Thanks to her marriage to Prince Harry,Meghan Markle is one of the most well-known women on Earth.
Despite that, many fans don’t actually know her real name.
While many actors use a stage name, Meghan’s real moniker isn’t too well-known.
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When Thomas Markle and Doria Ragland welcomed their new bouncing baby girl on August 4, 1981, they christened her Rachel Meghan Markle. Rachel was also the name, coincidentally, of her character in Suits.
Meghan appeared in the hit show from 2011 to 2018 as Rachel Zane. Introduced in the show’s first season, Rachel was a paralegal who eventually worked her way up to being a full-fledged attorney.
Suits showrunner Aaron Korsh revealed on Radio 4 back in 2017 that he foresaw her eventual marriage to Prince Harry and had actually begun writing her character out soon after the couple first went public.
He says he didn’t actually ask Megan about it, he says: “I sort of had a decision to make because I didn’t want to intrude and ask her, ‘Hey, what’s going on? What are you going to do?’”
Meghan has never revealed why she prefers her middle name to her first, but it’s clear that she’s been known as “Meg” within her family since she was very young.
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From the age of nine, she regularly spent time on the set of 80s sitcom Married With Children, when her dad Thomas was the show’s director of photography.
The future Duchess of Sussex even scored her first screen credit on the show, appearing as “Student Sitting on Stage”.
“Every day after school for 10 years, I was on the set of Married … with Children, which is a really funny and perverse place for a little girl in a Catholic school uniform to grow up,” she told Esquire magazine in 2013. “There were a lot of times my dad would say, ‘Meg, why don’t you go and help with the craft services room over there? This is just a little off-colour for your 11-year-old eyes.'”
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One thing that Meghan and Harry have in common is that neither of them are actually known by their legal first name.
If royal-watchers weren’t already aware of that fact, it became clear then the late Queen Elizabeth II gave her royal assent to their marriage.
“I declare my consent to a contract of matrimony between my most dearly beloved grandson Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales and Rachel Meghan Markle,” the queen wrote at the time.
“Which consent I am causing to be signified under the great seal and to be entered in the books of the Privy Council.”
So there it is. She may not be in Suits any more but legally, she’s still a Rachel.
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