20 Little Known Facts About Prince Harry

20 Little Known Facts About Prince Harry
Image: SplashNews

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He may never be king, but these days, it seems like Prince Harry is one of the most talked about members of the British royal family. Once upon a time, he was known as the wild child -- the rebel -- but lately the Duke of Sussex seems to have channeled all of that rebellious energy into gaining some independence from the monarchy and protecting his new little family from the spotlight. Still, we can't erase years of being in the public eye simply by claiming our own exit, not even if we're royalty. Well, perhaps especially not if you're royalty. Despite Prince Harry's seeming desire to garner less attention from the public, people are more interested in him than ever.

Harry was mostly flying under the radar until he began dating American actress Meghan Markle, marrying her, and starting a family together. Then, of course, early in 2020, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex (the titles they were given after marrying) announced they would be stepping back from their roles as senior members of the royal family, and curiosity about Prince Harry has never been higher.

He's bucked a ton of traditions, upset a lot of people, earned his place in many hearts (and certainly made his mark in history), and people want to know more. From the UK to the US -- where Harry and Meghan are currently living -- headlines about Harry are a daily occurrence, and the public is eating it up. 

Keep reading to find out some interesting and lesser known facts about Prince Harry.

  • Harry Isn't His Actual Name

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    Prince Harry
    Splash News

    The royals tend to have lengthy names, and the prince is no exception -- except, Harry isn't actually one of his legal names at all. Prince Harry's birth name is Henry Charles Albert David Mountbatten-Windsor of Wales. It's a mouthful, yes, but it isn't Harry. We're assuming Harry is a nickname he was given as a child to distinguish him from other members of the royal family.

  • Secret Facebook Page

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    prince harry
    Splash News

    Despite having a name that looks more like a list, it's rumored that Prince Harry's security detail felt the need to give him one more. Apparently, his Scotland Yard protection officers call him "Spike Wells." We're sure there's an interesting story behind the moniker, but if it was supposed to be some sort of secret code name, the secret's definitely out -- especially because he got caught with using it for a secret Facebook page.

  • He Probably Won't Be King

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    prince harry in uniform
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    When Prince Harry was born to Prince Charles and Princess Diana in 1984, he was a lot closer to being king one day than he is now. At birth, he was third in line for the throne, after his father and his older brother Prince William. But because William now has three children, Harry has been bumped to number six in line.

  • Regular School Kid

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    prince harry and princess diana
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    Prince Harry and his older brother, Prince William, were the first members of the British royal family to be educated outside of the palace. On the insistence of his mother, Princess Diana, Prince Harry attended regular school  -- with regular kids -- starting as soon as he was old enough for nursery school, and all the way up until he started college.

  • Speculation Prince Charles Is Not Harry's Daddy

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    prince harry and prince charles
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    Believe it or not, back in the 1990s, rumors that Prince Charles wasn't actually Harry's father spread like wildfire. A man by the name of James Hewitt claimed he and Princess Diana had an ongoing affair in the '80s, and the press quickly ran with the story -- even drawing comparisons between Harry's appearance and Hewitt's. We happen to think Harry looks a whole lot like Queen Elizabeth herself, but now, we totally get his disdain for the UK press.

  • Passionate About Polo

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    prince harry playing polo
    Splash News

    Though tradition dictates that men in the royal family play polo, Harry's actually quite passionate about the sport. He's been playing since he was a young boy, and while his official career in the sport ended when he graduated from Eton College, he still plays competitively in charity matches and exhibitions -- and even wins quite often. It's not uncommon to see Meghan Markle in attendance at his matches. Even baby Archie has been out to support his dad.

  • Combat Veteran

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    prince harry military
    Splash News

    Prince Harry was a full-time member of the British Army for 10 years, serving two tours in Afghanistan. (He was actually in combat, and eventually achieved the rank of captain.) He was the first member of the royal family to be in combat since 1982, when his uncle, Prince Andrew, performed air missions in the Falkland Islands.

  • Popping Up at Soccer Games

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    Like most Brits, Prince Harry is a huge fan of soccer. He roots for the Arsenal Football Club, as does Prince William, and they've both been known to show up at the stadium to attend live games. We wonder if Harry will frequent Arsenal matches with his own son, Archie Harrison, one day -- or if he'll pick a US team to support.

