Princess Diana has some pretty big heels to fill, but Meghan Markle is no slouch. Here are 10 ways in which the Duchess is living up to Diana’s legacy.
Princess Diana was famous for her work with humanitarian causes and charities, including HIV/AIDS, homelessness, leprosy, and clearing landmines from war-torn areas. Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have continued the tradition of championing deserving causes, and have devoted their Instagram account to rotating “the accounts we follow based on causes and social issues that matter to us.”
For June, the Sussexes are highlighting Pride.
From her engagement ring, which contains two diamonds that belonged to Diana, to her wedding veil, to perhaps even naming her baby Archie, Meghan keeps the memory of her mother-in-law alive in many meaningful ways. To celebrate Mother’s Day in the U.S., Meghan posted this photo of her holding Archie with Diana’s favorite flower, forget-me-nots, visible in the background.
Just like Diana, a lot of attention is paid to what Meghan wears. Many articles have been written about how some of Meghan’s fashion choices have mimicked and paid homage to style icon Diana.
Breaking with British royal family tradition, Diana was a very hands-on mother to William and Harry, spending as much time with them as she could and openly showing them affection in public. Meghan is new to motherhood, and she shows every indication of being the kind of loving, attentive parent Diana was.
The British royal family has a lot of etiquette rules to remember when engaging with the public, one of them being, “No hugging.” Both Princess Diana and Meghan Markle broke that rule, much to the delight of the general public who welcomed their warmth and friendliness.
Because of their genuine love for people, both Meghan and Diana are beloved by the public. Following her death in 1997, then-Prime Minister Tony Blair called Diana, “the People’s Princess,” and in Time Magazine’s list of the “100 Most Influential People of 2018,” Meghan’s good friend Priyanka Chopra referred to her as “a princess for the people.”
There have been many rumors in the British press that Meghan does not get along with her sister-in-law, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, but royal insiders have said the rumors are completely untrue. The same rumors were spread by the British press about Diana and her sister-in-law, Sarah, Duchess of York, when Sarah was married to Prince Charles’s brother Andrew, but earlier this year, Sarah wrote an open letter stating, “that reminds me of how people tried to portray Diana and me all the time as rivals, which is something neither of us ever really felt.”
From the moment Diana became engaged to Prince Charles until her untimely death, every aspect of her life was on display. But she learned how to use the press and her celebrity to bring attention to the causes she championed. Meghan was in the public eye before she married Harry, but the attention on her has certainly increased since her wedding and the birth of baby Archie. Still, Meghan always appears calm and engaged in public. Perhaps she is heeding the advice given to her by Michelle Obama to “take some time and don’t be in a hurry to do anything.”
There is no doubt Diana brought renewed glamor and relatability to the British royal family. Similarly, “senior aides at Buckingham Palace are already talking about just how strong Meghan’s global influence will be over the years ahead and how that will make her an incredibly important and powerful asset to the British Royal Family,” one royal insider reported.
As noted, Diana loved her sons deeply, and what better way can Meghan honor Princess Diana’s legacy than to love and take care of Prince Harry for the rest of their lives? It’s a fitting ending to a beautiful real-life fairy tale.
In 1995, Diana gave a secret television interview on BBC where she admitted her marriage to Prince Charles was falling apart. She was not afraid to show the public her vulnerability and true feelings. Similarly, in the October, 2017 issue of Vanity Fair magazine, Meghan confessed her love for Harry to the public before the royal family publicly confirmed the status of their relationship.