Meghan Markle and Prince Harry intended to humiliate royals with portrait

A portrait of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle has sparked controversy after an expert claimed they had published the photo to hurt the royals.

Tom Bower, author of "Revenge: Meghan, Harry and the War Between the Windsors", said the image was "absolutely" intended to humiliate the royal family.

“It was all about, we’re back now on course to build Brand Meghan and the book, the Netflix series, the podcast," he told Page Six.

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“Everything is money. And to their advantage, they were in the public eye for seven days during the funeral or more, every day they were filmed.”

Bower also drew comparisons between the Queen Elizabeth II's Jubilee in June where the couple were "shuffled off to a window upstairs and hardly seen" and her funeral on September 19 where "they were centre stage."

"You know, she has really got one interest," Mr Bower said.

"And that’s Meghan, and the casualties are the royal family and as far as she’s concerned, that’s terrific."

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The new portrait was posted on Instagram on Monday by photographer Misan Harriman, showing the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on their visit to Manchester for the One Young World summit just days before the Queen's death last month.

The couple appeared to be putting on a united front, clasping hands and standing close as they look into the camera with determined expressions.

The photographer followed the post up with another photo of the pair in profile, this time in black and white.

And despite critics' complaints, fans of the couple were quick to shower them with praise.

One said: "Stunning! I hope they know how much they are loved."

Another added: "Beautiful photograph of two people who have chosen each other above all else – peace and blessings be upon them."

The timing of the images is significant, coming just two days after the Palace released the first official portrait of King Charles III as King.

In the photo, the new monarch can be seen standing alongside Queen Consort Camilla and the Prince and Princess of Wales, the four of them smiling at the camera and appearing relaxed.

The snap was taken by longtime royal photographer, Chris Jackson, on the night before Queen Elizabeth's funeral when the Palace hosted a gala to welcome global leaders and dignitaries to say goodbye to Her Majesty, who passed away at the age of 96 due to old age on September 8.

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