Charles III

King of the United Kingdom since 2022

Charles III (Charles Philip Arthur George; born 14 November 1948) is the Head of the Commonwealth and the King of the United Kingdom and 14 other countries since 2022.[3] He was Prince of Wales between 1958 and 2022.[3]

Charles III
Head of the Commonwealth[note 1]
Photograph of Charles III
Charles III in 2024
King of the United Kingdom
and other Commonwealth realms
Reign8 September 2022 – present
Coronation6 May 2023
PredecessorElizabeth II
Heir apparentWilliam, Prince of Wales
BornPrince Charles of Edinburgh
(1948-11-14) 14 November 1948 (age 75)
Buckingham Palace, London, England
  • (m. 1981; div. 1996)
  • (m. 2005)
Full name
Charles Philip Arthur George[note 2]
FatherPrince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh
MotherElizabeth II
ReligionProtestant[note 3]
SignatureCharles's signature in black ink
EducationGordonstoun School
Alma materTrinity College, Cambridge (MA)
AllegianceUnited Kingdom
Years of service1971–1976
RankFull list
Commands heldHMS Bronington

Early life


King Charles III was born at Buckingham Palace in London. He is the first son of Elizabeth II and Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark. He is the grandson of George VI of the United Kingdom and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. He was baptised at Buckingham Palace.

Charles went to school at Gordonstoun and to university at Trinity College, Cambridge. He became the first British royal heir to earn a university degree.[4][5]

Prince of Wales

Portrait of Charles when he was Prince of Wales

Charles was officially made the Prince of Wales in 1958. As Prince of Wales, Charles fulfilled many public engagements and charity work, such as creating the Prince's Trust. He has also spent time in the Royal Air Force. He has spent a lot of time advocating for the prevention of climate change.

As the heir to the throne, Charles also represented his mother on numerous occasions, such as the independence days of Fiji, the Bahamas, Papua New Guinea, Zimbabwe and Brunei, as well as the day Hong Kong was given back to China.

In 2021, Prince Charles attended the celebration of Barbados becoming a republic and removing Queen Elizabeth as their leader. It was the first time that a British royal attended the transition of a Commonwealth realm in a republic.



Charles became king on 8 September 2022, after the death of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II. Holding the titles Prince of Wales, Duke of Cornwall, and Duke of Rothesay, Charles was the longest-serving British heir apparent, passing Edward VII's record on 20 April 2011. When he became monarch at the age of 73, he was the oldest person to do so.[6]

Charles in the Scottish Parliament (September 2022)

In an announcement after the death of Queen Elizabeth II, Prime Minister Liz Truss called Charles "King Charles III". This was the first time anyone had used that name officially.[7] soon after Clarence House confirmed that he would use the regnal name "Charles III".[8] When a British monarch becomes king or queen, they are allowed to change their name if they want to. For example, Charles' grandfather changed his name from "Albert" to "George", and he was "King George VI".



Charles' coronation took place at Westminster Abbey on 6 May 2023.[9] HM Queen consort Camilla was crowned at the same occasion. Charles' eldest son William, Prince of Wales attended and was the only noble to swear allegiance to The King.

Personal life


He was married to his first wife, Diana, Princess of Wales, from 1981 until they divorced in 1996.[3] They had two sons, Prince William and Prince Harry. Charles and Diana's divorce attracted a lot of media coverage and attention. Charles has been married to his second wife, Camilla, Queen Consort formerly the Duchess of Cornwall, since 2005.[3]

On 25 March 2020, Charles tested positive for COVID-19.[10][11]

On 5 February 2024, it was announced by Buckingham Palace that Charles had been diagnosed with cancer.[12]


  • 14 November 1948-6 February 1952 His Royal Highness Prince Charles Philip Arthur George of Edinburgh
  • 6 February 1952-9 September 2022 His Royal Highness The Duke of Cornwall, His Royal Highness Duke of Rothesay, His Royal Highness The Earl of Carrick, Baron of Renfrew, Lord of the Isles
  • 26 July 1958- 9 September 2022: Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, His Royal Highness The Earl of Chester
  • 9 April 2021-10 March 2023 His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, His Royal Highness The Earl of Merioneth, Baron of Greenwich
  • 8 September 2022 His Majesty The King of the United Kingdom
  1. Ceremonial and non-hereditary title conferred by the Commonwealth heads of government to symbolise the voluntary association of nations in the Commonwealth. Charles was chosen to succeed Elizabeth II at the 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.[1]
  2. As the reigning monarch, Charles does not usually use a family name, but when one is needed, it is Mountbatten-Windsor.[2]
  3. As monarch, Charles is Supreme Governor of the Church of England. He is also a member of the Church of Scotland.


  1. "Charles 'to be next Commonwealth head'". BBC News. 20 April 2018. Retrieved 20 April 2018.
  2. "The Royal Family name". Official website of the British monarchy. Archived from the original on 15 February 2009. Retrieved 3 February 2009.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 . Moreover, Charles is next in line for the British Throne, direct successor and heir of Queen Elizabeth II. Prince of Wales' biography Archived 2009-01-09 at the Wayback Machine
  4. Prince Charles, Cambridge B.A. (With Honors)
  5. Prince Charles Fast Facts
  6. Rayner, Gordon (19 September 2013). "Prince of Wales will be oldest monarch crowned". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 20 September 2013. Retrieved 19 September 2013.
  7. "Queen Elizabeth II has died". BBC News. 8 September 2022. Retrieved 8 September 2022.
  8. "Britain's new monarch to be known as King Charles III". Reuters. 8 September 2022. Retrieved 8 September 2022.
  9. "Coronation on 6 May for King Charles and Camilla, Queen Consort". BBC News. 11 October 2022. Archived from the original on 11 October 2022. Retrieved 11 October 2022.
  10. "Prince Charles tests positive for novel coronavirus". CNN. 25 March 2020.
  11. "Coronavirus: Prince Charles tests positive but 'remains in good health'". BBC. 25 March 2020.
  12. "King Charles III diagnosed with cancer, Buckingham Palace says". BBC. 5 February 2024.

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