Kings & Queens

Principle source: Kings & Queens of Britain by David Williamson [ISBN: 1 85648 003 8]


EGBERT (Reigned 802-839)
Consort: Raedburh
Issue: Ethelwulf
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Winchester

ETHELWULF 800-858 (Reigned 839-855) Abdicated
Consorts: 1) Osburh (Osburga) 2) Judith (married at 13)
Issue: Ethelbald, Ethelbert, Ethelred, Alfred
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Winchester

ETHELBALD 834-860 (Reigned 855-860)
Consort: Judith (see above) – marriage annulled – incestuous
Issue: None
Cause of Death: ?
Buried: Sherborne Abbey

ETHELBERT 836-865 (Reigned 860-865)
Consort: Unmarried
Issue: None
Cause of Death: ? [Suggested noncongenital defect]
Buried: Sherborne Abbey

ETHELRED I 840-871 (Reigned 865-871)
Consort: ?
Issue: Ethelhelm, Ethelwold [Both considered too young to rule]
Cause of Death: Battle Injury
Buried: Wimborne Minster, Dorset

ALFRED THE GREAT 849-899 (Reigned 871-899)
Consort: Ealhswith
Issue: Edward, Ethelfleda (ruler of Mercia) +
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Winchester – his remains have been lost
Importance: Codified the law, encouraged learning and religion, consolidated his realm. Council of bishops, ealdorman, thanes twice a year – credited with the concept of parliament.
Birthplace: Wantage – fine statue of this great king unveiled in 1901

EDWARD THE ELDER 870-924 (Reigned 899-924)
Consort: 1) Egwina 2) Elfleda 3) Eadgifu
Issue: Large family – Athelstan, Edmund, Edred + several daughters
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Winchester

ATHELSTAN 895-939 (Reigned 925-939)
Consort: Unmarried
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Malmesbury Abbey, North Wiltshire – First undisputed king of all England. Successful monarch who passed humane laws, introduced a national coinage and kept peace within his realm.

EDMUND THE MAGNIFICANT 921-946 (Reigned 939-946)
Consorts: 1) Elfgiva (St. Elfgifu) 2) Ethelfleda
Issue: Edwy, Edgar (Considered too young to reign when father died)
Cause of Death: Stabbed during a scuffle – age 25
Buried: Glastonbury Abbey

EDRED (Reigned 946-955) – brother to Edmund
Consort: Unmarried
Cause of Death: Natural – suspected congenital defect
Buried: Winchester

EDWY the FAIR 940-959 (Reigned 955-959)
Consort: Elfgiva (Secret marriage later annulled – consanguinity)
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Died young (19) – Cause unknown but suspicious – considered weak and incompetent – likely murdered after forced abdication of the throne to his brother Edgar.
Buried: Glastonbury Abbey

EDGAR the PEACEFUL 944-975 (Reigned 959-975)
Consorts: 1) Ethelfleda 2) Elfrida
Issue: Edward, Etherlred
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Glastonbury Abbey

EDWARD the MARTYR 962-979 (Reigned 975-979)
Consort: Unmarried
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Murdered by order of his step-mother Elfrida
Buried: Remains currently reside in the Midland Bank (Croydon) !

ETHELRED II (UNREADY) 969-1016 (Reigned 979-1013 and 1014-16)
Reigned interrupted by Sweyn of Denmark – died 1014 and Ethelred returned from exile * see below
Consort: 1) Elfgiva 2) Emma [eldest daughter of Richard 1, Duke of Normandy]
Issue: Large family – Edmund, Edward
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: St. Paul’s (London)

SWEYN FORKBEARD (Reigned 1013-14) Danish
Consort: 1) Gunhild 2) Sigrid the Haughty
Issue: Harold (King of Denmark 1014-19), Canute
Buried: Roskilde Cathedral (Denmark)

EDMUND II (IRONSIDE) (Reigned April-November 1016)
Consort: Ealdgith
Issue: 2 sons – Sent out of the country for safe-keeping
Cause of Death: Murdered – age 23
Buried: Glastonbury
Kingdom divided – Edmund (Wessex ) Canute (Mercia)

CANUTE the GREAT 995-1035 (Reigned 1016-35) * Note: When brother Harold died in 1019, Canute became King of Denmark as well. Conquered Norway in 1030.
Consorts: 1) Gunhild 2) Elfgiva 3) Emma (Ethelred’s widow)
Issue: Sweyn [Governor of Norway] Harold, Hardicanute, Gunhild
Cause of Death: Natural – age 40
Buried: Winchester Cathedral

HAROLD the HAREFOOT (Reigned 1035-1040)
Consort: Unmarried
Cause of Death: ? – age 24
Buried: St. Clement Danes (London) – Body disinterred and thrown into a swamp by half-brother Hardicanute possibly because Harold had banished his mother, Emma. Decapitated corpse found and quietly buried at St. Clement Dane’s, London.

