When Britain's longest-reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, passed away in 2022, her firstborn and eldest son had ascended the throne as King Charles III. This spring, his reign will be formalized with all the pomp and circumstance with a coronation in London on Saturday, May 6.
Since Charles' ascension, there have, of course, been shifts in the line of succession — plus, changes to rules and the births of new family members have affected who's in line.
Ever since the 17th century, the rules of order have been determined by both descent and Parliamentary statues, according to the royal family’s website. But the rules around succession have been altered over time.
The Perth Agreement passed in 2013 and was put into full effect in 2015. This agreement equalizes the rights of sons and daughters in the British royal line of succession, meaning male heirs are no longer entitled to pass daughters in line to the throne.
Ahead of Charles' coronation weekend, we’re revisiting the royals and their current place in line to the throne.
King Charles III — monarch
As Queen Elizabeth's oldest child, Charles has been at the very front of the line of succession since his birth in 1948. Since being named heir apparent in 1952 following his mother becoming queen, Charles has obtained many titles. In addition to being the Prince of Wales, Duke of Cornwall, and Duke of Rothesay, on April 9, 2021, he became the Duke of Edinburgh after the death of his father, Prince Philip. Shortly after his mother's death, a spokesperson for the king told TODAY that he would be King Charles III.
As a royal family member and son of the queen, Charles has spent a great deal of his life in the public eye. His marriage to Princess Diana — whom he married on July 29, 1981 — garnered international attention and then ire when his affair with Camilla Parker Bowles came to light.
Camilla, queen consort — monarch's spouse
It took time for the public to warm up to Camilla for her part in the dramatic royal love triangle that dominated headlines in the '80s and '90s. Nearly three decades after their affair first began, Charles and Camilla became official when he declared that their relationship was “non-negotiable.”
It took time, but after Prince Charles brought on a public relations executive to help win them acceptance, Camilla began to gain public approval. In April 2005, the two were married, and she became Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.
Though she is not in the line of succession, Queen Elizabeth determined in February 2022 that Camilla will become queen consort when Charles takes the throne.
Prince William — first in line of succession
Born on June 21, 1982, Prince William is Charles and Diana's firstborn child, which makes him first in line to the throne. His marriage to Kate Middleton was an all-out royal event viewed live by tens of millions around the globe. Upon their marriage, William was made Duke of Cambridge and Kate became the Duchess of Cambridge.
Will and Kate's titles, however, changed following Elizabeth's death and Charles' ascension. They're now the Prince and Princess of Wales, titles held for the heir apparent.
Today, William performs various royal duties on behalf of the monarchy.
Prince George — second in line of succession
Born George Alexander Louis on July 22, 2013, the young prince is the oldest child to William and Kate, making him second in line to the throne. His rank in the line of succession means that he will likely become head of the British monarchy one day.
George has been hailed as a style icon for children. A 2017 piece by Vogue highlighted his influence on children’s clothing sales as a 4-year-old, noting how “anything Prince George wears, we will see demand for those items increase quite considerably.”
Princess Charlotte — third in line of succession
Named after her great-grandmother, the queen, as well as her late grandmother, Diana, Charlotte Elizabeth Diana was born on May 2, 2015. The young princess is third in line to the throne, and because of the Perth Agreement, she became the first female in the royal family to not be moved down the line of succession after the birth of her younger brother.
Like her older brother, Charlotte has become known as a style icon in her own right. According to a 2021 report by Reader’s Digest, Charlotte has the highest net worth out of the entire royal family. Thanks to her influence on fashion sales, her net worth is valued at $5 billion.
Prince Louis — fourth in line of succession
Louis Arthur Charles was born on April 23, 2018, and is the youngest child of the Prince and Princess of Wales. As mentioned above, his rank in line of succession is a major milestone of the modern age and equality for women as he stands behind his older sister, Charlotte.
Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex — fifth in line of succession
As the youngest son of Charles and Diana, Prince Harry has slowly been moved down the line of succession with the birth of each of his oldest brother’s children. As of 2022, he was the fifth in line to the throne.
In 2018, Harry and Meghan Markle's royal wedding was a global sensation, with nearly 30 million American viewers tuning in. Meghan became the second American to ever marry into the British royal family, and after the wedding, she became the Duchess of Sussex.
Two years later, the increasing media scrutiny of Markle and the couple's every move came to a head. In January 2020, Harry and Meghan announced that they would “step back” from their royal duties, which they officially confirmed in February 2021. Today, they live in Montecito, California.
Prince Archie — sixth in line of succession
Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, the eighth great-grandchild of Queen Elizabeth, was born on May 6, 2019, and is sixth in line to the throne. At birth, he was named Master Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor. In 2023, he and his younger sister, Lilibet, received prince and princess titles.
Princess Lilibet — seventh in line of succession
The eleventh great-grandchild of Queen Elizabeth, Lilibet Diana Mountbatten-Windsor, was born on June 4, 2021, to Harry and Meghan. Like Charlotte, Lilibet’s name is a nod to both her great-grandmother and grandmother. Instead of “Elizabeth,” however, Lilibet’s name was inspired by the queen’s childhood nickname.
See the royal family tree below for more: