The Edmondson Blog

How Monarchs Die

Being a British monarch is a pretty risky task. Since King Harold was killed at the Battle Of Hastings there has been 44 monarchs. Only eight have died of old age.

Harold, killed 14th October 1066 at the Battle of Hastings.
William I, 1066 – 1087, fell off his horse and died of injuries.
William II, 1087 – 1100, accidentally shot in heart and buried under Winchester Cathedral tower. The next year the tower fell down.
Henry I, 1100 – 1135, died from eating a surfeit of lampreys. Henry’s son and heir was drowned in shipwreck in 1120 when drunk.
Stephen, 1135 – 1154, died naturally.
Henry II, 1154 – 1189, died of a broken heart when he learnt that his sons had turned against him.
Richard I (the Lionheart), 1189 – 1199, shot in the shoulder in a minor skirmish and died from gangrene.
John, 1199 – 1216, a contemporary repart tells he fell into a fever and was let blood, but keeping an ill diet as indeed he never kept good, eating green peaches, and drinking sweet ale, he fell into a looseness and grew presently so weak, that there was much ado to get him to Newark, where soon after he died.
Henry III, 1216 – 1272, died naturally.
Edward I, 1272 – 1307, died naturally.
Edward II, 1307 – 1327, murdered with a red-hot spit thrust into his anus, so that body showed no signs.
Edward III, 1327 – 1377, died of overwork.
Richard II, 1377 – 1399, abdicated and then murdered.
Henry IV, 1399 – 1413, collapsed and died at his prayers.
Henry V, 1413 – 1422, died in France after long illness.
Henry VI, 1422 – 1471, murdered.
Edward IV, 1461 – 1483, died of fever. (He drowned his younger brother in a barrel of wine)
Edward V, April – June 1483, one of the princes murdered in the Tower.
Richard III, 1483 – 1485, killed at Battle of Bosworth Field. During the battle key allies switched sides. Tradition holds that his final words were "Treason, treason, treason, treason, treason." His naked body was paraded through the streets of Leicester.
Henry VII, 1485 – 1509, died in an epidemic.
Henry VIII, 1509 – 1547, died of syphilis.
Edward VI, 1547 – 1553, died in great pain of tuberculosis.
Lady Jane Grey, ruled 9 days July 1553, executed for treason.
Mary I, 1553 – 1558, Bloody Mary, died of either influenza or stomach cancer.
Elizabeth I, 1558 – 1603, died naturally.
James I of England and VI of Scotland, 1603 – 1625, died of dysentery.
Charles I, 1625 – 1649, executed.
Oliver Cromwell, 1649 – 1658, died of natural causes.
Richard Cromwell, 1658 – 1659, died 1712 of natural causes.
Charles II, 1660 – 1685, died of natural causes.
James II, 1685 – 1688, deposed and died of brain haemorrhage.
William III and Mary II, jointly reigned from 1689. William died from pneumonia, a complication from a broken collar bone resulting from a fall from his horse. Mary died of smallpox.
Anne, 1702 – 1714, died of erysipelas, a bacteriological skin infection causing massive swelling. Her body was so swollen and large that it had to be buried in a vast almost-square coffin
George I, 1714 – 1727, died of a stroke.
George II, 1727 – 1760, died of a ruptured aorta while straining on the WC.
George III, 1760 – 1820, died of porphyria that had turned him mad (and lost America).
George IV, 1820 – 1830, died from a ruptured blood vessel in his stomach.
William IV, 1830 – 1837, died of cardiac failure and bronchopneumonia.
Victoria, 1837 – 1901, died naturally at a very old age.
Edward VII, 1901 – 1910, , grossly overweight, died of a heart attack.
George V, 1910 – 1935, died of natural causes, although it was admitted in 1986 that he was “helped” to die so that the death could be reported in The Times and not the evening papers.
Edward VIII, 1935 – 1936, abdicated.
George VI, 1936 – 1952, died from lung cancer.
Elizabeth II, 1952 – present

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