A comprehensive timeline of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's tumultuous relationship with the royal family

Prince William, Princess Kate, Prince Harry, and Meghan Markle wave as they walk around Windsor Castle
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  • Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's relationship with the royal family has been strained for years.

  • They stepped back as senior royals in 2020 before moving to California.

  • Harry and Meghan weren't reunited with the royals as a couple until 2022.

Prince Harry appeared to be close to his brother growing up, though his relationship with his father was more complicated.

Prince Charles, Prince Harry, Prince William.
Charles and his sons Prince Harry and Prince William, pictured in 2013.Karwai Tang/WireImage

Prince Harry and Prince William appeared to be close in photos from their childhood.

And when Princess Diana died after a run-in with the paparazzi in August 1997, the brothers seemed to grow tighter than ever, sticking to each other's sides in the years following her death.

William said he and Harry were "uniquely bonded because of what we've been through" in a video released by Kensington Palace in 2017.

Their father, Charles, became their primary parent after their mother's death, but according to royal reporter Katie Nicholl's book "The New Royals: Queen Elizabeth's Legacy and the Future of the Crown," he was often too "busy" to spend time with his children.

"With a busy work schedule and Camilla now very much a priority in his private diary, Charles placed too much trust in William and Harry to look after themselves," Nicholl wrote of the king's approach to parenting his teenage sons, which led them to get into trouble.

Harry also appeared to be close to William and Kate Middleton when he was single.

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Prince William, Kate Middleton, and Prince Harry in 2016.Jeff Spicer/Getty Images

Harry served as the best man in William and Kate Middleton's 2011 wedding, and the trio often attended royal events together after the Waleses got married, seeming to have a close relationship.

Harry once called Kate "the big sister I never had," according to Marie Claire.

The three also founded the mental-health initiative Heads Together in 2016.

Harry and Meghan Markle started dating in July 2016.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in 2017. Harry kisses Meghan on the forehead.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in 2017.Karwai Tang/WireImage/Getty Images

The couple were set up on a blind date by a mutual friend, and they became a couple almost immediately.

Prince Harry told James Corden that by his second date with Markle, he knew what they had was "pretty special."

"Dating with me, or with any member of the royal family I guess, is kind of flipped upside down," he said. "All the dates become dinners or watching the TV or chatting at home. And then eventually, once you become a couple you venture out to dinners, to the cinema, and everything else. So, everything was done back to front with us."

"There were no distractions, and that was great, that was an amazing thing. We went from 0 to 60 like in the first two months," he added.

On November 8, 2016, Harry confirmed his relationship with Meghan by speaking out against racist comments made about her.

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in December 2017.Jeremy Selwyn/WPA Pool/Getty Images

Harry's royal communications secretary released a statement on his behalf.

The statement said Harry felt compelled to confirm his relationship because "His girlfriend, Meghan Markle, has been subject to a wave of abuse and harassment."

It went on to say Markle had been subjected to harassment in news articles, comments sections of articles, and in person as people tried to gain access to her home.

"Prince Harry is worried about Ms. Markle's safety and is deeply disappointed that he has not been able to protect her," the statement said. "It is not right that a few months into a relationship with him that Ms. Markle should be subjected to such a storm. He knows commentators will say this is 'the price she has to pay' and that 'this is all part of the game.' He strongly disagrees. This is not a game — it is her life and his."

Following the release of the statement, reports surfaced that Prince William did not approve of Harry going public with his relationship. He then disputed those claims in a statement issued by Kensington Palace, according to The Telegraph.

"The Duke of Cambridge absolutely understands the situation concerning privacy and supports the need for Prince Harry to support those closest to him," the statement said.

Harry and Meghan announced they were engaged on November 27, 2017.

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announce their engagement on November 27, 2017.Chris Jackson / Getty

As the couple told the BBC, Harry proposed to Meghan at home while they were making dinner.

"[We were] trying to roast a chicken and it just — just an amazing surprise, it was so sweet and natural and very romantic," Meghan said of the proposal. "He got on one knee."

Kensington Palace and Clarence House announced the engagement via a statement.

William and Kate also released a statement about the couple's news, showing their support for the engagement: "We are very excited for Harry and Meghan. It has been wonderful getting to know Meghan and to see how happy she and Harry are together."

Harry and Meghan married on May 19, 2018, at Windsor Castle.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle leave after their wedding ceremony at St. George's Chapel in Windsor Castle in Windsor, near London, England, Saturday, May 19, 2018.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle leave their wedding ceremony at St George's Chapel on May 19, 2018.Ben Birchhall/Pool Photo via AP

At the time, Harry and Meghan's wedding itself seemed to be a joyous, family affair.

Charles walked Meghan down the aisle; Prince William was Harry's best man; and Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis served as a bridesmaid and page boy respectively.

However, there was controversy in the weeks leading up to the wedding because of Meghan's family.

Her father Thomas Markle and half-sister Samantha Markle repeatedly spoke to tabloids about Meghan, and Thomas posed for staged paparazzi photos in exchange for money, according to the Daily Mail.

The Sussexes moved out of the property they shared with Prince William and Kate Middleton in November 2018 when Meghan was pregnant with her first child.

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in October 2018.Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty Images

In the early months of their marriage, Meghan and Harry lived in Nottingham Cottage on the grounds of Kensington Palace, where William and Kate lived with their children.

But shortly after Kensington Palace announced Meghan was pregnant, the Sussexes shared that they would be moving to Frogmore Cottage — 18 miles away from Kensington Palace on the grounds of Windsor Castle — on November 18, 2018.

