List of French monarchs

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Monarchy of France
Arms of the Kingdom of France (Moderne).svg
Details
Style See article
First monarch Clovis I
(as King)
Last monarch Napoleon III
(as Emperor)
Formation 486
Abolition 4 September 1870
Residence Palais de la Cité
Louvre Palace
Palace of Versailles
Tuileries Palace
Appointer Hereditary
Pretender(s) Disputed:
Louis Alphonse
(House of Bourbon)
Henri d'Orléans
(House of Orléans)
Jean-Christophe
(House of Bonaparte)

The monarchs of the Kingdom of France and its predecessors ruled from the establishment of the Kingdom of the Franks in 486 till the fall of the Second French Empire in 1870.

Sometimes included as "kings of France"[1] are the kings of the Franks of the Merovingian dynasty, which ruled from 486 until 751,[2] and of the Carolingians, who ruled until 987 (with some interruptions).

The Capetian dynasty, the male-line descendants of Hugh Capet, included the first rulers to adopt the title of king of France for the first time with Philip II of France (r. 1180–1223). The Capetians ruled continuously from 987 to 1792 and again from 1814 to 1848. The branches of the dynasty which ruled after 1328, however, are generally given the specific branch names of Valois (until 1589) and Bourbon (until 1848).

During the brief period when the French Constitution of 1791 was in effect (1791–92) and after the July Revolution in 1830, the style "King of the French" was used instead of "King of France (and Navarre)". It was a constitutional innovation known as popular monarchy which linked the monarch's title to the French people rather than to the possession of the territory of France.[3]

With the House of Bonaparte "Emperors of the French" ruled in 19th century France, between 1804 and 1814, again in 1815 and between 1852 and 1871.

Titles[edit]

Further information: Style of the French sovereign

The title "King of the Franks" (Latin: Rex Francorum) gradually lost ground after 1190, during the reign of Philip II (but FRANCORUM REX continued to be used, for example by Louis XII in 1499, by Francis I in 1515, and by Henry II about 1550. It was used on coins up to the eighteenth century.[n 1] During the brief period when the French Constitution of 1791 was in effect (1791–92) and after the July Revolution in 1830, the style "King of the French" was used instead of "King of France (and Navarre)". It was a constitutional innovation known as popular monarchy which linked the monarch's title to the French people rather than to the possession of the territory of France.[5]

In addition to the Kingdom of France, there were also two French Empires, the first from 1804–14 and again in 1815, founded and ruled by Napoleon I, and the second from 1852–70, founded and ruled by his nephew Napoleon III (also known as Louis-Napoleon). They used the title "Emperor of the French".[6][7]

This article lists all rulers to have held the title "King of the Franks", "King of France", "King of the French" or "Emperor of the French". For other Frankish monarchs, see List of Frankish kings. In addition to the monarchs listed below, the Kings of England and Great Britain from 1340–60 and 1369–1801 also claimed the title of King of France. For a short time, this had some basis in fact – under the terms of the 1420 Treaty of Troyes, Charles VI had recognized his son-in-law Henry V of England as regent and heir. Henry V predeceased Charles VI and so Henry V's son, Henry VI, succeeded his grandfather Charles VI as King of France. Most of Northern France was under English control until 1435, but by 1453, the English had been expelled from all of France save Calais (and the Channel Islands), and Calais itself fell in 1558. Nevertheless, English and then British monarchs continued to claim the title for themselves until the creation of the United Kingdom in 1801.

Frankish Empire[edit]

Merovingian dynasty (486–751)[edit]

The Merovingians were a Salian Frankish dynasty that ruled the Franks for nearly 300 years in a region known as Francia in Latin, beginning in the middle of the 5th century. Their territory largely corresponded to ancient Gaul as well as the Roman provinces of Raetia, Germania Superior and the southern part of Germania. The Merovingian dynasty rose to historical prominence with Childeric I (c. 457-481), the son of Merovech, leader of the Salian Franks, but it was his famous son Clovis I (481–511) who united all of Gaul under Merovingian rule.[8]