HARDICANUTE (Reigned 1040-1042)
Consort: Unmarried
Cause of Death: Heart Attack – age 24 – may have been poisoned
Buried: Winchester
Note: Imposed crippling taxes which alienated his supporters

EDWARD the CONFESSOR (Reign 1042-1066) * Son of Ethelred the Unready/Emma [Half-brother to both Edmund Ironside and Hardicanute]
Consort: Edith – marriage was never consummated
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Natural – age 60
Buried: Westminister Abbey initially before the high altar. Canonized by Pope Alexander III in 1161, his body was moved (1269) into a magnificent tomb built by King Henry III. Saint or no, Edward’s crown, vestments and ring, set with ‘St. Edward’s Sapphire’ were removed from his body prior to burial. Only the sapphire is still with us, atop the Imperial State Crown.
Note: Founded Westminster Abbey – Consecrated on Holy Innocents’ Day, 28 December, 1065.

HAROLD II (Reigned January-October 1066) * Brother to Queen Edith
Chosen by common consent over Edgar, grandson of Edmund Ironside. The throne was actually promised to William – later called the Conqueror – and, in order to ensure his release from captivity, Harold swore to honour William’s succession. A promise obviously made under duress. Harold virtually ran the country while brother-in-law Edward played saint-in-waiting.
Consort: Ealdgyth
Issue: Ealdryth [Issue: Harold – fate unknown], Gytha (mother was Harold’s mistress Edith Swan-neck)
Cause of Death: Slain – Battle of Hastings
Buried: Waltham Abbey ?


WILLIAM the CONQUEROR 1027-1087 (Reigned 1066-1087)
Illegitimate son of Duke Robert the Devil (or Magnificent) of Normandy
Gained throne through right of conquest
Consort: Matilda (Daughter of Baldwin V, Count of Flanders)
Issue: Robert (Died a prisoner in Cardiff Castle), Richard, William, Cecilia, Agatha, Adeliza, Adela (King Stephen’s mother), Matilda, Constance, Henry
Cause of Death: Horse stumpled and he was pitched forward, likely rupturing his bladder
Buried: St. Stephen at Caen, France (Tomb Destroyed) * Chief claim to fame: Domesday Book

WILLIAM II (Rufus) Reigned 1087-1100
Consort: Unmarried * Some suggestion of homosexuality
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Hunting Accident in the New Forest – Murdered?
Buried: Westminster Cathedral

HENRY I 1068-1135 (Reigned 1100-1135) – Youngest son of William the Conqueror
Consort: Matilda [Daughter of Malcolm III, King of the Scots and (St.) Margaret] 2) Adeliza
Issue: William (lost at sea), Matilda
Illigitimate Issue: Several, including Robert, Earl of Gloucester
Cause of Death: ‘Surfeit of eel’ – ptomaine poisoning?
Buried: Reading Abbey

STEPHEN 1096-1154 (Reigned 1135-1154) * Nephew to Henry I
Consort: Matilda (Daughter of Eustace III, Count of Boulogne and Mary of Scotland)
Issue: Baldwin, Eustace, Matilda, William, Mary – either died young or without male issue
Cause of Death: Most likely complications resulting from appendicitis
Buried: Faversham Abbey
Note: Constant power struggled between Henry’s daughter Matilda and Stephen weakened the realm and divided loyalities.

HOUSE OF ANJOU (Plantagenet)

Geoffrey V, Count of Anjou and Maine was the eldest son of Count Fulk V. Geoffrey acquired the nickname Plantagenet from the sprig of broom worn in his cap. He married Henry I’s daughter Matilda. From this union comes the Plantagenet line of English kings who would rule from 1154 to 1485.

