List of regnal numerals of future British monarchs
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This is a list of the regnal numerals which may in time be used by future British monarchs.
During the reign of the current monarch of the United Kingdom, Elizabeth II, there was some controversy in Scotland over whether it was appropriate to refer to her as "the Second of that name" since no Elizabeth had previously reigned in Scotland. Most supporters of Scottish independence, and many other pro-union Scots, believed the title to be an example of establishment bias favouring England. But affirming the Queen's intention to continue as "the Second" throughout the UK, a policy was announced that all future UK monarchs would be reckoned according to the number of either their English or Scottish predecessors, whichever number was higher.
Accordingly, when assigning a regnal numeral to any future UK monarch, it will be necessary to consult the list of monarchs of Scotland and the list of monarchs of England, as well as the list of British monarchs for monarchs since the 1707 Acts of Union. (Checking back at all regnal names since that event, incidentally, we find that none of them violates this policy.)
It should be noted that both the regnal name and regnal numeral of a new monarch are a matter of personal choice when they assume the throne. Prior to the current Queen, it had been common for British monarchs to assume their second or a later given name when they commence their reign. For example, it is by no means certain that the Prince of Wales would become Charles III. The prince's given names are Charles Phillip Arthur George, and he has expressed a wish to take the last of these names, which would make him George VII. There is also no reason why he could not become Arthur I or Phillip I; but it is considered extremely unlikely he would choose an entirely new name such as William V, Frederick I, Edward IX, John II etc.
It is unknown whether the same regnal number will be used for all the sixteen countries in the Commonwealth which are in personal union with the Crown of the United Kingdom. Currently all Commonwealth Realms use the style 'Elizabeth II'.
Note: for the purposes of this table, it is assumed that the reckoning of English monarchs started with a blank slate from the Norman Conquest of 1066. This approach is undeniably conventional with respect to the name "Edward": although there had been three Edwards (Edward the Elder, Edward the Martyr, and Edward the Confessor) prior to the Conquest, the thirteenth-century Plantagenet is always referred to as Edward I, and other Edwards are always reckoned from him. However, while the Edward precedent is by now set in stone, there is a possibility that a future Harold or Alfred might choose to number himself "III" or "II", respectively, to take into account pre-Norman kings of those names.
 Names which have been used multiple times
UK uses since
when next used
Alexander 3 0 S 0 IV Charles 2 2 = 0 III Constantine 3 0 S 0 IV David 2 0 S 0 III Donald 3 0 S 0 IV Duncan 2 0 S 0 III Edward 1 6 E 2 IX Elizabeth 0 1 E 1 III George 0 0 = 6 VII Henry 0 8 E 0 IX James 7 2 S 0 VIII Kenneth 3 0 S 0 IV Malcolm 4 0 S 0 V Mary 2 2 = 0 III Richard 0 3 E 0 IV Robert 3 0 S 0 IV William 2 3 E 1 V
 Names which have been used once in both England and Scotland
- Anne (same person, Queen of pre-unification Kingdom of England and Kingdom of Scotland)
- John (different people, John of England and John Balliol)
- Victoria (same person, Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland)
 Names which have been used once in Scotland but not (post-1066) in England
*Note: prior to the Norman Conquest of 1066, England did have one Edgar (two if the uncrowned reign of Edward's son Edgar in 1066 is counted, as sometimes is the case).
 Names which have been used once in England (post-1066) but not in Scotland
- Stephen of England (reigned 1135 to 1154)
The following rulers may have been acknowledged monarchs of England, but are not traditionally included amongst the list of monarchs in the British Isles. It is therefore unclear whether they would be included in the numbering of future monarchs.
- Jane Grey, designated heir to Edward VI of England. Reigned as uncrowned queen regnant for nine days in 1553.
- Louis VIII of France was proclaimed King in London in May 1216 during the First Barons' War against the unpopular King John. Claimed kingdom 1215–1216.
- Empress Matilda, daughter of Henry I of England, was Henry's designated heir, but the English Barons declared Stephen of England to be King, leading to the civil war known as the Anarchy. Claimed Kingdom 1135-1153.
- Philip II of Spain, unlike Prince Albert or the Duke of Edinburgh, was styled "King of England" during his marriage to Mary I of England (the only King consort in English history). He is not usually listed among the monarchs of England.
 See also
- English monarchs family tree
- Scottish monarchs' family tree
- List of the monarchs of the Kingdom of England
- List of monarchs of Scotland
- List of monarchs in the British Isles
- Direct descent from William I to Elizabeth II