Portrait Name King from King until Death Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Clovis 1er.jpg Clovis I
(Clovis Ier)
481 511 Died of natural causes aged 46. Buried at Abbey of St Genevieve until 18th century. Remains relocated to Basilica of St Denis.  • Son of Childeric I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
After Clovis's death, his kingdom was divided among his four sons, who took up residences in different cities. The number and extent of the parts of the kingdom varied over time. Clothar I, the youngest son, eventually reunited the kingdom.
Portrait Roi de france Thierri Ier.jpg Theuderic I
(Thierry Ier)
511 533 or 534 Died 48.  • Eldest son of Clovis I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Reims
Theodebert I 534 548 king of Metz.jpg Theudebert I
(Thibert Ier)
533 or 534 547 or 548 Killed in a hunting accident, aged 47.  • Son of Theuderic I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Reims
Theudebald
(Thibaut Ier)
547 or 548 555 Died aged 20.  • Son of Theudebert I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Reims
Clodomir supervise l'execution de Sigismond.jpg Chlodomer
(Chlodomir)
511 25 June 524 Killed in the Battle of Vézeronce, aged 29.  • Second (surviving) son of Clovis I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Orléans
Tiers de sou d'or de Childebert Ier.png Childebert I
(Childebert Ier)
511 13 December 558 Died aged 64. Buried at Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés.  • Third (surviving) son of Clovis I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Paris
Monnaie d'argent de Clotaire Ier.png Chlothar I the Old
(Clotaire Ier le Vieux)
511 29 November 561 Died aged 64. Buried at Abbey of St. Medard, Soissons.  • Youngest son of Clovis I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Soissons
After Clothar's death, the kingdom was divided among his four sons. The parts of the kingdom varied over time and eventually developed into three distinct realms. Neustria, centred at Soisson and Paris, Austrasia, centered at Metz, and Burgundy, centered at Orléans. Clothar II, grandson of Clothar I, eventually reunited the kingdom.
Jean-Joseph Dassy (1796-1865) - Caribert, roi franc de Paris et de l'ouest de Gaule (mort en 567).jpg Charibert I
(Caribert Ier)
29 November 561 567 Died aged 50. Buried at Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés.  • Eldest son of Chlothar I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Paris
Tiers de sou de Gontran frappé à Chalon-sur-Saône.jpeg Guntram
(Gontran)
29 November 561 592 Died aged 59. Buried at Saint Marcellus, Chalon-sur-Saône.  • Second son of Chlothar I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Orléans
Sigebert Ier.jpg Sigebert I
(Sigebert Ier)
29 November 561 575 Murdered at Vitry-en-Artois, aged 40.  • Third son of Chlothar I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Metz
Childebert II.png Childebert II
(Childebert II)
575 595 Died aged 24.  • Son of Sigebert I

 • Adopted son of Guntram

King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
King of Austrasia and (after 592) Burgundy
Tiers de sou de Théodebert II frappé à Clermont.png Theudebert II
(Thibert II)
595 612 Murdered, aged 26.  • Older son of Childebert II King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
King of Austrasia
Theuderic II
(Thierry II)
595 613 Died, aged 26.  • Younger son of Childebert II King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
King of Burgundy (595-613) and Austrasia (612-613)
Sceau de Sigebert II.jpg Sigebert II
(Sigebert II)
613 613 Executed, aged 11.  • Son of Theuderic II King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
King of Austrasia and Burgundy
Portrait Roi de france Chilpéric roy de France.jpg Chilperic I
(Chilpéric Ier)
29 November 561 584 Died aged 45. Buried at Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés.  • Youngest son of Chlothar I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Soissons
Clothaire II 584 628.jpg Chlothar II the Great, the Young
(Clotaire II le Grand, le Jeune)
584 18 October 629 Died aged 45. Buried at Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés.  • Son of Chilperic I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
at Soissons
King of Neustria (595-639)
King of Burgundy (613-629)
King of Austrasia (613-623)
Following the reunification of the kingdom, Neustria and Burgundy remained under the direct rule of the King of the Franks, while Austrasia was soon put under the rule of a junior king. The following list restricts itself to the kings ruling in Neustria and Burgundy.
Tiers de sou or Dagobert Ier.jpg Dagobert I
(Dagobert Ier)
18 October 629 19 January 639 Died aged 36. Buried at Basilica of St Denis.  • Son of Chlothar II King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Tiers de sous d'or de Clovis II.jpg Clovis II the Lazy
(Clovis II le Fainéant)
19 January 639 31 October 657 Died aged 20. Buried at Basilica of St Denis.  • Son of Dagobert I King of Neustria and Burgundy
(Roi de Neustrie et de Bourgogne)
Clothar III.jpg Chlothar III
(Clotaire III)
31 October 657 673 Died aged 21. Buried at Basilica of St Denis.  • Son of Clovis II King of Neustria and Burgundy
(Roi de Neustrie et de Bourgogne)
King of Austrasia
(661–662)
Portrait Roi de france Childéric II.jpg Childeric II
(Childéric II)
673 675 Died aged 22. Buried at Abbey of Saint-Germain-des-Prés.  • Son of Clovis II
 • Younger brother of Chlothar III
King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Theuderic III.jpg Theuderic III
(Thierry III)
675 691 Died aged 37.  • Son of Clovis II
 • Younger brother of Childeric II
King of Neustria
(Roi de Neustrie)

