Kings queens of the World – Rich Living Monarchs and their Royal Residences
“Uueasy lies the head that wears the crown” – so goes this age-old proverb. However, it is not just uneasiness in store for a monarch. Emperors globally have enjoyed and continue to enjoy luxurious lifestyles. Some even have 13 brides. The best levels of comfort that money can fetch are in store for the emperors globally. Be it the Sultan of Brunei or Queen Elizabeth, plush lifestyle is the mark of monarchy. There are currently 44 monarchies in the world and their combined royal wealth has shot up over US $10 trillion. One of the royal attractions is the palace of the King or the Queen. In this article, we will try to catch a glimpse of royal residences of some of the richest ruling monarchs in the world today along with a brief introduction about them.
1. Bhumibol Adulyadej – King of Thailand
Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej (L), Queen Sirikit (C) and Crown Prince Vajiralongkorn greets a crowd from the balcony of the Chakri Maha Prasat Throne Hall at the Grand Palace on December 5, 2007, in Bangkok, Thailand.
Photo from Darriuss Royce
Photo from Darriuss Royce
King Bhumibol, the 80-year-old king of Thailand, is worth US$ 35 billion. He is the longest serving monarch in Thai history. He has benevolently used his royal wealth in over 3,000 rural development projects in the country. He has a world record in having the highest number of honorary university degrees (136). The royal palace in Bangkok was built in 1782. The palace consists of an aggregate of buildings on the east bank of the Chao Phraya River. The total area is 218,400 sq. m. The palace has a sacred Buddha temple. You have to follow a strict dress code to enter the royal palace (this is applicable for both men and women).
Official residence: Grand Palace – Bangkok
Photo from m_l_monschein
2. Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan
– President of UAE and hereditary ruler of Abu Dhabi
– President of UAE and hereditary ruler of Abu Dhabi
UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahayan (C) Sheikh Sultan bin Zayed al-Nahayan (L) Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahayyan (R)
Photo from Fazza3
Photo from Fazza3
The 60 year old president of UAE is worth US$ 23 billion. The oil reserve pool is the president’s source of wealth. Amiti Palace is the official residence of the President.
Official residence: Amiti Palace
( photo unavailable )
Emirates Palace – This luxurious hotel, managed by The Kempinski Group, is probably the most expensive hotel ever built in the world, costing the Abu Dhabi government roughly US$3 billion. Often mistaken as the presidential palace. It has about 400 rooms and gold has been used to decorate the interiors along with highest quality of marble. Several classical and popular music and ballet performances have been staged at the Emirates Palace’s Conference Centre since its inauguration.
Photo from Sporty Morty
3. Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud – King of Saudi Arabia
The 84-year-old king of Saudi Arabia is worth over US$ 21 billion. King Abdullah is known for his benevolence. He bore the entire expenditure of operation of Polish conjoined twins. He was reciprocated with “honorary citizenship” of the Polish town where the twins were born. The King’s palace in Riyadh is more than 1 sq. mile in area. The palace has polished stone walkways and serene water bodies. The pink palatial buildings are true architectural marvels.
Official residence: King’s Palace in Riyadh
4. Haji Hassanal Bolkiah – Sultan of Brunei
Photo from rentasimages
The 62-year Sultan of Brunei, the 29th heir to the throne of an unbroken 600-year-old Muslim dynasty, has a net asset worth of $20 billion. The Sultan has anything between 3000 to 6000 cars in his collection. The Istana Nurul Iman palace, the Sultan’s official residence, provides visitors a spectacular sight. It is the biggest palace in the world, much bigger than the Vatican palace. US$ 350 million was spent in erecting the palace. It has 1788 rooms, 257 bathrooms and the total floor area is 2,152,782 sq. feet.
Official residence: Istana Nurul Iman Palace
Photo from Treksek
5. Hans-Adam II – Prince of Liechtenstein
The 63-year-old prince is the 15th in succession to the throne of Liechtenstein. His net worth is 5 billion US$. Castle Schloss Vaduz is his official residence. The palace overlooks the town of Vaduz, the capital of Liechtenstein. The main alter has a late-gothic architecture. The original entrance of the spectacular palace has a height of 11 m.
