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King Bob the Nth

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Often, if a work wants to portray an old kingdom with entrenched rulers, they will have a leader who has a numbernote , after their name (e.g. King Bob IX). These are always written in Roman numerals and the large ones can actually be Truth in Television: France, for example, had 18 Kings named Louisnote .


A subtrope to Ancestral Name. Often a case of successive generations of Dead Guy Junior.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • One Piece has a few rulers like that, like Riku Dold III, Elizabello II, or Outlook III (Sabo's father). On the non-ruler side of things, we also have Vander Decken IX.
  • In The Legend of Zelda manga, the current Princess Zelda is Zelda XVII. In the sequel based on Zelda II: The Adventure of Link, Link must revive Zelda I from her millennia-long coma.

    Comic Books 
  • Fantastic Four: The Emperor of the Skrulls is Dorek VII. His grandson, Hulkling, is Dorek VIII.
  • The ruler of Syldavia in the Tintin story King Ottokar's Sceptre was King Muskar XII.

    Fan Works 
  • Played straight in the Gene Catlow fanfic The Basalt City Chronicles, in which Priest-Emperor Zaykar Kh'Naral is the 24th of that name. His grandfather was Rraghan Kh'Naral CDLXVII (The 467th). It's said that their dynasty reaches back into prehistoric times.
  • The current Zelda in the Hyrule Warriors-inspired fanfic In Sotto Voce is Zelda Nohansan Harkinian Hyrule XV. In this case, it's justified because it is mandatory that all heirs to the Hyrulian throne be named "Zelda".
  • The Parselmouth of Gryffindor‘s Goblin King is called Ragnuk VII. (Ragnuk I was a contemporary of the Hogwarts Founders, according to canon.)
  • At one point in Heretic Pride, Obi-Wan and Anakin act as bodyguards for the pompous King Marlontan, whose very long list of formal titles includes referring to him "Seventh of that Line", indicating that there have been six King Marlontans at some point prior to him.
  • In Mirrors (TLOZ), Sheik would have been Queen Zelda IX of Hyrule if he hadn't transitioned. Instead, he becomes King Zelda I, with his reign name differing from the name he casually uses.

    Film — Animated 
  • The song "The Phony King of England" from Robin Hood (1973) mentioned a suggestion that Prince John is "too late to be known as John the First. He's sure to be known as John the Worst!"
  • King Julien XIII, self-proclaimed ruler of the lemurs in Madagascar. The spinoff series All Hail King Julien introduces his Evil Uncle, King Julien XII. A history book gives a bit of information on Kings Julien I and II, while all other Juliens are mentioned in passing with titles rather than numbers.

    Film — Live-Action 

  • Discworld:
    • Pteppic in Pyramids is Pteppicymon XXVIII when he takes the throne (however briefly). That's a reference to the Real Life pharaohs of Egypt; the last pharaoh was Ptolemy XVI, Caesar's son by Cleopatra. But the Ptolemies ruled only in the Ptolemaic Dynasty, which lasted about 250 years (and not all the Ptolemaic pharaohs were named Ptolemy!); before the Ptolemies were more than thirty-five previous dynasties and interstitial rules, dating back no less than three thousand years. And that's an incomplete list.
    • In Carpe Jugulum, when discussing the Lancrastian tradition that whatever the priest says in the naming ceremony is your name, Nanny Ogg mentions a past king called My God He's Heavy I. The inclusion of the ordinal implies the existence of at least King My God He's Heavy II.
  • Elric of Melnibone is the eighth monarch to bear that name, and the 428th Emperor of Melnibone. His father was Sadric LXXXVI.
    • Melnibone did last over ten thousand years, after all.
  • Dune makes a good example. It's the year 10,191 of the Galactic Empire, and the current monarch is Shaddam IV, 81st Padishah Emperor. It's never explained within the original novel who exactly the previous three Shaddams were.
