When William assumes the throne - Queen Catherine?

I see that queen consorts don’t get numerals to distinguish them. This confused me for years (QEII’s mom was Queen Elizabeth, but not QEI).

Queen consorts get other sorts of distinctions, like their place of origin.

So, assuming William and Catherine wed, stay together, and then he assumes the throne, what will she called? Queen Catherine of ?

Are there official protocols to name her?

In general the king’s wife is just called by her first name. There’s precedent – Elizabeth Woodville (a commoner) was just Queen Elizabeth.

It looks like the title of queen consort was abolished when England and Scotland merged thrones.

I thought she would be “Her Royal Highness” but not “Queen” due to not being a royal in her own right. ???

Not so, she will be Her Majesty Queen Catherine, just as Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon became first Her Royal Highness the Duchess of York and finally Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth when her husband became King George VI

Ditto with King George V’s wife. Although she had her own title (Princess Mary of Teck), when she married, she dropped all her hereditary titles and became simply Princess (later Queen) Mary.

I heard speculation yesterday that after Catherine marries William, the Queen will probably grant her a title of her own. If not, she’d assume whatever title her husband receives after their marriage, like Sarah Ferguson received Duchess of York when Prince Andrew was given the title after their marriage.

Queen consorts don’t get numerals because they are not The monarch.

They don’t get ‘of’ anything.

So what are we to call Catherine of Aragon or Anne of Cleves?

I suppose if William eventually beheads Katie and marries another Katie, we’ll have to distinguish them by their town of origin.

They got their “of” titles from their fathers, King Ferdinand II of Aragon, and John III, Duke of Cleves, respectively.

Can you sell your title on eBay? :slight_smile:

During the time they held the position of queen consort, they were addressed simply “Queen Catherine” and “Queen Anne.”

Is it automatic that she be titled as “Queen” at all? The current husband of the Queen is not the King.

In the British system, a queen regnant’s husband is not the king, but a king’s wife is always a queen. Those are the rules.

And if it turns out that he’s actually gay, he’ll be the king queen, thus capturing both titles.



Yep, George IV was really unhappy having to go to a rather uncooperative Parliament to divorce his wife, Caroline of Brunswick, and strip her of her title.

There’s only been one “king consort” in English history, Phillip II of Spain. Also the first two husbands of Mary I of Scotland were made “King of Scots” by virture of marriage.

Once she dies she reverts to her maiden name. This is why the Queen Mother is now properly refered to as “Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon”, not “Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother”. And the only reason “Queen Mother” was even part of her style in the first place was to reduce confusion with her daughter. Mary of Teck was just “Queen Mary” after her husband died, not “Queen Mary, the Queen Mother”.

That would be completely without precedent in British history. Women automatically assume the feminine forms of their husbands’ titles (the reverse is not true). I do expect the media to start calling her “Princess Catherine/Kate” after the wedding, but that won’t be correct. Prince William will be granted the customary dukedom and she’ll be “HRH (Princess William) the Duchess of _____”.

On a somewhat related note, I just learned that in Japanese protocol, you don’t name the Emperor at all. He is officially refered to as only the Emperor. He’s only officially accorded a name after he dies in order to distinguish a past ruler like Emperor Showa or Emperor Taisho from the current Emperor.

And if he then takes a male domestic partner, there will have to be emergency meeting of the heraldry committees to decide what title his domestic partner gets!

(Duke of Ireland was a traditional one, but the Irish Republic might not care for that much anymore.
From a later time, the titles of Duke of Buckingham or Earl of Somerset are available.)

Well, I imagine when Queen Anne was of Cleves you didn’t really go around making too many references to the previous Anne if you knew what was good for you.

Not officially; that’s just done so that they’re easier to tell apart in the books. She is still properly referred to as Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, the last title she held. But if it’s necessary to distinguish her from the other queen consorts named Elizabeth, it’s convenient to call her Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon.

The only real change upon death that I can think of is that, for example in the case of the current monarch, she is correctly referred to as “Her Majesty the Queen,” the end, but upon dying will obviously no longer be called that, instead “Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.”

As for the OP, when William is His Majesty the King, Catherine will be Her Majesty the Queen. No special act of Parliament or other process is necessary to effect this. (In fact, there’s a constitutional argument that Camilla will legally be Queen, even though they have announced that she will use the style “Her Royal Highness the Princess Consort.”)

If William predeceases her, she will technically be Her Majesty the Queen Dowager (or would it be HM Queen Catherine, the Queen Dowager? I’m not sure). However, she might choose to use a different title, such as Queen Mother (if one of her children has ascended to the throne) or simply Queen Catherine (as Queen Mary did once her granddaughter had become Queen).