At the time the move was announced, outlets including The Sun cited unnamed sources that said there was "tension" between the brothers.

In March 2019, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex split their office with the Cambridges.

Prince William, Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle, and Prince Harry visiting Sandringham in 2018.
Prince William, Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle, and Prince Harry visiting Sandringham in 2018.Samir Hussein/WireImage

Until the spring of 2019, Harry and Meghan shared a royal office with William and Kate.

In March of that year, Buckingham Palace announced that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex had been appointed their own royal household.

Soon after the palace announced the couple would have their own household, The Times reported that Prince Harry and Meghan originally requested "entire independence" from Buckingham Palace, which the Queen denied.

"They wanted their household to be entirely independent of Buckingham Palace, but were told 'no,'" an unnamed source told The Times at the time.

"There is an institutional structure that doesn't allow that kind of independence," the source went on to tell the outlet. "The feeling is that it's good to have the Sussexes under the jurisdiction of Buckingham Palace, so they can't just go off and do their own thing."

Archie Mountbatten-Windsor was born on May 6, 2019, and the Sussexes broke royal tradition with his birth.

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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry with their newborn son Archie on May 8, 2019.WPA Pool/Getty Images

Meghan and Harry welcomed Archie on May 6, 2019. Unlike Princess Diana and Kate Middleton, Meghan did not pose for a photo with her newborn at the Lindo Wing at London's St. Mary's Hospital.

"The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are very grateful for the goodwill they have received from people throughout the United Kingdom and around the world as they prepare to welcome their baby," a statement from the palace said at the time.

The duke and duchess posed for photos with Archie at Windsor Castle two days after she gave birth.

Harry also held Archie at the photo call, which broke royal tradition, as Diana and Kate both held their newborns when introducing their children to the world.

The Sussexes cut ties with the Waleses' charity in June 2019.

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Prince William, Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, and Kate Middleton at an Armistice Service at Westminster Abbey in London on November 11, 2018.Reuters

Although their offices had already been split, Meghan and Harry further separated themselves from William and Kate by resigning from The Royal Foundation, which Harry and William founded together in 2009.

Buckingham Palace confirmed the separation in a statement in June 2019, though The Sun's Emily Andrews first reported the news of the split in May 2019.

"Later this year The Royal Foundation will become the principal charitable and philanthropic vehicle for The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge," the palace's statement said. "The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will establish their own new charitable foundation with transitional operating support from The Royal Foundation."

"In addition both couples will continue to work together on projects in the future, including on The Foundation's mental health programme, Heads Together," the statement went on to say.

In October 2019, Meghan hinted she was unhappy in an interview and Harry seemed to confirm his rift with William.

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Meghan Markle in an October 2019 interview.ITV News

In the ITV documentary "Harry and Meghan: An African Journey" about his and Meghan's tour of Africa, Harry said he and William were "on different paths at the moment," appearing to confirm their rift.

"We don't see each other as much as we used to because we're so busy, but I love him dearly. The majority of this stuff is created out of nothing, but as brothers, you know, you have good days, you have bad days," he said.

In the same documentary, Meghan became emotional when interviewer Tom Bradby asked how media attention was impacting her mental and physical health, particularly after she gave birth to Archie.

"Look, any woman, especially when they're pregnant, you're really vulnerable, and so that was made really challenging," she said. "And especially as a woman, it's really — it's a lot."

"Also, thank you for asking, because not many people have asked if I'm OK," she said to Bradby. "But it's a very real thing to be going through behind the scenes."

Meghan and Harry announced they were stepping back as senior royals on January 8, 2020.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's relationship with the royals has been frosty.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry in Australia on October 17, 2018.Chris Jackson - Pool/Getty Images

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced they were stepping back from royal life in a statement on Instagram.

"After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution," the statement said. "We intend to step back as 'senior' members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen."

The BBC reported via Twitter at the time that the royal family was not made aware of Meghan and Harry's decision before they posted the news to social media.

Meghan and Harry also announced on their website that they would no longer be participating in the royal-rota system at the time.

In response to the duke and duchess' announcement, the royal family said at the time there were "complicated issues that will take time to work through" in a statement from the royal communications office obtained by Insider.

William and Harry released a joint statement addressing allegations that Harry and Meghan had been "bullied" out of the family on January 13, 2020.

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Prince William and Prince Harry at the commemorations for the 100th anniversary of the battle of Vimy Ridge on April 9, 2017.Jack Taylor/Getty Images

The brothers released a statement to royal reporter Rebecca English in response to an article from the Times of London that said Harry and Meghan had been "bullied" out of the royal family.

"Despite clear denials, a false story ran in a UK newspaper today speculating about the relationship between The Duke of Sussex and The Duke of Cambridge," a statement from a spokesperson for the princes said. "For brothers who care so deeply about the issues surrounding mental health, the use of inflammatory language in this way is offensive and potentially harmful."

"It's clear from my conversations this morning that BOTH brothers are deeply, deeply unhappy about suggestions that Harry feels he has been 'bullied' out of the Royal Family by William," English added in a tweet.

On January 18, 2020, Queen Elizabeth said she supported the Sussexes' "wish for a more independent life" in a statement.

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Meghan Markle, Prince Harry, and Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace on June 26, 2018.John Stillwell/WPA Pool/Getty Images

"Following many months of conversations and more recent discussions, I am pleased that together we have found a constructive and supportive way forward for my grandson and his family," the statement said.

"Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family," the Queen went on to say. "I recognise the challenges they have experienced as a result of intense scrutiny over the last two years and support their wish for a more independent life."

"I want to thank them for all their dedicated work across this country, the Commonwealth and beyond, and am particularly proud of how Meghan has so quickly become one of the family," the statement read. "It is my whole family's hope that today's agreement allows them to start building a happy and peaceful new life."

In addition to the Queen's personal statement, Buckingham Palace shared a statement clarifying that Harry and Meghan would be completely stepping back from their royal duties beginning in the spring of 2020. It also said they would no longer be receiving public funds, and they planned to pay back the Sovereign Grant for their Frogmore Cottage renovations.

The statement said Buckingham Palace would not comment on the details of the Sussexes' security arrangements. "There are well established independent processes to determine the need for publicly-funded security," it said.

Meghan and Harry didn't speak to William and Kate at their final engagement as working royals on March 9, 2020.

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Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, Prince William, and Kate Middleton at the Commonwealth Service on March 9, 2020.Getty/Phil Harris

Meghan and Harry attended a Commonwealth Day event alongside King Charles, Prince William, and Kate Middleton.

The Sussexes and Cambridges were near each other throughout the event, but they did not speak and barely made eye contact.

The pairs typically chatted at royal events, and Meghan and Kate even hugged at the 2019 Commonwealth Day ceremony.

Harry and Meghan moved to California shortly after the event, and they bought their first home in Montecito in July 2020.

Meghan's legal team said she was "unprotected by the Institution" in court documents in July 2020.

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Meghan Markle at New Zealand House on March 19, 2019.Max Mumby/ Indigo/ Getty Images.

At the time, Meghan was suing the Mail on Sunday over the misuse of private information, infringement of copyright, and breach of the Data Protection Act 2018 after it published a letter she wrote to her father following her wedding in 2018.

In July 2020, Meghan's legal team filed a court document that said she felt "unprotected by the Institution."

"The Claimant had become the subject of a large number of false and damaging articles by the UK tabloid media, specifically by the Defendant, which caused tremendous emotional distress and damage to her mental health," a legal spokesperson for the duchess said in the document obtained by Insider.

"As her friends had never seen her in this state before, they were rightly concerned for her welfare, specifically as she was pregnant, unprotected by the Institution, and prohibited from defending herself," they added.

Meghan also defended herself against criticism that she leaked the letter to People through an unnamed friend, saying the Kensington Palace communications team did not give her "the opportunity to participate" in the media response to People's story.

Harry and Meghan announced they were officially financially independent from the royal family on September 8, 2022, by paying back $3 million of taxpayer money they used to renovate Frogmore Cottage.

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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry on March 5, 2020.Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty Images

A spokesperson for the Sussexes confirmed to Insider that the couple paid back the renovation money after signing a multimillion dollar deal with Netflix.

"A contribution has been made to the Sovereign Grant by the Duke of Sussex," the spokesperson said.

"This contribution as originally offered by Prince Harry has fully covered the necessary renovation costs of Frogmore Cottage, a property of Her Majesty The Queen, and will remain the UK residence of the duke and his family," the statement went on to say.

Prince Harry's request to be represented in a remembrance service was denied by the royal family in November 2020.

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Prince Harry on April 16, 2018.Simon Dawson/WPA Pool/Getty Images

According to The Telegraph and The Sunday Times, Prince Harry requested the royal family lay a wreath on his behalf at the Cenotaph for a Remembrance Sunday service on November 8, 2020.

Royal courtiers denied his request because "he is no longer representing the monarchy," according to the Times.

An Instagram post from the royal family showed that William, along with the Earl of Wessex, the Princess Royal, and the Duke of Kent laid wreaths at the Cenotaph, and wreaths were laid for Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip as they did not attend in person.

Reports surfaced that Buckingham Palace was investigating claims Meghan Markle bullied palace staff on March 3, 2021, days before her and Harry's interview with Oprah Winfrey was set to air on CBS.

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Meghan Markle in Nottingham, England, on December 1, 2017.Jeremy Selwyn/WPA Pool/Getty Images

Four days before the Sussexes' interview with Winfrey aired on CBS, Buckingham Palace announced it was investigating allegations that Meghan bullied two senior royal staff members, which was first reported by The Times of London.

"We are clearly very concerned about allegations in The Times following claims made by former staff of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex," the palace said in a statement obtained by Insider on March 3, 2021.

"Accordingly our HR team will look into the circumstances outlined in the article," the statement said, referring to The Times of London report. "Members of staff involved at the time, including those who have left the Household, will be invited to participate to see if lessons can be learned."

"The Royal Household has had a Dignity at Work policy in place for a number of years and does not and will not tolerate bullying or harassment in the workplace," the palace went on to say.

Representatives for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex denied the allegations through a spokesperson in a statement to The Times and said it was "no coincidence" the palace announced it was investigating the allegations ahead of the couple's interview with Winfrey.

"Let's just call this what it is — a calculated smear campaign based on misleading and harmful misinformation. We are disappointed to see this defamatory portrayal of The Duchess of Sussex given credibility by a media outlet," the spokesperson said in a statement obtained by The Times.

"It's no coincidence that distorted several-year-old accusations aimed at undermining The Duchess are being briefed to the British media shortly before she and The Duke are due to speak openly and honestly about their experience of recent years," the spokesperson went on to say.

"The Duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying herself and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma," the spokesperson went on to say. "She is determined to continue her work building compassion around the world and will keep striving to set an example for doing what is right and doing what is good."

