Princess Charlotte's birth made royal history as the Queen amended the succession act to give her great-granddaughter equal standing to her brothers - Prince George and, now, Prince Louis too. As eldest daughter of a future monarch, the little girl's also got a special title on deck: Princess Royal. But Charlotte may not be styled as such until later in her life as a few things will have to come to pass.
First, her father, Prince William, will have to ascend the throne, at which point her mother Duchess Kate will likely become Queen Catherine. But that's not all! There is currently a Princess Royal in place, the Queen's 67-year-old daughter Princess Anne, whose eventual passing will free up the title for her great-niece as it is one that's held for life. "William will need to be king and Princess Anne [pass away] for Charlotte to be named Princess Royal," Marlene Koenig, founder of Royal Musings and royal historian, told HELLO!. "So yes, it is possible in the future."
When the title of Princess Royal is available, it is up to the monarch to decide when it is granted to his or her eldest daughter - so it's not automatic. Princess Anne was 36 years old when she took on the title in 1987. "There is a lot to be said for the timing," explained Marlene. "The Phillips marriage was already in trouble. They separated two years later, but in 1985, Mark became a father of Felicity Tonkin, born in New Zealand. This story broke in 1991, but there is no doubt that Anne already knew as Heather Tonkin had called Gatcombe to tell Mark that she was pregnant. Accepting the title of Princess Royal allowed Anne to stop being styled as HRH The Princess Anne, Mrs. Mark Phillips."
Queen Victoria, on the other hand, gave the title to her daughter Victoria when she was still an infant. So when Princess Charlotte will take on the title is highly unpredictable. And Prince William has another detail to consider where his precious daughter is concerned. The status of Princess Royal isn't as high as that of a royal dukedom, so he'll likely wish to give his second-born a special honour when she weds.
Marlene explained what could be in store for the three-year-old. "Now with gender equal succession, I think it would be more possible to grant a peerage to Charlotte. Prince Louis will get one when he marries, so it would only be fair if Charlotte was named a duchess on her wedding day. She and her children will be ahead of Louis' line in the succession." Regardless of when it all comes to pass, Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte of Cambrid has a very exciting future ahead of her!