    • The Dune Encyclopedia has a list of every Emperor along with the dates of their reigns. Shaddam IV's immediate predecessors were Fredhrick XIX, Corrin XXV and Elrood IX. Shaddam III reigned 4200 years before Shaddam IV, Shaddam II was some 3000 years before that, and Shaddam I reigned 2400 years before him. Shaddam IV was the 81st "Padishah" Emperor, but the 370th Emperor of the Known Universe.
      • Number 1 was Alexander the Great, so it isn't supposed to be an accurate list.
    • The final emperor is Leto II, though his namesake was just a duke. You see, his father Paul, son of Leto I, overthrew Shaddam IV.
  • Isaac Asimov:
    • The Empire Novels:
      • The Galactic Emperors, whose rule stretches back twelve thousand years, although not through the same dynasty.
      • Pebble in the Sky: Stannell II is established as a short-lived emperor who was assassinated about fifty years ago (his immediate successor was Emperor Edard and the current monarch is unnamed). This name is taken from the earlier Foundation story, "The Merchant Princes", which mentions an Emperor Stannell VI, a distant successor.
      • Pebble in the Sky: The first ruler of the Galactic Empire is named emperor Frankenn the First, and their rule forms the basis of the Galactic Era calendar.
    • Foundation Series:
      • "The Merchant Princes": Stannell VI, a past emperor, is mentioned briefly by Onum Barr as one of the last good rulers. He had died fifty years before the present events.
      • "The General": The current Emperor, Cleon II, follows in memory of Cleon I, under whom the Empire reached its zenith. Cleon II likely surpassed his namesake, because Cleon I was not a forceful monarch and he preferred letting his First Ministers do the real governing, but Cleon II was a very active and powerful emperor.
      • "The General": Ducem Barr mentions Emperor Daluben IV, who reigned during Hari Seldon's development of psychohistory.
      • "The General": The narration introducing Cleon II mentions a previous Galactic Emperor; Stanel VI.
      • "The General": Riose mentions the campaigns of Loris VI, which occurred two thousand years ago, when describing his Enclosure of Terminus.
      • "The Mule": The current Mayor of the Foundation is Indbur the Third, because within the past century, the office of the Head of State has become dynastic.
      • "The Mule": According to the Encyclopedia Galactica entry, after the Great Sack, young Dagobert IX and his father, the Emperor of the Galactic Empire, retreated to Delicass and renamed it Neotrantor. His son, Prince Dagobert X, only knows the rule of twenty agricultural planets, instead of the entire galaxy.
      • "Search by the Foundation": In the fifth chapter, "Stowaway", Arkady briefly mentions the historical Stannel V, emperor of the previous Galactic Empire.
      • Harry Turtledove's "Trantor Falls": Emperor Dagobert VIII must evacuate Trantor, referencing the appearance of Dagobert IX in "The Mule".
      • Harry Turtledove's "Trantor Falls": Now that he has conquered Trantor, the warlord Gilmer calls himself Gilmer I, comparing himself to luminaries such as Dagobert VIII (whom he has just defeated), Cleon II (from "The General (Foundation)"), and Stannell VI (mentioned in "The Merchant Princes")
      • Prelude to Foundation: Emperor Cleon I, current ruler of the Galactic Empire. He is the namesake to Emperor Cleon II, from "The General (Foundation)".
      • Prelude to Foundation: Emperor Stanel VI is Cleon's immediate predecessor, having been mentioned before in "The General (Foundation)".
      • Prelude to Foundation: The Mayor of Wye is somehow a hereditary title, and until he abdicated in favour of Rashelle, it was ruled by Mannix IV.
      • Forward the Foundation: "Wanda Seldon" shows Agis XIV has taken the throne. Like many previous emperors, Agis XIV doesn't really want the job. He also mentions his namesake, Agis IV, under whose rule the Galactic Library became independent.
      • David Brin's Foundations Triumph: This book names Klayus I as the emperor of the galaxy during Seldon's trial for treason (overlapping with "The Psychohistorians").
  • Titus Groan is the 77th Earl of Gormenghast.
  • Ursula K. Le Guin's Hainish 'verse:
    • The Left Hand of Darkness has Argaven XV of Karhide, latest of a dynasty that has lasted 700 years or so. There were a lot of kings before them, though.
