The current Queen of England (Elizabeth II) was just 25 yrs old when she took the Throne. But she was old by comparison to the youngest people ever to have taken the throne. In fact, she was older than our top 3 in the list combined…
10 – Charles II (Reigned 1649-1685 and age of accession was 18 yrs, 8 Months)
Wiki Info: Charles’s English parliament enacted laws known as the Clarendon Code, designed to shore up the position of the re-established Church of England. Charles acquiesced to the Clarendon Code even though he favoured a policy of religious tolerance.
9 – Victoria I (Reigned 1837 – 1901 and age of accession was 18 yrs, 1 Month)
Wiki Info: Victoria was the daughter of Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn, the fourth son of King George III. Both the Duke of Kent and King George III died in 1820, and Victoria was raised under close supervision by her German-born mother Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld.
8 – Henry VIII (Reigned 1509 – 1547 and age of accession was 17 yrs, 10 Months)
Wiki Info: Henry is best known for his six marriages and, in particular, his efforts to have his first marriage, to Catherine of Aragon, annulled. His disagreement with the Pope on the question of such an annulment led Henry to initiate the English Reformation, separating the Church of England from papal authority and appointing himself the Supreme Head of the Church of England.
7 – Jane I (Reigned 1553 – 1554 and age of accession was 15 yrs, 8 Months)
Wiki Info: The great-granddaughter of Henry VII through his younger daughter Mary, Jane was a first cousin once removed of Edward VI. In May 1553, she was married to Lord Guildford Dudley, a younger son of Edward’s chief minister, John Dudley, Duke of Northumberland. When the 15-year-old king lay dying in June 1553, he nominated Jane as successor to the Crown in his will, thus subverting the claims of his half-sisters Mary and Elizabeth under the Third Succession Act.
6 – Edward III (Reigned 1327 – 1377 and age of accession was 14 yrs, 2 Months)
Wiki Info: Edward was crowned at age fourteen after his father was deposed by his mother, Isabella of France, and her lover Roger Mortimer. At age seventeen he led a successful coup against Mortimer, the de facto ruler of the country, and began his personal reign. After a successful campaign in Scotland, he declared himself rightful heir to the French throne in 1337 but his claim was denied.
5 – Edward V (Reigned 1483 – 1484 and age of accession was 12 yrs, 5 Months)
Wiki Info: Edward and his younger brother Richard of Shrewsbury, Duke of York, were the Princes in the Tower who disappeared after being sent to heavily-guarded royal lodgings in the Tower of London. Responsibility for their deaths is widely attributed to Richard III, but the lack of any solid evidence and conflicting contemporary accounts also suggest other possible suspects.
4 – Richard II (Reigned 1377 – 1399 and age of accession was 10 yrs, 5 Months)
Wiki Info: During Richard’s first years as king, the government was in the hands of a series of councils. Most of the aristocracy preferred this to a regency led by the king’s uncle, John of Gaunt, yet Gaunt remained highly influential. The first major challenge of the reign was the Peasants’ Revolt in 1381. The young king played a major part in the successful suppression of this crisis.
3 – Edward VI (Reigned 1547 – 1553 and age of accession was 9 yrs, 3 Months)
Wiki Info: Edward’s reign was marked by economic problems and social unrest that, in 1549, erupted into riot and rebellion. An expensive war with Scotland, at first successful, ended with military withdrawal from Scotland as well as Boulogne-sur-Mer in exchange for peace. The transformation of the Church into a recognisably Protestant body also occurred under Edward, who took great interest in religious matters.
2 – Henry III (Reigned 1216 – 1272 and age of accession was 9 yrs, 1 Months)
Wiki Info: Following the revolt, Henry ruled England personally, rather than governing through senior ministers. He travelled less than previous monarchs, investing heavily in a handful of his favourite palaces and castles. He married Eleanor of Provence, with whom he had five children. Henry was known for his piety, holding lavish religious ceremonies and giving generously to charities.
1 – Henry VI (Reigned 1422 – 1461 and age of accession was 0 yrs, 8 Months)
Wiki Info: Henry experienced a mental breakdown after the failure of the war, with Richard of York taking control of the government as regent until his recovery the following year. Civil war broke out in 1460, leading to a long period of dynastic conflict known as the Wars of the Roses.