Duke of Sussex

Royal dukedom in the United Kingdom

Dukedom of Sussex
Coat of Arms of Harry, Duke of Sussex.svg
Creation date19 May 2018 (announced)[1]
16 July 2018 (Letters Patent)[2]
Created byElizabeth II
PeeragePeerage of the United Kingdom
Present holderPrince Harry
Heir apparentArchie Mountbatten-Windsor
Remainder tothe 1st Duke's heirs male of the body lawfully begotten[2]
Subsidiary titlesEarl of Dumbarton
Baron Kilkeel
The current Duke and Duchess of Sussex in 2017

Duke of Sussex is a substantive title, one of several royal dukedoms, that has been created twice in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. It is a hereditary title of a specific rank of nobility in the British royal family. It takes its name from the historic county of Sussex in England.

The title was revived in 2018, when Queen Elizabeth II bestowed it on her grandson Prince Harry on 19 May 2018 upon his marriage to Meghan Markle. Meghan became known as the Duchess of Sussex.


A title associated with Sussex first appeared with the Kingdom of Sussex, an Anglo-Saxon kingdom that was annexed by the Kingdom of Wessex around 827,[3] that later became part of the Kingdom of England. In charters, Sussex's monarchs were sometimes referred to as ealdormen, or duces in Latin, which is sometimes translated as "dukes".

First creation, 1801

The title of Duke of Sussex was first conferred on 24 November 1801 upon Prince Augustus Frederick,[4] the sixth son of King George III. He was made Baron Arklow and Earl of Inverness at the same time, also in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. The title became extinct upon Prince Augustus Frederick's death in 1843.

Although Prince Augustus Frederick was survived by a son and daughter by Lady Augusta Murray, their marriage (purportedly solemnized at St George's Hanover Square Church, Westminster, in 1793) had been annulled for lack of royal permission under the Royal Marriages Act 1772, rendering the children illegitimate under English law and unable to inherit titles from their father. Both children by the annulled marriage died childless, rendering the issue of their inheritance moot.

On 2 May 1831, Prince Augustus Frederick married secondly (and again in contravention of the Royal Marriages Act 1772) to Lady Cecilia Gore at Great Cumberland Place, London. Not being the Prince's legitimate wife, Lady Cecilia could not be received at court. On 30 March 1840, she was given the title of Duchess of Inverness in her own right by Queen Victoria.[5]

Second creation, 2018

In 2018, the dukedom of Sussex was recreated and granted to Prince Harry, the grandson of Queen Elizabeth II and great-great-great-great-great grandnephew of the previous Duke, to mark the occasion of his wedding to Meghan Markle, who thereby became the first ever Duchess of Sussex.[1][6] On 19 May 2018, it was announced that Prince Harry would become Duke of Sussex in England, with the subsidiary titles of Earl of Dumbarton in Scotland and Baron Kilkeel in Northern Ireland. In 2019, an heir to the dukedom, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor, was born.

In 1999, before the wedding of Prince Edward, the youngest son of Queen Elizabeth II, some had suggested the dukedoms of Sussex or Cambridge as the most likely titles to be granted to him. Instead, Prince Edward was created Earl of Wessex, and it was announced that he would eventually be created Duke of Edinburgh, a title then held by his father, Prince Philip.[7]

There was again speculation that Prince William might be given the Sussex title on his wedding to Catherine Middleton in April 2011,[8] but he was instead created Duke of Cambridge.

Dukes of Sussex

1801 creation

Duke Portrait Birth Marriage(s) Death
Prince Augustus Frederick
House of Hanover
also: Earl of Inverness and Baron Arklow (1801)
Prince Augustus Frederick 27 January 1773
Buckingham House, London
son of King George III and Queen Charlotte
4 April 1793
Lady Augusta Murray
2 children

2 May 1831
Lady Cecilia Underwood
No children
21 April 1843
Kensington Palace, London
aged 70

Prince Augustus's first marriage to Lady Augusta Murray, which produced two children, was invalid under the Royal Marriages Act 1772 (he had not asked his father's approval to marry); so, accordingly, all his titles became extinct on his death.

2018 creation

Duke Portrait Birth Marriage(s) Death
Prince Harry
House of Windsor
also: Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel (2018)[1]
Prince Harry 15 September 1984
St Mary's Hospital, London
son of King Charles III and Diana, Princess of Wales
19 May 2018
Meghan Markle
2 children

Line of succession

Family tree

  • v
  • t
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Family tree: Dukes of Sussex
King George III
DUKE OF SUSSEX (first creation), 1801
King George IV
King William IV
Prince Edward
Duke of Kent and Strathearn
Prince Augustus Frederick
Duke of Sussex
Dukedom extinct, 1843
Queen Victoria
Augustus d'Este
King Edward VII
King George V
King Edward VIII
King George VI
Queen Elizabeth II
King Charles III
(b. 1948)
DUKE OF SUSSEX (second creation), 2018
William, Prince of Wales
(b. 1982)
Prince Harry
Duke of Sussex
(b. 1984)
Archie Mountbatten-Windsor
(b. 2019)

See also


  1. ^ a b c Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle: Announcement of Titles, The Royal Household, 19 May 2018.
  2. ^ a b "No. 62358". The London Gazette. 20 July 2018. p. 12928.
  3. ^ Edwards, Heather (2004). "Ecgberht [Egbert] (d. 839), king of the West Saxons in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography". Oxford University Press. Retrieved 22 June 2014.
  4. ^ "No. 15429". The London Gazette. 24 November 1801. p. 1403.
  5. ^ "No. 19842". The London Gazette. 31 March 1840. p. 858.
  6. ^ "Meghan Markle's royal title is Duchess of Sussex". The Independent. 17 April 2018. Retrieved 23 May 2018.
  7. ^ "His Royal Highness was born with the title Prince Edward, as he is a son of The Sovereign. He was created The Earl of Wessex and Viscount Severn on his marriage in 1999". Royal.gov.uk. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 9 January 2016.
  8. ^ "Kate Middleton will inherit a host of titles". Cambridge News. 16 November 2010. Archived from the original on 27 July 2014. Retrieved 22 April 2014.
  • v
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(1984-09-15) 15 September 1984 (age 38)
Events and charities
Popular culture
Interviews and
Film and
  • Concert for Diana (2007)
  • Monarchy: The Royal Family at Work (2007)
  • The Taking of Prince Harry (2010)
  • I Wanna Marry "Harry" (2014)
  • The Windsors (TV series, 2016–2020; play, 2021)
  • Harry & Meghan: A Royal Romance (2018)
  • Harry & Meghan: Becoming Royal (2019)
  • Spitting Image (2020–)
  • Harry & Meghan: Escaping the Palace (2021)
  • The Prince (2021)