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The couple met in London. She told Vanity Fair in September 2017 that they were introduced through mutual friends.
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The first reports about Harry and Markle’s romance began to emerge. A source exclusively told Us Weekly at the time that he “started texting her regularly” in June ahead of their first face-to-face meeting. “Harry loves that she’s so into philanthropy,” the source added. “One of the first things they spoke about was her shelter dogs. He loves that she’s so caring.”
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The prince confirmed the dating rumors with a public statement condemning sexist and racist trolls who criticized the Suits actress. “It is not right that a few months into a relationship with him that Ms. Markle should be subjected to such a storm,” he said via his communications secretary.
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Harry introduced Markle to his sister-in-law, Duchess Kate, and niece Princess Charlotte at Apartment 1A in Kensington Palace in London. “Meghan’s so happy she’s getting to know more of Harry’s nearest and dearest,” a source told Us at the time. Markle met Prince William and Prince Charles a few months earlier.
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The Los Angeles native cheered on her boyfriend at a charity polo match in Ascot, England. The game marked the first time they were spotted together at a public event.
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The former Army helicopter pilot and the actress traveled to Botswana, Africa, to celebrate her 36th birthday and spend time with his friends. “He was thrilled to bits that he could introduce her to them,” a Harry pal exclusively told Us at the time. “The celebration began almost the minute they touched down. … Meghan was speechless and so touched.”
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Markle broke her silence about her romance with Harry in her cover story for Vanity Fair. “We’re a couple. We’re in love,” she gushed to the magazine. “I’m sure there will be a time when we will have to come forward and present ourselves and have stories to tell, but I hope what people will understand is that this is our time. This is for us. It’s part of what makes it so special, that it’s just ours. But we’re happy. Personally, I love a great love story.”
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The pair made their first official joint appearance at the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto. They walked hand-in-hand and later attended an event with her mother, Doria Ragland. A source exclusively confirmed to Us that Harry asked Ragland in Toronto for permission to propose to her daughter.
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Palace officials announced Harry and Markle’s engagement days after she wrapped filming on Suits and moved to London. Clarence House said in a statement that the prince proposed earlier that month. The couple, whose wedding is scheduled for spring 2018, later appeared for a photo call at Kensington Palace’s Sunken Garden. Markle showed off her engagement ring, which Us exclusively revealed features diamonds from a brooch that belonged to Harry’s late mother, Princess Diana.
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After announcing their engagement, the couple sat down with BBC News’ Mishal Husain for their first joint interview. Harry revealed that he proposed at Kensington Palace’s Nottingham Cottage. “It was just an amazing surprise,” Markle gushed. “It was just so sweet and natural and very romantic. He got on one knee. As a matter of fact, I could barely let [him] finish proposing. I was like, ‘Can I say ‘yes’ now?’”
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Harry and Markle released their official engagement photos on December 21. They were taken by fashion photographer Alexi Lubomirski at Frogmore House, Windsor.
Credit: Alexi Lubomirski via Getty Images
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Markle joined her fiancé and her future in-laws Prince William and Duchess Kate at the annual royal Christmas church service at Sandringham on Monday, December 25. The future member of the British royal family, 36, wore a $1295 camel wrap coat by Sentaler (that has already sold out), and teamed it with Stuart Weitzman over-the-knee boots ($798), a Chloe Pixie leather and suede shoulder bag ($1550) and Birks snowflake earrings ($5995).
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