Official residence: Castle Schloss Vaduz
6. Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani – Emir of Qatar
Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani and his daughter and chief of staff Sheikha (Princess) Hind Bint Hamad Al Thani
Sheikh Hamad, Emir of Qatar is aged 56 and worth 2 billion US$. Sheikh Hamad is instrumental in developing Qatar’s oil and natural gas resources. His fame is also attributed to the modernization of the country’s armed forces. His Royal Palace is in Doha. He does not live there. The palace is mainly used for parliamentary affairs and for receiving guests.
Official residence: Royal Palace in Doha
Pictures copyright of owner / Photo from baldrick2dogs
7. Mohammed VI – King of Morroco
Morocco’s King Mohammed VI and Princess Lalla Salma
The 46-year-old Moroccan king has asset strength of 1.5 billion US$. The king is reputed for his drive to modernize the society and inject a culture of accountability. He has tried to eradicate poverty from Moroccan society. The Royal Palace in Rabat is open to the public. The king has a personal mosque within the palatial complex. The palace is famous for its lush green gardens and the entrance gates are truly majestic.
Official residence: Royal Palace in Rabat
8. Albert II – Prince of Monaco
Prince Albert II, aged 50, is the current ruler of the Principality of Monaco. His net worth is 1.4 billion US$. He is the first head of state to have visited the North Pole. He is also the Global Advisor to Orphans International. His palace remains open to the public during the summer. The palace hosts many functions ranging from open-air concerts to children’s Christmas parties. It has an Italian-styled gallery and lot of awesome salons. The palace has several attractions. Among them the Throne Room, which overwhelms you with memoirs of the Renaissance period, and the Sainte-Marie Tower are notable.
Official residence: Prince’s Palace of Monaco
9. Qaboos Bin Said – Sultan of Oman
Qaboos Bin Said, the Sultan of Oman, has royal properties worth $1.1 billion. The 67-year-old Sultan captured the throne after overthrowing his father. His riches are accounted to surplus oil production. He owns a 500 ft yacht. The Al Alam Royal Palace, the residence of the Sultan, overlooks the serene Muscat harbour. The regal palace is an exquisite marvel of art and architecture. Simply stated, the palace seems to be taken out of a fairy tale book.
Official residence: Qasr al Alam Royal Palace
10. Prince Karim Al Husseini Aga Khan – leader of 15 million Ismaili Muslims
Prince Aga Khan, aged 71, is the spiritual leader of 15 million Ismaili Muslims. Aga Khan, worth 1 billion US$, chairs the Aga Khan Development Network that invests in Asian and African development projects. He donated his palace to India in 1969 in the honor of Mahatma Gandhi and the Gandhian philosophy. The palace, located in Pune, India was built in 1892. The main aim behind construction of the Aga Khan palace was to provide employment to local people hard-hit by famine.
Official residence: Aga Khan Palace
11. Elizabeth II – Queen of U.K.
Queen Elizabeth II is the oldest living emperor in the history of United Kingdom at the age of 82. Her net worth is 650 million US$. She plans to rule until she becomes physically unable. The Buckingham palace is the official residence of the royals. It is also a site for hosting state occasions and welcoming international guests. The palace, having 775 rooms, is kept open for visitors on a regular basis.
Official residence: Buckingham Palace
12. Sheikh Sabah Al-Sabah – Emir of Kuwait
It is interesting to note that Sheikh Sabah Al Sabah, the Emir of Kuwait, does not have a royal blood. He was the foreign minister of Kuwait and ascended to the throne in 2006 after the crown prince became too ill to rule. The royal wealth is estimated at 500 million US$. However, his wealth comes in the form of a stipend. He is promoting economic reforms in Kuwait currently. Dar Salwa palace is the official residence of the Emir.
Official residence: “Dar Salwa” Palace
13. Beatrix Wilhelmina Armgard – Queen of Netherlands
Queen Beatrix Armgard, the queen of Netherlands, has a net asset worth of 300 million US$. The queen is rumoured to have stepped down so that her eldest son can ascend the throne. This will make her son the first Dutch king in over a century. Huis ten Bosch Palace is the official royal palace of the queen.
