What’s in a name? It seems a lot when you are Meghan and Harry, says Catherine Scott

So Meghan and Harry have welcomed their new baby daughter into the world, And it seems they can’t even do that without being surrounded by controversy.

Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

They have named their daughter, who is eighth in line to the throne, Lilibet Diana – after her great grandmother and grandmother.

Now there is nothing unusual about people naming their children after relatives.

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In fact both my of daughters’ middle names are after their two grandmothers. And my youngest’s first name was after my maternal great grandmother.

I think the difference with Lilibet – to be known, apparently, as Lili – is that it is the affectionate nickname of the Queen given to her by her grandfather George V after she struggled to say her own name when she was small.

This makes it an even more personal gesture, which many will see as an olive branch to the Queen for the bad feeling caused by the couple’s much publicised criticism of the Royal family on Oprah Winfrey’s television show and broadcast to the world.

It seems on the surface to be a lovely gesture, which pays tribute not only to Harry’s grandmother but to his beloved mother, Diana.

However it wasn’t long before the detractors were raising the question of whether the Queen gave her permission.

Now, I have to say that I didn’t think anyone had to ask permission on what to name their child. Even a nickname can’t be copyrighted.

Surely, Her Majesty will be nothing but touched that her grandson and his wife have chosen her pet name to name their first-born daughter. However, I can’t believe that it wasn’t discussed with her – only in the way that other people discuss their baby’s possible names. But even if she wasn’t, does it really matter?

I am not a great supporter of the way the Sussexes have handled themselves, especially their decision to bare all on television when the Duke of Edinburgh was so ill. It could only cause distress to the Queen at what was already an emotional time.

However, I think only a hardened cynic would see naming their child after the Queen’s pet name as anything other than a tribute to her.

That said, I really hope that this couple who have given up so much, they say, to get the privacy to crave, will now keep out of the spotlight.

The best way to mend bridges with the Queen and Royal family is to do it in private, not in the public eye.

This is a start, but if a reconciliation is what Harry and Meghan really want then they must do more and do it privately.

Twitter: @ypcscott