How and When Does Prince Charles Become King?
The throne has been passed to Prince Charles. After his mother, Queen Elizabeth, passed away today at the age of 96, her son, Prince Charles, automatically became monarch. King Charles instantly assumes the role of monarch of the United Kingdom, much as Queen Elizabeth did upon the death of her father, King George VI.
Over the course of the preceding year, Charles’s responsibilities on behalf of his sick mother have grown. He filled in for her in the Easter Maundy Service, the Remembrance Sunday Service, and the Commonwealth Day Service, and he opened parliament for the first time in May.
Charles, like his mother before him, will have to choose a regnal name for himself. Like Elizabeth, Charles will likely return to his birth name. The BBC stated that Charles will be known as King Charles III. The date of Charles’s coronation is currently unknown.
The reign of King Charles II as Prince of Wales was the longest of any British monarch. Since his eldest son, Prince William, is clearly next in line for the throne, he will need to be officially named Prince of Wales. William’s mother, Princess Diana, was known as the Princess of Wales, therefore it seems likely that William will take up that title as well.
A royal fan told Kate, “You’re going to make a brilliant Princess of Wales.” earlier this summer, during the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s visit to Cardiff, Wales for Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee. And Kate’s response was “That’s very kind. I’m in good hands,” making a gesture toward her husband.