Meghan Markle, Prince Harry announce engagement

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There will be a royal wedding in 2018: Suits star Meghan Markle and Prince Harry of Wales announced their engagement on Monday after weeks of speculation, with the Clarence House revealing the wedding will take place next spring.

“His Royal Highness and Ms. Markle became engaged in London earlier this month,” Clarence House said in a statement. “Prince Harry has informed Her Majesty The Queen and other close members of his family. Prince Harry has also sought and received the blessing of Ms. Markle’s parents. The couple will live in Nottingham Cottage at Kensington Palace.”

In a statement, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip said they were “delighted for the couple and wish them every happiness.”

Markle’s parents — Thomas Markle and Doria Ragland — said they were “incredibly happy” about the engagement.

“Our daughter has always been a kind and loving person,” they said in a statement. “To see her union with Harry, who shares the same qualities, is a source of great joy for us as parents. We wish them a lifetime of happiness and are very excited for their future together.”

Prince William and Kate Middleton also sent their well-wishes in a statement: “We are very excited for Harry and Meghan. It has been wonderful getting to know Meghan and to see how happy she and Harry are together.”

The couple’s union will be the biggest royal wedding since William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, wed in 2011. Markle, meanwhile, will become the first American to marry a direct heir to the throne since Wallis Simpson married King Edward VIII in 1937. (Prince Harry is fifth in line to the throne, behind his father, Prince Charles, and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte.)

Markle and Prince Harry began dating in July 2016. In November of that year, Prince Harry defended Markle, whom he called his “girlfriend,” against “a wave of abuse and harassment” by the media.

In an interview earlier this year, Markle broke her silence on dating Prince Harry and their relationship together. “We’re a couple. We’re in love. I’m sure there will be a time when we will have to come forward and present ourselves and have stories to tell, but I hope what people will understand is that this is our time,” she told Vanity Fair. “This is for us. It’s part of what makes it so special, that it’s just ours. But we’re happy. Personally, I love a great love story.”

Earlier this month, it was reported Markle will leave Suits at the end of its seventh season.

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