Historical British Monarchs Like You’ve Never Seen Them Before

Published May 11, 2015
Updated January 30, 2018
Historical British Monarchs Pictures

The Queen, Princess Elizabeth and Margaret Rose as they interact with the royal archers in 1937. Source: Colossal

Now that Princess Charlotte has made her debut, there’s one more British royal stealing the hearts of the world. While monarchy is a thing of the past in many countries, it’s hard to deny the tiny bit of fairytale excitement and glamour that comes to mind when we envision the shiny lives of kings and queens.

Since 1837, six British monarchs have occupied the throne: Victoria, Edward VII, George V, Edward VIII, George VI and Elizabeth II. These past centuries have been marked by countless births, deaths, christenings, marriages, wars and coronations, bringing us to where we are today. Take a trip down memory lane and see more than 100 years of British monarchs in this vintage collection:

British Monarchy Vintage Pictures
Queen Victoria wed Prince Albert in 1840. Source: Filip Welna Photography

Boy King George V
This snapshot shows future King George V as a boy in 1870. Source: Wikimedia

Princess Beatrice
An 1885 snapshot of Princess Beatrice, the youngest child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Source: Vintage Blog

Vintage Queen Victoria Pictures
In image from 1894, Queen Victoria looks onto the future King Edward VIII at Richmond Park. Source: Daily Mail

Vintage British Monarchy
Queen Victoria sits beside her son Edward VII (to her right) and Russian royalty Tsar Nicholas, Empress Alexandra and their daughter. Source: Wikipedia

Edward II Vintage British Pictures
Edward VII and Alexandra in 1896. Source: Wikimedia

British Monarchs 1900s
King Edward VII ruled England from 1901 to 1910. Source: Britannica Kids

British Kings 1905
This 1905 vintage picture captures four of England’s monarchs at various stages in their lives: Edward VII, George V, Edward VIII and George VI. Source: Old Historic Photos

British Monarchs Vintage Victoria
Queen Victoria, looking regal after decades as the nation’s ruler. Source: Stephen Liddel

Edward VIII as a Child
A young Edward VIII. Source: Pinterest

George V Coronation Pictures
The 1911 coronation of King George V and Queen Mary. Source: Daily Mail

George V Hunting in Nepal
George V on the Delhi Durbar hunting tour in Nepal back in 1911. Source : The Explora

Vintage British Monarchy in 1926
This 1926 image captures Elizabeth, the future queen, after her christening. Source: Daily Mail

British Monarchy Vintage Pictures
Princess Elizabeth with her father in 1929. Source: Colossal

Vintage British Weddings
In 1934, Prince George, Duke of Kent married Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark. He died less than ten years later in the war. Source: Royal Weddings

Silver Jubilee Vintage British Royalty
The royal family in May 1935 at King George V’s Silver Jubilee. At the time, then-Princess Elizabeth II was just a small girl (seen right). Source: Daily Mail

Silver Jubilee British Monarchs
Another shot of the royal family at the 1935 Silver Jubilee. Source: Daily Mail

Vintage Pictures British Monarchs
King George VI looked quite dashing in 1937. Source: Metro

1945 Princess Elizabeth World War II
Princess Elizabeth works on a car during her military service in 1945. Source: National Army Museum

Elizabeth II Vintage Pictures
Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip were married on November 20, 1947. Source: Vintage Everyday

Elizabeth II Marriage
The newlyweds wave to the crowds from the balcony of the Buckingham Palace in London. Source: Vintage Everyday

Elizabeth II Coronation
Following the death of her father, King George VI, Queen Elizabeth was crowned Queen on June 2, 1953. Source: Daily Mail

British Monarchy History
After becoming Queen, Elizabeth II regularly attended to official engagements in Scotland. Here she is inspecting troops in Glasgow in 1953. Source: BBC

England's Royal Family 1950s
A portrait of the British Royal Family in the 1950s. Source: Daily Mail

See the 1953 coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in this video clip, which has been restored to color:

Kiri Picone
Kiri Picone holds a B.A. in English and creative writing from Pepperdine University and has been writing for various digital publishers for more than 10 years.
Savannah Cox
Savannah Cox holds a Master's in International Affairs from The New School as well as a PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, and now serves as an Assistant Professor at the University of Sheffield. Her work as a writer has also appeared on DNAinfo.
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Picone, Kiri. "Historical British Monarchs Like You’ve Never Seen Them Before." AllThatsInteresting.com, May 11, 2015, https://allthatsinteresting.com/vintage-british-monarchs. Accessed June 21, 2024.