Prince Harry may not be marrying a commoner, after all—research finds that Meghan Markle actually has royal blood in her.
The actress is a direct descendant of England’s King Edward III, who ruled from 1327 until 1377, according to genealogist, Gary Boyd Roberts. That technically makes her and Harry 17th cousins.
Roberts, who specializes in researching American descendants of British monarchs, is affiliated with the Boston-based New England Historic Genealogical Society, one of the world’s top genealogical institutions. The organization announced the findings on Markle’s ancestry yesterday.
According to the research, Markle, a Los Angeles-born American citizen, is a 24th generation descendant of King Edward III. The lineage was discovered through Rev. William Skipper, a royal descendant who arrived in New England in 1639. He’s an ancestor of Markle’s father, Thomas Wayne Markle.
With this newfound genealogical connection, Markle’s other royal very-distant cousins include Her Majesty the Queen and Princess Diana, the organization states. She’s also distantly related to U.S. presidents like George W. Bush, George H.W. Bush, Gerald Ford, Richard Nixon, and Calvin Coolidge.
Speculation on Markle’s royal heritage isn’t new. Earlier research on her lineage appeared to show that one of Harry’s ancestors, King Henry VIII, beheaded one of her ancestors, Lord Hussey, first Baron Hussey of Sleaford, in the 1500s. Luckily relations between their families have improved since then.
Despite her roots in the monarchy, Markle is still taking big steps to get acclimated to royal life as she preps for her royal wedding. She plans to get baptized and confirmed in the Church of England before marrying Harry, and will become a U.K. citizen.
As a biracial woman, Markle has a fascinating ancestry, with distant royals on her father’s side of the family, and former slaves on her mother’s side. She even opened up about her great-great-great grandfather choosing a surname after slavery was abolished in 1865. Markle wrote in an essay about her mixed-race heritage in 2015:
“Perhaps the closest thing to connecting me to my ever-complex family tree, my longing to know where I come from, and the commonality that links me to my bloodline, is the choice that my great-great-great grandfather made to start anew. He chose the last name Wisdom. He drew his own box.”