The only time when there was no King or Queen in Britain was when the country was a republic between 1649 and 1660
William l (1066-1087)
William I (c,1028 – 9 September 1087) usually known as William the Conqueror and sometimes William the Bastard, was the first Norman king of England, reigning from 1066 until his death in 1087. A descendant of Rollo, he was Duke of Normandy from 1035 onward. By 1060, following a long struggle to establish his throne, his hold on Normandy was secure. In 1066, following the death of Edward the Confessor, William invaded England, leading an army of Normans to victory over the Anglo-Saxon forces of Harold Godwinson at the Battle of Hastings, and suppressed subsequent English revolts in what has become known as the Norman Conquest. The rest of his life was marked by struggles to consolidate his hold over England and his continental lands, and by difficulties with his eldest son, Robert Curthose.
William ll (1087-1100)
William II (c. 1056 – 2 August 1100) was King of England from 26 September 1087 until his death in 1100, with powers over Normandy and influence in Scotland. He was less successful in extending control into Wales. The third son of William the Conqueror, he is commonly referred to as William Rufus (Rufus being Latin for “the Red”), perhaps because of his ruddy appearance or, more likely, due to having red hair as a child that grew out in later life.
Henry l (1100-1135)
Henry I (c. 1068 – 1 December 1135), also known as Henry Beauclerc, was King of England from 1100 to his death in 1135. He was the fourth son of William the Conqueror and was educated in Latin and the liberal arts. On William’s death in 1087, Henry’s elder brothers Robert Curthose and William Rufus inherited Normandy and England, respectively, but Henry was left landless. He purchased the County of Cotentin in western Normandy from Robert, but his brothers deposed him in 1091. He gradually rebuilt his power base in the Cotentin and allied himself with William Rufus against Robert.
Stephen (1092 or 1096 – 25 October 1154), often referred to as Stephen of Blois, was King of England from 22 December 1135 to his death in 1154. He was Count of Boulogne jure uxoris from 1125 until 1147 and Duke of Normandy from 1135 until 1144. His reign was marked by the Anarchy, a civil war with his cousin and rival, the Empress Matilda, whose son, Henry II, succeeded Stephen as the first of the Angevin kings of England.
Henry ll (1154-1198)
Henry II (5 March 1133 – 6 July 1189), also known as Henry Curtmantle, Henry FitzEmpress, or Henry Plantagenet, was King of England from 1154 until his death in 1189. He was the first king of the House of Plantagenet. King Louis VII of France made him Duke of Normandy in 1150. Henry became Count of Anjou and Maine upon the death of his father, Count Geoffrey V, in 1151. His marriage in 1152 to Eleanor of Aquitaine, whose marriage to Louis VII had recently been annulled, made him Duke of Aquitaine. He became Count of Nantes by treaty in 1158. Before he was 40 he controlled England, large parts of Wales, the eastern half of Ireland and the western half of France; an area that was later called the Angevin Empire. At various times, Henry also partially controlled Scotland and the Duchy of Brittany.
Richard l (1189-1199)
Richard I (8 September 1157 – 6 April 1199) was King of England from 1189 until his death in 1199. He also ruled as Duke of Normandy, Aquitaine and Gascony, Lord of Cyprus, and Count of Poitiers, Anjou, Maine, and Nantes, and was overlord of Brittany at various times during the same period. He was the third of five sons of King Henry II of England and Eleanor of Aquitaine and seemed unlikely to become king, but all his brothers except the youngest, John, predeceased their father. Richard is known as Richard Cœur de Lion or Richard the Lionheart because of his reputation as a great military leader and warrior The troubadour Bertran de Born also called him Richard Oc-e-Non, possibly from a reputation for terseness.
John (24 December 1166 – 19 October 1216) was King of England from 1199 until his death in 1216. He lost the Duchy of Normandy and most of his other French lands to King Philip II of France, resulting in the collapse of the Angevin Empire and contributing to the subsequent growth in power of the French Capetian dynasty during the 13th century. The baronial revolt at the end of John’s reign led to the sealing of Magna Carta, a document considered an early step in the evolution of the constitution of the United Kingdom.
