We’re only slightly ashamed by how many useless facts we know about the British royal family (like Prince Louis’s favorite song). Since Queen Elizabeth rarely addresses the media, it can be hard to tell what’s accurate information versus a rumor that’s been around so long, it’s assumed to be true. Join us as we debunk three common misconceptions about the royal family.

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Misconception #1: Queen Elizabeth is *just* the queen of England

This statement is partially correct, since Queen Elizabeth has political power over England. However, to simply credit her as the Queen of England is a gross understatement, since she technically rules the entire United Kingdom. This consists of 16 different countries, including but not limited to: Northern Ireland, Scotland, Jamaica, New Zealand, Australia and—of course—England.

Therefore, her official title is “Queen of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth realms,” though it can vary by country. For example, in New Zealand, the monarch’s title is “Her Majesty Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God Queen of New Zealand and Her Other Realms and Territories, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith.” The same can’t be said for Australia, which has an entirely different title for Elizabeth: “Her Majesty Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, Queen of Australia and Her other Realms and Territories, Head of the Commonwealth.”

It’s for this reason that her title is typically shortened to Queen Elizabeth.

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Misconception #2: Diana was a princess

This one’s a confusing one, since Diana is often referred to as The People’s Princess, The Princess of Wales and Princess Diana. However, she was never deemed an official princess by the royal family. Allow us to explain…

When Diana married Prince Charles in 1981, she was given an official title: Her Royal Highness The Princess Of Wales. Because of this, many people started calling her a princess, which is technically inaccurate. You see, the title must come before the name in order for someone to be considered an actual “princess.” For example, Princess Anne and Princess Charlotte are the real deal.

Since Diana never received an official princess title, she was never considered one, despite the fact that she’s often called Princess Diana by the media. A similar situation happened with Prince Charles’s new wife, Camilla Parker Bowles. While she has an official title (Duchess of Cornwall), she’s never referred to as Duchess Camilla, since the name is a mere formality.

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Misconception #3: Prince Charles will abdicate the throne to Prince William

The popular belief is that Prince Charles will say, “thank you, next,” when Queen Elizabeth steps down as monarch, ultimately allowing his son, Prince William, to take over the throne. We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: It won’t happen.

The reality is, Prince Charles will become king when Queen Elizabeth decides to give up the throne. While Prince William will eventually follow in his father’s footsteps, he won’t be king anytime soon.

Why? Prince Charles has been preparing his entire life to be king. The only reason people think he’d give up the title is because Prince William has become more popular than him. Last time we checked, that’s not a legitimate excuse to refrain from fulfilling one’s life purpose.

To top it off, several royal aficionados have pointed out that it’s constitutionally impossible for Prince Charles to remove himself from the line of succession. It’s tradition for the first-born son to be king, and since the royal family are sticklers when it comes to customs, we highly doubt they’d go against protocol this late in the game.

Not to mention, Queen Elizabeth already issued a formal request for the Commonwealth Heads of Government to appoint Prince Charles as her successor back in 2018. So, as much as we’d secretly enjoy a highly controversial switcheroo, we aren’t holding our breath.

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