Famous 21st Century Emperors & Kings

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 1 
Akihito
(125th Emperor of Japan)
Akihito
24
Birthdate: December 23, 1933
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tokyo, Japan

Akihito served as the 125th emperor of Japan after succeeding his father to the Chrysanthemum Throne. As emperor, he played a crucial role in inspiring people in 2011 when Japan was struck by two major disasters: Fukushima I nuclear crisis and Great East Japan Earthquake. Akihito abdicated the throne in 2019, becoming the first emperor to do so since 1817.

 2 
Naruhito
(Emperor of Japan)
Naruhito
17
Birthdate: February 23, 1960
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Tokyo Imperial Palace, Tokyo

Naruhito, the 126th emperor of Japan and the only living monarch to use the title “Emperor,” ascended the throne after his father Akihito’s abdication in 2019. Devoted to efforts of water conservation, Naruhito has also been part of the International Olympic Committee. He plays both the violin and the viola.

 3 
Harald V of Norway
(King of Norway)
Harald V of Norway
20
Birthdate: February 21, 1937
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Skaugum, Norway

Harald V of Norway ascended the throne after the demise of his father, King Olav V. A sports enthusiast, he represented Norway in sailing at three Olympic Games. He also became a patron of World Sailing. The King is an admiral, the Supreme Commander of the Norwegian Armed Forces and a four-star general.

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 4 
Hassanal Bolkiah
(Sultan of Brunei)
Hassanal Bolkiah
9
Birthdate: July 15, 1946
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei
Hassanal Bolkiah is the prime minister and Sultan of Brunei. The eldest son of Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddien III, Bolkiah is the world's second longest-tenured living monarch, after Queen Elizabeth II. He has chaired APEC and ASEAN summits. He was the world’s richest person in 1997, surpassing Bill Gates.
 5 
Felipe VI of Spain
(King of Spain)
Felipe VI of Spain
15
Birthdate: January 30, 1968
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain

Felipe VI of Spain is the current King of Spain, reigning since 2014. He ascended the throne upon the abdication of his father, Juan Carlos I. His mother is Queen Sofía. As the king, he is head of state and commander-in-chief of the Spanish Armed Forces as well. He also serves as the honorary president of several associations and foundations. 

 6 
Bhumibol Adulyadej
(Former King of Thailand (1946 - 2016))
Bhumibol Adulyadej
16
Birthdate: December 5, 1927
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
Died: October 13, 2016

Bhumibol Adulyadej of the Chakri dynasty reigned as the ninth monarch of Thailand. Reigning from 1946 until his death in 2016, Adulyadej is the second-longest reigning monarch in the history. During his reign, Bhumibol Adulyadej retained enormous constitutional powers and was extremely popular among his subjects, with some even seeing him as close to divine.

 7 
Mohammed VI of Morocco
(King of Morocco (Since 1999))
Mohammed VI of Morocco
8
Birthdate: August 21, 1963
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Rabat, Morocco

Mohammed VI of Morocco is the present King of Morocco. He ascended to the throne in 1999. His father was King Hassan II. Hailing from the Alaouite dynasty, Mohammed VI well-educated man with a Ph.D. in law with distinction. It is alleged that corruption is rampant in his court, and he is criticized for his extravagant lifestyle.  

 8 
King Willem-Alexander
(King of the Netherlands )
King Willem-Alexander
15
Birthdate: April 27, 1967
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: University Medical Center Utrecht, Netherlands
Willem-Alexander, son of Beatrix of the Netherlands and German-born diplomat Claus van Amsberg, took over as the king of the Netherlands after his mother’s abdication. He has served the Royal Netherlands Navy and been a member of the International Olympic Committee. His interests include sports and water management.
 9 
Frederik, Crown Prince of Denmark
(Prince of Denmark and Heir Apparent to the Danish Throne)
Frederik, Crown Prince of Denmark
7
Birthdate: May 26, 1968
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen, Denmark

Frederik, Crown Prince of Denmark is the first in order of succession to the Danish throne. Frederik has various interests that range from climate change to sports. He often encourages the people of Denmark to stay active and healthy. He has also established the Crown Prince Frederik's Foundation, which aims to provide financial support to students and encourage scientific expeditions.