Edward I (1272 – 1307)
Edward I (17/18 June 1239 – 7 July 1307), also known as Edward Longshanks and the Hammer of the Scots, was King of England from 1272 to 1307. Before his accession to the throne, he was commonly referred to as The Lord Edward. The first son of Henry III, Edward was involved from an early age in the political intrigues of his father’s reign, which included an outright rebellion by the English barons. In 1259, he briefly sided with a baronial reform movement, supporting the Provisions of Oxford. After reconciliation with his father, however, he remained loyal throughout the subsequent armed conflict, known as the Second Barons’ War. After the Battle of Lewes, Edward was hostage to the rebellious barons, but escaped after a few months and defeated the baronial leader Simon de Montfort at the Battle of Evesham in 1265. Within two years the rebellion was extinguished and, with England pacified, Edward joined the Ninth Crusade to the Holy Land. He was on his way home in 1272 when he was informed that his father had died. Making a slow return, he reached England in 1274 and was crowned at Westminster Abbey.
Edward ll (1307-1327)
Edward II (25 April 1284 – 21 September 1327), also called Edward of Caernarfon, was King of England and Lord of Ireland from 1307 until he was deposed in January 1327. The fourth son of Edward I, Edward became the heir apparent to the throne following the death of his elder brother Alphonso. Beginning in 1300, Edward accompanied his father on campaigns to pacify Scotland. In 1306, he was knighted in a grand ceremony at Westminster Abbey. Following his father’s death, Edward succeeded to the throne in 1307. He married Isabella, the daughter of the powerful King Philip IV of France, in 1308, as part of a long-running effort to resolve tensions between the English and French crowns.
Edward lll (1327-1377)
Edward III (13 November 1312 – 21 June 1377), also known as Edward of Windsor before his accession, was King of England and Lord of Ireland from January 1327 until his death in 1377. He is noted for his military success and for restoring royal authority after the disastrous and unorthodox reign of his father, Edward II. Edward III transformed the Kingdom of England into one of the most formidable military powers in Europe. His fifty-year reign was one of the longest in English history, and saw vital developments in legislation and government, in particular the evolution of the English Parliament, as well as the ravages of the Black Death. He outlived his eldest son, Edward the Black Prince, and the throne passed to his grandson, Richard II.
Richard ll (1377-1399)
Richard II (6 January 1367 – c. 14 February 1400), also known as Richard of Bordeaux, was King of England from 1377 until he was deposed in 1399. He was the son of Edward, Prince of Wales (known to posterity as the Black Prince), and Joan, Countess of Kent. Richard’s father died in 1376, leaving Richard as heir apparent to his grandfather, King Edward III; upon the latter’s death, the 10-year-old Richard succeeded to the throne.
Henry IV (1399-1413)
Henry IV (c. April 1367 – 20 March 1413), also known as Henry Bolingbroke, was King of England from 1399 to 1413. He asserted the claim of his grandfather King Edward III, a maternal grandson of Philip IV of France, to the Kingdom of France. Henry was the first English ruler since the Norman Conquest, over three hundred years prior, whose mother tongue was English rather than French.
Henry V (1413-1412)
Henry V (16 September 1386 – 31 August 1422), also called Henry of Monmouth, was King of England and Lord of Ireland from 1413 until his death in 1422. Despite his relatively short reign, Henry’s outstanding military successes in the Hundred Years’ War against France made England one of the strongest military powers in Europe. Immortalised in Shakespeare’s “Henriad” plays, Henry is known and celebrated as one of the greatest warrior-kings of medieval England.
Henry VI (1422-1461)
Henry VI (6 December 1421 – 21 May 1471) was King of England and Lord of Ireland from 1422 to 1461 and again from 1470 to 1471, and disputed King of France from 1422 to 1453. The only child of Henry V, he succeeded to the English throne at the age of nine months upon his father’s death, and succeeded to the French throne on the death of his maternal grandfather, Charles VI, shortly afterwards.
Edward IV (1461-1483)
Edward IV (28 April 1442 – 9 April 1483) was King of England from 4 March 1461 to 3 October 1470, then again from 11 April 1471 until his death in 1483. He was a central figure in the Wars of the Roses, a series of civil wars in England fought between the Yorkist and Lancastrian factions between 1455 and 1487.
Richard lll (1483-1485)
Richard III (2 October 1452 – 22 August 1485) was King of England and Lord of Ireland from 26 June 1483 until his death in 1485. He was the last king of the House of York and the last of the Plantagenet dynasty. His defeat and death at the Battle of Bosworth Field, the last decisive battle of the Wars of the Roses, marked the end of the Middle Ages in England.