Harry and Meghan's interview with Winfrey aired on March 7, 2021, and they made multiple bombshell allegations about the royal family.

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Oprah Winfrey spoke to Meghan Markle and Prince Harry for an interview that aired March 7, 2021.Harpo Productions/Joe Pugliese via Getty Images

During their tell-all interview with Winfrey, the duke and duchess opened up about their experience in the royal family.

In the interview, Harry and Meghan said members of the royal family made racist remarks about Archie's skin tone before he was born.

They also said the firm disregarded Meghan's mental health issues, with Meghan saying she had suicidal thoughts and that when she asked a senior member of the institution for help, the staffer told her she could not seek help because it would not look good for the monarchy.

Meghan also said that Kate made her cry during the week of her wedding over a disagreement about Princess Charlotte's flower girl dress, disputing reports that Meghan made Kate cry.

In addition, Prince Harry said his father stopped taking his phone calls before he and Meghan stepped back, and he and Meghan shared that the king cut the couple off financially following their step back.

Prince Harry clarified that his grandparents didn't make racist comments about his son a day after the interview.

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Queen Elizabeth II, Meghan Markle, and Prince Harry on July 10, 2018.Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Following the interview, Oprah Winfrey shared with CBS' Gayle King that Prince Harry told her his grandparents, the Queen or Prince Philip, didn't comment on Archie's skin tone ahead of his birth.

Winfrey told King that Harry wanted to ensure that it was known "that it was not his grandma nor his grandfather that were a part of those conversations."

Buckingham Palace issued a statement about the interview two days after it aired.

Queen Elizabeth II and her son Charles in 2019.
Queen Elizabeth II and Charles during the State Opening of Parliament at the Palace of Westminster in 2019.Paul Edwards - WPA Pool/Getty Images

"The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan," the statement from Buckingham Palace said.

"The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning," it went on to say. "While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately."

"Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members," the statement went on to say.

Prince William said the royal family was "very much not a racist family" on March 11, 2021.

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Prince William in 2018.Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Prince William and Kate Middleton made an appearance at an elementary school for a mental-health initiative on March 11, 2021.

During the appearance, Sky News North of England correspondent Inzamam Rashid asked William if he had spoken to Prince Harry since the interview.

"No I haven't yet, but I will do," he responded.

"And can you just let me know, is the royal family a racist family, sir?" Rashid responded.

"We're very much not a racist family," William said as he and Kate left the event.

Prince Harry and Prince William spoke briefly at Prince Philip's funeral on April 17, 2021, but William and Kate reportedly feared conversation with Harry would leak to the press.

Peter Phillips, Prince William, and Prince Harry during the funeral of Prince Philip in April 2021.
Peter Phillips, Prince William, and Prince Harry, pictured during the Ceremonial Procession at the funeral of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, at Windsor Castle on April 17, 2021, in Windsor, England.WPA Pool/Getty Images

Harry reunited with his family after Prince Philip died on April 9, 2021.

He attended the funeral at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle on April 17, 2021, though he and William did not walk next to each other during the processional. Instead, their cousin, Peter Philips, walked between them.

Harry was also spotted briefly walking and speaking with William and Kate after the ceremony, but according to royal historian Robert Lacey's book "Battle of Brothers: William, Harry and the Inside Story of a Family in Tumult," the couple didn't speak to Harry after the funeral because they feared the conversation would be "leaked."

Lacey wrote that William and Kate saw "no point in talking to Harry, since any discussion of substance would go straight back to Meghan to be leaked out via Oprah or some other tentacle of the Sussex network that had not stopped spreading stories in the weeks since the interview that the couple's friends had promised would be their final word."

And according to royal biographer Katie Nicholl's book "The New Royals: Queen Elizabeth's Legacy and the Future of the Crown," William and Kate also didn't attend an impromptu wake with Harry, Prince Philip, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie, and Zara and Mike Tindall.

Prince Harry revealed new details about his and his wife's mental-health struggles when they were senior royals when "The Me You Can't See" premiered on May 21, 2021.

Prince Harry speaks with Oprah in a scene from 'The Me You Can't See'
Prince Harry speaks with Oprah in a scene from "The Me You Can't See" in 2021.AppleTV+

In the third episode of the Apple TV+ series, Harry spoke candidly about his relationship with his father, revealing that King Charles often told him and Prince William when they were children, "Well, it was like that for me so it's going to be like that for you."

"That doesn't make sense," Harry said of his father's refrain. "Just because you suffered doesn't mean your kids have to suffer."

"In fact, quite the opposite," he went on to say. "If you suffered, do everything you can to make sure that whatever negative experiences you had, that you can make it right for your kids."

And in episode five, Harry shared that he woke up to Meghan crying before their interview with Winfrey aired because of a "smear campaign" from British tabloids and the firm, the institution that supports the monarchy.

"Before the interview, because of their headlines and that combined effort of the firm and the media to smear her, I was woken up in the middle of the night to her crying in her pillow because she doesn't want to wake me up because I'm already carrying too much," Harry said of Markle.

"That's heartbreaking," he added. "I held her. We talked. She cried, and she cried, and she cried."

Members of the royal family congratulated Harry and Meghan on their daughter's birth in June 2021.

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in June 2021.Misan Harriman; Copyright owned by The Duke and Duchess of Sussex © 2021

Meghan and Harry welcomed their daughter in June 2021, who was named Lilibet Diana after her grandmother and great-grandmother; Lilibet was Queen Elizabeth's family nickname.

