The sweet meaning behind Princess Eugenie's newborn son's name

We're melting

Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank attend the Christmas Day service at St Mary Magdalene Church on December 25, 2022 in Sandringham, Norfolk. King Charles III ascended to the throne on September 8, 2022, with his coronation set for May 6, 2023.
(Image credit: Photo by UK Press Pool / Getty)

Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank announced the happy news on Monday that they had welcomed their second child.

Writing on Instagram alongside two beautiful photos of the baby, Eugenie said: "Jack and I wanted to share the news that we had our little boy, Ernest George Ronnie Brooksbank on 30th May 2023 at 8.49 weighing 7.1lbs."

The first photo was a close-up of baby Ernest in his cot, while the second was a wider shot of their eldest son August, 2, tenderly placing his hand on his brother's head. Eugenie said: "Augie is loving being a big brother already."

But Ernest isn't a particularly popular name for babies in 2023, with Nameberry placing it at #291 of the baby names that are most consulted on its website, so you may be wondering where that somewhat unusual choice came from.

Don't worry — Eugenie made sure to explain that, too, saying: "He is named after his great great great Grandfather George, his Grandpa George and my Grandpa Ronald." 

When the Princess mentions "his great great great Grandfather George," she is referring to George V, who was Elizabeth II's grandfather, per the Mirror. And while the middle name George itself may be a nod to George V, it's actually the name Ernest that was inspired by the erstwhile monarch. Indeed, he was christened George Frederick Ernest Albert.

Meanwhile, the name George is a tribute to George Brooksbank, Jack's dad — who sadly passed away in 2021 — and the name Ronnie is a nod to Ronald Ferguson, the Duchess of York's late father — who was famously a polo manager to Prince Philip and Prince Charles.

Of course, royals have a habit of naming their children after their ancestors — with August himself having been named August Philip Hawke Brooksbank after the late Prince Philip.

Still, it may be a common practice, but it doesn't make it any less touching. Welcome to the world, little Ernie!

Iris Goldsztajn
Iris Goldsztajn is a celebrity and royal news writer for Marie Claire. As a London-based freelance journalist, she writes about wellness, relationships, pop culture, beauty and more for the likes of InStyle, Women's Health, Bustle, Stylist and Red. Aside from her quasi-personal investment in celebs' comings and goings, Iris is especially interested in debunking diet culture and destigmatising mental health struggles. Previously, she was the associate editor for Her Campus, where she oversaw the style and beauty news sections, as well as producing gift guides, personal essays and celebrity interviews. There, she worked remotely from Los Angeles, after returning from a three-month stint as an editorial intern for in New York. As an undergraduate at the University of California, Los Angeles, she interned at goop and C California Style and served as Her Campus' national style and LGBTQ+ editor. Iris was born and raised in France by a French father and an English mother. Her Spotify Wrapped is riddled with country music and One Direction, and she can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.