This Is Who'll Be King After Queen Elizabeth Dies

Queen Elizabeth II has ruled the United Kingdom for nearly 70 years, making her the longest-serving monarch in the country's considerable history (via Britannica). Her Majesty has become such a synonymous figure with the British throne that many, at least outside of the British Isles, aren't even sure of who her successor will be. Detailed, comprehensive rules are in place for the line of succession, however, down to the next couple dozen in line to be the head monarch of the United Kingdom.

First in line for the throne is Elizabeth's elder son, the Prince of Wales, Prince Charles. Charles is the 73-year-old son of Elizabeth, who has maintained his royal duties into his senior years. He has recently made his first overseas trip since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping in line with the responsibilities expected of the heir to the throne, accompanied by his wife, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall. Charles has been the heir since birth, as the queen's late husband, Philip, was never in contention.

The line of succession runs long

According to, the rules for succession were formally established in the late 1600s and early 1700s, as the United Kingdom began to develop their constitution. After King James II fled the country in 1688, British Parliament set a precedent that they could regulate succession to the throne. They decided that only Protestant descendants of Princess Sophia can take the throne, with various other restrictions raised and removed in the centuries since.

After the Prince of Wales (above), next in line for the throne is currently his elder son, William, the Duke of Cambridge. Following William are his three children: Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis. Though William's brother, Prince Harry, has distanced himself from royal duties, he is next in line after William's children, and his own children are in line after him. The line of succession goes down 24 places, all the way down to Lucas Tindall, who was born in March 2021. The picture may change in the decades to come, of course, especially since a reign as long as Elizabeth's is unlikely to be replicated any time soon.