King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
(687–691)
Georges Rouget (1783-1869) - Clovis III roi d'Austrasie en 691 (682-695).jpg Clovis IV
(Clovis IV)
691 695 Died aged 13.  • Son of Theuderic III King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Childebert III 694 711.jpg Childebert III the Just
(Childebert III le Juste)
695 23 April 711 Died aged 28. Buried at Church of St Stephen at Choisy-au-Bac, near Compiègne.  • Son of Theuderic III
 • Younger brother of Clovis IV
King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Portrait Roi de france Dagobert II (i.e III).jpg Dagobert III 23 April 711 715 Died aged 14.  • Son of Childebert III King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Portrait Roy de france Chilperic II.jpg Chilperic II
(Chilpéric II)
715 13 February 721 Died aged 49. Buried at Noyon.  • Probably son of Childeric II King of Neustria and Burgundy
(Roi de Neustrie et de Bourgogne)

King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
(719–721)
Theuderic IV.jpg Theuderic IV 721 737 Died aged 25.  • Son of Dagobert III King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
The last Merovingian kings, known as the lazy kings (rois fainéants), did not hold any real political power, while the Mayor of the Palace governed instead. When Theuderic IV died in 737, Mayor of the Palace Charles Martel left the throne vacant and continued to rule until his own death in 741. His sons Pepin and Carloman briefly restored the Merovingian dynasty by raising Childeric III to the throne in 743. In 751, Pepin deposed Childeric and became King in his place.
Jean Dassier (1676-1763) - Childéric III roy de France (754).jpg Childeric III
(Childéric III)
743 November 751 Died aged 37.  • Son of Chilperic II or of King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Carolingian dynasty (751–888)[edit]

The Carolingian dynasty was a Frankish noble family with origins in the Arnulfing and Pippinid clans of the 7th century AD. The family consolidated its power in the late 8th century, eventually making the offices of mayor of the palace and dux et princeps Francorum hereditary and becoming the real powers behind the Merovingian kings. In 751, a Carolingian, Pepin the Younger, dethroned the Merovingians and with the consent of the Papacy and the aristocracy, was crowned King of the Franks.[9]

Portrait Name King from King until Death Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Pépin the younger.jpg Pepin the Younger
(Pépin le Bref)
751 24 September 768  • Son of Charles Martel King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Carloman.jpg Carloman I 24 September 768 4 December 771  • Son of Pepin King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Charlemagne-by-Durer.jpg Charlemagne (Charles I, the Great) 24 September 768 28 January 814  • Son of Pepin King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Emperor of the Romans
(Imperator Romanorum)
(800–814)
Ludwik I Pobożny.jpg Louis I the Pious, the Debonaire
(Louis Ier le Pieux, le Débonnaire)
28 January 814 20 June 840  • Son of Charlemagne King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Emperor of the Romans
(Imperator Romanorum)
CharlesIItheBald.JPG Charles II the Bald
(Charles II le Chauve)
20 June 840 6 October 877  • Son of Louis I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Emperor of the Romans
(Imperator Romanorum)
(875–877)
Louis II of France.JPG Louis II the Stammerer
(Louis II le Bègue)
6 October 877 10 April 879  • Son of Charles II King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
King Louis III.gif Louis III 10 April 879 5 August 882  • Son of Louis II King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Carloman II of France.jpg Carloman II 5 August 882 6 December 884  • Son of Louis II King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Sceau de Charles le gros.jpg Charles III the Fat
(Charles le Gros)
20 May 885 13 January 888  • Son of Louis the German
 • Cousin of Louis II and Carloman II
 • Grandson of Louis I the Pious
King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Emperor of the Romans
(Imperator Romanorum)
(881–887)

Robertian dynasty (888–898)[edit]

Main article: Robertian dynasty

The Robertians were Frankish noblemen owing fealty to the Carolingians, and ancestors of the subsequent Capetian dynasty. Odo, Count of Paris, was chosen by the western Franks to be their king following the removal of emperor Charles the Fat. He was crowned at Compiègne in February 888 by Walter, Archbishop of Sens.[10]

