- The fifth in line to the British throne’s name has a distinctly Gallic royal flavour
- Comical reactions included: ‘So the royal baby has a French name.. sacre bleu!’
- Others praised name as tribute to other famous stars from music and big screen
- Some wags joked inspiration could be Walsh, Theroux, Tomlinson or orangutan
- JK Rowling’s publisher says couple’s children have names of famous Weasleys
Kate and William‘s decision to call their newborn son Louis has sent social media into a frenzy with many fascinated by their choice of a French name.
The fifth in line to the British throne shares the same moniker as 18 kings from across the Channel and many reacted with a ‘sacre bleu’ when they heard the news.
Piers Morgan suggested in a tongue-in-cheek tweet: ‘In a defiant two fingers to Brexit, William & Kate have given their baby a French name: Louis. One used by 18 French kings’.
Twitter offered its typical kaleidoscope of views but many focused on the Gallic roots of the name Louis, which means ‘renowned warrior’, and linked it to Britain’s ongoing divorce from the EU.
Reactions included: ‘That means Will and Kate are Remainers’, ‘I guess after Brexit it will become Lewis’ and ‘So the royal baby has a French name.. sacre bleu!’
Louis is pronounced Lou-ee, rather than Lew-is – but some joked it would change to the latter Anglicised version post-Brexit.
And a vocal minority have hailed it as a great choice because it is the name of the orangutan from Disney favourite The Jungle Book or jokingly suggested Kate and William love One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson and the X-Factor’s Louis Walsh.
Mr Tomlinson tweeted about the name and said: ‘Young Louis welcome to the world. I’ll take you under my wing lad. The Adidas tracksuit is in the post!’.
Pottermore, author JK Rowling‘s publishing company, has pointed out that Louis, Arthur and Charles are all members of the famous Weasley family from the Harry Potter books.
The official Twitter account tweeted: “Louis Arthur Charles, you were named after three iconic Weasleys… #RoyalBabyName”
The name, also one of Prince George’s middle names, is French and German in origin and means ‘renowned warrior’.
Louis was the 71st most popular name in England and Wales, according to the latest available figures from the Office for National Statistics.
In 2016, just 911 boys were given the name Louis in England and Wales.
It was more popular in the early 2000s when it ranked around 39th, but was not popular throughout the 20th century.
Louis has been the name of many rulers across the world, including 18 kings of France.
The first was Louis I, known as ‘Louis the Pious’, who reigned between 778 and 840.
The most famous was Louis IX, known as the Sun King, whose reign started aged four and lasted 72 years and 110 days – the longest recorded of any monarch of a sovereign country in European history.
Queen Elizabeth‘s reign is currently in its 66th year.
The last one was Louis XVIII – who reigned for a year until Napoleon took power for a second time in 1815 and ensured the monarchy was destroyed.
Louis XVI was the last King of France before the fall of the monarchy during the French Revolution and was the only King of France ever to be executed.
His wife Marie Antoinette was also executed by guillotine – but historians claim she never said the ‘let them eat cake’ phrase she is best known for.
The most likely inspiration for using the name Louis is a tribute to Lord Louis Mountbatten, who was the Duke of Edinburgh’s uncle and the brother of Philip‘s mother Princess Alice.
He was the last British Viceroy of India before independence in 1947.
Louis was very close to Charles but Uncle Dickie, as he was known in the family, was assassinated by the IRA in August 1979.
His boat was blown up on a fishing trip off the coast of County Sligo in the Republic of Ireland.
Arthur, Prince Louis’s second name, evokes the legend of King Arthur, the mythical leader of the knights of the Round Table.
Arthur has been a popular middle name for royal born sons during the Windsor era – but not a common first name.
One of Charles’ middle names, it is also one of William’s and was a middle name of the Queen’s father, George VI.
The baby’s third name Charles, of course, pays tribute to William’s father and the baby’s grandfather the Prince of Wales.
Its meaning is ‘man’ and it is derived from the German name Karl. It is considered an unlucky royal name for a king as Charles I was executed and Charles II’s reign featured the plague and the Great Fire of London.