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Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, leave St Mary's hospital

Prince William, the Duke of Cambridge, and his wife Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, welcomed their second child on May 2, and have named their daughter Charlotte Elizabeth Diana, Princess of Cambridge, a sister for Prince George, aged nearly 2.

Princess Charlotte was born at 8.34 am, weighing 8lb 3oz (3.7 kg) in the Lindo Wing of St. Mary’s Hospital in London – the same hospital where her brother Prince George, her father Prince William, and her uncle Prince Harry were born. Her birth was celebrated by the illuminating of landmarks such as Tower Bridge in pink, and gun salutes at the Tower of London. She is fourth in line to the throne.

Princess Charlotte is the first princess to be born into the British royal family in 25 years – the last one was Princess Eugenie of York, the daughter of Prince Andrew. The last Princess of Cambridge was born 182 years ago, and that was Mary, Duchess of Teck; her brother was also called George.

Charlotte has been chosen before as a name in the royal family – the last Princess Charlotte was born in 1819. The name is believed to be a nod to the princess’ grandfather, Prince Charles. Charlotte is also the middle name of Catherine’s sister Pippa, so could be honouring the princess’ mother’s side of the family as well. The names Charles and Charlotte are traditional ones in the Spencer family too, and in fact Princess Diana’s brother Charles Spencer, the 9th Earl, has a young daughter named Charlotte Diana, so like Prince George’s three names, Princess Charlotte shares her name with a Spencer cousin.

Elizabeth is another traditional royal name, given in honour of the princess’ great-grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. It is also Catherine’s middle name, and her mother Carole’s middle name as well, so can be seen as honouring the princess’ mother and maternal grandmother at the same time. Prince George has one of his father’s middle names, Louis, as one of his middle names, so it makes perfect sense for Charlotte to share her middle name with her mother.

Diana is in honour of William’s mother Princess Diana, the princess’ paternal grandmother; Diana is a traditional name in the Spencer family. This middle name came as no surprise, because when the royal couple were touring Australia, Prince William explained in an interview they planned to use Diana as a middle name for Prince George, should he have been a girl.

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