Portrait Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Odo of France.PNG Odo of Paris
(Eudes de Paris)
29 February 888 1 January 898  • Son of Robert the Strong (Robertians)
 • Elected king against young Charles III.
King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Carolingian dynasty (893–922)[edit]

Charles, the posthumous son of Louis II, was crowned by a faction opposed to the Robertian Odo at Reims Cathedral, though he only became the effectual monarch with the death of Odo in 898.[11]

Portrait Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Georges Rouget (1783-1869) - Charles III, dit le simple, roi de France en 896 (879-929).jpg Charles III the Simple
(Charles III le Simple)
28 January 898 30 June 922  • Posthumous son of Louis II
 • Younger half-brother of Louis III and Carloman II
King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Robertian dynasty (922–923)[edit]

Portrait Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Robert I de France.jpg Robert I
(Robert Ier)
30 June 922 15 June 923  • Son of Robert the Strong (Robertians)
 • Younger brother of Odo
King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Bosonid dynasty (923–936)[edit]

Main article: Bosonid dynasty

The Bosonids were a noble family descended from Boso the Elder, their member, Rudolph (Raoul), was elected "King of the Franks" in 923.

Portrait Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Rudolph of France.PNG Rudolph
(Raoul de France)
13 July 923 14 January 936  • Son of Richard, Duke of Burgundy (Bosonids)
 • Son-in-law of Robert I
King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Carolingian dynasty (936–987)[edit]

Portrait Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Louis IV of France.PNG Louis IV of Outremer
(Louis IV d'Outremer)
19 June 936 10 September 954  • Son of Charles III King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Lothaire-Face.jpg Lothair
(Lothaire de France)
12 November 954 2 March 986  • Son of Louis IV King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Louis V.jpg Louis V 8 June 986 22 May 987  • Son of Lothair King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)

Capetian dynasty (987–1792)[edit]

Main article: Capetian dynasty

After the death of Louis V, the son of Hugh the Great and grandson of Robert I, Hugh Capet, was elected by the nobility as king of France. The Capetian Dynasty, the male-line descendants of Hugh Capet, ruled France continuously from 987 to 1792 and again from 1814 to 1848. They were direct descendants of the Robertian kings. The cadet branches of the dynasty which ruled after 1328, however, are generally given the specific branch names of Valois and Bourbon.

Not listed below are Hugh Magnus, eldest son of Robert II, and Philip of France, eldest son of Louis VI; both were co-kings with their fathers (in accordance with the early Capetian practice whereby kings would crown their heirs in their own lifetimes and share power with the co-king), but predeceased them. Because neither Hugh nor Philip were sole or senior king in their own lifetimes, they are not traditionally listed as Kings of France, and are not given ordinals.

Henry VI of England, son of Catherine of Valois, became titular King of France upon his grandfather Charles VI's death in accordance with the Treaty of Troyes of 1420; however this was disputed and he is not always regarded as a legitimate king of France.

From 21 January 1793 to 8 June 1795, Louis XVI's son Louis-Charles was the titular King of France as Louis XVII; in reality, however, he was imprisoned in the Temple throughout this duration, and power was held by the leaders of the Republic. Upon Louis XVII's death, his uncle (Louis XVI's brother) Louis-Stanislas claimed the throne, as Louis XVIII, but only became de facto King of France in 1814.

Direct Capetians (987–1328)[edit]

Main article: House of Capet

The main line of descent from Hugh Capet is generally known as the "direct Capetians". This line became extinct in 1328, precipitating a succession crisis known as the Hundred Years War. While there were numerous claimants to succeed, the two best claimants were the House of Valois and the House of Plantagenet.

