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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's choice to name their daughter after the Queen "breaches her privacy" because it suggests "inappropriate intimacy", a royal expert claims.

Her Majesty's biographer Sally Bedell Smith says the monarch had "no choice" but to accept the baby's name as she is "walking on eggshells" around the couple.

While early reports said Prince Harry sought the blessing of his grandmother before naming his second child Lilibet, sources now say the request was not formal or in keeping with tradition.

"In today’s tense climate, when everyone is walking on eggshells with Harry and Meghan, I can’t imagine that the Queen had any choice but to accept the name they presented to her," Sally says.

"Even if she felt – as would be completely understandable – that it breaches her privacy with a suggestion of inappropriate intimacy."

The nickname Lilibet was mainly used by the Queen's husband Prince Philip, her parents, and a few of her closest friends.

Prince Harry and Meghan made a statement on Sunday that their daughter will be known as Lili.

"Asking the Queen’s permission for the name would be in line with royal tradition," Sally says.

"I know when the Duke and Duchess of York, later George VI and Queen Elizabeth, proposed to name their second daughter Ann Margaret, King George V and Queen Mary objected to ‘Ann'.

"This then led to the couple settling on Margaret Rose."

The royal biographer says the name Elizabeth would have been more appropriate.

She said: "Harry and Meghan could have paid the Queen a far more dignified tribute by calling their daughter her great-grandmother’s proper name, Elizabeth.

"They would have been even better off calling the baby Diana Elizabeth.

"Nobody could possibly have objected to that.

"In fact, paying tribute to the baby’s late grandmother that way would have been widely applauded.

"I would expect the choice has not gone down well in royal circles.

"It’s lucky Harry and Meghan have said at the outset they will call their daughter ‘Lili.’"

The Queen's relationship with her grandson and Meghan has been strained since the couple announced their decision to step down as senior royals and move to the US.

But Her Majesty has continued to keep in touch with Archie on Zoom and will always consider them family, according to royal author Matthew Dennison.

"Prince Philip was certainly said to be very disappointed by the decision that Harry made," Matthew says. "But I think the Queen is more phlegmatic than that.

"I thought her statement in response to their decision was so interesting because it was affectionate but there was a great finality to it.

"It was a very tense period during Megxit and when that statement came it was really final. It was loving, but it was ‘this is what’s happening’. It didn’t leave room for any ‘will they, won’t theys’.

"She was essentially saying to them, this is what’s going to happen and I mean it with love.

"She was acting as a grandmother by saying ‘you are family, we love you and we will always love you’ but as Queen by stamping out any uncertainty and speculation."

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced in a statement on Sunday: "It is with great joy that Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, welcome their daughter, Lilibet 'Lili' Diana Mountbatten-Windsor, to the world.

"Lili was born on Friday, June 4 at 11:40 am in the trusted care of the doctors and staff at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital.

"Both mother and child are healthy and well, and settling in at home."

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