Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Royalty of 1917: the monarchs

A century ago, the royal world looked very different. There were a lot more of them to start off with. In a world riven by war, the ancient dynasties that had held power were holding on but sometimes only just. This month, I'm taking a look back at the royal world of a summer a century ago and it all starts with the people in charge of the dynasties we still know today. There will be another post soon looking at the rulers of monarchies that have long gone. But first here are the sovereigns of 1917, in order of reign length starting with the one who had been ruling the longest by 1917....


Europe's longest reigning sovereign in 1917

Sovereign Prince Johann II
Full name Johann Maria Franz Placidus
Born October 5th 1840, Lednice, Czech Republic (then Eisgrub, Moravia)
Son of Prince Aloys II of Liechtenstein and Countess Franziska Kinsky of Wchinitz and Tettau
Ascended November 12th 1858 on the death of his father, Prince Aloys II
Length of rule in 1917 59 years
Died February 11th 1929, Valtice, Czech Republic (then Czechoslovakia)
Rule would end....with his death on February 11th 1929
Reigned November 12th 1858 - February 11th 1929
Known for....his nickname, Johann the Good, never living permanently in Liechtenstein and ending up as the second longest reigning sovereign in European history


Alfonso XIII, reigned May 17th 1886 - April 14th 1931
Sovereign King Alfonso XIII
Full name Alfonso Leon Fernando Maria Jaime Isidro Pascual Antonio
Born May 17th 1886, Madrid
Son of King Alfonso XII of Spain and Maria Christina of Austria
Ascended May 17th 1886, the day of his birth, his father having died six months earlier
Length of rule in 1917 31 years
Rule would end....with his flight into exile on April 14th 1931
Reigned May 17th 1886 - April 14th 1931
Died February 28th 1941, Rome
Known for....being born as a king and losing his throne after a 45 year reign


Sovereign Prince Albert I
Full name Albert Honore Charles
Born November 13th 1848, Paris
Son of Prince Charles III of Monaco and Antoinette de Merode
Ascended September 10th 1889 on the death of his father, Charles III
Length of rule in 1917 28 years
Died June 26th 1922, Paris
Rule would end....with his death on June 26th 1922
Reigned September 10th 1889 - June 26th 1922
Known as....the oceanographer prince and a peacemaker


Sovereign Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands
Full name Wilhelmina Helena Pauline Maria
Born August 31st 1880, The Hague
Daughter of King Willem III of the Netherlands and Emma of Waldeck and Pyrmont
Ascended November 23rd 1890 on the death of her father, King Willem III
Length of rule in 1917 27 years
Rule would end....with her abdication on September 4th 1948
Reigned November 23rd 1890 - September 4th 1948
Died November 28th 1962, Het Loo Palace, Apeldoorn
Known for....her support for the resistance in World War Two, her considerable fortune and being the longest ever reigning Dutch monarch


Sovereign King Haakon VII of Norway
Full name Christian Frederik Carl Georg Valdemar Axel
Born August 3rd 1872, Charlottenlund Palace, Denmark as a Prince of Denmark
Son of King Frederik VIII of Denmark and Louise of Sweden
Ascended November 18th 1905 on his election as King of Norway
Length of rule in 1917 12 years
Died September 21st 1957, Royal Palace, Oslo
Rule would end....with his death on September 21st 1957
Reigned November 18th 1905 - September 21st 1957
Known for....being Norway's first king following the dissolution of the union with Sweden and his resistance during World War Two, becoming a national hero for his defiance of the Nazis


Sovereign King Gustav V of Sweden
Full name Oscar Gustav Adolf
Born June 16th 1858, Drottningholm Palace, Stockholm
Son of King Oscar II of Sweden and Sofia of Nassau
Ascended December 8th 1907 on the death of his father, King Oscar II
Length of rule in 1917 10 years
Died October 29th 1950, Drottningholm Palace, Stockholm
Rule would end....with his death on October 29th 1950
Reigned December 8th 1907 - October 29th 1950
Known for....the rise of parliamentary rule in Sweden, his love of sport and being Sweden's oldest ever monarch


Sovereign King Albert I of the Belgians
Full name Albert Leopold Clement Marie Meinrad
Born April 8th 1875, Brussels
Son of Prince Philippe, Count of Flanders and Princess Marie of Hohenzollern-Sigmaringen
Ascended December 23rd 1909 succeeding his uncle, King Leopold II of the Belgians
Length of rule in 1917 8 years
Died February 17th 1934, Marche-les-Dames, Namur
Rule would end....with his death on February 17th 1934
Reigned December 23rd 1909 - February 17th 1934
Known for....being a hero king during World War One and supporting universal suffrage

Great Britain

Sovereign King George V of the United Kingdom, Emperor of India
Full name George Frederick Ernest Albert
Born June 3rd 1865, London
Son of King Edward VII of Great Britain and Alexandra of Denmark
Ascended May 6th 1910 on the death of his father, King Edward VII
Length of rule in 1917 7 years
Died January 20th 1936
Rule would end....with his death on January 20th 1936, Sandringham House, Norfolk
Reigned May 6th 1910 - January 20th 1936
Known for....creating the House of Windsor, his love of the sea and always putting clocks forward


Sovereign Marie-Adelaide, The Grand Duchess of Luxembourg
Full name Marie-Adelaide Therese Hilda Wilhelmine
Born June 14th 1894, Berg Castle, Luxembourg
Daughter of William IV, Grand Duke of Luxembourg and Marie Anne of Portugal
Ascended February 25th 1912 on the death of her father, Grand Duke William IV
Length of rule in 1917 5 years
Rule would end....with her abdication on January 14th 1919
Reigned February 25th 1912 - January 14th 1919
Died January 24th 1924, Schloss Hohenberg, Germany
Known for....being the first female regnant of Luxembourg and her perceived pro-German sentiments inWorld War One despite her country's neutrality, an attitude which led to her abdication


The newest monarch in Europe in 1917

Sovereign King Christian X of Denmark
Full name Christian Carl Frederik Albert Alexander Wilhelm
Born September 26th 1870, Charlottenlund Palace, Denmark
Son of King Frederik VIII of Denmark and Louise of Sweden
Ascended May 14th 1912 on the death of his father, King Frederik VIII
Length of rule in 1917 5 years
Died April 20th 1947, Amalienborg Palace, Copenhagen
Rule would end....with his death on April 20th 1947
Reigned May 14th 1912 - April 20th 1947
Known for....the Easter Crisis of 1920 and his resistance to Nazi rule during World War Two

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