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List of French monarchs

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The monarchs of the Kingdom of France and its predecessors ruled from the establishment of the Kingdom of the Franks in 486 till the fall of the Second French Empire in 1870.

  • The Kings of the Franks of the Merovingian dynasty ruled from 486 until 751, followed by the Carolingians who ruled until 987.
  • The Capetian dynasty (descendants of Hugh Capet) followed, Philippe II Auguste (king from 1180 to 1123) being the first to adopt the title of king of France. The Capetians ruled continuously from 987 to 1792 and again from 1814 to 1848. The Valois who ruled from 1328 to 1589 were a Capetian branch, as were the Bourbons who ruled until 1848.
  • In 1791-1792 (French Constitution) and again from 1830 to 1848, the style « King of the French » was used instead of « King of France ».
  • With the House of Bonaparte Emperors of the French ruled between 1804 and 1814, again in 1815 and between 1852 and 1871.


Frankish Empire

Merovingian dynasty (486–751)

Carolingian dynasty (751-986)

  • Pépin "le Bref" (751-768), son of Charles Martel, first monarch of the Carolingian dynasty
  • Charlemagne (768-814), son of Pépin
  • Louis II "the Pious" (814-840) son of Charlemagne
  • Charles II "the Bald" (843-877), son of Louis I
  • Louis II "the Stammerer" (877-879), son of Charles II
  • Louis III (879-882), son of Louis II
  • Carloman II (879-884), son of Louis II and brother of Louis III
  • Eudes (888-898)
  • Charles III (898-929), posthumous son of Louis II
  • Robert I (922-923)
  • Raoul (923-936)
  • Louis IV "Transmarinus" (936-954), son of Charles III
  • Lothaire (954-986), son of Louis IV
  • Louis V (985-986), son of Lothaire

Capetian dynasty (987-1792)

Direct Capetians (987-1328)

Following the death of Louis V, last Caroligian monarch, Hugues Capet, member of the Robertian family and duke of the Franks, defeated Louis's heir Charles of Lorraine and won the throne.

Kings of the Franks

Kings of France

House of Valois (1328-1589)

Philippe IV's sons having all died without male heirs, the crown went to their cousin, Philippe de Valois, eldest son of Charles, Comte de Valois, younger brother of Philippe IV.


  • Louis XII (1498-1515), great-grandson of Charles V


  • François I (1515-1547), first cousin of Louis XII
  • Henri II (1547-1559) Son of François I
  • François II (1559-1560) Son of Henri II
  • Charles IX (1560-1574) Younger brother of François II.
  • Henri III (1574-1589) Younger brother of Charles IX. He was murdered by a monk, supporter of the Ligue.

House of Bourbon (1589-1792)

After the reigns of the three brothers François II, Charles IX and Henri, the Valois line was extinct in male line and the next heir, according to the Salic law, was Henri de Navarre, a descendant of Louis IX's youngest son Robert de Clermont. Henri inherited the French crown from his father's line, and the kingdom of Navarre from his mother, Jeanne d'Albret; thus France and Navarre were reunited for the first time since the last direct Capetians.

Kings of France and Navarre:

  • Henri IV (1589-1610) Head of the house of Bourbon, a cadet branch of the Capet family. He was the nearest heir of the Valois in male line. As a Protestant, he was not well accepted; he was finally crowned in 1594, after a war of five years, and having converted to Catholicism. He was murdered on 14 May 1610 in the streets of Paris.
  • Louis XIII (1610-1643) Son of Henri IV.
  • Louis XIV (1643-1715) Son of Louis XIII.
  • Louis XV (1715-1774) Great-grandson of Louis XIV (his cousin Philippe d'Orléans was regent until 1723).
  • Louis XVI (1774-1792) Grandson of Louis XV. From 4 September 1791, used the style "King of the French". He was deposed on 10 September 1792 and the monarchy was abolished on 21 September.

First Empire : House of Bonaparte (1804-1814)

  • Napoléon I A military officer from Corsica, became General and was made First Consul in 1799 (Directoire) the Consul for life (1802) and finally sacred Emperor on 2 December 1804. Deposed on 3 April 1814. Abdicated on 6 November. Briefly regained power from 20 March to 22 June 1815 (Cent-Jours).


House of Bourbon (1815-1830)

  • Louis XVIII (1814-1824) Younger brother of Louis XVI. Effectively became King after Napoléon was forced to abdicate ; he escaped from Paris upon Napoléon’s return on 20 March 1815, and regained power on 8 July 1815. Died in 1824.
  • Charles X (1824-1830) Younger brother of Louis XVIII (who was childless), succeeded him upon his death. Abdicated on 2 August 1830.

House of Orléans (1830-1848)

Following the 1830 revolution, a consequence of the return to absolutism of the Louis XVIII and especially Charles X, the crown was given, not to Charles X's heir, but to his cousin Louis-Philippe d'Orléans, head of the Orléans family, a cadet branch of the Bourbons, descendants of Louis XIII through his younger son Philippe, Duke of Orléans and younger brother of Louis XIV.

  • Louis-Philippe I (1830-1848), proclaimed King on 9 August 1830. Abdicated on 24 February 1848 ; the Second Republic was proclaimed.

Second Empire : House of Bonaparte (1852-1870)

  • Napoléon III (1852-1871), nephew of Napoléon I. Elected first President of the Second Republic in 1848, led a coup on 2 December 1851 and was proclaimed Emperor on 2 December 1852. Deposed on 1 March 1871 (beginning of the 3rd Republic).

See also Space:Présidents_de_la_République_Française for non-royal French heads of state.

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