Speed Reads

the royal wedding

Queen Elizabeth gives Prince Harry and Meghan Markle her consent to marry

The only way Prince Harry and Meghan Markle can get married is if Queen Elizabeth II gives her formal consent, and luckily for the couple, she's signed off on their wedding with a beautiful handwritten document.

The Instrument of Consent was written on vellum, which is only used for the most important state documents, Buckingham Palace said. There is a red dragon, the heraldic symbol of Wales, on the Instrument of Consent, as well as a rose, the national flower of the United States, and golden poppies, the state flower of California, Markle's birthplace. Attached to the bottom of the document by woven cords is the Great Seal of the Realm.

Under British law, the reigning monarch must give formal consent to the first six people in the line of succession to the throne, and with the birth of his nephew, Prince Louis, last month, Prince Harry is now sixth in line. Queen Elizabeth formally gave her consent to the marriage on March 14 during a meeting of the Privy Council, Buckingham Palace said, and the couple will receive the Instrument of Consent after their May 19 wedding.