Official residence: Huis ten Bosch Palace
14. Mswati III – King of Swaziland
Swaziland’s King Mswati III (in the foreground)
King Mswati, the king of Swaziland, has a net worth of 200 million US$. The king, ascending to the throne at a tender age of 18, has reportedly spent 2.5 million US$ to celebrate 40 years of his country’s independence along with his 40th birthday. He leads a lavish lifestyle and has 13 brides. Lozitha Palace is the official residence of the king.
Official residence: Lozitha Palace
15. Sheikh Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa – King of Bahrain
King Of Bahrain Sheikh Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa With George W. Bush
Sheikh Hamad is the emir of Bahrain since 2002. He is an alumnus of the Cambridge University. He takes active interest in preserving the country’s cultural heritage. Sports and fishing are also his areas of interest. The Riffa Palace is his official residence.
Official residence: Riffa Palace
( picture unavailable )
16. Albert II – King of Belgium
Albert, the king of Belgium, is the titular head of state. He symbolizes the entire nation and appoints the Belgian cabinet after an election. The Royal Palace in Brussels, known as Palais Royal, is the King’s palace. However, he prefers to live in Chateau de Laeken. The Royal palace is a neo-classic architectural marvel. It is open to public during summer.
Official residence: Royal Palace in Brussels
17. Yang di-Pertuan Agong Mizan Zainal Abidin – Sultan of Terengganu, Malaysia
Duli Yang Maha Mulia Al Wathiqu Billah, Al-Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin Ibni Almarhum Al-Sultan Mahmud Al-Muktafi Billah Shah Al-Haj (Center)
Yang Zainal Abidin, the Sultan of Terengganu, is the youngest Malay ruler. There are six sultans in Malaysia. One of these six, in this case Yang Zainal Abidin, has been elected as the King of Malaysia. He is the constitutional head of the country. His official residence is Istana Negara in Kuala Lumpur. The palace has a ground area of 28 acres. It overlooks the Klang River.
Official residence: Istana Negara – Kuala Lumpur
18. Margaret II – Queen of Denmark
Margaret II, the queen of Denmark, is a great painter. She is also known for her addiction to tobacco. The queen has multiple palaces. The winter residence is at Amalienborg palace; the summer residence is at Marselisborg palace (or Graasten Palace or on the royal yacht); and the spring and autumn residence is at Fredensborg Palace.
Official residence: Amalienborg Palace ( winter )
19. Akihito – the Emperor of Japan
Emperor Akihito is the 125th emperor of Japan. His rule is now merely ceremonial. The king is considered to be a direct descendent of God. The Imperial Palace in Tokyo is the official residence of the emperor. It is open to the public on just two days of the year – January 2, when the king wishes New Year to his subjects, and on December 23rd – his birthday.
Official residence: Imperial Palace in Tokyo
20. Abdullah II – King of Jordan
King Abdullah is the constitutional head of Jordon and retains substantial power. He has contributed greatly to the economic revival of the country and he is applauded for his pro-reform outlook. He is an alumnus of the Oxford University. The Raghadan Palace is the official residence of the King.
Official residence: Raghadan Palace
21. Henri – Grand Duke of Luxemburg
Henri, the Grand Duke, is the head of the state of Luxemburg. He is known for his anti-euthanasia stands. Interestingly, he is a member of the International Olympic committee. The Grand Ducal Palace is his official residence. It is an awesome palace, located in the middle of the city. Built in 1572 as a town hall, it has become a palace replete with history.
Official residence: The Grand Ducal Palace
22. Harald V – King of Norway
Harald V is the king of Norway. The king has no real powers, but only ceremonial authority. He resides in the Royal Palace in Oslo. The palace was built in the first half of the 19th century.
Official residence: Royal Palace, Oslo
23. Juan Carlos I – King of Spain
Juan Carlos I, the king of Spain, is highly popular among his subjects. He helped in establishing democratic governance in Spain. The Royal Palace in Madrid is the designated residence of the King, although the king prefers to live in a smaller palace on the outskirts of Madrid. The Royal Palace is still used for state occasions. It is the largest palace in Western Europe. It has a total area of 135,000 sq. m and has over 2800 rooms.
Official residence: The Royal Palace of Madrid
24. Carl XVI Gustaf – King of Sweden
The present monarch of Sweden is King Carl XVI Gustaf. He is the seventh king in the Bernadotte dynasty of Sweden. The Royal Palace of Stockholm is the official residence of the king. However, the private residence of the royal family is the Drottningholm palace. The palace has 609 rooms and is considered as one of the largest royal palaces in the world.