Portrait Coat of arms Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
King Hugh Capet.jpg Hugh Capet
(Hugues Capet)
3 July 987 24 October 996  • Grandson of Robert I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Seal of Robert II.jpg Robert II the Pious, the Wise
(Robert II le Pieux, le Sage)
24 October 996 20 July 1031  • Son of Hugh Capet King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Henri I.jpg Henry I
(Henri Ier)
20 July 1031 4 August 1060  • Son of Robert II King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Philip I of France · HHWXI28.svg Philip I the Amorous
(Philippe Ier l' Amoureux)
4 August 1060 29 July 1108  • Son of Henry I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Louis VI of France.gif Louis VI the Fat
(Louis VI le Gros)
29 July 1108 1 August 1137  • Son of Philip I King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
II Geza es VII Lajos KK.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Ancien).svg Louis VII the Young
(Louis VII le Jeune)
1 August 1137 18 September 1180  • Son of Louis VI King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
Louis-Félix Amiel-Philippe II dit Philippe-Auguste Roi de France (1165-1223).jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Ancien).svg Philip II Augustus
(Philippe II Auguste)
18 September 1180 14 July 1223  • Son of Louis VII King of the Franks
(Roi des Francs)
first monarch to use the title of King of France
(Roi de France)
Louis8lelion.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Ancien).svg Louis VIII the Lion
(Louis VIII le Lion)
14 July 1223 8 November 1226  • Son of Philip II Augustus King of France
(Roi de France)
Louis-ix.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Ancien).svg Louis IX the Saint
(Saint Louis)
8 November 1226 25 August 1270  • Son of Louis VIII King of France
(Roi de France)
Miniature Philippe III Courronement.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Ancien).svg Philip III the Bold
(Philippe III le Hardi)
25 August 1270 5 October 1285  • Son of Louis IX King of France
(Roi de France)
Philippe IV le bel.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France & Navarre (Ancien).svg Philip IV the Fair, the Iron King
(Philippe IV le Bel)
5 October 1285 29 November 1314  • Son of Philip III King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
Louis X Le Hutin.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France & Navarre (Ancien).svg Louis X the Quarreller
(Louis X le Hutin)
29 November 1314 5 June 1316  • Son of Philip IV King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
John I of France.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France & Navarre (Ancien).svg John I the Posthumous
(Jean Ier le Posthume)
15 November 1316 20 November 1316  • Son of Louis X King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
Philippe V Le Long.JPG Arms of the Kingdom of France & Navarre (Ancien).svg Philip V the Tall
(Philippe V le Long)
20 November 1316 3 January 1322  • Son of Philip IV
 • Younger brother of Louis X
King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
Charles IV Le Bel.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France & Navarre (Ancien).svg Charles IV the Fair
(Charles IV le Bel)
3 January 1322 1 February 1328  • Son of Philip IV
 • Younger brother of Louis X and Philip V
King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)

House of Valois (1328–1589)[edit]

Main article: House of Valois

The death of the last Direct Capetian precipitated the Hundred Years' War between the House of Valois and the House of Plantagenet over control of the French throne.[12] The Valois claimed the right to the succession by male-only primogeniture, having the closest all-male line of descent from a recent French king. They were descended from the third son of Philip III, Charles, Count of Valois. The Plantagenets based their claim on being closer to a more recent French King, Edward III of England being a grandson of Philip IV through his mother, Isabella. The two houses fought the Hundred Years War to enforce their claims; the Valois were ultimately successful, and French historiography counts their leaders as rightful kings. One Plantagenet, Henry VI of England, did enjoy de jure control of the French throne under the terms of the Treaty of Troyes, which formed the basis for continued English claims to the throne of France until the 19th century. The Valois line would rule France until the line became extinct in 1589, in the backdrop of the French Wars of Religion.

Portrait Coat of arms Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Phil6france.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Ancien).svg Philip VI of Valois, the Fortunate
(Philippe VI de Valois, le Fortuné)
1 April 1328 22 August 1350  • Grandson of Philip III of France King of France
(Roi de France)
JeanIIdFrance.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Ancien).svg John II the Good
(Jean II le Bon)
22 August 1350 8 April 1364  • Son of Philip VI King of France
(Roi de France)
Charles5lesage.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Ancien).svgArms of the Kingdom of France (Moderne).svg Charles V the Wise
(Charles V le Sage)
8 April 1364 16 September 1380  • Son of John II King of France
(Roi de France)
Charles VI de France - Dialogues de Pierre Salmon - Bib de Genève MsFr165f4.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Moderne).svg Charles VI the Beloved, the Mad
(Charles VI le Bienaimé, le Fol)
16 September 1380 21 October 1422  • Son of Charles V King of France
(Roi de France)

House of Lancaster (1422–1453) (disputed)[edit]

Main article: House of Lancaster
Portrait Coat of arms Name King from King until Claim Title
King Henry VI from NPG (2).jpg Coat of Arms of Henry VI of England (1422-1471).svg Henry VI of England
(Henri VI d'Angleterre)
21 October 1422 19 October 1453 By right of his father Henry V of England, who by the Treaty of Troyes became heir and regent of France. Grandson of Charles VI of France. King of France
(Roi de France)

House of Valois (1328–1589)[edit]

