WINDSOR, England (Reuters) - Senior members of the British royal family said on Tuesday they were delighted and thrilled at the birth of Prince Harry and Meghan’s baby as the couple considered a name for their son.
Meghan gave birth in the early hours of Monday morning to the boy, the seventh-in-line to the British throne, leaving his father, Queen Elizabeth’s grandson, and royal fans across the world enthralled.
“We couldn’t be more delighted at the news and we’re looking forward to meeting the baby when we return,” Prince Charles, the baby’s grandfather and heir-to-the-throne, said to well-wishers while on a trip to Berlin.
Harry’s elder brother Prince William and his wife Kate said they were absolutely thrilled at the news.
“I’m very pleased and glad to welcome my own brother to the sleep deprivation society that is parenting,” he said. “I hope the next few days they can settle down and enjoy having a newborn in their family and all the joys that come with that.”
Kate added: “As William said, we’re looking forward to meeting him and find out what his name’s going to be so it’s really exciting for both of them.”
So far, Harry and his aides have merely confirmed the boy weighed 7 lb 3oz (3.26 kg) and that Meghan and the couple’s first child were both healthy and well.
“I am so incredibly proud of my wife and, as every father and parent would ever say your baby is absolutely amazing, this little thing is absolutely to die for,” Harry said on Monday.
Few details about the birth have been released by Buckingham Palace with the announcement itself a mix of traditional and modernity which many say the baby himself represents, being the first mixed race child to be born into a senior position in British royalty in recent history.
The news was relayed on a ceremonial easel outside the palace after “It’s a Boy!” was trumpeted on the couple’s Instagram account, attracting more than 2.6 million “likes”.
It was not clear whether the birth took place at the couple’s home, Frogmore Cottage on the estate of Windsor Castle where they married in a lavish ceremony in May last year, or if Meghan had been rushed to a London hospital as a number of British newspapers reported.
Celebrities and world leaders were among those to send messages, a reflection of the star status of Harry, 34, and former U.S. actress Meghan, 37.
“Congratulations, Meghan and Harry! Barack and I are so thrilled for both of you and can’t wait to meet him,” former U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama said on Twitter.
Harry and Meghan decided to eschew the recent royal tradition of posing for photographs with their new baby hours after the birth, leaving the world’s media and royal fans waiting for a first glimpse of the boy who is entitled to both British and American citizenship.
It is expected that the couple will hold a limited photo call on Wednesday to show off their son.
“We’re still thinking about names,” Harry said. “The baby’s a little bit overdue so we’ve had a little bit of time to think about it ... that’s the next bit.”
Bookmakers have James, Alexander, Albert, Philip, and Arthur as the favorite names, although other suggestions include Spencer, which was the surname of Harry’s late mother Princess Diana.
The baby, the eighth great-grandchild of 93-year-old Elizabeth, the world’s longest-reigning monarch, will not automatically be a prince or a princess or be known as “His Royal Highness” unless the queen issues a decree.
However, when Elizabeth is succeeded by Prince Charles, royal rules mean the boy would then have such titles.
“It is possible that Harry might want his child not to have the burden of a royal title but I think the rest of the world would like the child to have (one),” said Ingrid Seward, editor of “Majesty” magazine.
“Harry always says how much he didn’t want to be a prince and he’d rather be almost anything else but when you’re in that world it’s very difficult to step out of it.”
Writing by Michael Holden; editing by Guy Faulconbridge and Alexandra Hudson