Fans of the royal family have been overtaken with “Markle Mania” ever since the Prince of Wales officially announced that his son, Prince Harry, was engaged to American actress and former Suits star Meghan Markle.
In the weeks after, more and more details have trickled out about the upcoming royal wedding, including where it will be (St. George’s Chapel) and when it will be (May 19, 2018).
Though it’s clearly true love between Meghan and Prince Harry, the redheaded royal was linked to several other women before her — some with similarities to the Los Angeles-born actress, and some who couldn’t be more different from her. One was even a Real Housewives star 12 years Harry’s senior!
Of them all, there were just two Harry dated seriously enough to have potentially married.
Scroll through for a chronological listing of every woman Prince Harry was linked to before getting engaged to Meghan.
Thumbnail Photos: Wikimedia Commons / Suzanne Plunkett // Instagram / Caroline Flack // Instagram / Ellie Goulding // Instagram / Natalie Pinkham // Instagram / Catherine Ommanney
1. Natalie Pinkham
Nowadays, Natalie is a British television presenter and Formula One pit lane reporter for Sky Sports F1. She is also a mom of two.
But back in 2003, she was one of the first women the press linked to the then 19-year-old Prince Harry, though their romance was never officially confirmed. They were frequently photographed partying together, and one particularly scandalous tabloid picture made the rounds in 2006, several years after the rumored hook-up.
2. Chelsy Davy
Zimbabwe-born Chelsy Davy was one of Prince Harry’s two officially recognized girlfriends and his longest-lasting relationship — that includes his relationship with Meghan. She is a former lawyer and currently runs her own jewelry brand, Aya.
Chelsy and Harry dated on and off from 2004 all the way up until 2010. It was reported that she had even met the Queen at one point. Chelsy also attended Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding in 2011, though she and Harry were no longer together at that point.
In a June 2016 interview with The Sunday Times, Chelsy opened up about her ex-boyfriend and about finding the media attention “tough” to deal with. “It was so full-on: crazy and scary and uncomfortable. I found it very difficult when it was bad. I couldn’t cope […] I was trying to be a normal kid and it was horrible,” she said.
3. Catherine Ommanney
Prince Harry and Catherine Ommanney, a Real Housewives of D.C. star, reportedly shared a kiss back in 2006, after a mutual friend’s party. At the time, Harry was 21 and Catherine was a 34-year-old mom of two.
Daily Mail reports that they were linked twice again in 2007. During this time, Harry and Chelsy were “off-again.”
4. Astrid Harbord
While Prince Harry was again separated from Chelsy in 2009, he was briefly linked to Kate Middleton’s friend Astrid Harbord.
The two were photographed together at a nightclub.
5. Caroline Flack
During the same period of estrangement from Chelsy, Prince Harry was also rumored to have dated The X Factor host Caroline Flack in 2009.
She even wrote about the romance (and its end) in her autobiography, Storm in a C Cup:
Once the story got out, that was it. We had to stop seeing each other. I was no longer Caroline Flack, TV presenter; I was Caroline Flack, Prince Harry’s bit of rough.
6. Natalie Imbruglia
Apparently, 2009 was a busy year for Harry, who also dated Australian actress and singer Natalie Imbruglia during his break from Chelsy.
The pair reportedly met through mutual friends and dated casually for a few months.
7. Camilla Romestrand
A CBS News report back in October 2010 linked Prince Harry to Scandinavian rock star and Eddie the Gun lead singer Camilla Romestrand. The rumored romance took place a few months after Chelsy and the prince officially called off their relationship for good.
Camilla reportedly told her friends that she had stayed overnight at the royal residence Clarence House and been served breakfast in bed by Harry.
8. Florence Brudenell-Bruce
Rumors circulated that actress and swimwear/lingerie model Florence Brudenell-Bruce was Prince Harry’s new girlfriend in 2011.
The two reportedly had “secret trysts” and kept their relationship off the radar, according to People. At the time, a Kensington Palace spokesman wouldn’t confirm or deny the relationship, saying only, “We don’t comment on the Prince’s personal life.”
9. Mollie King
Prince Harry had a very brief romance with Mollie King, a member of the British girl group the Saturdays, back in 2012.
After previously denying the romance in the media, Mollie eventually admitted, “Yes, I have met Harry, and we did go out for a drink.”
10. Cressida Bonas
Aside from Chelsy, Prince Harry’s most serious relationship before Meghan was with English actress and model Cressida Bonas.
Cressida met Harry through the prince’s cousin, Princess Beatrice. The two dated seriously for two years, from 2012 to 2014. The BBC reported that the couple split amicably a few months ahead of Prince Harry’s 30th birthday.
11. Camilla Thurlow
Prince Harry was linked to Camilla Thurlow, the former Miss Edinburgh, in late 2014 after his split from Cressida.
Their rumored romance lasted only a few weeks. By his 30th birthday in September, the two were no longer an item.
12. Ellie Goulding
Prince Harry was spotted “canoodling” with British singer Ellie Goulding under a blanket at a polo match after-party in 2016, shortly before he met his wife-to-be.
Clearly, it didn’t last because Harry and Meghan were set up by mutual friends and quickly hit it off just one month later.
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