Here's The Name Charles Is Expected To Choose When He Becomes King

Queen Elizabeth II is such an icon that the 96-year-old monarch seems almost superhuman. But time and age are catching up to the beloved ruler, and she has had to sit out of a number of official events as of late due to health issues. When Elizabeth no longer rules the United Kingdom, it will be a devastating day for the world. In an April interview with The Washington Post, royal expert Tina Brown talked about the importance of the British monarchy and the queen. Brown said, "It is the preeminent focus of national identity, national pride, history, tradition. And really, I'm not even sure that the Brits know how to be British anymore when the queen dies."

Prince Charles has been facing pressure to step up and do more as the queen's health troubles continue. But as people call for Elizabeth to relax, is that what she wants to do? One royal expert notes that the queen loves being busy. In 2020, Ingrid Seward, the editor of Majesty Magazine, told Sky News (via Express) that "the queen believes 'if I stop, I drop.'" Seward added, "If you think about it, her entire life has been one of duty." While we don't want to think about a world without Elizabeth, Charles will inevitably take the throne sooner rather than later. But what name will the Prince of Wales choose when he becomes king?

Prince Charles will likely be King Charles III

British monarchs can choose a different name for themselves, called a regnal name (or ruling name), when they ascend to the throne. According to Royal Central, a regnal name differs from the one they were given at birth to identify the monarch during their reign. Reader's Digest further notes that there have been many opinions about the name Prince Charles will choose when he becomes king, and many believe he will be King Charles III. The new king's regnal name will also include a regnal number. Each number is a Roman numeral that makes the ruler's name unique. Confused? Keep reading.

Royal Central speculates that Charles might choose another name because the two previous monarchs named King Charles were part of the English Civil Wars. The name might be bad luck! The Prince of Wales has four first names, Charles Philip Arthur George, so he could pick one of those, becoming King Philip, King Arthur, etc. — you get the idea. As for his mother, Hello! recalled a story about Elizabeth when she chose her regnal name. When the 25-year-old princess was asked what she wanted for her regnal name, the always sensible Elizabeth responded, "My own, of course." That's how the queen became Elizabeth II.

Only three British monarchs changed their birth name to rule

In the history of the United Kingdom, only three British monarchs changed their birth name when they took the throne. Queen Victoria was named Alexandrina Victoria when she was born. Still, when she ascended the throne of Great Britain, she took the regnal name of Victoria, according to Royal Central.

The outlet reported that the second British monarch who changed their birth name to rule was Prince Albert Edward of Wales, choosing the regnal name of King Edward VII when he took the throne in 1901. The son of Prince Albert and Queen Victoria made this decision out of respect for his father.

Queen Elizabeth had a close relationship with her father, King George VI. Elizabeth's father was given the name Albert at birth and called "Bertie" for most of his life until he took the British throne using the regnal name of King George VI in 1936. According to Express, King George VI ascended to the throne after his older brother Edward VIII's abdication to marry the twice-divorced American Wallis Simpson. The new monarch wanted to project stability after the abdication scandal, so he chose to rule under the name of his father, King George V, who was beloved by the British.