Official residence: Royal Palace of Stockholm
24. Norodom Sihamoni – King of Combodia
Norodom Sihamoni is the king of Combodia, although under the present constitution, he has no real power. The royal palace of Phnom Penh is his official residence. The palace was constructed over a century ago and it hosts all major ceremonial functions of the country. Foreign dignitaries also stay here.
Official residence: Royal Palace of Phnom Penh
26. Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuk – The Dragon king of Bhutan
Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchukm is the Dragon king of the secluded Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan. The Oxford-educated bachelor of 28 years is the youngest reigning monarch in the world. The Tashichoedzong Palace is the official residence of the royal family. The palace houses the government and the central clergy of monks. It remains open to the public during festivals, weekends, and after office hours.
Official residence: Tashichoedzong Palace
27. George Tupou V – The king of Tonga
George Tupou V is the ruler of the Polynesian archipelago that consists of 150 islands. The king lives in the royal palace of Nukualofa, the capital. The palace is wooden and is not open to the people. The king made strong fencing arrangements after some people broke the old, sacred fence after 1990.
Official residence: Royal Palace, Nuku’alofa Tonga
28. Letsie III – The king of Lesotho
(Letsie III / lesotho.gov.ls)
Letsie III is the king of Lesotho. Interestingly, Lesotho is the only independent state in the world that lies over 1000 meters above sea level. The Royal Palace in Maseru is the official residence of the king.
Official residence: Royal Palace in Maseru, Lesotho
Royal Families of the World
If you are wondering are there any royal families in the world, then the answer is a big YES. The following article will cover the names of the royal families of the world and introduce you to the famous blue-bloods today.
List of Royal Families
The following is a list of reigning royal family of the world, according to the nation they belong. The following list does not contain the names of the royal families who were deposed or are an abolished monarchy. Let us look at the reigning royal families according to their respective country or nation.
Royal Family of Africa
|Country||Name of Monarch||Type|
|Lesotho||King Letsie III||Constitutional|
|Morocco||King Mohammed VI||Constitutional|
|Swaziland||King Mswati III||Absolute|
Royal Family of Asia
|Country||Name of Monarch||Type|
|Bahrain||King Hamad ibn Isa Al Khalifah||Mixed|
|Bhutan||King Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck||Parliament|
|Brunei||Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah||Absolute|
|Cambodia||King Norodom Sihamoni||Constitutional|
|Jordan||King Abdullah II||Constitutional|
|Kuwait||Emir Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah||Mixed|
|Malaysia||King Mizan Zainal Abidin||Constitutional|
|Oman||Sultan Qaboos bin Said Al Said||Absolute|
|Qatar||Emir Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani||Absolute|
|Saudi Arabia||King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud||Absolute|
|Thailand||King Bhumibol Adulyadej||Constitutional|
|United Arab Emirates||President Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan||Constitutional|
Royal Family of Europe
|Country||Name of Monarch||Type|
|Andorra||Co-Princes Nicolas Sarkozy and Joan Enric Vives Sicília||Constitutiona|
|Belgium||King Albert II||Constitutional|
|Denmark||Queen Margrethe II||Constitutional|
|Liechtenstein||Prince Hans Adam II||Constitutional|
|Luxembourg||Grand Duke Henri||Constitutional|
|Monaco||Prince Albert II||Constitutional|
|Norway||King Herald V||Constitutional|
|Spain||King Juan Carlos I||Constitutional|
|Sweden||King Carl XVI Gustaf||Constitutional|
|Holy See (Vatican City)||Pope Benedict XVI||Absolute elective|
Royal Family of Oceanic Region
|Country||Name of Monarch||Type|
|Tonga||King George Tupou V||Constitutional|
Royal Family ~ Intercontinental
|Country||Name of Monarch||Type|
|Antigua and Barbuda||Queen Elizabeth II||All Constitutional|
|Papua New Guinea|
|Saint Kitts and Nevis|
|Saint Vincent and the Grennadines|
List of Current Royal Families
- Belgian Royal Family
- Brunei Royal Family
- Bhutanese Royal Family
- British Royal Family
- Bahraini Royal Family
- Brazilian Imperial Family (deposed)
- Bulgarian Royal Family (deposed)
- Cambodian Royal Family
- Canadian Royal Family
- Danish Royal Family
- Dutch Royal Family
- Greek Royal Family (deposed)
- Hessian Grand Ducal Family (deposed)
