The history of the British royals is a long one. Do you think you know it well enough to identify them from a picture? Most people can't, but can you?
Known for having 6 wives, which included Catherine of Aragon (his brother’s wife) whom he divorced for Anne Boleyn, which led to his separation from Rome. Henry declared himself head of the Church of England. His daughters Mary from Catherine of Aragon and Elizabeth from Anne Boleyn eventually became rulers of England.
Elizabeth married her cousin Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh. She was heavily involved in the war efforts of World War II, and after the passing of her father George VI, Elizabeth II became queen of seven commonwealth countries. Queen Elizabeth’s coronation in 1953 was the first to be televised.
Brother of Edward IV, who ruthlessly killed those who opposed him and was alleged to have murdered his nephew, had an unpopular reign during his time as king. His reign is notable for ending the War of the Roses by defeating Richard in the battle of Bosworth Field in Leicestershire.
Under the feeble reign of Stephen, the country faced numerous attacks and raids from Scottish and Welsh invaders. “The Anarchy” was a decade of civil war which started when Matilda invaded Anjou in 1139. The treaty of Westminster outlined that Matilda’s son, Henry Plantagenet would achieve the throne after the death of Stephen.
Founder of the Anglo-Saxon chronicles, he organized 5 years of peace between the Danes and Wessex before they erupted into war again in 877. Alfred was forced to seek refuge in Somerset Levels, where he masterminded his victories of Saxon Christian rule over Rochester, Edington and most of England
George was said to be a shy, nervous man. However, the well-loved King George displayed fortitude during World War II with his wife Elizabeth and his daughters Elizabeth II and Margaret, by staying in Buckingham Palace for the duration of the war.
Edward succeeded his father Henry VIII at the age of 9. He was described as a sickly boy suffering from tuberculosis. A great dispute started at the end of his short reign between Lady Jane Grey, who was next in line, and Mary I.
During his reign, he placed a heavy focus on the construction of Westminster Abbey, leaving Earl Godwin and his son to oversee the running of the country. He died eight days after the completion of Westminster Abbey. He left no natural heirs, this left England in a power struggle after his demise.
After death, Richard III’s crown was placed on the head of Henry VII after the battle of Bosworth. Henry unified the feuding parties of York and Lancaster by marrying Elizabeth of York. During his reign, playing cards were invented.
The third son of Henry led his own army by the age of 16 and ceased rebellions in France. One of the leading Christian commanders during the third crusade, Richard died from an arrow wound.
He succeeded his half-brother Athelstan at the age of 18 and re-established Anglo Saxon control over northern England. At the age of 25, Edmund was stabbed in his royal hall of Pucklechurch near Bathe by a robber, during the feast of Augustine
His reign of indulgence and cruelty made William very unpopular. The Rufus Stone marks the spot where he fell when he was killed by an arrow while hunting.
During the War of the Roses, Elizabeth Woodville sought safety in Westminster where her son Edward V was born. He succeeded to the throne at the age of 13. Edward had the shortest reign when both he and his brother were murdered.
Speaking little to no English, George arrived from Hanover to England. He was accompanied by 18 cooks and 2 mistresses. He left national policy to be handled by Sir Robert Walpole. George never learned English and spent most of his days in Hanover.
The youngest son of William I, he initiated a zoo in Woodstock in Oxfordshire to study animals. He was known as “the Lion of Justice” because he established favorable laws in England.
His aim was for a united Britain. He successfully brought together knights, clergy, nobility as well as lords for the first time in parliament. Known as “Hammer of the Scots” because he was triumphant in Scotland and brought the famous coronation stone from Scone to Westminster. He died on his way to fight Robert Bruce.
His reign was known for occurring during the height of elegance and eloquence in Britain. Some of the greatest writers were present during his reign, the likes of Jane Austen, Keats and Wordsworth. In 1773, the Boston Tea Party marked sure signs of unrest in America. On July 4th, 1776, America proclaimed independence. George suffered from a mental illness, which left the responsibility of ruling to his son. George passed away in 1821.
It was during her reign that the creation of the United Kingdom occurred, which was the unification of England and Scotland. She was the second daughter of James II who struggled to bear children, having a total of 17 pregnancies. She gave birth to one child, William, who died at the age of 11 of smallpox.
He began his reign at the age of 9. He was a dedicated Christian who loved art and learning and would later become one of the greatest patrons of medieval architecture. Henry was caught during the rebellion of barons and forced to establish a parliament at Westminster.
The third son of Oliver Cromwell, unlike his father he lacked military expertise. This made his role as second ruling Lord Protector of England, Scotland and Ireland short lived. He resigned after 9 months and exiled himself to France until 1680.
Held the throne after his father Alfred the Great. He conquered southeast England and the Midlands from the Danes. He also unified the kingdoms of Wessex and Mercia after the death of his sister. Edward was killed in a battle against the Welsh.
He was the son of Edward. He succeeded to the throne after the death of his brother Edmund. Eadred suffered from a stomach problem which eventually led to his death. He left no heir to the throne.
Son of Richard Duke of York and Cicely Neville, he was despised by many for having many mistress and poor ethics. Edward had his brother executed on the charge of treason. He died suddenly in 1483.
During his reign, England went through the Great Plague in 1653 and the Great Fire of London in 1666. He was known as the Merry Monarch, who came to the throne after Oliver Cromwell’s death and the exile of Richard Cromwell. He was a well-liked king, having 13 known mistresses and a number of illegitimate children.
The son of Egbert and the father of Alfred the Great, Aethelwulf was a highly pious king who traveled to Rome together with his son to see the Pope in 855. His eldest son Athelsten conquered the Danes at sea; this was the first known naval battle.
