Kings and Queens are some of the most influential people not only in their respective jurisdictions but all across the globe. Although there are not many of them left, there are names that will go down as the most significant in history. With the tradition that comes with naming who the next ruler will be, it is not so surprising to know that there are leaders who took the throne at very young ages. Despite that, certain royalties have managed to rule their kingdoms and made major strides. Here are some of them.
Mary, Queen of Scots
Mary, Queen of Scots, is said to be one of the most fascinating and controversial monarchs of 16th century Europe. At one point in her reign, she claimed the crowns or four nations: France, Scotland, England and Ireland. In fact, there is a TV series loosely based on her life, titled “Reign.” She is remembered by her physical beauty and her kindness. However, it seemed she did not have enough governing skills to rule Scotland.
Mary Queen of Scots’ reign began on December 14, 1542, or just 6 days after her birth. Her rule ended in July 1567, followed by her death in September 1543. While she lorded over lands, she lived a life of tragedy in terms of marriage and politics.
Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi of Uganda
King Oyo Nyimba Kamamba Iguru Rukidi is currently the youngest ruling monarch in the world. He ascended to the throne at 3 and a half years old to become the undisputed titular head of the 180-year-old Toro Kingdom. The previous record holder, says the Guinness Book of World Records, was Mswati III of Swaziland who was crowned at 18.
While Oyo rules a kingdom of more than two million at such a young age, there are two sides to his life. While attending school at the Aga Khan International School in Kampala, fellow students reportedly did not address him as king. He was often greeted with hugs and handshakes. “My friends at school don’t care that I am a king. They treat me like any other student,” he said.
Henry VI of England
Henry VI was the last Lancastrian ruler of England and his reign was marked by the War of the Roses. Henry was born on December 6, 1421, at Windsor Castle and was only nine months old when he succeeded his father, Henry V. In 1429, he was crowned King of England. Since he was too young to rule, a regency council ran the land until he was old enough.
Henry is remembered to be a pious man who had a sporadic interest in government. He picked the wrong advisors and was not able to prevent the power struggles that developed against him.
Emperor Henry Pu Yi
Emperor Henry Pu Yi was born into the Chinese royalty on February 7, 1906. Pu Yi grew up in the imperial palace and did not know anything about the outside world. He was crowned as emperor of China at just two years old. During the four years that he was emperor, he did not really rule the country. He had a regent who did it for him. However, he was treated like an emperor and had servants who bowed before him and obeyed his every command.
A revolution would later on ensue. This unseated him as emperor and led him to move from place to place until he found work as a gardener and literary researcher. He would later write an autobiography titled “From Emperor to Citizen.”
King Pomare III of Tahiti
King Pomare III was born on June 25, 1820, and was crowned king on December 7, 1821. He reigned until January 8, 1827. He is the second son of King Pomare II and his second wife, Queen Teri’ito’oterai Tere-moe-moe.
He was just an infant when he became king. Thus, he ruled under the regency of his mother, his aunt and his stepmother Teri’itari’a Ari’ipaeavahine and the five principal chiefs of Tahiti. He was king until he died of dysentery in 1827. His sister, ‘Aimata Pomare IV Vahine-o-Punuatera’itua, succeeded him and reigned from 1827 to 1877.
For kingdoms under a monarchy, age is just a number. The same holds true for King Tutankhamen of Egypt, Sobuhuza II of Swaziland and Alfonso XII of Spain. All of them were just boys when they took the crown. While these rulers were still in diapers or barely adolescents when they rose to power, history shows that they made their marks as some of the most prominent leaders of all time.