- Italian Royal Family (deposed)
- Japanese Imperial Family
- Jordanian Royal Family
- Korean Imperial Family (deposed)
- Malaysian Royal Families
- Johor Royal Family
- Kedah Royal Family
- Kelantan Royal Family
- Negeri Sembilan Royal Family
- Pahang Royal Family
- Perak Royal Family
- Perlis Royal Family
- Selangor Royal Family
- Terengganu Royal Family
- Laotian Royal Family (deposed)
- Liechtenstein Princely Family
- Luxembourg Grand Ducal Family
- Manchu Imperial Family (deposed)
- Māori Royal Family
- Mecklenburg (Schwerin and Strelitz)
- Grand Ducal Family (deposed)
- Mexican Imperial Family (deposed)
- Monegasque Princely Family
- Royal Family of Morocco
- Nepalese Royal Family / King of Nepal (deposed)
- Norwegian Royal Family
- Portuguese Royal Family (deposed)
- Qatari Royal Family
- Romanian Royal Family (deposed)
- Saudi Royal Family
- Schwarzenberg Princely Family (mediatized)
- The Spanish Royal Family
- Swazi Royal Family
- Swedish Royal Family
- Thai Royal Family
- Tongan Royal Family
- Yugoslavian Royal Family (deposed)
- Zulu Royal Family
The Rothschild family (often referred to simply as the Rothschilds), is an international banking and finance dynasty of German Jewish origin that established operations across Europe, and was ennobled by the Austrian and British governments. The family’s rise to international prominence began with Mayer Amschel Rothschild (1744–1812 – pictured above), whose strategy for future success was to keep control of their businesses in family hands, allowing them to maintain full discretion about the size of their wealth and their business achievements. Mayer Rothschild successfully kept the fortune in the family with carefully arranged marriages between closely related family members. Nathan Mayer Rothschild started his London business, N. M. Rothschild and Sons in 1811 at New Court in St Swithin’s Lane, City of London, where it still trades today. In 1818, he arranged a £5 million loan to the Prussian government, and the issuing of bonds for government loans formed a mainstay of his bank’s business. He gained a position of such power in the City of London that by 1825–6 he was able to supply enough coin to the Bank of England to enable it to avert a market liquidity crisis.
In the toss-up between including the Plantagenets or the Tudors, the Plantagenet’s won because much of the development of the English culture and political system (which remains to this day) arose under their rule. Under the Tudors, the Church of England was formed and some say a golden age occurred, but the significance of the Plantagenet line is far greater (and furthermore, Henry VIII was descended matrilineally from the Plantagenet family anyway). The House of Plantagenet was a royal house founded by Henry II of England, son of Geoffrey V of Anjou. The Plantagenet kings first ruled the Kingdom of England in the 12th century. In total, fifteen Plantagenet monarchs, including those belonging to cadet branches, ruled England from 1154 until 1485. A distinctive English culture and art emerged during the Plantagenet era, encouraged by some of the monarchs who were patrons of the “father of English poetry”; Geoffrey Chaucer. The Gothic architecture style was popular during the time, with buildings such as the Westminster Abbey and York Minster remodeled in that style. There was also lasting developments in the social sector, such as John I of England’s signing of the Magna Carta (pictured above). This was influential in the development of common law and constitutional law. Political institutions such as the Parliament of England and the Model Parliament originate from the Plantagenet period, as do educational institutions including the University of Cambridge and Oxford.
The Nehru-Feroz Gandhi family is an Indian political family which has been dominant in the Indian National Congress for most of India’s early independent history. Three members of the family (Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, his daughter Indira Gandhi and her son Rajiv Gandhi) have been Prime Minister of India, two of whom (Indira and Rajiv Gandhi) have been assassinated. A fourth member of the family, Sonia Gandhi, is currently Congress President, while her and Rajiv’s son, Rahul Gandhi, is the youngest member of the family to enter active politics when he contested and won a seat in the lower house of the Parliament of India in 2004. The Nehru-Feroz Gandhi family is not related to Indian independence leader Mohandas Gandhi. The Nehru-Gandhis are the most prominent example of the tradition of dynastic leadership in Asian democratic countries.
