Princess Caroline's stepson Prince Ernst of Hanover welcomes daughter — first royal baby of 2018!

The first royal baby of 2018 has been born! Princess Caroline’s stepson Hereditary Prince Ernst August of Hanover and his wife Ekaterina Malysheva welcomed their first child, a baby girl named Princess Elisabeth, on February 22 — seven months after the couple tied the knot. Elisabeth was born at Henriettenstifts hospital in Hanover, Germany. "My whole family and I are extremely happy," Prince Ernst August Jr., 34, said before thanking the doctors and nurses who attended to the birth. 

The couple posed for a tender photo with their newborn daughter. The first-time mom proudly cradled her sleeping baby, while her husband proudly stood beside them. 

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><img alt=VIEW GALLERY The couple welcomed their daughter on February 22 Photo: Diakovere, Hannover

Prince Ernst, who is the oldest son of Prince Ernst August of Hanover, married Ekaterina last July. The Russian bride walked down the aisle in a custom hand-embroidered Chantilly lace gown by Lebanese designer Sandra Mansour.

MORE: Casiraghi kids wear exclusive designs for royal wedding in Hanover

The pair exchanged vows in front of 600 guests inside Hanover’s Market Church. Ernst’s half-sister Princess Alexandra of Hanover as well as his royal step-siblings Charlotte Casiraghi, Pierre Casiraghi and Andrea Casiraghi were in attendance for the lavish event. Ernst Jr.’s father, Princess Caroline's estranged husband, skipped out on his oldest son's wedding due to a financial dispute.

><img alt=VIEW GALLERY Ernst and Ekaterina tied the knot in 2017 Photo: WENN

The first-time dad's younger brother Prince Christian of Hanover is set to marry Alessandra de Osma in a religious ceremony on March 16 in Lima, Peru. The pair said “I do” last year in a civil ceremony in London. Ekaterina and her husband planned to attend the pair's celebration in South America next month, however their baby's recent birth could possibly change their plans. 

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