The British Royal Family’s Succession Is a Bit Confusing — So We’ve Mapped It All Out for You!

The British royal family‘s line of succession is confusing, to say the least. And, just when you think you’ve got it figured out, someone has a baby and the whole thing changes again — seriously! The current monarch, Queen Elizabeth, took over the throne way back in 1952 and is now the longest-living and longest-reigning king or queen in British history. So impressive, right?!

The craziest thing is Queen Elizabeth and her lineage weren’t originally supposed to ascend to the throne so easily. In 1936, her father, King George VI, took over the crown when his older brother, King Edward VIII, abdicated. That would be like Prince Harry and his family becoming next in the line of succession if his elder sibling, Prince William, decided to no longer be king! Anyway, when King George VI took over the job, then Princess Elizabeth became the heir presumptive — and the rest is literally history!

Today, Queen Elizabeth’s eldest child, Prince Charles, is set to take over when she either dies or abdicates, and once that happens, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge William and Catherine will ascend to becoming the Prince and Princess of Wales.

Harry’s son, Archie, and daughter Lilibet, will then automatically become a prince and princess, as their grandfather will be the reigning sovereign. The little guy, whose full name is Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, wasn’t given a royal title when he was born in May 2019. At the time, his parents thought it’d be best if he just went by his first name, as they wanted to give him a “normal” upbringing. Their cousin, Prince George, automatically received his title at birth as the future king, and Queen Elizabeth granted similar titles to siblings Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis to keep the Cambridge children consistent.

However, if Charles becomes king, then Archie will move up the line of succession and will be sixth in line to the British throne. When he turns 18, the royal will also have a choice in whether he wants to be called His Royal Highness. But judging by his parents, who moved to Santa Barbara, California, after stepping back as senior members of the royal family in March 2020, he’ll have a lot to think about.

After all, Harry and Meghan did give up their lives in the spotlight for a reason, and hopefully, Archie will know what to do when the time comes.

Scroll below to see the current line of succession to the British throne!