The Daily Telegraph

Regnal name The legacy behind Charles III


The new King has officially chosen the regnal name of Charles III. It means he takes a name that carries with it difficult historical baggage.

Indeed, the King is believed to have considered choosing the name George VII, after his grandfathe­r, in part because of the contentiou­s legacies of Charles I and II.

Charles I, who reigned from 1625 to 1649, is one of Britain’s most notorious monarchs, often seen as an authoritar­ian leader intent on underminin­g Parliament. Yet there is little escaping the fact that his reign triggered the English Civil War and ended in his trial for treason and beheading.

Charles II was invited to restore the monarchy after 11 years of the Commonweal­th and pursued political and religious tolerance. He fell out with Parliament, dissolving it in 1681 and ruled without it until his death four years later. His son, James II, would be overthrown in 1688.

The ultimate sovereignt­y of Parliament was then assured once and for all. Daniel Capurro

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