Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have always done it their way.
The new parents officially introduced their first child to the world, with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex presenting son Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor on Wednesday morning.
Since they first went public with their romance in late 2016, with Harry releasing an unprecedented public statement calling out the media's coverage of his new girlfriend and the "wave of abuse and harassment" she had been subjected to, the couple has found ways to put their own modern spin on centuries-long royal rules and traditions, earning praise and endless headlines with each bare leg photographed and selfie taken.
And their handling of Archie's arrival and debut was no exception as even the literal handling of Archie, with Harry holding him going against the long tradition of the mother being the one to present the royal baby in their arms.
After much speculation about how and when Harry and Meghan would present Baby Sussex to the world, Buckingham Palace finally released a statement in April.
"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. Their Royal Highnesses have taken a personal decision to keep the plans around the arrival of their baby private. The Duke and Duchess look forward to sharing the exciting news with everyone once they have had an opportunity to celebrate privately as a new family."
Their decision to keep the plans completely private was in stark contrast to how Prince William and Kate Middleton have previously handled their three children's birth announcements, with Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis' arrivals being documented and reported on with precision. Who can forget when William and Kate stepped out of the hospital for their first photo op with Louis mere hours after she had given birth, looking ready and fit for royal duty.
While many royal watchers may have expected Harry and Meghan to follow suit with Baby Sussex, who arrived on May 6, the practice of presenting a new royal baby to the public actually doesn't go too far back in the royal family's centuries-long history: Prince Charles and Princess Diana established the trend when they posed on the hospital steps with Prince William, who also happened to be the first heir born in a hospital at Charles' request.
And yet, Harry and Meghan had earned their fair share of backlash over choosing to keep the arrival of Archie private until they were ready to share the news, with many criticizing them for breaking yet another royal rule, even though they did no such thing. Even
So how did all of these royal rules—official and unofficial—actually come to be? And how serious are they really? We decided to do some digging, looking into the history of how royal protocol is established and how it's evolved over the centuries, from Queen Victoria to Meghan Markle...