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History of the name Archie: The meaning of the royal baby's name

Once again, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have done it their way.
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If that name for the newborn son of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made the bookies’ odds at all, it was down there with Boris and Keith and all the other ridiculous ideas.

Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor. It’s kind of perfect.

Archie is both quintessentially British and quintessentially American, like the Duke and Duchess themselves.

A top 20 baby name in England for several years, Archie’s popularity was inspired by a beloved character on the British television show "Monarch of the Glen." The Brits love nickname names, and Archie leads the pack.

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In the U.S., it was ironically enough a television show that dampened Archie’s chances as a baby name. The 1970s show "All in the Family," which featured the beloved bigot Archie Bunker, associated the name with racism, sexism, and ignorance — not a legacy most parents want to pass on to their babies.

But that image is fading in favor of another iconic American Archie in the comics and now TV: the eponymous redheaded Archie, boyfriend of Betty and Veronica. In fact, Harry and Meghan would be perfectly cast as Archie and Veronica.

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Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, pose with their newborn son at St George's Hall at Windsor Castle on May 8, 2019.Getty Images

Archie is a diminutive of Archibald, an ancient Teutonic name meaning “truly brave.” But like many contemporary British parents, the Duke and Duchess have chosen to simply put the short form on the birth certificate. Harry, by contrast, is short for Henry.

And Harrison is, of course, Harry’s son.

The name also breaks with tradition in following the American convention of having simply a first and a middle name rather than the three that the Cambridges gave their children or the four that William and Harry themselves carry.

Once again, the Duke and Duchess have done it their way, and proven that it’s possible to forge an original path within the royal family. They’ve upended the stereotypes and created a singular image for their son, the first biracial child in line for the British throne.

Archie ranks 108th on the U.S.-based baby name site Nameberry and 18th on England's official name listings. It also ranks in the Top 100 in Scotland, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand, as well as for American dogs. Amy Poehler and Will Arnett have an Archie. Now that this Archie has made his entrance, you can expect the name to see a big surge of popularity in the U.S.