Members of the royal family offered their congratulations to the family online.

"Congratulations to The Duke and Duchess of Sussex on the birth of Lilibet Diana!" the royal family wrote on its official Instagram on behalf of Queen Elizabeth, her son, Camilla, and William and Kate.

Charles and Camilla, as well as William and Kate, also congratulated the Sussexes in their own Instagram post, in which they didn't use Meghan and Harry's royal titles.

"We are all delighted by the happy news of the arrival of baby Lili. Congratulations to Harry, Meghan, and Archie," William and Kate said in an Instagram post.

"Congratulations to Harry, Meghan, and Archie on the arrival of baby Lilibet Diana," Charles and Camilla said in their post. "Wishing them all well at this time."

Prince Edward said Meghan and Harry's rift with the royals had been "difficult" for the family on June 10, 2021.

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Prince Edward on April 12, 2018.Dan Mullan/Getty Images

During an interview with CNN, King Charles' youngest brother answered a question about Harry and Meghan's rift with the royal family.

"It's very sad," Prince Edward said of the situation. "Weirdly, we've all been there before, we've all had excessive intrusion and attention in our lives, and we've all dealt with it in slightly different ways."

"We wish them the very best of luck, it's a really hard decision," he went on to say. "Fantastic news about the baby, that's great, I hope they'll be very happy. Families are families, aren't they?"

When a reporter asked him if the rift had been difficult for Queen Elizabeth, Edward said, "It's difficult for everyone. But that's families for you."

Prince William and Prince Harry reunited to unveil a statue for Princess Diana on July 1, 2021.

Prince William, left, and Prince Harry, right, look at a blue statue of Princess Diana surrounded by three children
Prince William and Prince Harry at Kensington Palace on July 1, 2021.Dominic Lipinski /Pool Photo via AP

In honor of what would have been Princess Diana's 60th birthday, William and Harry came together at Kensington Palace for the unveiling of a statue made in their mother's honor.

The brothers released a rare joint statement for the occasion.

"Today, on what would have been our mother's 60th birthday, we remember her love, strength, and character – qualities that made her a force for good around the world, changing countless lives for the better," the brothers said in their statement. "Every day, we wish she were still with us, and our hope is that this statue will be seen forever as a symbol of her life and her legacy."

Harry and William attended the event without any members of the royal family, including their wives, though they were joined by Diana's siblings, Charles Spencer, Sarah McCorquodale, and Jane Fellowes.

Ahead of the unveiling, Stewart Pearce, Diana's voice coach, told Insider that William and Harry are bonded together by their grief for their mother.

"What the British press are not seeing is that these two young men are held in an extraordinary pact of grief," Pearce said.

A spokesperson for Charles said he did not speculate on Archie's skin color in November 2021.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry with their first child, Archie.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry with their first child, Archie, on September 25, 2019.Toby Melville/Getty Images

In November 2021, Christopher Andersen published "Brothers and Wives: Inside the Private Lives of William, Kate, Harry, and Meghan."

In the book, Andersen wrote that a well-placed palace source told him that it was Harry's father who speculated on Archie's skin tone.

According to the source, on Meghan and Harry's wedding day, Charles asked Camilla, "I wonder what the children will look like?"

Camilla was "somewhat taken aback" by the question and responded that they would be, "Well, absolutely gorgeous, I'm certain," the source told Andersen.

"I mean, what do you think their children's complexion might be?" Charles responded, according to the unnamed source who spoke to Andersen.

When Page Six reported on the claim, a representative for Charles said: "This is fiction and not worth further comment."

The palace also consulted lawyers about the allegation, royal writer Omid Scobie wrote on Twitter at the time.

In December 2021, The Sun reported that Harry and Charles' relationship was at an "all-time low."

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Meghan Markle, Charles, and Prince Harry at the Trooping The Colour on June 9, 2018.Mark Cuthbert/Contributor/Getty Images

On December 7, 2021, Matt Wilkinson reported for The Sun that sources told him Charles was "deeply shocked and hurt" by Meghan and Harry's step back and the events following.

Wilkinson's sources were also cited saying that Charles and his son had "barely spoken" in eight months.

However, Charles said he was proud of Harry in January 2022.

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Charles in 2018.WPA Pool / Getty Images

In a personal essay for Newsweek about climate change published on January 4, 2022, Charles honored William and Harry's conservation efforts.

"As a father, I am proud that my sons have recognized this threat," the king wrote. "And my younger son, Harry, has passionately highlighted the impact of climate change, especially in relation to Africa, and committed his charity to being net zero."

Nigel Cawthorne, the royal biographer who wrote "Prince Philip: I Know I Am Rude," told Insider's Maria Noyen that Charles' comments about Harry indicated he was working towards resolution.

"Prince Charles is clearly realizing that he has to take on the conciliatory role of the grown up that Prince Philip used to have," Cawthorne told Insider at the time.

"Like his father he is realizing that letting emotions fester will be the downfall of the Windsors. Prince Philip used what the Queen called his 'cheeky humor' to unruffle feathers, even with Harry and William's mother Diana," Cawthorne went on to say. "Charles will have to find his own way in keeping the family together rather than let it grow apart over quibbles."

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle privately visited Queen Elizabeth during a trip to Europe on April 14, 2022.

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Queen Elizabeth and Prince Harry on May 18, 2015.Julian Simmonds - WPA Pool / Getty

A spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex confirmed to Insider that Harry and Meghan paid a visit to the Queen while they were in Europe for the Invictus Games, a competition for injured service personnel founded by Harry.

