Prince Harry, Meghan Markle to Marry in Spring

The British royal and the U.S. actress are engaged and will wed next year.

It's confirmed: Prince Harry and American actress Meghan Markle are set to get married. 

The news — which had been widely expected in the British press — was finally unveiled Monday by Clarence House, which manages the affairs of Prince Charles, Harry's father.

“His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales is delighted to announce the engagement of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle," the announcement, posted on Twitter, read. "The wedding will take place in spring 2018. Further details about the wedding day will be announced in due course." His Royal Highness and Markle became engaged in London earlier this month. Prince Harry has informed Her Majesty The Queen and other close members of his family. Prince Harry has also sought and received the blessing of Ms Markle’s parents."

Markle, who currently stars in the legal drama Suits, first met Prince Harry through friends in July 2016. Their relationship only became public in early 2017, six months after they began dating. THR earlier this month broke the news that Markle was to exit Suits ahead of season 8, a move that added further fuel to rumors of a royal wedding. 

Harry attacked the U.K. press for the "racial overtones" in its reporting of their relationship, with Markle having described herself as biracial and "half black and half white."

The Prince has quite a few months coming up, with it recently being revealed that he stars as a Stormtrooper alongside his brother Prince William in Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Shortly after the announcement, the couple made a brief appearance together on the grounds of Kensington Palace (below). Harry said he was "thrilled" and promised forthcoming details about his proposal, which he said was "of course" romantic. Markle, wearing her new engagement ring, said she was "so happy."

Markle's ring includes two diamonds that belonged to Princess Diana and royal officials say Harry designed the ring himself. The diamonds, from the collection of his late mother, flank a central diamond from Botswana.

The couple plan to give their first interview later on Monday.