The private Royal Family nicknames have been revealed, and they're all a bit unflattering

If you know anything about the Royal Family, you'll know that they're bound by strict rules of protocol. Rather than blabbering to the press about what they think of the political climate, they keep schtum, rather than going bare-legged, the girls wear skin-coloured rights, and rather than PDAing all of the place, the couples keep their hands firmly to themselves.

However, in private it's a whole other story. After all, the Windsors are just like you and me (not counting the crowns and the palaces), and they like to have their fun too. One thing that those who have only observed them in public perhaps wouldn't expect them to do is to have weird nicknames. That's right: The Royal Family may seem all poised and dignified, but when it gets down to it, they've given one another some incredibly unflattering monikers.

The Queen

If you're a fan of The Crown, you'll be aware that Queen Elizabeth's nearest and dearest call often her "Lilibet". However, it turns out she has an array of other nicknames, many of which are rather odd. some years ago, it was claimed that Prince Philip endearingly referred to her as ‘"Sausage", while she is also supposedly called "Mama" by royals including Kate Middleton.

The strangest of the lot though is "Gary". This nickname comes with an adorable backstory: Reportedly, when Prince William was young, he struggled with the word "granny", so began calling his grandma this nickname. The little prince is said to have fallen over at Buckingham Palace once and called for "Gary", completely confusing those around him. However, the Queen soon came to the rescue, saying: "I’m Gary." Nowadays, William's son Prince George adorably calls his great-grandmother "Gan Gan".

Prince William

When he studied at the University of St. Andrew's, the second-in-line to the throne needed a code name to keep his identity under wraps, so is said to have gone for "Steve". Conversations overheard between Wills and his wife Kate have also revealed that the couple use pretty standard pet names to refer to one another, including "babe", "poppet" and "darling".

Kate Middleton

According to reports, while at school, the Duchess of Cambridge had the nickname of "Squeak". This was due to the school's two guinea pigs; "There was one called Pip and one called Squeak, so my sister was called Pip and I was Squeak," Kate is said to have revealed. However, as she got older, headed to university and met her future husband, the now-mother-of-two's nickname changed, with her friends naming her the "Princess-in-waiting". Very appropriate!

Prince Harry

Back in the day, Harry is believed to have had a secret Facebook account where he went under the moniker of "Spike Wells", reportedly choosing the name because he was called "Spike" when he was younger. Nowadays though, he is apparently referred to as "Hazza" by his new wife's friends, much to his chagrin; Meghan's friend Byrony Gordon revealed during recent a Loose Women interview that the 33-year-old Prince reluctantly has been putting up with the new nickname.

Meghan Markle

When first heard, Meghan Markle's nickname doesn't appear to be the most flattering - but when you look further into it, it's actually rather nice. According to the Mail on Sunday, who collected their data from an unknown source close to the royal family, Prince Charles often calls the Duchess of Sussex "Tungsten", a Swedish term, which means "heavy stone." It refers to a rare and incredibly robust form of metal, meaning that Meghan is tough and unbending, with the insider claiming: "Prince Charles admires Meghan for her strength and the backbone she gives Harry, who needs a tungsten-type figure in his life as he can be a bit of a softy. It’s become a term of endearment."

Can't get enough of those Royal Family secrets? There's plenty more where that came from! Did you know Meghan Markle has had to give up her favourite food since joining the royal family?