Genghis Khan (pictured above) was the founder, Khan (ruler) and Khagan (emperor) of the Mongol Empire, the largest contiguous empire in history.
He came to power by uniting many of the nomadic tribes of northeast Asia. After founding the Mongol Empire and being proclaimed “Genghis Khan”, he started the Mongol invasions and raids of the Kara-Khitan Khanate, Caucasus, Khwarezmid Empire, Western Xia and Jin dynasties. During his life, the Mongol Empire eventually occupied a substantial portion of Central Asia. Before Genghis Khan died, he assigned Ogedei Khan as his successor and split his empire into khanates among his sons and grandsons. He died in 1227 after defeating the Tanguts. He was buried in an unmarked grave somewhere in Mongolia at a location unknown. His descendants went on to stretch the Mongol Empire across most of Eurasia by conquering and/or creating vassal states out of all of modern-day China, Korea, the Caucasus, Central Asian countries, and substantial portions of modern Eastern Europe and the Middle East.
Claudia and Julius Families
These two families are combined in one item as they were two of the most important families in Ancient Rome and eventually joined together to form the Julio-Claudian Dynasty that provided the most famous emperors: Caligula, Augustus (pictured above), Claudius, Tiberius, and Nero. These five emperors ruled the Roman Empire from 27 BC to AD 68, when the last of the line, Nero, committed suicide. These five rulers were linked through marriage and adoption into the familial gens Julio and gens Claudia. Julius Caesar is sometimes inaccurately seen as its founder, although he was not an emperor and had no Claudian connections; Augustus is the more widely accepted founder. The reigns of the Julian-Claudian emperors bear some similar traits: All came to power through indirect or adopted relations. Each expanded the territory of the Roman Empire and initiated massive construction projects. They were generally loved by the common people, but were resented by the senatorial class – a sentiment reflected by ancient historians. Ancient historians describe the Julio-Claudians as self-aggrandizing, mad, sexually perverse and tyrannical.
“Zhu” was the family name of the emperors of the Ming Dynasty. The first Ming Emperor, Hongwu (Zhu Yuanzhang – pictured above) opted to use the name Ming for the dynastic name. Ming means “Brilliant”. The Ming Dynasty was the ruling dynasty of China from 1368 to 1644, following the collapse of the Mongol-led Yuan Dynasty. The Ming, “one of the greatest eras of orderly government and social stability in human history,” was the last dynasty in China ruled by ethnic Hans. Although the Ming capital Beijing fell in 1644 to a rebellion led by Li Zicheng, which was itself soon replaced by the Manchu-led Qing Dynasty (the last Chinese imperial family), regimes loyal to the Ming throne (collectively called the Southern Ming) survived until 1662. Ming rule saw the construction of a vast navy and a standing army of one million troops. There were enormous construction projects, including the restoration of the Grand Canal and the Great Wall and the establishment of the Forbidden City in Beijing during the first quarter of the 15th century. Estimates for the late-Ming population vary from 160 to 200 million. The Ming dynasty is often regarded as both a high point in Chinese civilization as well as a dynasty in which early signs of capitalism emerged.
The House of Habsburg was an important royal house of Europe and is best known as supplying all of the formally elected Holy Roman Emperors between 1452 and 1740, as well as rulers of Spain and the Austrian Empire. Originally from Switzerland, the dynasty first reigned in Austria, which they ruled for over six centuries, but a series of dynastic marriages brought Burgundy, Spain, Bohemia, Hungary and other territories into the inheritance. The dynasty is named after their seat of origin, the Habsburg Castle in the Swiss Canton of Aargau. The dynasty’s motto is “Let others wage wars, but you, happy Austria, shall marry”, which indicates the talent of the Habsburgs to have their members intermarry into other royal houses, to make alliances and inherit territory. Empress Maria Theresa (pictured above) is recognized quite notably for it and is sometimes referred to as the ‘Great-Grandmother of Europe’.