Main article: House of Valois
Portrait Coat of arms Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Charles VII by Jean Fouquet 1445 1450.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Moderne).svg Charles VII the Victorious, the Well-Served
(Charles VII le Victorieux, le Bien-Servi)
21 October 1422 22 July 1461  • Son of Charles VI King of France.
(Roi de France)
Louis XI of France.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Moderne).svg Louis XI the Prudent, the Cunning, the Universal Spider
(Louis XI le Prudent, le Rusé, l'Universelle Aragne)
22 July 1461 30 August 1483  • Son of Charles VII King of France
(Roi de France)
Charles VIII Ecole Francaise 16th century Musee de Conde Chantilly.jpg Coat of Arms of Charles VIII of France.svg Charles VIII the Affable
(Charles VIII l'Affable)
30 August 1483 7 April 1498  • Son of Louis XI King of France
(Roi de France)
Ludvig XII av Frankrike på målning från 1500-talet.jpg Arms of the Kingdom of France (Moderne).svg Louis XII Father of the People
(Louis XII le Père du Peuple)
7 April 1498 1 January 1515  • Great-grandson of Charles V
 • Second cousin, and by first marriage son-in-law of Louis XI
 • By second marriage husband of Anne of Brittany, widow of Charles VIII
King of France
(Roi de France)
Jean Clouet 001.jpg Coat of arms of France 1515-1578.svg Francis I the Father and Restorer of Letters
(François Ier le Père et Restaurateur des Lettres)
1 January 1515 31 March 1547  • Great-great-grandson of Charles V
 • First cousin once removed, and by
first marriage son-in-law of Louis XII
King of France
(Roi de France)
Henry II of France..jpg Coat of arms of France 1515-1578.svg Henry II
(Henri II)
31 March 1547 10 July 1559  • Son of Francis I/Maternal grandson of Louis XII King of France
(Roi de France)
FrancoisII.jpg Coat of arms of France 1515-1578.svg Francis II
(François II)
10 July 1559 5 December 1560  • Son of Henry II King of France
(Roi de France)

King of Scots
(1558–1560)
CharlesIX.jpg Coat of arms of France 1515-1578.svg Charles IX 5 December 1560 30 May 1574  • Son of Henry II King of France
(Roi de France)
Anjou 1570louvre.jpg Coat of arms of France 1515-1578.svg Henry III
(Henri III)
30 May 1574 2 August 1589  • Son of Henry II King of France
(Roi de France)

King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania
(1573–1575)

House of Bourbon (1589–1792)[edit]

Main article: House of Bourbon

The Valois line looked strong on the death of Henry II, who left three male heirs. His first son, Francis died in his minority. His second son, Charles IX had no legitimate sons to inherit. Following the assassination of his third son, the childless Henry III, France was plunged into a succession crisis over which distant cousin of the king would inherit the throne. The best claimant, Henry, King of Navarre was a Protestant, and thus unacceptable to much of the French nobility. Ultimately, after winning numerous battles in defense of his claim, Henry converted to Catholicism and was crowned king, founding the House of Bourbon.

Portrait Coat of arms Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Henry IV of france by pourbous younger.jpg Grand Royal Coat of Arms of France & Navarre.svg Henry IV, Good King Henry, the Green Gallant
(Henri IV, le Bon Roi Henri, le Vert-Galant)
2 August 1589 14 May 1610  • Tenth generation descendant of Louis IX in the male line
 • By first marriage son in law of Henry II, Brother in law of Francis II, Charles IX and Henry III
King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
LouisXIII.jpg Grand Royal Coat of Arms of France & Navarre.svg Louis XIII the Just
(Louis XIII le Juste)
14 May 1610 14 May 1643  • Son of Henry IV King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
Hyacinthe Rigaud - Louis XIV, roi de France (1638-1715) - Google Art Project.jpg Grand Royal Coat of Arms of France & Navarre.svg Louis XIV the Great, the Sun King
(Louis XIV le Grand, le Roi Soleil)
14 May 1643 1 September 1715  • Son of Louis XIII King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
LouisXV-Rigaud1.jpg Grand Royal Coat of Arms of France & Navarre.svg Louis XV the Beloved
(Louis XV le Bien-Aimé)
1 September 1715 10 May 1774  • Great-grandson of Louis XIV King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
Antoine-François Callet - Louis XVI, roi de France et de Navarre (1754-1793), revêtu du grand costume royal en 1779 - Google Art Project.jpg Grand Royal Coat of Arms of France & Navarre.svg Louis XVI the Restorer of French Liberty
(Louis XVI le Restaurateur de la Liberté Française)
10 May 1774 21 September 1792  • Grandson of Louis XV King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
(1774–1791)

King of the French
(Roi des Français)
(1791–1792)
Louis XVII coll Ulysse Moussali.jpg Grand Royal Coat of Arms of France & Navarre.svg Louis XVII (Claimant) 21 January 1793 8 June 1795  • Son of Louis XVI (Disputed) King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)


House of Bonaparte, First Empire (1804–1814)[edit]

The French First Republic lasted from 1792 to 1804, when its First Consul, Napoléon Bonaparte, was declared Emperor of the French.

