at St George's Chapel, where Harry and Meghan were married last year, and where Harry himself was christened in 1984.
Who are Archie's godparents?
Earlier this week, Prince Harry and Meghan surprised royal fans when they announced that the identities of baby Archie's godparents would be kept secret. Meghan’s close friend Jessica Mulroney and her university friends, London-based Lindsay Roth and Genevieve Hillis, who co-hosted the New York baby shower, are all tipped to be godmothers. However, the Church of England dictates that godparents themselves must first be baptised before they can take on the role, which would rule out Jessica, who is of the Jewish faith. Other close friends in the running to be godparents include Harry’s mentor Mark Dyer, whose son Jasper was a pageboy at the royal wedding, Soho House director Markus Anderson, a close friend of the couple, Lady Julia Fellowes, Princess Diana's older sister, who was one of the first to meet Archie, and Harry's childhood friend Jake Warren, whose daughter Zalie was a bridesmaid at the couple's wedding.
But despite their wishes, for anonymity, it's possible the names of the godparents could emerge in due course. The Church of England rules that details of all baptisms, including the godparents, are a matter of public record, and can be accessed by anyone who is prepared to pay a fee. However, it's unclear whether the same rules will apply in this case; because the building is a private royal chapel, the Queen is able to make the final decision - known as a 'royal peculiar' - and as such, the documentation may remain private.
Who officiated Archie's christening?
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, had the honour of officiating Archie's christening on Saturday. He also christened Prince George in 2013, Princess Charlotte in 2015 and Prince Louis in 2018. The Archbishop also baptised Meghan ahead of her wedding to Prince Harry last year, which took place in a private ceremony.
How was Archie christened?
Following Royal tradition, Archie was christened using The Royal Lily Font. The Lily Font was commissioned by Queen Victoria & Prince Albert for their first child's baptism in 1841. Since then, all royal christenings have used The Lily Font. Archie was also christened using holy water which was transported from the River Jordan to the UK, another royal tradition that was used for Charlotte and Louis' christenings.
Who took Archie's official christening photos?
The stunning photographs released to the public were taken by photographer Chris Allerton. Chris left the British Army in 2001 and then worked at the Lichfield Studios in Notting Hill to learn the skills he needed to be a professional photographer. He has travelled all over the world and specialises in location portrait, fashion and private event photography, so it comes as no surprise that he was chosen to take these incredible shots. He has even worked with fashion designer Ralph Lauren - a brand loved by Meghan.
One photo was taken in the Green Drawing Room, the same room and on the same green sofa where Harry's formal pics were taken after his christening in 1984.
Who took Archie's official christening photos?
This stunning black and white photo was also taken by photographer Chris Allerton, in the Rose Garden at Windsor Castle.
Following the release of the photos, a royal spokesperson said: "The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are overjoyed to share the happiness of this day, and would like to thank everyone around the world for their ongoing support. They feel so fortunate to have enjoyed this special moment with family and Archie’s godparents."
What did Archie wear?
Archie looked beautiful wearing the iconic replica lace and satin Honiton gown that was made in 2004, and has been worn by many of the younger royals, including the Cambridge children and Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex's son, James Viscount Severn. The gown was created to replace the original robe commissioned by Queen Victoria for the christening of her daughter Princess Victoria in 1841. After clothing 62 royal babies for their christenings over 163 years, the original gown was deemed too fragile to use in 2004 and the Queen commissioned a copy, which has been used ever since.
How did the royal family celebrate Archie's christening?
Guests were more than likely offered refreshments of tea and cake after the ceremony. The cake in question being slices of Harry and Meghan's wedding cake. It is a royal tradition that a tier is saved from a royal wedding cake to be served to guests on such occasions as a christening. Harry and Meghan's cake was designed by Claire Ptak, who made a lemon and elderflower creation with buttercream icing, topped with fresh flowers.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge also served their wedding cake, which had eight tiers and 17 individual fruit cakes, was designed by Fiona Cairns, at the christenings of all three of their children.
Who attended Archie's christening?
Proud grandfather the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were all in attendance, along with Archie’s grandmother, the Duchess’s mother Doria Ragland, who flew in from the United States. Tennis ace Serena Williams did not attend due to work commitments. Meghan’s close friend Jessica Mulroney was also present after flying in from Toronto.
Why wasn't the Queen at Archie's christening?
Archie's great-grandmother the Queen was notably absent from Saturday's christening. Her Majesty was unable to attend because of a prior commitment. Her busy schedule meant she also missed the christening of Archie’s cousin Prince Louis last year.
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