Nearly four months after Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s engagement was announced, Queen Elizabeth has finally given her official consent to the impending royal wedding. In a letter released by Buckingham Palace, the monarch gave her nod of approval to the couple, meaning it’s all systems go for the May 19 ceremony.

As with all things relating to the most anticipated royal wedding since, well, Prince William and Kate Middleton‘s nuptials, the declaration has been read with the level of precision and over-analysis — and some particularly dedicated royal aficionados have noticed that the Queen may have subtly slammed Meghan in her letter.

prince harry and meghan markle engagement getty images

(Photo Credit: Getty Images)

“My Lords, 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, which Consent I am causing to be signified under the Great Seal and to be entered in the Books of the Privy Council,” the message read. First, note that (before his extensive array of middle names) that Harry is referred to as “my most dearly beloved grandson,” while Meghan is simply Rachel Meghan Markle (she dropped the “Rachel” while pursuing her acting career). Fair enough, given that Harry’s the one Her Majesty is related to.

But then consider the declaration of consent which William and Kate received back in 2011, in which William was also “most dearly beloved” but Kate became “our Trusty and Well-Beloved Catherine Elizabeth Middleton.” Do we detect a certain coolness of tone? Perhaps it was unintentional, but the difference between William and Kate’s letter and Harry and Meghan’s notice does seem a tad odd.

queen elizabeth prince harry meghan markle getty images

(Photo Credit: Getty Images)

It’s worth bearing in mind, though, that the letter being shared is merely a typed memo from the palace, not the official declaration in the books — it’s very possible that Meghan will receive the same “trusty” designation as her future sister-in-law once the Queen’s consent is officially noted down on parchment. And if new reports are to be believed, Her Majesty, Harry, and Meghan recently met for a special lunch at Windsor Castle on the UK’s Mother’s Day, so it seems they’re all very close.

But why does Harry even have to seek permission from his grandmother before getting married? It comes down to a simple matter of royal protocol. According to the Royal Marriages Act, the first six in line to the throne must seek permission from the reigning monarch ahead of their wedding. Harry is currently fifth in line, coming after Prince Charles, his elder brother Prince William and his nephew and niece Prince George and Princess Charlotte, meaning that this piece of legislation still applies. As yet, the Queen has never formally denied a request, but should Harry have married without her approval, he and his descendants would theoretically be banned from the throne.

This post was written by Katie Rosseinsky. It originally appeared on our sister site, Grazia Daily.

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