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New Princess is fourth in line

PUBLISHED: 12:16 02 May 2015 | UPDATED: 12:16 02 May 2015

Town crier Tony Appleton proclaims the birth of the second child to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, west London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 2, 2015. See PA story ROYAL Baby. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire

Town crier Tony Appleton proclaims the birth of the second child to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, west London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday May 2, 2015. See PA story ROYAL Baby. Photo credit should read: John Stillwell/PA Wire

The new Princess of Cambridge is fourth in line to the throne.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s second child is the Queen’s fifth great-grandchild and a great-great-great-great-great-grandchild of Queen Victoria.

Prince George’s younger sibling is is not be expected to ever be crowned sovereign. She is the “spare to the heir” - a younger sister to a future king.

But she is the highest ranking female in line to the throne, following the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Cambridge and Prince George.

A girl has not been born this high up the line of succession for nearly 65 years. Princess Anne was born third in line in 1950 and rose to second when her mother became Queen and before the birth of Prince Andrew in 1960. Princess Beatrice was born fifth in line in 1988.

Prince Harry has shifted down the line of succession to fifth place, but is more pleased than put out by the move.

When it was suggested to him after Kate’s pregnancy was announced that this further reduced his chances of being king, he laughed and replied: “Great!”

The Duke of York has dropped out of the top five for the first time to sixth place.

Princess Beatrice, who had since birth been the highest ranking woman in the line of succession, shifts from sixth to seventh in line and Princess Eugenie to eighth. Zara Phillips falls out of the first 15 in line to the throne to 16th place.

The royal baby is the first girl born to the British royal family to take the title princess for 25 years. The last - William’s cousin Eugenie - daughter of the Duke of York and Sarah, Duchess of York - was born in 1990.

The Earl and Countess of Wessex’s daughter Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor is also technically a princess, but her parents decided, with the Queen’s agreement, that she would use the courtesy title of the daughter of an earl instead.

The new baby would have been a lady, not a princess, had her great-grandmother the Queen not intervened. The monarch stepped in ahead of Prince George’s birth and issued a Letters Patent under the Great Seal of the Realm to ensure all William’s children would become HRHs with fitting titles.

It is the first time a great-granddaughter of a serving sovereign has been born in direct succession on the male line since 1897, when George VI’s sister Princess Mary was born, and it will be a historic day when the Queen meets her new granddaughter.

The baby is also the first Princess of Cambridge to be born for 182 years. The last was King George III’s granddaughter Princess Mary Adelaide of Cambridge, who was born in Hanover, Germany, in 1833.

The new princess will also, unlike Anne, not be overtaken in the line of succession by any future younger brothers. The Succession to the Crown Act came into force in March, removing male bias.

The Queen already has four great-grandchildren - Savannah and Isla Phillips, Prince George and Mia Tindall. The baby is the Prince of Wales and Michael and Carole Middleton’s second grandchild.

How the line of succession now looks:

1. The Prince of Wales

2. The Duke of Cambridge

3. Prince George of Cambridge

4. The new Princess of Cambridge

5. Prince Henry of Wales

6. The Duke of York

7. Princess Beatrice of York

8. Princess Eugenie of York

9. The Earl of Wessex

10. Viscount Severn

11. Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor

12. The Princess Royal

13. Peter Phillips

14. Savannah Phillips

15. Isla Phillips

ends

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