With less than a fortnight until the expected due date of the new royal baby, it has become a subject of fascination the world over.
But what is the expected protocol of the arrival of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's baby? With the arrival of the royal baby, thought to be due on July 13, comes the age-old custom of placing a proclamation of royal birth behind the iron railings of Buckingham Palace.
The brief bulletin, on headed Palace notepaper, confirms the sex of the baby but usually gives little else away other than that the baby has been "safely delivered" and perhaps the weight.
It used to be handwritten, but is now mostly typed and then signed by royal doctors. The names given to royal babies are not usually revealed straight away and the public is often left guessing for several days.
William and Kate could, however, buck the trend and unveil their chosen name immediately.
The royal baby will be celebrated with a Royal Salute of 41 guns.
As well as keeping to these traditions, the baby's arrival will no doubt also be officially declared via the monarchy's website, on Facebook and summed up neatly in fewer than 140 characters on Twitter, perhaps including an accompanying hashtag, making this royal baby the first future British King or Queen to have news of their birth tweeted by a royal household.
Here is a look at the royal baby by numbers:
- The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been married for two years before the birth of their baby.
- William and Kate's baby will be born third in line to the throne and the Queen's third great-grandchild.
- The baby will bump Prince Harry down to fourth in line to the throne.
- William and Kate's firstborn will be the great-great-great-great-great-grandchild (five greats) of Queen Victoria.
- The baby will one day be head of state of 16 countries.
- William and Kate will both be 31 when the baby is born.
- Royal births are celebrated with a 41-gun salute.
- If the baby follows the Prince of Wales and William on to the throne, he or she will be the 43rd monarch since William the Conqueror in 1066.
- The baby may one day be head of the Commonwealth, which covers 54 nations and two billion citizens.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's baby will be the highlight of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.