    • In the short story "Winter's King", all the kings of Karhide who aren't called Argaven are called Emran. King Argaven XVII commits to taking back the throne when she finds out that the corrupt Emran, Argaven's child who is now older than her because Argaven has been off-planet and been affected by time dilation, has chosen an heir with neither of the traditional names. '"The kings of Karhide are called Emran," said Argaven, "and Argaven."'
  • In John Ringo's and David Weber's Empire of Man (aka Prince Roger) space opera series, the 500-year-old dynasty has had ten Emperors and eight Empresses. All Empresses but the first have been named Alexandra — Prince Roger's mother is the seventh. His sister is also named Alexandra. One of his middle names is Alexander.
  • Cordwainer Smith's Norstrilia had Roderick McBan CLI.
  • In the Worldwar series by Harry Turtledove, the Race is governed by a 50,000 year old imperial dynasty headed by the Ssumaz family. The current emperor is "37th Emperor Risson".
  • Fighting Fantasy gives us King Salamon LVII of the city-state of Salamonis.
  • Averted in Deltora Quest, in which there does not seem to have been more than one monarch with the same name in the country's history. Although the series does end by revealing that Lief and Jasmine named their one of their sons after his father, he is either a second or third son (his brother is named after Jasmine's father, in an aversion of Dead Guy Junior) and likely won't become king.
  • Variation in Codex Alera. The First Lord is Gaius Sextus and the deceased heir was Gaius Septimus, meaning the First Lord is Gaius the 6th and the deceased heir is Gaius the 7th. This becomes a plot point in determining the next heir to the crown Tavi is short for Octavian, aka Gaius the 8th. Word of God establishes that there have been many more Gaius-es than this would indicate — the counting restarts when there is a dynasty change, with one dynasty making it to Gaius Dodecandorus, or Gaius the 12th.
  • Rafik Schami's fictional city of Morgana is technically a democracy with an elected president but practically always ruled by a member of the family Hadahek (a very large and costantly feuding family). At first, the presidents were numbered (President Hadahek LIII) but people soon got fed up with the increasing numbers, and added adjectives intead (President Hadahek the Brave) until they ran out of adjectives. Currently they name their presidents according to their hobbies (President Hadahek the Toy-Collector)
  • Parodied in Verhalen van de tweelingbroers by Tonke Dragt, when one of the main characters suddenly becomes King of Tirania, he has, despite being named Laurenzo, to adopt the name of Sutan the 467thnote , because all his predecessors have borne that name as well. There being actually two Sutans the 467th isn't reflected in the numbering, though.
  • In the Belgariad novels, the ruler of Tolnedra is always referred to as Ran [House] [Number] of the [Number] [House] Dynasty (If a given Emperor died without male issue, a different noble house would start a new dynasty rather than passing the throne to a brother, nephew or cousin of the previous emperor, with the throne often returning to a house that had held the throne at some other point in history). Arguably subverted when General Varana of House Anadile was adopted as the son of Ran Borune XXIII and took the throne as Ran Borune XXIV instead of Ran Anadile I.
    • They also seem to think that Polgara and Belgarath are hereditary names, and so the current one has an ordinal up in the hundreds—because the Tolnedrans can't wrap their minds around the fact that it's been the same two people all along.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire:
    • The Kings of the Andals, the Rhoynar, and the First Men in Westeros do this, sometimes more formally as "the Nth of his name." Since the books are set at the beginning of a new dynasty that comes from a different naming culture than the founding dynasty, most of the kings we actually see are only the first of their name, but the previous Targaryen dynasty had racked up five Aegons, two Viseryses, two Jaeheryses, two Daerons, and two Aeryses, with a smattering of other names that never got recycled. The exiled Targaryens in Essos continue the tradition; Viserys styles himself as "Viserys III", while his nephew Aegon styles himself as "Aegon VI".
    • Balon Greyjoy, whose dynasty dates back to ancient times (though they only rose to power following the Targaryen Conquest), is apparently the ninth of his name. There were also at least five King Theon Greyjoys at one point or another.
