When last the Cubs won the World Series, House Saxe-Coburg-Gotha ruled vast swaths of the world.
Like several other major European dynasties, the earliest recorded history of the House of Wettin is found in the tenth century. Through conquest, the family took control of Castle Wettin, and took its name for the dynasty. The family would proceed to control substantial parts of Germany and Poland over the next thousand years, and to provide a pair of kings for Poland, as well as prince consorts for Portugal and the United Kingdom, and kings for Belgium and Bulgaria. Most of these came through a cadet branch of House Wettin named Saxe-Coburg Gotha, founded in 1826 by Duke Ernest of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, one of the Saxon Duchies.
House Saxe-Coburg Gotha achieved the throne of the United Kingdom through the marriage of Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg Saalfeld and Princess (later Queen) Victoria of House Hannover. Despite Albert’s death at a relatively young age, he and Victoria spawned nine children, including the future King Edward VII. Upon the death of Queen Victoria, Edward became the first British monarch of House Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.
During World War I, King George V of House Saxe-Coburg-Gotha renamed his dynasty “Windsor” for obscure reasons relating to wartime propaganda. In the wake of the war, King George ruled (through direct imperial control, as well as through a variety of local governments) over a vast swath of the globe, including service as the Emperor of India. George V was succeeded briefly in 1936 by his son Edward VIII, then by his other son George VI, and finally by his granddaughter Elizabeth II.
Across the 20th second half of the 20th century, despite leading a country that had prevailed in two major wars, House Saxe-Coburg-Gotha (Windsor) has steadily lost control over the greater portion of its territories. Ireland, under the control of Great Britain in some form since the 12th century, escaped Sage-Coburg-Gotha (Windsor) in stages, beginning in 1922. The heaviest blows came in the immediate wake of World War II, when a number of dominions (including India and Pakistan) gained independence and renounced the monarchy.
Today, House Saxe-Coburg-Gotha (Windsor) rules a fraction of its former territories. The titular head, Queen Elizabeth II, reigns over a small, rainy island to the northwest of the European peninsula, and retains a ceremonial role over several other dominions. Reportedly, the Queen’s executive power is tightly constrained by legislative bodies within her various territories, as well as by formal legal commitments to supranational institutions. In recent times, restive Scots have threatened to destroy the political unity of the island of Great Britain itself.
Reigns of Elizabeth II
|Trinidad and Tobago||1962–1976|
|Papua New Guinea||1975–present|
|Antigua and Barbuda||1981–present|
|St. Kitts and Nevis||1983–present|
Prospects for a restoration appear grim. Although Elizabeth herself remains popular around the world, people seem to think her son Charles is “old” and “sketchy.” Elizabeth’s grandson William is better liked, but republican sentiment in many of the dominions continues to grow. More importantly, grassroots support for restoration of the monarchy in most former dominions appears low, if not completely non-existent.