Once the Prince of Wales, Charles III was crowned King on the day of Queen Elizabeth II’s death. Charles’s succession from his mother has been widely expected for decades, but there have been rumors that, in light of the controversial legacies of Kings Charles I and Charles II, Charles would instead adopt the name George as his royal name.
Queen Elizabeth II’s decision to give her son the name Charles is instructive for deducing the monarchy’s hopes and plans for the future of the United Kingdom during a time of political and constitutional flux.
Charles I: A Tyrant?
In the eyes of most historians, naming another monarch “Charles” is sacrilegious. In theory, the current monarch might have been referred to by either of his given names, Charles Philip Arthur George.
However, he has maintained the name shared by his two illustrious forebears from the House of Stuart, who presided over the British Empire through what was perhaps its most turbulent years (so far).
Having been born in Scotland’s Dunfermline Palace in 1600, Charles I became king of England, Scotland, and Ireland in 1625. Almost immediately upon his accession to the throne, parliaments in both England and Scotland began pressing for expanded powers.
Charles, however, was a believer in the divine prerogative of monarchs and believed that he had been endowed with unlimited monarchical power by God alone, making him immune to accountability before parliament.
A short, stuttering man with a thick Scots accent, he made a poor impression. Princess Henrietta Maria of Bourbon was French and a devout Catholic, and she became Charles’s wife.
A prominent factor in the Wars of the Three Kingdoms, which included the English Civil War, was the protestant king’s efforts to reform the Church of England.
By the end, Charles I had been convicted of high treason in 1649 because he had refused to establish a constitutional monarchy (which would have put parliament in charge instead of the monarch). The execution of the king in front of London’s Banqueting House became a symbol of the decline of the monarchy.
Charles II: A Flighty King?
Charles II, his son, fled to the Spanish Netherlands, the Dutch Republic, and France after the Civil War. King Louis XIV of France provided Charles II with a haven at his court and provided him with money and lodging while he was in exile.
Charles II, after being restored to the throne, became a benefactor to the arts and sciences and a beloved monarch. However, he failed to unite the country over its religious differences and show promise as either a statesman or a military leader. His reputation as the “merry monarch” was severely damaged by his scandalous affairs.
His luck was as bad as anybody else’s. When the Great Plague hit London in 1665 and the Great Fire of London broke out the following year, Charles II was the monarch. All things considered, the name “Charles” does not conjure up images of a golden age for the British monarchy.
‘Charles III’: The Stuart Pretender
According to certain sources, King Charles III already existed in the past.
It was a revolt in 1688 that toppled Charles II’s brother, the Catholic King James II of England and VII of Scotland. His offspring and their Jacobite allies insisted, however, that they were legitimate heirs to the monarchy.
In 1745–1746, James’s grandson Charles Edward Stuart—also known as Bonnie Prince Charlie—led a failed Jacobite uprising. Eventually, he took on the name Charles III, albeit it was never formally recognised by British authorities or even by Catholic European rulers. If you read more latest updates so you can visit TheActiveNews.Com.