TUDOR & ELIZABETHIAN
Henry Vll (1485-1509)
Henry VII (28 January 1457 – 21 April 1509) was King of England and Lord of Ireland from his seizure of the crown on 22 August 1485 until his death in 1509. He was the first monarch of the House of Tudor.
Henry Vlll 1509-1547)
Henry VIII (28 June 1491 – 28 January 1547) was King of England from 22 April 1509 until his death in 1547. Henry is best known for his six marriages, and for his efforts to have his first marriage (to Catherine of Aragon) annulled. His disagreement with Pope Clement VII about such an annulment led Henry to initiate the English Reformation, separating the Church of England from papal authority. He appointed himself Supreme Head of the Church of England and dissolved convents and monasteries, for which he was excommunicated by the pope. Henry is also known as “the father of the Royal Navy” as he invested heavily in the navy and increased its size from a few to more than 50 ships, and established the Navy Board.
Edward Vl (1547-1553)
Edward VI (12 October 1537 – 6 July 1553) was King of England and Ireland from 28 January 1547 until his death in 1553. He was crowned on 20 February 1547 at the age of nine. Edward was the son of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour and the first English monarch to be raised as a Protestant. During his reign, the realm was governed by a regency council because he never reached maturity. The council was first led by his uncle Edward Seymour, 1st Duke of Somerset (1547–1549), and then by John Dudley, 1st Earl of Warwick (1550–1553), who from 1551 was Duke of Northumberland.
Mary l (1553-1558)
Mary I (18 February 1516 – 17 November 1558), also known as Mary Tudor, and as “Bloody Mary” by her Protestant opponents, was Queen of England and Ireland from July 1553 until her death in 1558. She is best known for her vigorous attempt to reverse the English Reformation, which had begun during the reign of her father, Henry VIII. Her attempt to restore to the Church the property confiscated in the previous two reigns was largely thwarted by Parliament, but during her five-year reign, Mary had over 280 religious dissenters burned at the stake in the Marian persecutions.
Elizabeth l (1558-1603)
Elizabeth I (7 September 1533 – 24 March 1603) was Queen of England and Ireland from 17 November 1558 until her death in 1603. Sometimes referred to as the Virgin Queen, Elizabeth was the last of the five monarchs of the House of Tudor.
James Vl & l (1603-1625)
James VI and I (James Charles Stuart; 19 June 1566 – 27 March 1625) was King of Scotland as James VI from 24 July 1567 and King of England and Ireland as James I from the union of the Scottish and English crowns on 24 March 1603 until his death in 1625. The kingdoms of Scotland and England were individual sovereign states, with their own parliaments, judiciaries, and laws, though both were ruled by James in personal union.
CAROLINE & QUEEN ANNE
Charles l (1625-1649)
Charles I (19 November 1600 – 30 January 1649) was King of England, Scotland, and Ireland from 27 March 1625 until his execution in 1649. He was born into the House of Stuart as the second son of King James VI of Scotland, but after his father inherited the English throne in 1603 (as James I), he moved to England, where he spent much of the rest of his life. He became heir apparent to the kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland in 1612 upon the death of his elder brother, Henry Frederick, Prince of Wales. An unsuccessful and unpopular attempt to marry him to the Spanish Habsburg infanta Maria Anna culminated in an eight-month visit to Spain in 1623 that demonstrated the futility of the marriage negotiation. Two years later, he married the Bourbon princess Henrietta Maria of France.
The Commonwealth was the political structure during the period from 1649 to 1660 when England and Wales, later along with Ireland and Scotland, were governed as a republic after the end of the Second English Civil War and the trial and execution of Charles I. The republic’s existence was declared through “An Act declaring England to be a Commonwealth”, adopted by the Rump Parliament on 19 May 1649. Power in the early Commonwealth was vested primarily in the Parliament and a Council of State. During the period, fighting continued, particularly in Ireland and Scotland, between the parliamentary forces and those opposed to them, as part of what is now generally referred to as the Third English Civil War.
Charles ll ((1660-1685)
Charles II (29 May 1630 – 6 February 1685) was King of Scotland from 1649 until 1651, and King of England, Scotland and Ireland from the 1660 Restoration of the monarchy until his death in 1685.
James ll (1685-1688)
James II and VII (14 October 1633 – 16 September 1701) was King of England and Ireland as James II, and King of Scotland as James VII from the death of his elder brother, Charles II, on 6 February 1685. He was deposed in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. He was the last Catholic monarch of England, Scotland, and Ireland. His reign is now remembered primarily for conflicts over religious tolerance, but it also involved struggles over the principles of absolutism and the divine right of kings. His deposition ended a century of political and civil strife in England by confirming the primacy of the English Parliament over the Crown.