HENRY II FitzEmpress (Curtmantle) 1133-1189 (Reigned 1154-1189)
Consort: Eleanor, Duchess of Aquitaine – former wife of Louis VII of France (marriage annulled). Eleanor was thirty years old when she married Henry; he was nineteen.
Issue: William, Henry, Matilda, Richard, Geoffrey, Eleanor, Joan, John
Cause of Death: Natural (age 56)
Buried: Fontevraud Abbey (France)
Note: Energetic, intelligent and perceptive, Henry also inherited a more than representative sampling of the Plantagenet temper. The defection and then murder of his erstwhile friend Thomas Becket combined with constant wrangling within his family, left him at the end a bitter and unhappy man. Yet history will record that Henry brought justice and order to his realm. He was, despite his faults, perhaps one of England’s finest kings.

RICHARD I (Lionheart) 1157-1199 (Reigned 1189-1199)
Consort: Berengatia
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Arrow wound that turned gangrenous.
Buried: Frontevraud Abbey (France)
Note: 1) Spent very little time in England 2) nearly bankrupt the country with the cost of the Crusade and then his ransom from the Duke of Austria 3) failed to provide for an heir possibly because he was a homosexual.

JOHN (Lackland) 1167-1216 (Reigned 1199-1216)
Consort: 1) Isabella, Countess of Gloucester (marriage annulled) 2) Isabella, daughter of the Count of Angouleme
Issue: Henry, Richard, Joan, Isabella, Eleanor
Cause of Death: Natural (dysentery)
Buried: Worcester Cathedral

HENRY III 1207-1272 (Reigned 1216-1272)
Consort: Eleanor, daughter of the Count of Provence
Issue: Edward, Margaret, Beatrice, Edmund (Crouchback), Richard, John, Katherine, William, Henry
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Westminster Abbey

EDWARD I (Longshanks) 1239-1307 (Reigned 1272-1307)
Consort: 1) Eleanor, daughter of Ferdinand III, King of Castile and Leon 2) Margaret of France
Issue: 1) Eleanor, Joan, John, Henry, Julian, Joan (first died young), Alfonso, Margaret, Berengaria, Mary, Alice, Elizabeth, Edward, Beatrice, Blanche 2) Thomas, Edmund, Eleanor
Cause of Death: Natural (dysentery)
Buried: Westminster Abbey

EDWARD II 1284-1327 (Reigned 1307-1327)
Consort: Isabella (daughter of Philip IV, King of France)
Issue: Edward, John, Eleanor, Joan
Cause of Death: Murdered * See Westminster Abbey
Buried: Gloucester Cathedral

EDWARD III 1312-1377 (Reigned 1327-1377)
Consort: Philippa (daughter of William III, Count of Holland and Hainault)
Issue: Edward (The Black Prince), Isabella, Joan, William, Lionel, John, Edmund, Blanche, Mary, Margaret, William, Thomas
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Westminster Abbey

RICHARD II 1367-1400 (Reigned 1377-1399) [son of Edward, The Black Prince] Deposed
Consort: 1) Anne of Bohemia 2) Isabella of France
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Murdered
Buried: Westminster Abbey


HENRY IV (Bolingbroke) 1366-1413 (Reigned 1399-1413) [son of Edward III’s fourth son, John of Gaunt/Blanche, heiress of Lancaster]
Consort: 1) Mary de Bohun 2) Joan, daughter of Charles II, King of Navarre
Issue: Henry, Thomas, John, Humphrey, Blanche, Philippa
Cause of Death: Natural (most likely heart failure)
Buried: Canterbury Cathedral

HENRY V 1387-1422 (Reigned 1413-1422)
Consort: Catherine (daughter of Charles VI, King of France)
Issue: Henry
Cause of Death: Dysentery – age 35
Buried: Westminster Abbey. Died near Paris. His body was dismembered, the flesh boiled. Only his bones were brought back to England for burial.
NOTE: Henry’s widow Catherine married Owen Tudor a Welsh squire. Their son Edmund Tudor, Earl of Richmond, was Henry VII’s father.