Katie Nicholl's "New Royals" revealed that the Duke of Sussex also saw Charles and Camilla during the visit.

"Harry went in with hugs and the best of intentions and said he wanted to clear the air," a friend of the royal family told Nicholl of the prince's approach to his meeting with his father and stepmother.

"He actually suggested that they use a mediator to try and sort things out, which had Charles somewhat bemused and Camilla spluttering into her tea," the friend went on to tell Nicholl.

"She told Harry it was ridiculous and that they were a family and would sort it out between themselves," the same friend said, according to Nicholl.

After the visit, Harry said he wanted to make sure the Queen was "protected" and avoided a question about his brother.

Prince Harry
Prince Harry.Peter Nicholls-WPA Pool/Getty Images

On April 20, Harry discussed his visit with his grandmother during an interview with NBC for the "Today" show.

"Being with her, it was great, it was just so nice to see her," Harry said of the Queen. "She's on great form. She's always got a great sense of humor with me, and I'm just making sure that she's, you know, protected, and got the right people around her."

"We have a really special relationship, we talk about things she can't talk about with anyone else," he added.

In the same interview, Hoda Kotb asked Harry if he missed his father and brother since moving to the US, and Harry seemed to avoid the question by talking about the Invictus Games.

"For me, in the moment, I'm here, focused on these guys and these families and giving everything that I can — 120% — to them to make sure they have the experience of a lifetime," Harry responded.

In June 2022, the Sussexes attended the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations, reuniting them with the royal family.

prince harry and meghan markle attending a service celebrating queen elizabeth's platinum jubilee
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle leave after a service of thanksgiving for the reign of Queen Elizabeth II at St. Paul's Cathedral in London on June 3, 2022.Matt Dunham/AP

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex flew to the UK with their children for Queen Elizabeth's Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

On June 3, 2022, they made their first joint appearance at a royal event since 2020 for the Service of Thanksgiving at St. Paul's Cathedral in honor of the Queen's 70 years on the throne.

Although they attended the service, they didn't attend a luncheon for the royals after the event, and they appeared to be booed by some as they exited the ceremony, according to a video published by the New York Post.

Charles and Camilla were able to meet Lilibet during the trip, and a source told People the monarch had an "emotional" reaction to meeting his granddaughter.

"It was a fantastic visit," an unnamed royal source told People's Simon Perry. "The prince was delighted to see his grandson and meet his granddaughter for the first time."

"The Prince and the Duchess [of Cornwall] were absolutely thrilled to see them," the source went on to tell People.

Prince Harry reunited with the royal family after Queen Elizabeth died on September 8, 2022.

Prince Harry Aberdeen
Vehicles believed to carry Prince Harry arrive at Aberdeen International Airport in Aberdeen, Scotland, on September 9, 2022.Phil Noble via Reuters

Queen Elizabeth died on September 8, 2022, at 96. Buckingham Palace said she "died peacefully at Balmoral" in Scotland in a statement.

Members of the royal family rushed to Balmoral after the Queen's doctors said they were concerned about her, Harry included, as he and Meghan were in London at the time for a charity event.

But Harry did not see the Queen before she died. The palace announced she died earlier that afternoon at 6:30 p.m. local time, and Harry's flight did not arrive in Scotland until  6:46 p.m., according to flight-tracking data published by The Daily Beast and Mail Online.

The Duke of Sussex was reunited with the new King Charles, Prince William, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward, and Sophie, the Countess of Wessex at Balmoral.

Meghan and Harry stayed in the UK for the duration of the Queen's funeral events.

King Charles voiced his love for Meghan and Harry in his first address as monarch on September 9, 2022.

charles first speech as king
King Charles III gives a speech after the death of Queen Elizabeth II on September 9, 2022.The Royal Family/Instagram

King Charles gave his first address to the UK as monarch the day after his mother's death.

In the speech, he paid tribute to his mother, bestowed the titles of Prince and Princess of Wales to William and Kate, and expressed his love for Harry and Meghan.

"I want to also express my love for Harry and Meghan as they continue to build their lives overseas," Charles said after announcing William was taking over his title.

Harry and Meghan made a surprise appearance with Kate and William on September 10, 2022, their first as the "fab four" in over two years.

Prince William, Princess Kate, Prince Harry, and Meghan Markle wave as they walk around Windsor Castle
Prince William, Princess Kate, Prince Harry, and Meghan Markle on a walk at Windsor Castle on September 10, 2022.Chris Jackson - WPA Pool/Getty Images

On September 10, Meghan and Harry joined William and Kate for an impromptu walkabout at Windsor Castle to greet well-wishers.

A spokesperson for the new Prince of Wales told The Times of London that William personally invited Harry and Meghan to join the walk, which marked their first joint appearance as couples in years.

"The Prince of Wales thought it was an important show of unity at an incredibly difficult time for the family," the spokesperson told The Times.

But royal expert Marlene Koenig told Insider the moment of unity likely wasn't a sign of a permanently mended relationship.

"I don't think there's been a reconciliation," Koenig said. "I'm sure it was insanely uncomfortable for all of them."

Meghan and Harry were later spotted with King Charles at Buckingham Palace.

King Charles granted Harry an exception to wear his military regalia to stand vigil for his grandmother on September 16, 2022.