Considered to be "the first gentleman of Europe" he was known for his love of architecture. Despite his popularity, his reign was not respected and his death was considered a relief from his incompetence. He married Caroline of Brunswick in 1796 and had one daughter who died in 1817.
The brother of George IV was known as the Sailor King. His personality and lack of pomp and pretense made him popular with his people. He married Adelaide of Saxe-Coburg in 1818. William abolished slavery in the colonies in 1833.
Married to Isabella of France in 1308, he was the fourth son of Edward I. He was defeated at the Battle of Bannockburn by the Scots. He was overthrown by his wife and her lover and murdered in Berkley Castle.
Her reign was at the height of the Shakespearean era. She was well-loved for her decision making. She was the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. She was never married. Elizabeth placed many capable advisers in high-ranking positions and this ensured England was respected and feared.
One of the bloodiest battles ever fought in Britain saw Athelstan conquering a combination of Vikings, Celts, Danes and Scots to claim the title of King of Britain. The culmination of this war produced a unified England.
He was a skilled soldier who was knighted at the tender age of 12. Henry's expertise in combat came from being victorious in the many rebellious attacks launched at his father Henry IV. He reintroduced the war efforts against France in 1415 and was victorious against the French at the Battle of Agincourt. Henry’s death meant he left his 10-month-old son as king of England and France.
Richard was an extravagant and unjust ruler, after the death of his wife Anne of Bohemia he became unbalanced and his actions of tyranny became much worse. In 1381, Richard put a severe end to the Peasant Revolt led by Wat Tyler. In 1399, Henry of Lancaster returned from exile and overthrew Richard. He was later killed in Pontefract Castle in 1400.
This well-loved King ushered the Edwardian age of elegance. He had many social elegances and enjoyed horse racing. He married Alexandra of Denmark in 1863. Near death, Queen Alexandra allowed one of his mistresses, Mrs.Keypel, to say her goodbyes to Edward.
The fourth child of Henry II, he was a cruel and selfish king. He was said to be jealous of his brother Richard who was very handsome. John was a short, fat man and died of overeating.
The first monarch to have extensive rule over Anglo Saxon England. He reclaimed his kingdom of Wessex after returning from exile by Charlemagne. He died at the age of 70 having conquered joint forces of Danes and Cornish at Hingston Downing Cornwall.
The last of the Danish kings to rule England, he was the son of Canute the Great and Emma of Normandy. He was immediately acknowledged as king after sailing with his mother and escorted by an armada of 62 warships. Harathcanute died at age 24 during a wedding toast.
After the death of his father, the people of England crowned Edmund as king. However, the Witan council elected Canute to take the throne. After being defeated at the battle of Assandun, Aethelred made the compromise to divide the kingdom between Canute and Edmund II. Edmund died that same year.
Canute was married to Emma of Normandy, the widow of Aethelred II. He succeeded King Edmund II. Canute, son of Sweyn Forkbeard, was favored by his subjects for sending the majority of his army back to Denmark. Canute divided England into East Anglia, Northumbria, Wessex and Mercia.
During his reign, he defeated an invading Norwegian army at the Battle of Stamford Bridge in Yorkshire. Harold was elected king by a council of nobles and religious leaders. He died at the battle of Hastings, his death resulted in the end of Anglo-Saxon kings and started the reign of Norman kings.
During his reign, between 1348-1350 the Bubonic Plague, also called the Black Death, killed half the population of England. His reign lasted for 50 years and his goal of conquering Scotland and France led to the Hundred Years Wars in 1338. Edward and his son “The Black Prince” were revered for being victorious at Crecy and Poitiers.
The youngest son of Edmund I succeeded the throne after the shadowy death of his brother Eadwig. His coronation was held in Bath in 1973, where he was met by 6 Kings of Scots, Kings of Strathcylde and some princes of Wales. The kings displayed their alliance to Edgar by rowing him in his state barge across the River Dee.
Son of Mary Queen of Scots and Lord Darnely, he was the first king to rule over both England and Scotland. The publication of the authorized version of the Bible was released during his reign. This caused unrest within the Puritans and their beliefs toward the established church.
He was the eldest son of Edgar. He was made king by the age of 12 and his reign was supported by Archbishop Dunstan. However, it was challenged by supporters of his half-brother Ethelred. The resulting feud led to civil war in England. His reign lasted two years before he was killed at Corfe Castle by his brother’s supporters.
He became king at the age of 10. The invasion of England by Sweyn Forkbeard, King of the Danes caused the king to flee to Normandy in 1013. He returned to England after the death of Sweyn in 1014.
His speed and skill as a hunter gained him the nickname Harold Harefoot. One of the illegitimate sons of Canute, he governed England for three years while his half-brother, who was the rightful heir to the throne, battled to protect his Danish kingdom. His death came just weeks before Harthacanute’s planned invasion of England.
He joined the Navy in 1877 and was described as a hearty man. He did not expect to be king. However, after the death of his elder brother he had to take control of the throne. He married his dead brother’s fiancé Mary of Teck. World War I came in 1914- 1918, during his reign as king. He also established the royal broadcast on Christmas Day.
Daughter of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon. She married Philip of Spain. She carried out a severe conversion of England to Catholicism. She died in 1558. During her reign the country was plunged into a bloody battle which is why she was known as Bloody Mary.
She was the only child of Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg and Edward Duke of Kent. Her throne was strengthened by her marriage to her cousin Albert of Saxe-Coburg in 1840. Albert was very persuasive during the Queen’s reign. He left the legacy of the Christmas Tree and the Great Exhibition of 1851. Victoria’s reign developed the British Empire to twice its size.
Very popular prince of Wales who rejected the throne to marry twice-divorced American Wallis Simpson. His actions were thought to be undesirable by the Church and he eventually relinquished his title as king, in favor of his brother, opting instead to take the title of Duke of Windsor.