1 - The Sovereigns of King William IV (1830-1837)

Born at Buckingham Palace in London on 21 August 1765. William IV was the third son of George III (William Henry; 21 August 1765 – 20 June 1837).  He was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and King of Hanover from 26 June 1830 until his death on 20th June 1837.

As the third son of George III, William was not expected to succeed to the throne. The death of the prince regent's (George IV) only daughter in 1818, followed by the death of George III's 2nd eldest son led to William's succession. He became the last King of Britain to hold the title of King of Hanover.

At the age of 13 William joined the Royal Navy, enjoying a distinguished career which would see him created Duke of Clarence and St Andrews, Lord High Admiral, and earn one of his nicknames the 'Sailor King' the other being the rather less flattering 'Silly Billy'.

William lived with his mistress, the actress Dorothy Jordan, from 1791 until 1811, they would have 10 children who took the surname Fitzclarence, none had a claim to the throne as all were considered illegitimate. The main reason for the alliance was the Royal Marriages Act 1772. Dorothy Bland (stage name Jordan) An Anglo Irish actress would never have fitted the bill. Unlike the extravagance of his brother George IV, William insisted on a simple coronation, and  he was initially a very popular monarch. William's reign was dominated by the Reform crisis. which lead the reform Act of 1832, William died on 20 June 1837 aged 72, without any surviving litigate children, and his niece Victoria succeeded him.

King William IV Bare head Sovereign (1830-1837)

Marsh (16C) : King William IV (Bare Head) 1830-1837, above 1831 Proof 2nd head type sovereign.

Obverse Legend : GULIELMUS 1111 D:G:BRITANNIAR: REX F:D:

(William the Fourth, by the Grace of God, King of the Britains, Defender of the Faith.). Reverse Legend : ANNO 'date'

The William Wyon designed bust is seen on all William IV sovereigns, and were the first sovereigns to carry his initials W.W. The crowned shield reverse, was the work of Jean Baptiste Merlen, and was the last design to include the House of Hanover arms.

King William IV (1830-1837) - Part 2

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