Archie Harrison meets Archbishop Desmond Tutu at his first ever royal engagement

By Zach Harper

Archie Harrison had his first ever royal engagement on Sept. 25 – and what a way to do it! Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan, who are in Cape Town, South Africa as part of a 10-day tour of southern Africa, brought their four-month-old son to visit anti-apartheid hero Archbishop Desmond Tutu and his daughter Thandeka.

The news was first revealed on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s Instagram account, sussexroyal. In their Instagram stories, Meghan and Harry shared a video of Archie being carried in his mother’s arms as she made sweet, playful sounds in his ear while they arrived to meet Desmond and Thandeka. The couple had superimposed the adorable text “Arch meets Archie!” over the clip, and at one point, the little boy could be heard babbling happily as his father said, “You get to meet Arch!”

Desmond and Leah were thrilled to meet Archie and Meghan, who was also making their acquaintance for the first time. Harry has a longtime friendship with the couple, having presented Desmond with his Order of the Companions of Honour from the Queen in 2015 when he was last in South Africa. The archbishop received in recognition of his services to UK communities and international peace and reconciliation.

At one point during their conversation, Harry remarked that their son seemed used to the cameras already, and Meghan told Desmond and Leah that Archie was “an old soul.” Our hearts are melting here!

What a little sweetheart! Archie had a great time! Photo: © Henk Kruger/AFP/Getty Images

At one point, Thandeka jokingly said, “You like the ladies. He’s going to be a ladies’ man.”

Meghan looked completely stunning during their half-hour meeting with Desmond and Thandeka, wearing a gorgeous black-and-white sheer Club Monaco dress with vertical patterns. Archie was dressed in the sweetest pair of overalls we’ve ever seen.

It was quite clear everyone was very pleased to see and meet each other, and in a statement, Desmond later said he was “thrilled” by the “rare privilege and honour” of meeting the Sussexes. They said the same thing on Sept. 25 on their Instagram, commenting they were “honoured” to have introduced their son to Desmond and Thandeka.

Proud mom Meghan held her son throughout their meeting with Desmond and Thandeka. Photo: © Toby Melville - Pool/Getty Images

From the 1970s to 1990s, Desmond became one of the most prominent anti-apartheid activists in South Africa, actively working to oppose the system of racial discrimination and segregation that disenfranchised people of colour in the country. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1984 and had a major role in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, a body formed to conduct hearings into human rights abuses and help South Africa transition to democracy.

Niclas Kjellstromn-Matseke, chair of the Desmond and Leah Legacy Foundation, told People Archie meeting Desmond and Thandeka symbolizes the start of a new era.

“Archbishop Tutu met theQueen and had a great relationship with her and here is her grandson,” he said. “This is a generational thing. This is a hand over from the elderly to the younger.”

PHOTOS: The best pictures from Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry's royal tour of southern Africa

Harry, Meghan and Archie are on a 10-day tour of southern Africa. After ending the day in Cape Town, Harry will travel separately to Botswana, Angola and Malawi before returning to South Africa to reunite with Meghan and his son in Johannesburg in October. Their tour wraps Oct. 2.

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