HENRY VI 1421-1471 (Reigned 1422-1461 and 1470-1471) Deposed
Consort: Margaret of Anjou
Issue: Edward – slain at Tewkesbury (1471)
Cause of Death: Officially – Melancholiness/Unofficially – Murdered
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor

HOUSE OF YORK (Plantagenet)

EDWARD IV 1442-1483 (Reigned 1461-1470 and 1471-1483 [Claimed descent from two of Edward III’s sons – Edmund of Langley (Duke of York) and Lionel of Antwerp (Duke of Clarence) through the female line]
Consort: Elizabeth Wydville (Woodville/Widville)
Issue: Elizabeth (future queen of Henry VII), Mary, Cicely, Edward *, Margaret, Richard *, Anne, George, Catherine, Bridget
Cause of Death: Natural (most likely heart failure)
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor
* The Princes in the Tower

RICHARD III 1452-1485 (Reigned 1483-1485)
Consort: Anne Neville
Issue: Edward of Middleham – died age 11
Died: Slain at the Battle of Bosworth
Buried: Grey Friars Abbey, Leicester;


HENRY VII 1457-1509 (Reigned 1485-1509)
Consort: Elizabeth of York
Issue: Arthur, Margaret, Henry, Elizabeth, Mary, Edmund, Katherine
Cause of Death: Natural
Buried: Henry VII’s Chapel, Westminster Abbey

HENRY VIII 1491-1547 (Reigned 1509-1547)
Consorts: 1. Catherine of Aragon [Issue: Mary] 2. Anne Boleyn [Issue: Elizabeth] 3. Jane Seymour [Issue: Edward] 4. Anne of Cleves [no issue] 5. Catherine Howard [no issue] 6. Catherine Parr [no issue] Good way to remember the queens in order – Divorced, Beheaded, Died, Divorced, Beheaded, Survived.
Cause of Death: Natural – combination of syphilis, gluttony, obesity, blood poisoning – senile at the end
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor

EDWARD VI 1537-1553 (Reigned 1547-1553)
Consort: Unmarried (Died age15)
Cause of Death: Congenital syphilis/consumption – arsenic
Buried: Westminster Abbey

LADY JANE GREY 1537-1554 (Reigned for 9 days – not officially crowned)
Consort: Lord Guildford Dudley
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Beheaded on Tower Green – 12 February, 1554
Buried: Chapel Royal of St. Peter-ad-Vincula, Tower of London

MARY 1 (‘Bloody Mary’) 1516-1558 (Reigned 1553-1558)
Consort: Philip II, King of Spain
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Congenital syphilis – age 42
Buried: Westminster Abbey

ELIZABETH I 1533-1603 (Reigned 1558-1603)
Consort: Unmarried
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Infected tonsils – age 69
Buried: Westminster Abbey – the effigy an exact likeness taken from her death mask.


JAMES I 1566-1625 (Reigned 1603-1625) [Son of Mary Queen of Scots/Henry, Lord Darnley]
Consort: Anne of Denmark, daughter of Frederick II, King of Denmark and Norway
Issue: Henry, Elizabeth, Margaret, Charles, Robert, Mary, Sophia
Cause of Death: Porphyria – resulting kidney failure
Buried: Westminster Abbey

CHARLES 1 1600-1649 (Reigned 1625-1649) Deposed
Consort: Henrietta Maria, daughter of Henry IV, King of France and Navarre
Issue: Charles James, Charles, Mary, James, Elizabeth, Anne, Catherine, Henry, Henrietta Anne
Cause of Death: Beheaded outside Whitehall Palace by Parliamentary decree – Cromwell
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor


CHARLES II 1630-1685 (Reigned 1649[1660]-1685
Consort: Catherine of Braganza, daughter of John IV, King of Portugal
Issue: None *
Cause of Death: Uraemia – kidney failure – age 54
Buried: Westminster Abbey
· Charles fathered many children, all of them illegitimate

JAMES II 1633-1701 (Reigned 1685-88) – brother to Charles II – Forced Abdication
Consort: 1) In secret – Anne, daughter of Edward Hyde, 1st Earl of Clarendon, Lord High Chancellor [Issue: Charles, Mary, James, Anne, Charles, Edgar, Henrietta, Catherine] 2) Mary of Modena, daughter of Alfonso IV, Duke of Modena [Issue: Catherine Laura, Isabella, Charles, Charlotte Maria, James Francis Edward]
Cause of Death: Cerebral haemorrhange – age 68 – in exile in France
Buried: Church of the English Benedictines, Paris. Transferred to St. Germain-en-Laye in 1813.