    • While the exact number isn't known, the Starks have had a tradition of naming one son Brandon in every generation... going back 8,000 years to Brandon the Builder. Even if only one generation in five had a Bran in charge, and if the average reign was 20 years, that would make the current Bran Stark (who is, in theory, the King in the North after Robb died at the Red Wedding) the 80th of his name.
    • There's also brief mention of two kings of the Reach: Garth XII and Mern IX of House Gardener. The latter was the final king of the Reach, at the time of Aegon's Conquest.
    • In The World of Ice & Fire, House Durrandon's time as kings of the Stormlands had a tradition of naming the firstborn son of each king after the line's founder, Durran Godsgrief. The maesters producing the in-universe documents that make up The World of Ice and Fire find this particularly irritating, because the fragmentary nature of the records mean that they know a King Durran did this or that thing, but they're not sure which one, leading to annotations that they think the King Durran who did thus-and-so was the tenth of his name - not counting the original Durran Godsgrief, whose thousand-year reign they think might have been a collection of Durrans rolled into one by the process of myth-making. Basically, Stormlands history is very confusing up to Aegon's Conquest and the founding of House Baratheon.
    • Ironically, Robert Baratheon is the first of his name, and so is, as far as we know, Robb Stark.
  • In Suzette Haden Elgin 's Ozark cycle, the men of Ozark like to recycle names (as opposed to the women, who must be Properly Named by the Grannies from numerological principles), using numbers to distinguish. Complicated because the names are used just because someone likes the sound of them, and the numbers do not indicate direct descent, but just the number of times that name has been used... "John Jacob Traveler the Hundredth" means only that there were 99 John Jacob Travelers before him.
  • In John Boyd 's Last Starship From Earth, numbers indicate descent in a professional "dynasty". However, priests, in a one-upsmanship contest between Irish and Jewish factions (It Makes Sense in Context) bend this by simply counting the number of alleged priests in their families. The ludicrous Father Kelly XL "apparently decided to count his ancestors who were Druid priests."
  • The not-exactly-hereditary nobles of Wright's Islandia count the number of their family to hold a particular position — within certain limits. In his lost "cultural" notes on Islandia, Wright explained the system, noting that it was "sometimes confusing to foreigners" — to which his daughter Sylvia added "I am a foreigner."
  • Assorted royal characters in the medieval fantasy Tales of the Branion Realm. Since the series spans four centuries, certain names get reused; Marsellus I and III are major characters in two different books, and princes named Marsellus feature in two more. Kassandras, Atreuses and Kathrines also appear frequently.
  • Emperors of Arkon in the Perry Rhodan universe use this in conjunction with their family name. So, Atlan da Gonozal => Emperor Gonozal VIII (there were seven emperors of that family before him, including his father) or Gaumarol da Bostich => Emperor Bostich I.
  • The Chronicles of Narnia has Prince Caspian, from the book of the same name, who ascends the Telmarine/Narnian throne as King Caspian X. We know his father was King Caspian IX, the rest of the Caspians are never mentioned.
  • Tolkien's Legendarium:
    • In The Lord of the Rings, the rulers of Gondor and Arnor and the dwarves of Durin's line followed this practice. The numbers don't get particularly high, at least on the family trees included in the appendices; only the Durins, which get to Durin VII and Last, get beyond III. Aragorn was Aragorn II as Chieftain of the North, but took a new name, Elessar, as king. None of the rulers of Gondor or Arnor were numbered beyond II.
    • The Elves, in contrast, never reused names; there are several likely reasons for this, the most obvious being that they're immortal so it would be awkward. Yet seven of the Ruling Stewards of Gondor were named for Elves of the First Age (Denethor twice, Orodreth, Ecthelion twice, Egalmoth, Turgon); one may wonder what the Elves thought of that.
  • Parodied in the Malazan Book of the Fallen series, which has King Tehol the Only of Lether, who turned out so competent at ruling that people grew unhappy with how great life had become and they chased him out the gates, just so they could go back to being miserable again.
