Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Are Engaged: 5 Things You Might Not Know About the Soon-to-Be Royal

Actress will make history in the royal family by marrying Prince Harry

By Kendall Fisher Nov 27, 2017 6:34 PMTags

We've been tracking Meghan Markle's every move since news of her romance with Prince Harry was reported last year.

We know she's most famous for her role playing Rachel Zane in the USA legal drama Suits, and we know she's an American with a biracial upbringing that caused a "grey area" in her self-identity growing up. 

We know Meghan started dating Harry in October 2016 and that they've been spending every moment they can together ever since—attending weddings, traveling across the world for both enjoyment and humanitarian work and supporting each other at important events.

But while we may know a lot, there's still some very interesting details about Meghan that haven't been as widely spread as the rest...

Eddie Mulholland/Daily Telegraph/PA Wire

1. She Was Born in Beverly Hills: Though she's made Toronto her hometown because that's where she's been filming Suits since 2011, Meghan was actually raised in Los Angeles.

She was born on Aug. 4, 1981 with the real name Rachel Meghan Markle to her clinical therapist mother, Doria Radlan, and a television lighting director, Thomas Markle. Her parents divorced when she was six, but she remained close to both of them as they raised her in L.A. Though she was not Catholic, she went to a private all-girls' Catholic school, Immaculate Heart High School, before she went on to study theater at Northwestern University in Chicago.

2. She Will be the First Biracial, American Woman in the British Royal Family: Meghan is making history as the first half-white, half-black American woman to become part of the royal family—a characteristic she's opened up about in the past.

"My dad is Caucasian and my mom is African American," she told Elle magazine last year. "I'm half black and half white…To describe something as being black and white means it is clearly defined. Yet when your ethnicity is black and white, the dichotomy is not that clear. In fact, it creates a grey area. Being biracial paints a blurred line that is equal parts staggering and illuminating."

3. She Will Become a Duchess or a Princess: Despite being American, once Meghan marries Harry, she will get the title of a duchess or princess. 
It is believed Harry will take on duties as the Duke of Sussex, which means Meghan would become Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Sussex. 

However, with Harry moving down the line of succession (due to Prince William and Kate Middleton's children), he will probably never become king, and therefore, Meghan will not face the same level of responsibility Kate has as the potential future Queen.

As for Harry and Meghan's future children—which they've both admitted they want—they will be a lord or a lady unless Queen Elizabeth says otherwise, granting them a prince or princess title.

Ilya Savenok/USA Network/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

4. She Was Previously Married: Meghan married producer Trevor Engelson in 2011 after they dated for six years, but they split up in May of 2013.

Many have asked if Meghan's divorce is an issue within the royal family, but Kensington Palace has made it clear that it is not. As you may recall, Edward VIII gave up the throne to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson in 1936, and the Queen's own sister Princess Margaret chose duty over love instead of marrying divorcee Group Captain Peter Townsend in 1955, but (obviously) much has changed since then.

In fact, Harry's father, Prince Charles, divorced his mother, Princess Diana, and went on to marry divorcee Camilla Parker Bowles in 2005.

5. She Has a Long History of Humanitarian Work: While most know Meghan for being an actress, she also has a long history of humanitarian work.

Not only is she a global ambassador for World Vision Canada, she's also committed to gender equality through her work as a women's advocate for the UN—both of which will help Harry fulfill his mission to honor his mother's legacy.

Not to mention, the seventh season of Suits will mark Meghan's final season on the show. Many believe the exit will allow her to take on the royal duties that come with marrying Prince Harry as well as her continued humanitarian work. 

Bonus: Her Love of Dogs Fits Right in With the Royal Family: Meghan has two rescue dogs, a beagle named Guy and a Labrador-shepherd mix named Bogart. As you likely know, the Queen is known for her love of dogs. She has owned more than 30 corgis in her lifetime.