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Kate Middleton gives birth to a baby boy

Kate Middleton gives birth to a baby boy

Palace officials say Prince William's wife Kate has given birth to a baby boy. Photo: WENN/Cathal McNaughton

LONDON (Reuters) – Prince William’s wife Kate gave birth on Monday to a boy, who becomes third in line to the British throne, ending weeks of feverish speculation about the royal baby.

The couple’s first child was born at 4:24 p.m. (11:24 a.m. E), weighing 8 lbs and 6 oz. His name will be announced at a later date but bookmakers favor George and James.

“Her Royal Highness and her child are both doing well and will remain in hospital overnight,” said a statement from the Royal Household, which sidestepped tradition to announce the birth with a press release.

“The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Harry and members of both families have been informed and are delighted with the news,” it read.

As the birth was announced, a loud cheer went up from the well-wishers and media gathered outside St. Mary’s Hospital in west London.

The couple arrived at the hospital at around dawn on Monday, dodging the pack of world media camped outside the main entrance by using an unmarked car and entering through a side door.

The Royal Household said the medical staff present for the birth were the former queen’s gynecologist Marcus Setchell, obstetrician Guy Thorpe-Beeston, and consultant neonatologist Sunit Godambe.

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