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A Brief History of the British Monarchy.

Learn more about King Charles III and the British Royal Family before your trip to London to Celebrate the Coronation in 2023.

The British Monarchy originates from the kingdoms of Anglo-Saxon England and early medieval Scotland. Great Britain has one of the eighth-longest monarchies in the world and definitely one of the most famous and in some cases the most infamous.

Did you know for example that playing cards were invented during the reign of Henry Tudor in the late 1400s? The ‘Queen’ you find on every deck of playing cards is based on a portrait of his wife, Elizabeth of York.

On the infamous side of Royal history, you’ll find Henry VIII (Henry the 8th), who came to power in 1509 and famously had 6 wives, two of whom he had killed – Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard. He also declared himself head of the Church of England so that he could divorce one of his wives, Catherine of Aragon.

But the most important part of our brief lesson on the history of the British monarchy starts with the reign of Queen Victoria from 1837 to 1901. During this period several of London’s best-known attractions were commissioned and built, including the Science Museum, Imperial College, and Royal Albert Hall.

A Brief History of the British Monarchy

The 20th century started with King George V and the Saxe-Coburg-Gotha family on the British throne. During World War I, King George V decided that his family would turn away from their German roots and the Royal family became known as the Windsors from that point forward.

King George V was succeeded by his son Edward VIII in 1936. King George VI unexpectedly became King in 1936 after the abdication of his brother King Edward VIII following his tryst with American divorcé Wallace Simpson.

During the Second World War in 1939, the King and Queen remained at Buckingham Palace despite the intense aerial bombing of London during The Blitz. The Queen Mother was also famously photographed queueing for food rations along with other Londoners. After the war, King George VI’s reign saw the start of the National Health Service.

After King George VI passed away in 1952, his eldest daughter, Queen Elizabeth II (or Lilibet) took the throne. and became the longest-reigning monarch in British history.

Military service is expected of members of the Royals during peacetime or even during times of war. Elizabeth was no different in that regard, serving as a driver and mechanic in the Auxiliary Territorial Services. After the war, she married Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, who served in the Royal Navy during World War II. After their marriage, he then became the Duke of Edinburgh. They had four children Charles, Anne, Andrew and Edward.

Guiding the United Kingdom through changing and uncertain times for over 70 years, Queen Elizabeth II recently died on the 8th of September 2022 at Balmoral aged 96. King Charles III then became King after the death of his mother Queen Elizabeth II. At age 73, he is the oldest heir to succeed to the British throne.

Charles’ eldest son, Prince William, will be next in line to the throne. He is married to Catherine Middleton and they have two children, Prince George, and Princess Charlotte.

The coronation of King Charles III will take place on Saturday the 6th of May 2023 in Westminster Abbey, London. Book a stay at Eccleston Square Hotel for the Kings Coronation. We are ideally located in the heart of all the action, only 15 minutes walk from Buckingham Palace and close to Victoria Station.

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