The Ptolemaic dynasty was a Hellenistic Macedonian royal family which ruled the Ptolemaic Empire in Egypt for nearly 300 years, from 305 BC to 30 BC. Ptolemy, one of the seven bodyguards who served as Alexander the Great’s generals and deputies, was appointed satrap of Egypt after Alexander’s death in 323 BC. In 305 BC, he declared himself King Ptolemy I, later known as “Soter” (saviour). The Egyptians soon accepted the Ptolemies as the successors to the pharaohs of independent Egypt. Ptolemy’s family ruled Egypt until the Roman conquest of 30 BC. The most famous member of the line was the last queen, Cleopatra VII (pictured above), known for her role in the Roman political battles between Julius Caesar and Pompey, and later between Octavian and Mark Antony. Her suicide at the conquest by Rome marked the end of Ptolemaic rule in Egypt.
The Mèdici family was a powerful and influential Florentine family from the 13th to 17th century. The family had three popes (Leo X – pictured above, Clement VII, and Leo XI), numerous rulers of Florence (notably Lorenzo the Magnificent, patron of some of the most famous works of Renaissance art) and later members of the French and English royalty. Like other signore families they dominated their city’s government. They were able to bring Florence under their family’s power, allowing for an environment where art and humanism could flourish. They led the birth of the Italian Renaissance along with the other great signore families of Italy such as the Visconti and Sforza families of Milan, the Este of Ferrara, and the Gonzaga of Mantua. The Medici Bank was one of the most prosperous and most respected in Europe. There are some estimates that the Medici family were for a period of time the wealthiest family in Europe. From this base, they acquired political power initially in Florence and later in wider Italy and Europe.
The Capetian dynasty is the largest European royal house. It includes any of the direct descendants of Hugh Capet of France. King Juan Carlos of Spain and Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg are members of this family, both through the Bourbon branch of the dynasty. Over the course of the preceding centuries, Capetians spread throughout Europe, ruling every form of provincial unit from kingdoms to manors. Besides being the most numerous royal family in Europe, it also is one of the most incestuous, especially in the Spanish Monarchy. Many years have passed since the Capetian monarchs ruled a large part of Europe, however they still remain as kings, as well as other titles. Currently two Capetian monarchs still rule in Spain and Luxembourg. In addition, seven pretenders represent exiled dynastic monarchies in Brazil, France, Spain, Portugal, Parma and Two Sicilies. The current legitimate senior family member is Louis Alfonso (pictured above), the Duke of Anjou, who also holds the Legitimist claim to the French throne. Overall, dozens of branches of the Capetian dynasty still exist throughout Europe.
Notable Omissions: Merovingians, Qin family, Bhutto family, Tudors, Romanovs, Stuarts, House of Orange, Berenguer family, Kennedy family, Vanderbilt family
The British Monarchy and Empire is alive and well. The Bank of England within the city of London takes care of Crown business in the modern world, the powerful and the mighty worldwide are just employees. Many years ago the British monarchy realised it was dangerous to run the Empire overtly and it would be much safer and smarter to do things covertly hence the emergence of neo-colonies and the corporation the British Common wealth. The world is still the stage of compliant states to the British monarchy and absolute power worldwide is always on their agenda. The US flag which is just a modified version of the Union Jack with the same colours is and emblem of the U.S. but a U.K. .
On her Government watch she rules from a throne in the House of Lords, in a sea of tiaras, robes and ermine commanding its House of Commoners and subjest Irish ‘executive’ to attend to her whims. When the lord chancellor on bended knee, hands her a speech dictating her government’s agenda, she starts with the words: “My government…”Few of her commoner subjects, watch this ritual heavy with symbolism. Her little ignorant royal subjects such as Lord Muck Guinness, her deputy first minister in Ireland with the aid of her Official Secrets Act, will just view it as charming.
Royalists, loyalists, agnostics and enabled ‘acceptable’ republicans defend it and say the “irrelevant monarchy” is just decorative pretending they have no real power. Nothing could be further from this truth ! Simultaneously other clever royal defenders argue the monarchy is embedded in constitutional arrangements and is the only constant. While Scotland, Wales, Occupied Ireland and even England are devolutionary and the institutional relationship with Europe fluid, the stability of the monarchy is essential with a continuity, that tempers any radical possibility.
Elected Member of Parliament are barred from debating “the conduct of the sovereign, the heir to the throne or other members of the royal family”. Any MP who raises this question or speaks of a republic can be sent to prison at her pleasure.