Why Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Are Calling the Royals “The Firm”

The duchess referred to "the Firm" in her upcoming interview with Oprah.

CBS has released a new clip from Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's upcoming Oprah interview, just after a report published earlier this week alleging that the duchess bullied staff members.

In the clip, the Duchess of Sussex told Oprah that the royal family played a role in "perpetuating falsehoods" about herself and Prince Harry, referring to the family as "the Firm."

"I don't know how they could expect that after all of this time, we would still just be silent if there is an active role that the Firm is playing in perpetuating falsehoods about us," she said, adding, "And if that comes with risk of losing things, I mean I — there's a lot that's been lost already."

"The Firm" is a term that has long been used to describe the royal family, referring to the senior working royals and their business-minded operative. In Penny Junor's 2005 book The Firm: The Troubled Life of the House of Windsor, she wrote that Queen Elizabeth II's father King George VI was the first to refer to the House of Windsor as The Firm, and the name stuck.

"Prince Philip calls it 'The Firm,' and all the royal executives and their powerful associates are supposed to make every effort to avoid even a hint of scandal that could diminish the reputation of the family business," she wrote in a blurb for the book.

The New York Times reported in 1996 that the King George VI "once remarked that British royals are 'not a family, we're a firm.'"

Royal Family

Last year, it was reported that Queen Elizabeth would be forming an exclusive "firm of eight" to carry out royal duties, including herself, Prince Edward, Sophie, Countess of Wessex, Kate Middleton, Prince William, Prince Charles, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, and Princess Anne.

Earlier this week, a report in the Times of London alleged bullying behavior by the Duchess of Sussex during her time as a working royal, though it did not provide any examples of what the behavior entailed.

Meghan Markle has denied the claims in a statement via her rep that read, "The Duchess is saddened by this latest attack on her character, particularly as someone who has been the target of bullying herself and is deeply committed to supporting those who have experienced pain and trauma."

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