As the world eagerly awaits the birth of the second royal baby, there are only two questions on everybody’s minds: Will it be or a boy or a girl, and what will Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge, née Kate Middleton, name Prince George’s younger sibling?
Just one day after leaving the hospital with their son in July 2013, the duke and duchess announced their firstborn’s name: Prince George Alexander Louis. The traditional name is rich in history, and the future King of England will surely write his own chapter.
Should Kate give birth to another boy like Princess Diana, who had brothers William and Harry just two years apart, there are many traditional names to choose from. Here, Hello! lists some possible royal baby boy names, including their meaning and historic significance, from A to Z.
A: ALEXANDER, Defender of the people. The feminine version, Alexandra, is the Queen’s middle name, and it’s believed William and Kate gave their son this middle name in tribute to her.
B: BRICE, From the town of Bruis. This is the family name of famed Scottish king Robert, who led the country to independence from England in 1320.
C: CHARLES, Freeman. Strong Prince Charles shares a moniker with Charles II (1630-1685), who came to power when the monarchy was restored in 1660.
D: DAVID, Beloved. In something of a royal tradition, King Edward VIII (later Duke of Windsor) was known informally as David, the last of his seven names.
E: EDWARD, Noble strength. King Edward I’s (1239 – 1307) campaign to bring Scotland under English control is the subject of the film Braveheart.
F: FREDERICK, Peaceful ruler. Always a favourite with royals, the name had a surge in popularity in the 18th century when the German House of Hanover claimed the throne.
G: GEORGE, Farmer. Prince George shares his name with the Queen’s beloved father, George VI, who saw Great Britain through the Second World War.
H: HENRY, Ruler of the estate. He’s known to the world as Prince Harry, but the rugged young royal’s first name is actually Henry – one of the most-storied royal names.
I: INDULF, Wolf. This unusual moniker is the English version of the medieval Gaelic name “Ildulb.” Indulf mac Causantin (d. 962) was king of the Scots
J: JAMES, Supplanting. The 20th-most-popular boy’s name in Canada last year, James is also the name of many British kings and Kate’s beloved younger brother, entrepreneur James Middleton.
K: KENNETH, Fire. King Kenneth MacAlpin is considered by some to be the founding father of Scotland in the ninth century.
L: LOUIS, Famed warrior. Like his son, Prince William has this as a middle name. It was likely chosen to honour Prince Philip’s uncle, Lord Louis Mountbatten.
M: MICHAEL, Who is like God. As well as being the name of Kate’s father, Michael Middleton, it is also the name of the Queen’s cousin Prince Michael of Kent.
N: NICHOLAS, Victory of the people. The Duke of Kent’s son Lord Nicholas Windsor, now in his 40s, shares a name with the saint who is believed to protect sailors.
O: OCTAVIUS, Eighth. Royal families would give this name to the eighth child (or eighth boy), as with Prince Octavius (1779-1783), eighth son of King George III.
P: PHILIP, Fond of horses Prince Charles paid tribute to his father, Prince Philip, when naming his first-born. Philip is one of Prince William’s middle names.
Q: QUINCY, Estate of the fifth son. Derived from the Latin word “quintus,” this was the name of rebel leader Saer de Quincy, 1st Earl of Winchester (1155-1219).
R: RICHARD, Brave power. King Richard III (1452-1485) may have gotten a bad rap from Shakespeare, but this name has never gone out of style.
S: STEPHEN, Crown. A fitting choice for a royal, Stephen wasn’t always a proper name; it was used as a noun in Homer’s ancient Greek epic The Illiad.
T: THOMAS, Twin. Thomas Becket (1120-1170), the Archbishop of Canterbury, had disputes with King Henry II and was killed by his men.
U: UNREADY, Bad counsel. Ethelred the Unready (968-1016) was just seven years old when he took the throne, hence he became known as the “unready” ruler.
V: VICTOR, Champion. Despite its martial meaning, this name is more famous for its association with saints and religious figures than warriors.
W: WILLIAM, Determined protector. Unless he decides to use a different name – as many monarchs have done – Prince William will become King William V.
X: XAVIER, New house. St. Francis Xavier (1506-1552) was one of the first Jesuit missionaries and devoted his life to taking Roman Catholicism to Asia
Y: YOUNG. King Henry II’s successor was known as Henry the Young King to differentiate between father and son. He lived from 1155-1183.
Z: ZEID, To grow. Perfect for a born leader, the name represents a person who encourages progression in himself and others.