  • Subverted in A Practical Guide to Evil. The Dread Emperors and Empresses of Praes never use their original names as regnal names, instead choosing various Names to Run Away from Really Fast like Maleficent, Terribilis, Treacherous or Triumphantnote . It is also very rare for the Tyrants to use an ordinal number, partly because rule of Praes isn't hereditary- Tyrants ascend the tower exclusively through Klingon Promotion. The only names known to have been re-used are the name of the empire's founder Maleficent and Terribilis (though it isn't known why Terribilis was re-used, it was the second Terribilis who is best-known and the first was a historical footnote).
  • Journey to Chaos: Kasile is the seventh Queen of Ataidar to have this name. There have also been twelve queens named "Fran" and nine kings named "Steiner".
  • In The Worm Ouroboros, all the Kings of Witchland have been named Gorice, with the novel opening with the death of Gorice XI and ascension of Gorice XII. This is implied to be because all of them are actually the same Familial Body Snatcher.
  • The Interdependency has been around for a thousand years, so this trope is definitely in effect for the emperoxs (the "x" is silent). The first novel starts with the death of Emperox Attavio VI and the ascension of his daughter, who takes the regnal name Grayland II. In the second book, we meet the virtual ghost of Tomas Reynauld Chenevert, formerly known as King Tomas XII of Ponthieu before he was overthrown.
  • Red Queen: All kings of Norta are named "Tiberias Calore." The current one is the Sixth, and his eldest son is expected to ascend the throne as the Seventh. After he is assassinated, his younger son, Maven, ascends to the throne, instead, breaking the tradition.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Babylon 5, when Londo Mollari becomes Emperor of the Centauri Republic (as prophesied by Emperor Turhan's wife early on), he becomes "Emperor Mollari II;" evidently, Centauri Emperors are known by the names of their Houses (which, fittingly for the Romanesque Centauri, follows Roman practice), and House Mollari had previously provided one Emperor.
  • The Crown: S01E02 "Hyde Park Corner" dramatises the moment (described in the Real Life folder below) in which the former Princess Elizabeth told her private secretary Martin Charteris she chose to reign under her first given name, complete with a Dramatic Pause as everyone realised that this would make her Elizabeth the Second.
  • Doctor Who: In "The Beast Below", the mysterious Liz 10 that the Doctor meets is actually Queen Elizabeth X of the United Kingdom. She refers to several of her predecessors as "Liz 1", "Liz 2" and "Henry 12".
  • In Farscape, Rygel XVI is a diminutive Dominar-in-exile of the Hynerian Empire, ruler of 600 billion subjects. He was overthrown by his cousin Bishan (whose number is not given) and remained in exile for over 130 cycles. He finally regains his throne in the follow-up graphic novel. His greatest hero is his ancestor Rygel I.
  • Foundation (2021): The current "genetic dynasty" ruling the Galactic Empire was created by Emperor Cleon I, who decided that from then on, only clones of himself would reign. The current triad of Brothers Dusk, Day, and Dawn at the start of the series are Emperors Cleon XI, XII, and XIII, though they're rarely ever referred to as such. In "The Mathematician's Ghost", this cycles with Brother Dusk being euthanized, the other two Brothers moving up a rank, and a new Brother Dawn, Cleon XIV, being born.
  • Game of Thrones: King Robert Baratheon, the First of His Name, actually. Most prospective kings also use this style, even if they are the first of their name. "First of His Name" is even the title of Season 4's fifth episode.
  • Mister Rogers' Neighborhood had King Friday XIII of the Land of Make-Believe.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons features Vlaakith CLVII, Lich Queen of the Githyanki in the Planescape setting, and through Planescape in pretty much every other setting as well. This Vlaakith, by virtue of being an ancient undead abomination, has also ruled for at least a thousand years, although time doesn't exactly work the same way on their home plane.
    • The First Edition Dragonlance rulebook mentions that, due to Gully Dwarves' egotism and inability to count, it is not uncommon for them to have a succession of kings of the same name, each calling themselves "The First".
