Meghan Markles first and last birthdays in Royal Family as she turns 42

Meghan Markle is celebrating her 42nd birthday today (Friday, August 4) and is understood to be celebrating the big day in Montecito, California.

This is the Duchess of Sussex's fourth birthday since she and Prince Harry stepped down from royal duties in January 2020 and started a new life Stateside.

But the ex-Suits star managed to squeeze in two birthdays during her brief time in the Firm – one in 2018, shortly after her wedding to Harry, and one in 2019, months before the couple's sensational exit from Palace living.

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Meghan's first royal birthday was her 37th, and involved a big celebration – but not for her.

She and Harry spent August 4, 2018 at the wedding of Harry's childhood friend Charlie Van Straubenzee to Daisy Jenks where Meghan's groom was the best man, Hello! reported at the time.

The two pals reportedly met as kids at Ludgrove Prep School in Berkshire, and Straubenzee also attended the Sussexes' nuptials in May of that year.

And while Meghan didn't exactly dominate the spotlight during her first royal birthday, her second was all about her.

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The Duchess ushered in her 38th year in style with members of the Firm rushing to wish her well on the big day, with her husband posting a sweet tribute to Instagram to his "amazing wife".

The official Royal Family Instagram account began social media proceedings, posting a snap of Meghan with the late Queen Elizabeth on their first joint royal engagement in Chester in 2018.

The pic was captioned: "Wishing The Duchess of Sussex a very happy birthday!"

Meghan's brother-in-law Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton quickly followed with the same message.

Meanwhile the Clarence House account, which was run by the household staff of now King, then Prince Charles, and Camilla posted a portrait of Meghan with the caption: "Happy Birthday to The Duchess of Sussex!"

Meanwhile Sussex pal and royal biographer Omid Scobie took to Twitter (now X) to share a picture of Meghan's birthday cake, a carrot-flavoured extravaganza with orange and rosemary garnishes and the words "Happy Birthday Meghan" piped on in icing.

"Thanks so much to Alice Williams and the awesome team at @LuminaryBakery in London for letting us join them last weekend as they created Duchess Meghan’s beautiful carrot birthday cake," Scobie wrote.

This year Meghan and Harry were spotted celebrating at an A-list hotspot restaurant in Montecito on Wednesday (August 2) alongside pal Matt Cohen.

But there was radio silence from the royals as they failed to post public birthday messages.

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