 10 
Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck
(5th King of Bhutan)
Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck
9
Birthdate: February 21, 1980
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Dechencholing Palace, Thimphu, Bhutan

Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck is Druk Gyalpo or "Dragon King" of the Kingdom of Bhutan. He is the son of Jigme Singye Wangchuck, who abdicated the throne in his favor in 2006. As the king, he began overseeing the democratization of Bhutan and has implemented several reforms to improve the standard of living in his country. 

 11 
Abdullah II of Jordan
(King of Jordan )
Abdullah II of Jordan
15
Birthdate: January 30, 1962
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Amman, Jordan

The King of Jordan since 7 February 1999, Abdullah II of Jordan is a member of the Hashemite dynasty. He is a 41st-generation direct descendant of Muhammad and the son of King Hussein of Jordan and his second wife, Princess Muna. Upon assuming the throne, he liberalized the economy and implemented numerous reforms. He is a popular monarch.

 12 
Rainier III, Prince of Monaco
(Prince of Monaco from 1949 to 2005)
Rainier III, Prince of Monaco
11
Birthdate: May 31, 1923
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Monaco
Died: April 6, 2005
Rainier III, son of Prince Pierre, was the Prince of Monaco from 1949 to 2005. He reduced Monaco’s dependence on gambling as a source of revenue and made it more of a tourist destination. He also reduced the powers of the royalty. He was married to renowned actor Grace Kelly.
 13 
Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
(King and Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia)
Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
19
Birthdate: December 31, 1935
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud has been reigning as the King of Saudi Arabia since 23 January 2015. An important political figure, Salman also served as the Minister of Defense from 5 November 2011 to 23 January 2015. Salman also served as the Governor of Riyadh Province on two occasions; from 1956 to 1960 and again from 1963 to 2011.

 14 
King Charles III
(King of the United Kingdom)
King Charles III
4
Birthdate: November 14, 1948
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, England

King Charles III is King of the United Kingdom and 14 other Commonwealth realms. He acceded to the throne after the death of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II. Charles III is the oldest person ever to assume the British throne. He was the oldest and the longest-serving heir apparent in British history and the longest-serving Prince of Wales.

 15 
Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg
(Grand Duke of Luxembourg )
Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg
6
Birthdate: April 16, 1955
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Betzdorf, Luxembourg
Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg, had an elite education, having traveled to the U.K, the U.S., and Switzerland for his studies. He met Cuban-born Maria Teresa at the University of Geneva, and eventually walked the aisle with her. He became Luxembourg’s sixth Grand Duke after his father’s abdication in 2000.
 16 
Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani
(Emir of Qatar (1995 - 2013))
Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani
5
Birthdate: January 1, 1952
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Doha, Qatar

Born into the royal family of Qatar, Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani was educated at the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst. He served in the Qatar army and reigned as the Emir of Qatar. His reign witnessed women vote and run for office for the first time in the country.

 17 
Norodom Sihamoni
(Ruler of Cambodia)
Norodom Sihamoni
5
Birthdate: May 14, 1953
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Royal Palace, Phnom Penh

Norodom Sihamoni has had an interesting childhood, from studying in Czechoslovakia to joining a film school in North Korea, to moving to China after the fall of Pol Pot. A skilled choreographer who had his own dance troupe in Paris, he later rather reluctantly became the king of Cambodia.

 18 
Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev
(Former King of Nepal)
Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev
4
Birthdate: July 7, 1947
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Narayanhity Royal Palace, Kathmandu, Nepal
The last king of Nepal, Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev, came to power after the infamous 2001 Nepalese royal massacre, in which nine members of the royal family, including his brother, King Birendra, were killed. He had to give up his throne after Nepal became a democratic republic in 2008.
Mswati III of Swaziland
8
Birthdate: April 19, 1968
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Raleigh Fitkin Memorial Hospital, Manzini, Eswatini
 20 
Mohammed Zahir Shah
(King of Afghanistan from 1933 to 1973)
Mohammed Zahir Shah
5
Birthdate: October 15, 1914
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kabul, Afghanistan
Died: July 23, 2007

Mohammed Zahir Shah was the last king of Afghanistan, in power from 1933 until he was deposed in 1973. During his reign, he focused on modernizing the economy, improving Afghanistan’s relations with other countries, and creating a new constitution. Following his deposition, he remained in exile for many years before returning to Afghanistan.