WILLIAM III and MARY II (Reigned 1689-1694) William alone 1694-1702
William – son of William II, Prince of Orange and Charles I’s eldest daughter Mary
Issue: None
Cause of Death: Mary (smallpox – age 32) William (pneumonia – age 52)
Buried: Westminster Abbey

ANNE 1665-1714 (Reigned 1702-1714) – second daughter of James II/Anne Hyde
Consort: Prince George of Denmark
Issue: 18 pregnancies in 16 years – longest surviving child, William, Duke of Gloucester died age eleven.
Cause of Death: Heart failure due to severe obesity
Buried: Westminster Abbey


The House of Hanover claimed male descent from King Henry II and female descent from Elizabeth, daughter of King James I. In origin, the House was more Italian than German.

GEORGE I 1660-1727 (Reigned 1714-1727)
Consort: Sophia Dorothea, daughter and heiress of Duke George William of Brunswick-Luneburg-Celle (Divorced by a specially constituted tribunal on a charge of adultery – lived out her days a virtual prisoner at Ahlden Castle in Celle
Issue: George Augustus, Sophia Dorothea
Cause of Death: Cerebral haemorrhage
Buried: Herrenhausen (Hanover)

GEORGE II 1683-1760 (Reigned 1727-1760)
Consort: Caroline, daughter of John Frederick, Margrave of Brandenburg-Ansbach
Issue: Fredrick Louis, Anne, Amelia Sophia Eleanor, Caroline Elizabeth, George William, William Augustus, Mary, Louisa
Cause of Death: Ruptured aneurism of the aorta – died while sitting on the toilet! (Kensington Palace)
Buried: Westminster Abbey

GEORGE III 1738-1820 (Reigned 1760-1820) Son of Fredrick, Prince of Wales who died in 1751
Consort: Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz
Issue: George, Frederick, William, Charlotte, Edward [father of Queen Victoria), Augustus Sophia, Elizabeth, Ernest, Augustus, Adolphus, Mary, Sophia, Octavius, Alfred, Amelia
Cause of Death: Natural – suffered from porphyria – died age 81
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor

GEORGE IV 1762-1830 (Reigned 1820-1830)
Consort: Caroline of Brunswick – marriage was unhappy
Issue: Charlotte (Died without issue)
Cause of Death: Cirrhosis of the liver – obesity and gluttony – age 67 ‘a grotesque mountain of flesh’
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor

WILLIAM IV 1765-1837 (Reigned 1830-1837) Third son of George III
Consort: Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen
Issue: Charlotte, Elizabeth, twin boys [stillborn] Both daughters died in infancy
Cause of Death: Pneumonia and cirrhosis of the liver – age 71
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor

QUEEN VICTORIA 1819-1901 (Reigned 1837-1901) Longest reigning English monarch: 63 years, 216 days.
Consort: Prince Albert, younger son of Ernest I, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha – died of typhus 1861 – age 42
Issue: Victoria, Albert Edward, Alice, Alfred, Helena, Louise, Arthur, Leopold, Beatrice
Cause of Death: Natural – cerebral haemorrhage
Buried: Royal Mausoleum, Frogmore, Windsor – Both Albert and Victoria’s effigies were carved at the time of Albert’s death so the single large sarcophagus in which she lies with her beloved Albert is surmounted by the pair depicted as they were in their prime of life. The Royal Mausoleum is open to the public only twice a year – in May.


EDWARD VII 1841-1910 (Reigned 1901-1910)
Consort: Alexandra, eldest daughter of Christian IX, King of Denmark
Issue: Albert Victor, George, Louise, Victoria, Maud, Alexander
Cause of Death: Heart failure
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor


GEORGE V 1865-1936 (Reigned 1910-1936)
Consort: Mary of Teck
Issue: Edward Albert, Albert George, Mary, Henry, George Edward, John
Cause of Death: Natural – eased by a lethal dose of morphine and cocaine – age 71
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor

EDWARD VIII 1894-1972 (Reigned January-December 1936) Abdicated
Married Wallis Warfield Simpson, twice divorced American – no issue
Cause of Death: Cancer of the throat – age 77
Buried: Frogmore, Windsor – 14 years later his wife joined him.

GEORGE VI 1895-1952 (Reigned 1936-1952)
Consort: Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, youngest daughter of Claude George Bowes-Lyon, 14th Earl of Strathmore
Issue: Elizabeth, Margaret
Cause of Death: Lung Cancer – age 57
Buried: St. George’s Chapel, Windsor

Consort: Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, formerly Prince of Greece and Denmark
Issue: Charles, Anne, Andrew, Edward

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