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World waits to see new prince

The baby's name will be announced later but George and James are favoured choices.

The Duke of Cambridge, Prince William with his wife the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton. Picture: AFP.

LONDON - The world was awaiting the first glimpse of Britain's new prince on Tuesday with camera crews poised to photograph the royal couple Prince William and his wife, Kate, leaving St. Mary's Hospital in London with their baby son.

Kate gave birth to the couple's first child, who is third in line to the British throne, on Monday afternoon, ending weeks of feverish anticipation about the arrival and surprising royal watchers, who were widely expecting a girl.

The baby's name will be announced later but George and James, both traditional royal names, were favoured choices with British bookmakers for the child, who could one day be king.

The popular couple sidestepped tradition by announcing the birth via a press release but were expected to adhere to protocol by giving the public the first sight of the royal baby on the steps as they leave the hospital.

Managing editor of Majesty Magazine Joe Little said, "All we will probably see is a glimpse of the top of the baby's head but they will stick to this tradition."

"After that we won't see them for some time. Having a baby is a very private moment and they are a private couple so the next time we see the baby will be the official photo and that could be weeks."

Kensington Palace announced the arrival of a boy weighing 3.8 kg at about 8:30pm on Monday, four hours after his birth, saying Kate and her child were doing well and would remain in hospital overnight. Prince William was with them.

Congratulations flooded in from all over the world after the announcement of the birth, which was followed moment-by-moment by the world media as well as the British press with the excitement seen as a boost for Britons facing economic austerity.

British tabloid newspaper The Sun temporarily renamed itself The Son in honour of the baby while the left-leaning Guardian newspaper provided readers of its website with a "Republican" button so that they could filter out the barrage of royal news if they wanted.

Support for the royals dipped after Diana's death in a car crash in Paris in 1997, a year after her divorce from Prince Charles, as the royals were accused of being out of touch with modern Britain in the way they handled the death of the popular princess.

Prince William and Kate, who met when they were students at St. Andrews University in Scotland about 10 years ago, have officially been known as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge since their sumptuous royal wedding in April 2011.

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