 21 
Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden
8
Birthdate: April 30, 1946
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Solna, Sweden

Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden has been serving as the king of Sweden since the demise of his grandfather King Gustaf VI Adolf in 1973. He is currently the longest-reigning monarch in the history of Sweden. Apart from being passionate about the environment, agriculture, technology, and trade, the king is also fond of automobiles and owns many Porsche 911s.

 22 
Birendra of Nepal
(King of Nepal from 1972 to 2001)
Birendra of Nepal
3
Birthdate: December 28, 1945
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Kathmandu, Nepal
Died: June 1, 2001
Nepalese king Birendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev, true to his royal lineage, had received an elite education at institutes such as Eton and Harvard. His murder, by his own son, Dipendra, during a dinner party massacre in 2001, that killed almost the entire Nepalese royal family, shocked the world.
 23 
Jigme Singye Wangchuck
(Former King of Bhutan)
Jigme Singye Wangchuck
3
Birthdate: November 11, 1955
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Dechencholing Palace, Thimphu, Bhutan
Jigme Singye Wangchuck had taken over as the king of Bhutan when he succeeded his father in 1972, at age 16. Interestingly, Wangchuck had married four sisters in a "Royal Wedding." He is known for promoting Gross National Happiness instead of Gross Domestic Product as the goal of Bhutan.
 24 
Juan Carlos I
(King of Spain (1975-2014))
Juan Carlos I
16
Birthdate: January 5, 1938
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
 25 
Albert II of Belgium
(King of the Belgians (1993 - 2013))
Albert II of Belgium
6
Birthdate: June 6, 1934
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Brussels, Belgium

Albert II of Belgium reigned as the King of the Belgians from 1993 until his abdication in 2013. He abdicated in favor of his eldest son Philippe due to health reasons. During his reign, Albert represented Belgium at high level international meetings. He also established the Prince Albert Foundation in 1984 to promote competence in foreign trade.   

 26 
Philippe of Belgium
(King of the Belgians)
Philippe of Belgium
14
Birthdate: April 15, 1960
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Brussels, Belgium

Philippe of Belgium is the King of the Belgians who succeeded his father King Albert II after the latter's abdication on 21 July 2013 due to health reasons. In 2014, Philippe helped form a coalition government after the Belgian federal election. 

 27 
Vajiralongkorn
(King of Thailand)
Vajiralongkorn
16
Birthdate: July 28, 1952
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bangkok, Thailand

Vajiralongkorn became the king of Thailand at age 64, following his father Bhumibol Adulyadej’s death, becoming the oldest to ascend to the throne. He was once seen dressed in a crop top, with his mistress, in a viral video. He sparked protests after moving to Germany during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 28 
Hans-Adam II, Prince of Liechtenstein
(Prince of Liechtenstein)
Hans-Adam II, Prince of Liechtenstein
5
Birthdate: February 14, 1945
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Zürich, Switzerland
Died: 0000 AD
 29 
Jean, Grand Duke of Luxembourg
(Grand Duke of Luxembourg (1964 - 2000))
Jean, Grand Duke of Luxembourg
3
Birthdate: January 5, 1921
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg
Died: April 23, 2019

Jean, Grand Duke of Luxembourg was exiled with his family following the German occupation of Luxembourg during World War II. A Royal Military Academy Sandhurst alumnus, he was part of the D-Day landings and the liberation of Luxembourg from the Nazis, and later turned Luxembourg into a financial hub.

Jacques, Hereditary Prince of Monaco
3
Birthdate: December 10, 2014
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Princess Grace Hospital Centre, La Colle, Monaco
 31 
Jean-Christophe, Prince Napoleon
7
Birthdate: July 11, 1986
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Saint-Raphaël, Var, France
 32 
Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifah
(King of Bahrain)
Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifah
3
Birthdate: January 28, 1950
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Riffa, Bahrain

Former emir and the current king of Bahrain, Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifah, had an elite education in the U.K. He reframed the constitution of Bahrain, making it a constitutional monarchy. His cordial relations with Israel helped Bahrain become the second nation after the U.A.E. to normalize ties with Israel.

 33 
Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu
3
Birthdate: July 27, 1948
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Nongoma, South Africa
Died: March 12, 2021

Zulu king Goodwill Zwelithini kaBhekuzulu was a descendant of King Cetshwayo, who led the Zulu struggle for independence against the British. His 50-year rule had witnessed his efforts in preserving the Zulu culture and traditions such as the Reed Dance ceremony. However, his comments were blamed for attacks against foreigners.