Queen Elizabeth's grandchildren walk out for a special vigil on September 17, 2022.
Queen Elizabeth's eight grandchildren honored her with a solemn vigil on September 17, 2022.Aaron Chown-WPA Pool/Getty Images

In the days after the Queen's death, a spokesperson for the Duke of Sussex told Insider that Prince Harry would be wearing a morning suit to all funeral services for his grandmother, not military attire, since he is no longer a working royal.

"Prince Harry, The Duke of Sussex will wear a morning suit throughout events honouring his grandmother," the spokesperson said at the time. "His decade of military service is not determined by the uniform he wears and we respectfully ask that focus remain on the life and legacy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II."

On September 12, The Telegraph reported that only working members of the royal family would be permitted to wear military attire to the Queen's funeral events, but said an exception had been made for Prince Andrew who would get to wear military dress at a final vigil held at Westminster Hall despite being stripped of his military titles earlier that year.

But on September 16 ahead of a vigil at Westminster Hall attended by Queen Elizabeth's eight grandchildren, royal reporter Rebecca English tweeted that both William and Harry would wear their military attire to the service "at the King's request."

The stunning reversal seemed like an indication that the royal family was making amends in the wake of the Queen's death.

But Harry's uniform was missing his grandmother's initials.

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex arrives to hold a vigil in honour of Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Hall on September 17, 2022 in London, England.
Prince Harry arrives to hold a vigil in honor of Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Hall on September 17, 2022, in London, England.Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Roya Nikkah reported for The Sunday Times on September 18, 2022 that Harry's uniform was missing an "ER" pin, Queen Elizabeth's initials, when it was returned to him.

The missing pin meant that Harry was initially not meant to wear his uniform for the ceremony, despite serving over 10 years in the British military.

An unnamed friend of Harry told Nikkah that the prince was "heartbroken" that the pin was left off the uniform, and he considered not wearing it at all out of "humiliation" since the absence of the pin seemed "intentional."

On October 27, 2022, Penguin Random House announced Prince Harry's upcoming memoir would be called "Spare."

The cover photo for Prince Harry's memoir, "Spare."
The cover photo for Prince Harry's memoir, "Spare."Penguin Random House

Penguin Random House announced "Spare" would be released on January 10, 2023, though it was originally slated to be released in 2022.

The title appeared to be a reference to Harry's former position in his family as the spare heir to the throne as William's younger brother. People often called the siblings "the heir and the spare" as children, according to Vanity Fair.

The synopsis of the book on the Penguin Random House website indicates the prince will get candid about his relationship with his family.

"It was one of the most searing images of the twentieth century: two young boys, two princes, walking behind their mother's coffin as the world watched in sorrow—and horror," the synopsis said. "As Diana, Princess of Wales, was laid to rest, billions wondered what the princes must be thinking and feeling—and how their lives would play out from that point on. For Harry, this is that story at last."

"With its raw, unflinching honesty, Spare is a landmark publication full of insight, revelation, self-examination, and hard-won wisdom about the eternal power of love over grief," it went on to say.

When "Harry & Meghan" premiered on Netflix on December 8, 2022, the streaming company and unnamed royal sources disagreed about its production.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in their Netflix docuseries "Harry & Meghan."
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in their Netflix docuseries "Harry & Meghan."Netflix

The Netflix docuseries premiered in two volumes, with three episodes dropping on December 8 and three dropping on December 15.

At the beginning of episode one, two screen cards appeared on the screen with disclaimers about the production.

"This is a first-hand account of Harry & Meghan's story, told with never before seen personal archive," the first card read. "All interviews were completed by August 2022," before Queen Elizabeth's death on September 8, 2022.

A second disclaimer then appeared: "Members of the Royal Family declined to comment on the content within this series." The disclaimer did not note which members of the royal family were contacted ahead of the show's release.

But after the premiere, multiple outlets, such as PeopleThe Independent, and Page Six, reported that unnamed sources said Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace were not asked for comment on the contents of the series. The palaces did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment on the matter.

An anonymous royal source said to People that the two palaces' offices got an email from an unnamed third-party production company but "the substance of the email did not address the entire series." The source went on to tell People that the palaces then contacted Archewell and Netflix about the email, and they got no response to their inquiry.

But a Netflix source told Insider that both Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace were contacted specifically about the show and were given the opportunity to comment on its content.

In the series, Harry said the royal family didn't think his relationship with Meghan would last because of her career.

meghan markle suits
Meghan Markle played paralegal-turned-lawyer Rachel Zane in "Suits."USA Network

In episode two of the series, Harry and Meghan discussed the royal family's first impression of her.

"I remember my family first meeting her and being incredibly impressed," Harry said. "Some of them didn't quite know what to do with themselves."

Despite being "impressed," Harry went on to say that his family didn't initially think he would end up marrying Meghan because of her career; Meghan was an actress on "Suits" when she met Harry.

"The fact that I was dating an American actress was probably what clouded their judgment more than anything else in the beginning," the prince said.

"Oh, she's an American actress, this won't last," he said of what his family thought.

"The actress thing was the biggest problem, funny enough," Meghan echoed her husband in a different interview during the docuseries. "There was a big idea of what that looks like from the UK standpoint. Hollywood, it was just very easy for them to typecast that."

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex also revealed they had been trying to move away from the UK since 2018 in the series.

meghan harry south africa
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry visit the Nyanga Township during their royal tour of South Africa on September 23, 2019, in Cape Town.Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty Images

Harry and Meghan moved away from the UK in March 2020 after stepping back as senior royals.

But as they shared in episode five of "Harry & Meghan," they considered moving to three Commonwealth countries so they could continue working for the Queen outside of the UK.

