What is the difference between a crown prince and a prince?


LAST UPDATED: March 25, 2020 by Ryan McCain

A crown prince is a male member of a monarch’s family that is first in line to inherit the throne. This is usually the monarch’s eldest son.

The British Royal Family
The British Royal Family

A prince is a male member of a monarch’s or former monarch’s family that IS NOT an heir to the throne. A prince designation is usually given to all the son’s or grandsons of a monarch other than the eldest son.

In certain monarchies, more substantive titles may be used such as the Prince of Wales in the United Kingdom or the Prince of Asturias in Spain.

The female equivalent of a crown prince is a crown princess and the female equivalent of a prince is a princess.

  1. The title ‘Duke of Cornwall’ is automatically given to the monarch’s eldest son in the United Kingdom.
  2. The title ‘Duke of Rothesay‘ is automatically given to the monarch’s eldest son, as that is what they will be known as in Scotland.
  3. The title ‘Duke of York‘ is automatically given to the 2nd son of the monarch in the United Kingdom.

  1. Wikipedia.org – Prince
  2. Wikipedia.org – Crown Prince
  3. Listverse.com – 10 Curious Facts About The British Monarchy


    • Me either, but for the past several months I had been noticing the term “crowned” used. I had decided that it must be the spouse of the actual prince or princess spoken of, since they would have to “be crowned” as opposed to being born royal. I can’t remember now what caught my attention today that I was wrong, but off I went to find the truth! Got to love the internet, right?

      I realize I’m commenting on your reply from several years ago, but was pleased to see I wasn’t the only one who didn’t know, and decided to reply anyway!

      In great company, I’m sure.


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