Portrait Coat of arms Name Emperor from Emperor until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Napoleon I (by Anne Louis Girodet de Roucy-Trioson).jpg Grandes Armes Impériales (1804-1815)2.svg Napoleon I, the Great
(Napoléon Ier, le Grand)
18 May 1804 11 April 1814 None. Emperor of the French
(Empereur des Français)

Capetian Dynasty (1814–1815)[edit]

Following the first defeat of Napoleon and his exile to Elba, the Bourbon monarchy was restored, with Louis XVI's younger brother Louis Stanislas being crowned as Louis XVIII. Louis XVI's son had been considered by monarchists as Louis XVII but he was never crowned and never ruled in his own right before his own death; he is not usually counted among French monarchs, creating a gap in numbering on most traditional lists of French kings. Napoleon would briefly regain control of the country during his Hundred Days rule in 1815. After his final defeat at the Battle of Waterloo, the Bourbon Monarchy was re-established yet again, and would continue to rule France until the July Revolution of 1830 replaced it with a cadet branch, the House of Orleans.

House of Bourbon, Bourbon Restoration (1814–1815)[edit]

Main article: Bourbon Restoration
Portrait Coat of arms Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Lodewijk XVIII.jpg Coat of Arms of the Bourbon Restoration (1815-30).svg Louis XVIII, the Desired
(Louis Dix-huitième, le Désiré)
11 April 1814 20 March 1815  • Grandson of Louis XV  • Younger Brother of Louis XVI King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)

House of Bonaparte, First Empire (Hundred Days, 1815)[edit]

Main article: Hundred Days
Portrait Coat of arms Name Emperor from Emperor until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Napoleon I (by Anne Louis Girodet de Roucy-Trioson).jpg Grandes Armes Impériales (1804-1815)2.svg Napoleon I
(Napoléon Ier)
20 March 1815 22 June 1815 None Emperor of the French
(Empereur des Français)
80 Napoleon II.jpg Grandes Armes Impériales (1804-1815)2.svg Napoleon II
(Napoléon II)
[n 2]
22 June 1815 7 July 1815  • Son of Napoleon I (Disputed) Emperor of the French
(Empereur des Français)

Capetian Dynasty (1815–1848)[edit]

House of Bourbon (1815–1830)[edit]

Portrait Coat of arms Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Lodewijk XVIII.jpg Coat of Arms of the Bourbon Restoration (1815-30).svg Louis XVIII, the Desired
(Louis Dix-huitième, le Désiré)
7 July 1815 16 September 1824  • Grandson of Louis XV  • Younger Brother of Louis XVI King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
Charles X Roi de France et de Navarre.jpg Coat of Arms of the Bourbon Restoration (1815-30).svg Charles X
(Charles Dixième)
16 September 1824 2 August 1830  • Grandson of Louis XV  • Younger Brother of Louis XVI and Louis XVIII King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
Louis antoine d'artois, duc d'angouleme.jpg Coat of Arms of the Bourbon Restoration (1815-30).svg Louis XIX Antoine
(Louis XIX)
2 August 1830 2 August 1830
(20 minutes)
 • Son of Charles X (Disputed) King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)
Henri dArtois by Adeodata Malatesta.jpg Coat of Arms of the Bourbon Restoration (1815-30).svg Henry V
(Henri V)
2 August 1830 9 August 1830
(7 days)
 • Grandson of Charles X
 • Nephew of Louis Antoine
(Disputed) King of France and of Navarre
(Roi de France et de Navarre)

House of Orléans, July Monarchy (1830–1848)[edit]

The Bourbon restoration came to an end with the July Revolution of 1830, which deposed Charles X and replaced him with Louis Philippe I, a distant cousin with more liberal politics. The popular monarchy changed the styles and forms of the ancien regime, replacing it with more populist forms (i.e. replacing "King of France" with "King of the French"). Ultimately it was overthrown as well during the continent-wide Revolutions of 1848, to be replaced by the Second French Republic.

