Royal Tots Prince William & Kate Middleton’s Baby & More Royal Tots (PHOTOS)
Will and Kate’s lucky future offspring will join an exclusive group of royal children being groomed to run the world—or serve as figureheads. The Daily Beast presents your future kings, queens, and emperors.
Sure, Queen Elizabeth is still carrying out her royal duties and Prince Charles is still waiting for his crown. But royal families plan out succession years in advance, so we already know that Will and Kate’s expected child will one day be a monarch, regardless of gender. Upon its birth, the new royal baby will join an extra-exclusive club of royal children who are even now being groomed for their future careers—as kings, queens, and emperors.
Chris Jackson / Getty Images Will & Kate’s Future Child
Ending months of speculation from royal watchers,
Prince William and Kate Middleton announced Monday that they are expecting a child. Kate is reportedly only 12 weeks into her pregnancy, but due to an October 2011 agreement to change the succession laws, their first-born child will bump Prince Harry out of the line of succession and one day ascend to the throne regardless of whether it is a girl or a boy. In the past, boys jumped over their older sisters in the line of succession; Queen Elizabeth II only became queen because she had no brothers. Jonas Ekstromer, AFP / Getty Images Princess Estelle of Sweden
When Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria gave birth to
Estelle Silvia Ewa Mary on Feb. 23, 2012, in Stockholm, the baby princess immediately became second in line to the Swedish throne. At the time of her birth, Estelle’s father, Prince Daniel, Victoria’s former personal trainer, said: “The Crown Princess feels radiant, she is so happy. Both the little daughter and the Crown Princess are doing great.” Jaime Reina, AFP / Getty Images Princess Leonor of Spain
Leonor was born in Madrid in 2005 to Crown Prince Felipe and his wife, Princess Letizia. Princess Leonor is currently second in the line of succession and is expected to become queen of Spain one day. However, due to Spain’s succession laws, if her parents ever have a son, Leonor’s crown would go to her brother instead. Talk about a sibling rivalry. So far, Leonor’s parents have given her only a little sister, Sofia, born in 2007. Pascal Le Segretain / Getty Images Princess Catherina-Amalia
Princess Catharina-Amalia of the Netherlands was born on Dec. 7, 2003, and is second in the line of succession after her father, Crown Prince Willem-Alexander. Unlike some of the other young royals on this list, her ascension will not break any glass ceilings, however, as the Netherlands have been ruled by
queens—Wilhelmina, Juliana, and currently Beatrix—since 1890. Catharina-Amalia’s father will be the notable exception in this group when he becomes king. Chris Jackson / Getty Images Prince Christian of Denmark
Though it seems that Europe will be dominated by queens in the future, some future kings are out there as well. Denmark’s Prince Christian was born on Oct. 15, 2005, in Copenhagen to Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary, and he is currently second in the line of succession after his father. And though both will likely be kings one day, they may have to wait a while. During the celebrations for the 40th anniversary of her reign in January 2012, Queen Margarethe disputed rumors that she might step aside early,
saying: “In my eyes, in a hereditary monarchy, this position means that when an old king dies, the new regent is created. I feel it’s a responsibility that you receive. And you must stay there for all your life.” Ragnar Singsaas / Getty Images Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway
Princess Ingrid Alexandra was born on Jan. 21, 2004, to Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit. Due to changes in the succession laws, Ingrid Alexandra is second in line to the throne after her father, even though she has a younger brother, Prince Sverre Magnus. Unusually, Ingrid Alexandra also bypasses her older brother, Marius, in the line of succession, because he was a child of Mette-Marit’s previous relationship and is not technically a member of the royal family. And if Ingrid Alexandra one day ascends to the throne, as expected, she will become Norway’s first queen-regnant since Queen Margaret in the 14th century.
Belgium Royal Pool / Getty Images Princess Elisabeth of Belgium
Princess Elisabeth was born on Oct. 25, 2001, to Prince Philippe and his wife, Princess Mathilde. She is second in the line of succession after her father. Belgium’s succession laws were changed before Elisabeth was born to allow her to take the throne one day, and when she does, she will become the first reigning queen in the history of the country. Issei Kato, AFP / Getty Images Prince Hisahito of Japan
Japan’s Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako have one child, Aiko, a daughter who was born on Dec, 1, 2001. Strict succession laws keep females out of the line of succession, and the pressure to produce a male heir reportedly drove
Princess Masako to a nervous breakdown and caused her to withdraw from the public eye. Amid a decades-long shortage of male heirs in the imperial family, proposals had been put forward to change the laws of succession to allow Aiko to ascend the Chrysanthemum Throne and become empress one day. That all changed on Sept. 6, 2006, when the wife of Naruhito’s younger brother, Akishino, gave birth to Prince Hisahito—the first male child born to the family in 41 years. The modernizing proposal has since been dropped, and it seems that Prince Hisahito will bypass his older cousin, Aiko, and eventually become emperor one day after all.