Harry and Meghan said they presented the royal family with a plan for them to move to New Zealand in 2018; South Africa in the spring of 2019; and, finally, Canada at the end of 2019.

"The family and their people knew that we were trying to find a different way of working for a minimum of two years," Harry said.

Harry went on to say their plan to move to South Africa was approved by the Queen's office, Charles' office, and Prince William's office, and each office signed off on an "internal document" regarding the move.

But the document was leaked to The Times in April 2019, Harry said, so the move was canceled.

"Then that whole plan was then scrapped because it's now become a public debate," Harry said. "Once plans like that become public debates, nine times out of 10, it's gonna fail."

The plan to move to Canada was also leaked in January 2020, which frustrated Harry in particular because he asked his father if he could avoid putting the plan in writing. But Charles said he couldn't make the move happen if it wasn't written down.

Harry sent his father details about the move on January 1, 2, and 3, 2020, and The Sun published a story about it by January 7.

Also in the series, Harry said he had nothing to do with a joint statement released by the palace with his and William's name on it after he and Meghan stepped back as senior royals.

Prince William Prince Harry
Prince Harry and Prince William during the annual Remembrance Sunday memorial on November 11, 2018, in London, England.Chris Jackson/Getty Images

In episode five, Harry addressed the "joint" statement a Kensington Palace representative gave to Rebecca English about allegations William had bullied the Sussexes out of the royal family.

Harry said no one asked his permission to add his name to the statement, and he was shocked when he heard about it.

"I couldn't believe it," he said.

He said he called Meghan to tell her about the statement after he heard about it.

"She burst into floods of tears," the prince said of Meghan's reaction. "Within four hours, they were happy to lie to protect my brother and yet for three years, they were never willing to tell the truth to protect us."

In the Netflix series, Harry said William yelled at him during the Sandringham Summit in January 2020.

prince william prince harry rugby
Prince Harry and Prince William watching England v. Wales at the Rugby World Cup in 2015.Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

After Harry and Meghan announced their step back on social media, senior members of the royal family gathered at Sandringham House in January 2020 to discuss what Meghan and Harry's futures as members of the royal family would be.

In episode five of "Harry & Meghan," Harry said the conversations were not productive, particularly because of William's reaction.

"It became very clear very quickly that that goal was not up for discussion or debate," Harry said. "It was terrifying to have my brother scream and shout at me."

"I mean the saddest part of it was this wedge created between myself and my brother so that he's now on the institution's side," he went on to say. "And part of that, I get. I understand, right? That's his inheritance."

"So, to some extent, it's already ingrained in him that part of his responsibility is the survivability and the continuation of this institution," he added.

Representatives for Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment on this story.

Harry attended the coronation without Meghan on May 6, 2023.

Prince Harry speaks to Princess Anne at King Charles III's coronation.
Prince Harry speaks to Princess Anne at King Charles III's coronation.Richard Pohle - WPA Pool/Getty Images

King Charles III's coronation took place at Westminster Abbey, and both Harry and Meghan were invited.

However, Harry came on behalf of the Sussexes, while Meghan stayed with their children in California, which royal experts told Insider was a "brilliant" PR strategy.

The Duke of Sussex was only in London for 28 hours, and although he was not seen interacting with the king or Prince William, he chatted with his cousins and aunt, Princess Anne.

Buckingham Palace said it wouldn't be commenting after Harry and Meghan's representative said they were involved in a paparazzi car chase on May 16, 2023.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry outside the Hertz rental car facility on May 16, 2023
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry outside a Hertz rental car facility on May 16, 2023.Selcuk Acar/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

After attending an event in Manhattan on May 16, Harry, Meghan, and her mother Doria Ragland were "chased" by paparazzi for over two hours, a representative for the Sussexes said in a statement shared by royals reporter Omid Scobie at the time.

"This relentless pursuit, lasting over two hours, resulted in multiple near collisions involving other drivers on the road, pedestrians, and two NYPD officers," the statement said.

After the alleged incident, Buckingham Palace declined to comment on the matter when contacted by Insider.

"This isn't something we're commenting on," a Buckingham Palace spokesperson told Insider.


The Duke and Duchess of Sussex officially vacated Frogmore Cottage in June 2023.

Harry and Meghan, Frogmore Cottage
The couple vacated Frogmore Cottage.Max Mumby/ Indigo/ Getty Images, GOR/ Getty Images

The royal family released the Sovereign Grant report on June 28, and during a briefing about the report the following day, the keeper of the privy purse Sir Michael Stevens confirmed Harry and Meghan vacated the cottage, as the Independent reported.

"We will not be going into any detail on those arrangements here," Stevens said. "Safe to say that, as has previously been stated, the duke and duchess have paid for the expenditure incurred by the Sovereign Grant in relation to the renovation of Frogmore Cottage, thus leaving the Crown with a greatly enhanced asset."

William and Harry teamed up for an award that honored Princess Diana.

Prince William and Prince Harry at a walkabout at Windsor Castle on September 8, 2022.
Prince William and Prince Harry at a walkabout at Windsor Castle on September 8, 2022.CHRIS JACKSON/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

On Friday, The Diana Award recipients were announced, which honor 180 young people for their humanitarian efforts and social work, according to a press release reviewed by Insider. The list is announced on June 30 to honor the late princess' birthday, which is July 1.

Diana's sons play an active role in the organization, and for the 2023 awards ceremony, both William and Harry filmed videos congratulating the recipients.

Their videos were filmed separately, but the brothers offered similar sentiments in their messages.

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