Main articles: House of Orléans and July Monarchy
Portrait Coat of arms Name King from King until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Louis-Philippe de Bourbon.jpg Coat of Arms of the July Monarchy (1831-48).svg Louis-Philippe I, the Citizen King
(Louis Philippe Ier, le Roi Bourgeois)
9 August 1830 24 February 1848  • Sixth generation descendant of Louis XIII in the male line
 • Fifth cousin of Louis XVI, Louis XVIII and Charles X
King of the French
(Roi des Français)

House of Bonaparte, Second Empire (1852–1870)[edit]

The Second French Republic lasted from 1848 to 1852, when its president, Louis-Napoléon Bonaparte, was declared Emperor of the French.

When he was declared emperor, Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte took the regnal name Napoleon III, after his uncle (the Emperor Napoleon I) and his cousin (Napoleon II, who was declared but uncrowned as heir to the Imperial throne). He would later be overthrown during the events of the Franco-Prussian war. He was the last monarch to rule France; thereafter the country was ruled by a succession of Republican governments. (See French Third Republic.)

Main article: Second French Empire
Portrait Coat of arms Name Emperor from Emperor until Relationship with predecessor(s) Title
Franz Xaver Winterhalter Napoleon III.jpg Coat of Arms Second French Empire (1852–1870)-2.svg Napoleon III
(Napoléon III)
2 December 1852 4 September 1870  • Nephew of Napoleon I Emperor of the French
(Empereur des Français)

Later pretenders[edit]

Various pretenders descended from the preceding monarchs have claimed to be the legitimate monarch of France, rejecting the claims of the President of France, and of each other. These groups are:

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ 'Louis XII, 1499 [...] LVDOVIVS XII FRANCORUM REX MEDILANI DUX [...] Francis I, 1515 [...] FRANCISCUS REX FRANCORUM PRIMUS DOMINATOR ELVETIORUM [...] Henri II, 1550? [...] HENRICVS II FRANCORVM REX' [4]
  2. ^ From 22 June to 7 July 1815, Bonapartists considered Napoleon II as the legitimate heir to the throne, his father having abdicated in his favor. However, throughout this period he resided in Austria, with his mother. Louis XVIII was reinstalled as king on 7 July.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Sullivan, William. Historical causes and effects, from the fall of the Roman empire, 476, to the reformation, 1517. p. 213. Grimshaw, William. The history of France from the foundation of the monarchy to the death of Louis XVI. p. 11
  2. ^ Claudio Rendina & Paul McCusker, The Popes: Histories and Secrets, (New York : 2002), p. 145.
  3. ^ Deploige, Jeroen; Deneckere, Gita, eds. (2006). Mystifying the Monarch: Studies on Discourse, Power, and History. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Amsterdam University Press. p. 182. ISBN 9789053567678. 
  4. ^ Potter, David (2008). Renaissance France at War: Armies, Culture and Society, C.1480–1560. Warfare in History Series. 28. Boydell & Brewer Ltd. p. viii. ISBN 9781843834052. Retrieved 2012-11-27. 
  5. ^ Deploige, Jeroen; Deneckere, Gita, eds. (2006). Mystifying the Monarch: Studies on Discourse, Power, and History. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Amsterdam University Press. p. 182. ISBN 9789053567678. 
  6. ^ Le Couronnement de Napoléon Premier, Empereur des Français. Paris, France: Guerin. 1806. p. 1. 
  7. ^ Pascal, Adrien (1853). Histoire de Napoléon III, Empereur des Français. Paris, France: Barbier. p. 359. 
  8. ^ Brown, Peter (2003). The Rise of Western Christendom. Malden, MA, USA: Blackwell Publishing Ltd. p. 137. 
  9. ^ Babcock, Philip (1993). Webster's Third New International Dictionary of the English Language, Unabridged. MA, USA: Merriam-Webster. p. 341. 
  10. ^ Gwatking, H. M.; Whitney, J. P.; et al. (1930). Cambridge Medieval History: Germany and the Western Empire. Volume III. London: Cambridge University Press. 
  11. ^ Parisse, Michael (2005). "Lotharingia". In Reuter, T. The New Cambridge Medieval History: c. 900–c. 1024. III. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. pp. 313–315. 
  12. ^ Knecht, Robert (2004). The Valois: Kings of France 1328–1422. NY, USA: Hambledon Continuum. pp. ix–xii. ISBN 1852854200. 
  • Hansen, M.H., ed. (1967). Kings, Rulers, and Statesmen. NY, USA: Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. pp. 103–107. [unreliable source?]