What is Prince William's last name? The public wants to know

Prince William escorts his gradmother Queen Elizabeth during a visit to RAF Valley where her is stationed as a search-and-rescue helicopter pilot, on April 1, 2011, in Holyhead, United Kingdom. (Christopher Furlong / Getty Images)

He’s got fame, money and oodles of weird memorabilia devoted to his likeness – but does the world’s most famous prince have… a last name?

According to new Internet research, the public isn’t quite sure. Yahoo! Searches for What is Prince William's last name” are up 1199 percent this week and “What is Prince William's full name" are up 774 percent. How is it that one of the world’s biggest celebrities managed to keep such a simple fact such a mystery?

Before you pity the bloke, know that while he generally goes by Prince William of Wales — as royals tend not to use last names — William does technically have a surname (royals, they’re just like us!). On occasions when the queen's children need a surname, it's (drumroll, please) Mountbatten-Windsor. The queen’s family name was originally Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, but due to anti-German sentiment after WWI, the royal surname was changed to Windsor, which had a long association with British royalty through the town of Windsor, Berkshire and the Windsor Castle.

Then in 1960, the queen and Prince Phillip decided to merge their last names — hers (Windsor) and his (Mountbatten) to create the current surname — that is rarely ever used and certainly not known by most fans.

(You’re welcome, Internet.)

The next public problem to solve: Searches on Yahoo! are off the charts for “Who is Prince Harry’s father?”

Slideshow: Wacky royal wedding memorabilia http://on.today.com/eZJnjC


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