What Meghan Markle’s first time having tea with the Queen was really like

By: Meaghan Wray

Meghan Markle has played many roles throughout her career, like her most popular as paralegal extraordinaire Rachel Zane on Suits. Her latest role as future senior member of the Royal Family takes the cake – or the scone, rather – but not without first having tea with Prince Harry’s grandmother, the Queen of England. In an excerpt from Andrew Morton’s unofficial biography, Meghan: A Hollywood Princess , published in Town & Country , the writer gives fans a glimpse behind the doors of Her Majesty’s private sitting room on the very day they met.

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Before even stepping foot in the palace, Meghan was already preparing for this moment in her hometown of Los Angeles, at a little slice of England called Rose Tree Cottage. “It is where Meghan learned to crook her finger as she sipped her Earl Grey from her cup and saucer,” Andrew writes. “Necessary skills to remember after she dropped a curtsy to her future mother-in-law.”

Commonwealth Day was the first of Meghan's royal engagements with the Queen. Photo: © Getty Images

Though Meghan had the support of Harry by her side, it wouldn’t be surprising if the former actress was a bit nervous. Because her fiancé is fifth in line to the throne – soon to be sixth once Prince William and Duchess Kate’s third baby is born – he requires the Queen’s blessing before marrying. Luckily, we know by now that the 36-year-old passed the royal test with flying colours, but what did it take?

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The couple arrived so incognito that day that senior palace servants had no idea they were there. As they made their way down miles of red carpet, the pressure to make the best impression possible was building. To make matters more tense, Andrew writes, no member of the Queen’s family has married a divorced commoner, and Harry has his own troubled past, too. The trio sipped tea pleasantly and munched on thin cucumber and mayonnaise sandwiches, likely discussing common interests, of which Meghan has many, like environmental awareness and human rights advocacy.

Meghan joined the Royal Family for Christmas at Sandringham, where she curtsies to the Queen. Photo: © Getty Images

However, sometimes puppy love is all one needs to win over a grandmother-in-law, and this was true for Meghan, too. Her Majesty’s pack of corgis took to the vocal dog lover almost immediately. “I’ve spent the last thirty-three years being barked at; this one walks in, absolutely nothing,” Harry explained to the BBC in their first joint interview last year. Of the encounter, his beaming fiancée gushed, “She’s an incredible woman!”

Without a doubt, the love Meghan and Harry so clearly share spoke for itself that day, but her American charm was likely the cherry on top of a perfect first encounter. And with her rescue dog Guy living with the couple at Kensington Palace, perhaps a puppy play date is next on the books!

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