  • D in Geography

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    prince harry
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    Although he had garnered something of a reputation as a party boy, Prince Harry is quite smart, and it is said that he usually got As and Bs in school. Surprisingly though, he once got a D in of all subjects, Geography. Even as a child, Harry traveled quite a bit, though we suppose it's possible that travel was such a common occurrence for him that he wasn't ever all that curious about where in the world his plane was landing.

  • Pet Bunny

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    pet bunny
    iStock/Getty Images

    It's been reported that as a child, Prince Harry had a pet bunny that was kept outdoors in the stable yard at his childhood home, Highgrove House, along with some sheep that he and Prince William enjoyed tending.Though Harry has gotten some criticism over his hunting hobby throughout the years  -- which Meghan has now put the kibosh on -- he does a lot of work for wildlife conservation.

  • North Pole Trekking

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    prince harry north pole
    Splash News

    Prince Harry has been to the North Pole, and no, he wasn't just dropped off via chopper for a photo op. He trekked to the North Pole over four days (out of 13 total), for an event organized by the charity organization Walking With the Wounded, to raise awareness for wounded servicemen and servicewomen -- some of whom also participated in the trek.

  • Unusual Inheritance

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    princess diana and prince charles wedding
    Terry Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images

    On his 30th birthday, Prince Harry received his mother Princess Diana's wedding dress in a joint inheritance with his brother, Prince William. It seems an odd item to get as a birthday gift, but maybe it was Princess Di's posthumous attempt to encourage Harry to wait to wed until after he turned 30. He married Meghan Markle at 33, so if so, she got her wish.

  • Nightmares After Princess Diana's Death

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    princess diana funeral
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    Prince Harry has admitted that he was deeply affected not just by the loss of his mother, but also by the cause of it. He has said that after her death he suffered from nightmares for years, and Harry still finds camera flashes and shutter sounds upsetting. Princess Diana died following a car crash after she was chased down by paparazzi in Paris.

  • Held Back in School

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    young prince harry
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    The year Princess Diana died, Harry was held back at Ludgrove School. He repeated the year and entered Eton College at the age of 14 instead of the usual 13. We can imagine that he must have missed a lot of school after the death of his mother, and likely struggled to get back into the swing of things -- so of course it's understandable that he would have to take an extra year to make up for it.

  • Champion for Mental Health Awareness

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    More recently, Harry has channeled his own experience with mental health struggles into something positive by becoming an advocate for mental health awareness. He has talked about his own mental health problems, shared resources, and encouraged others to seek support and assistance. He also works with various charities to offer mental health outreach and support services to youth and members of the military.

  • Gap Year in the Outback

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    prince harry and meghan markle australia
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    Though Prince Harry's most recent visit to Australia was on an official tour with Meghan in 2018, it wasn't his first time. Harry spent part of his gap year in the Outback, working on a ranch. He was a "jackaroo," and his job was to round up cattle. (The ranch was owned by a couple who had been friends of his mother's.) Daily manual labor must have made for an interesting experience for a member of the royal family.

  • Rugby Coach Training

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    prince harry rugby
    ALPR/AdMedia/Splash News

    Ever the sports lover, Prince Harry apparently also trained to be a rugby coach during his gap year, and he's since gone on to use those skills. Harry has coached and mentored rugby players at various schools throughout Great Britain over the years and served as honorary president of England Rugby, and vice president of the Rugby Football Union.

  • College Cheating Scandal

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    iStock/Getty Images

    No, not that kind of cheating. While Harry was at Eton College a teacher accused him of cheating on tests and getting special allowances from other teachers. An investigation was launched, and the allegations were found to be untrue -- although it did come to light that he had received help on a project required for Harry to be admitted into the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst.

  • Getting Dumped

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    PALACE LEE/Splash News

    Harry dated British model Cressida Bonas for several years before meeting and marrying Meghan Markle. But she dumped him -- as in, not an amicable split -- when she realized that the time for the royal to settle down was drawing near. Cressida was apparently not at all prepared for marriage and babies, and that was clearly in the prince's near future.

  • Secret Courting

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    harry and meghan invictus games
    Splash News

    Though Harry and Meghan's first public appearance together was at an Invictus Games event in September 2017, the couple had actually already been dating for two years at that point. Their relationship has seemed like quite the whirlwind to the general public, but they've been together for almost five years already. The royal family has a tradition of spacing out and scheduling major announcements -- like engagements, weddings, and babies -- so they must have been asked to wait, likely until after Prince William and Kate Middleton were in between pregnancies.

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