A Monarchy Mnemonic
An extra line is needed
06 May 2023
When I was about ten, my mum taught me a rhyme for remembering the kings and queens of England. "Who needs one of those?" you might ask. Actually it's proved to be remarkable handy over the years as a historical reference point. Just the other day I read a quote from Shakespeare's Richard II. Who he? Ah yes, son of pious Edward III, and precursor to Henry IV/V/VI and the Wars of the Roses that followed.
The version I was taught (which differs slightly from the version published on Wikipedia et al) goes as follows:
Willie, Willie, Harry, Ste(ve)
Harry, Dick, John, Harry 3
One two three Neds, Richard 2
Henry 4, 5, 6, then who?
Edward, Edward, Dick the Bad
Henry, Henry, Ned the lad
Mary, Elizabeth, James the vain
Charlie ,Charlie, James again
William and Mary, Anne-a-Gloria
Four Georges, William and Victoria
Edward, George, Edward, George again
Then Elizabeth 2 began her long reign.
Now it needs an extra line.
p.s. My eldest daughter learned the excellent Horrible Histories song, which borrowed a couple of phrases from this old rhyme, including Anne-a-gloria.
p.p.s. The version my mum learned as a child stopped at Victoria. Presumably her teacher regarded those who came afterwards as being too recent to be called history.