 34 
Dündar Aliosman
3
Birthdate: December 30, 1930
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Damascus, Syria
 35 
Qaboos bin Said Al Said of Oman
3
Birthdate: November 18, 1940
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Salalah, Oman
Died: January 10, 2020
 36 
Sultan bin Abdulaziz
(Former Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia (2005 - 2011) Who Also Served as the Saudi Defense Minister)
Sultan bin Abdulaziz
3
Birthdate: January 5, 1928
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Died: October 22, 2011

Sultan bin Abdulaziz was the 15th son of Saudi king Abdulaziz. He began his political career as the governor of the Riyadh province and then took over as the minister of defense and aviation. He then reigned as the deputy prime minister and the crown prince of Saudi Arabia.

 37 
Louis Alphonse, Duke of Anjou
(Member of the Royal House of Bourbon)
Louis Alphonse, Duke of Anjou
4
Birthdate: April 25, 1974
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain

Louis Alphonse, Duke of Anjou is a member of the Bourbons, a Spanish royal family, which formerly ruled many countries, including France. A direct descendant of Louis XIV of France, Louis Alphonse is a pretender to the French throne. However, the rival pretenders argue that Louis is ineligible for the throne as he is a Spanish citizen. 

Prince Sebastien of Luxembourg
0
Birthdate: April 16, 1992
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Grand Duchess Charlotte Maternity Hospital, Luxembourg
Leka Crown Prince of Albania born 1982
2
Birthdate: March 26, 1982
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Sandton Clinic, Johannesburg, South Africa
 40 
Prince Laurent of Belgium
(The Youngest Son of King Albert II)
Prince Laurent of Belgium
2
Birthdate: October 19, 1963
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Belvédère Castle, Laeken, Brussels, Belgium

Prince Laurent of Belgium is the youngest son of King Albert II and the younger brother of the current King of the Belgians, Philippe of Belgium. Currently, he is 13th out of the sixteen people in the Belgian line of succession. Prince Laurent of Belgium is best known as an ardent advocate of environment and animal welfare.

 41 
Tupou IV
(King of Tonga)
Tupou IV
2
Birthdate: July 4, 1918
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Nukuʿalofa, Tonga
Died: September 10, 2006
 42 
George Tupou V
(King of Tonga)
George Tupou V
2
Birthdate: May 4, 1948
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Nukuʿalofa, Tonga
Died: March 18, 2012
 43 
Nyuserre Ini
(Pharaoh)
Nyuserre Ini
2
Birthplace: Unknown
Died: 2422 AD
Leka Crown Prince of Albania born 1939
2
Birthdate: April 5, 1939
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Royal Palace of Tirana, Tirana, Kingdom of Albania
Died: November 30, 2011
 45 
Ahmad Shah Khan, Crown Prince of Afghanistan
(Head of the House of Barakzai)
Ahmad Shah Khan, Crown Prince of Afghanistan
1
Birthdate: September 23, 1934
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Kabul, Afghanistan
Ahmad Shah Khan, Crown Prince of Afghanistan is the second son of the former King of Afghanistan, Mohammed Zahir Shah. He was the Crown Prince of Afghanistan from 26 November 1942 to 17 July 1973. After his father's demise in 2007, Ahmad Shah Khan became the Head of the House of Barakzai.
 46 
Nayef bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
(Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia and First Deputy Prime Minister )
Nayef bin Abdulaziz Al Saud
2
Birthdate: 1934 AD
Birthplace: Taif, Saudi Arabia
Died: June 16, 2012
Afonso, Prince of Beira
2
Birthdate: March 25, 1996
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Lisbon, Portugal
 48 
Carlos Fitz-James Stuart, 19th Duke of Alba
(Head of the House of Alba, one of the most prominent families of the Spanish nobility)
Carlos Fitz-James Stuart, 19th Duke of Alba
0
Birthdate: October 2, 1948
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Madrid, Spain
 49 
Mwanga
(King of Buganda)
Mwanga
2
Birthdate: 1868 AD
Birthplace: Nakawa
Died: May 8, 1903
 50 
Mukarram Jah
(8th Nizam of Hyderabad)
Mukarram Jah
1
Birthdate: October 6, 1933
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Nice, France