William & Mary (1689-1702)
William of Orange (1650–1702) and his wife Mary II (1662–1694), daughter of James II, became king and queen of England in 1689. They were both Protestants. The pair had been invited to come from the Netherlands, where William was the official head of state, to rescue England from the Catholic rule of James II.
Anne (6 February 1665 – 1 August 1714) reigned as Queen of England, Scotland and Ireland from 8 March 1702 until 1 May 1707. On 1 May 1707, under the Acts of Union, the kingdoms of England and Scotland united as a single sovereign state known as Great Britain. Anne continued to reign as Queen of Great Britain and Ireland until her death.
George l (1714-1727)
George I (28 May 1660 – 11 June 1727) was King of Great Britain and Ireland from 1 August 1714 and ruler of the Electorate of Hanover within the Holy Roman Empire from 23 January 1698 until his death in 1727. He was the first British monarch of the House of Hanover.
George ll (1727-1760)
George II (30 October / 9 November 1683– 25 October 1760) was King of Great Britain and Ireland, Duke of Brunswick-Lüneburg (Hanover) and a prince-elector of the Holy Roman Empire from 11 June 1727 until his death in 1760.
George lll (1760-1814)
George III (George William Frederick; 4 June 1738 – 29 January 1820) was King of Great Britain and of Ireland from 25 October 1760 until the union of the two kingdoms on 1 January 1801, after which he was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland until his death in 1820, making him the longest reigning king in British history. He was concurrently Duke and Prince-elector of Brunswick-Lüneburg (“Hanover”) in the Holy Roman Empire before becoming King of Hanover on 12 October 1814. He was a monarch of the House of Hanover but, unlike his two predecessors, he was born in Great Britain, spoke English as his first language and never visited Hanover.
George lV (1820-1830)
George IV (George Augustus Frederick; 12 August 1762 – 26 June 1830) was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and King of Hanover from the death of his father, King George III, on 29 January 1820, until his own death ten years later. At the time of his accession to the throne, he was acting as Prince Regent, having done so since 5 February 1811, during his father’s final mental illness.
William lV (1830-1837)
William IV (21 August 1765 – 20 June 1837) was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and King of Hanover from 26 June 1830 until his death in 1837. The third son of George III, William succeeded his elder brother George IV, becoming the last king and penultimate monarch of Britain’s House of Hanover.
Victoria l (1837-1901)
Victoria (24 May 1819 – 22 January 1901) was Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland from 20 June 1837 until her death in 1901. Her reign of 63 years and seven months was longer than that of any previous British monarch and is known as the Victorian era. It was a period of industrial, political, scientific, and military change within the United Kingdom, and was marked by a great expansion of the British Empire. In 1876, the British Parliament voted to grant her the additional title of Empress of India.
Edward Vll (1901-1910)
Edward VII (9 November 1841 – 6 May 1910) was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and the British Dominions, and Emperor of India, from 22 January 1901 until his death in 1910.
George V (1910-1936)
George V (3 June 1865 – 20 January 1936) was King of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions, and Emperor of India, from 6 May 1910 until his death in 1936.
Edward Vlll (1936, abdicated)
Edward VIII (23 June 1894 – 28 May 1972) was King of the United Kingdom and the Dominions of the British Empire and Emperor of India from 20 January 1936 until his abdication in December of the same year.
George Vl (1936-1952)
George VI (14 December 1895 – 6 February 1952) was King of the United Kingdom and the Dominions of the British Commonwealth from 11 December 1936 until his death in 1952. He was concurrently the last Emperor of India until August 1947, when the British Raj was dissolved.
Elizabeth ll (1952-2022)
Elizabeth II (21 April 1926 – 8 September 2022) was Queen of the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth realms from 6 February 1952 until her death in 2022. She was queen regnant of 32 sovereign states during her lifetime and 15 at the time of her death. Her reign of 70 years and 214 days is the longest of any British monarch, the longest recorded of any female head of state in history, and the second-longest verified reign of any sovereign in history.
Charles lll (2022-Present)
Charles III (14 November 1948) is King of the United Kingdom and 14 other Commonwealth realms. He acceded to the throne on 8 September 2022 upon the death of his mother, Elizabeth II. He was the longest-serving heir apparent in British history and, at the age of 73, is the oldest person to assume the British throne.