  • The City of Brass, capital city and trade center of the Plane of Fire in Pathfinder is ruled by Hakim Khalid Suleiman XXIII. Outsiders, such as Hakim, an efreeti, do not biologically age past a certain point, and may remain in power indefinitely, barring outside influence.
  • Space 1889: Seldon’s empire lasted for millennia and the last of the line was Seldon LXIX (that’s 69th ).
  • The founder of the Third Imperium in Traveller was Cleon Zhunastu I, apparently a Shout-Out to Foundation. His son was named Cleon II, but he abdicated the throne. Centuries later when his successor's dynasty died out the Imperial moot tracked down his distant descendant and named him Cleon III, unfortunately he turned out to be insane and was assassinated. Following emperors sometimes were numbered but due to changes in dynasty they rarely got to large numbers; the highest reached is Martin VI. Numbers are preserved between emperors and empresses - Paulo I's granddaughter was Paula II, and her great-great-great grandson was Paulo III.

  • Probably implied in Ruddigore. At the time of the play's setting, in the beginning of the 19th century, there are depending on how you look at it, either 22 or 23 "bad baronets" of Ruddigore. As the bulk of baronetcies were from the mid 1600s, it seems a bit short of time for there to have been that many of them. Likely, since they are cursed to die if they don't commit at least one evil act daily, they have a high turn-over rate.

    Video Games 
  • Chrono Trigger has a rather non-orthodox example. Several families of minor characters (only one being royal) from 600 AD have their 1000 AD descendants marked with the same name as their ancestor but with a suffixed Roman numeral. This illustrates that yes, their families survived and produced descendants for all those 400 years.
    • Several non-royal families of this type include the Yakra and Yakra XIII, Toma and Toma XIII (with Chrono Cross, taking place 20 years after Trigger, also adding a Toma XIV), and finally Ozzie and Ozzie VIII.
    • The Guardian royal family is a special case. The game gives us King Guardia XXI, who rules his eponymous nation in the year 600 AD, and his descendent four centuries hence, King Guardia XXXIII. It seems to be a title, or at least regnal name that can be used in conjunction with an unstated real name, since King Guardia XXI's wife Queen Leene signs her name as "Queen Guardia XXI, Leene" in a letter during a sidequest (the rest of the game only calls her Queen Leene). This also indicates that spouses of Guardian monarchs also get to share the monarch's regnal number upon marriage.
  • Kingdom of Loathing has King Ralph XI. Who constantly gets imprismed. By a magical, indestructible sausage that somehow keeps coming back.
  • Metroid Prime 3: Corruption has this as a borderline Running Gag when you scan busts of Bryyo's ancient rulers found all over the planet... until you reach 'The last emperor of Bryyo'.
  • The plot of the obscure puzzle game Blue Ice begins with the death of Edward the 712th.
  • Final Fantasy IX:
    • Princess (later Queen) Garnet bears the full name Garnet Til Alexandros XVII. Her mother is Brahne Raza Alexandros XVI, indicating the Alexandandrian ordinal increases every generation.
    • A lesser example from the same game, but the regent of Lindblum is Cid Fabool IX.
  • The Elder Scrolls
    • The series has Emperor Uriel Septim VII, the 21st and finalnote  Emperor of the Septim dynasty. Crosses over with Meaningful Name and Numerological Motif, as the Archangel Uriel is traditionally the seventh and last in Judeo-Christian tradition, while "Septim" comes from septem, Latin for "seventh".
    • Other historical examples include the four Emperors named Pelagius Septim (of whom Pelagius III was the infamous "Mad Emperor") and, from the previous dynasty, the three Emperors named Reman Cyrodiil.
  • Saga Frontier 2: Gustave XIII at least until he was proven to have no aptitude in Anima, who also had a younger half brother named Gustave.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has King Zora XVI ruling Zora's Domain; Twilight Princess is set about a century later and refers to a recently-deceased King Zora, who presumably had an even higher number.
  • An accidental version in Warcraft III: Hero units all gets their own proper names (Gavinrad the Dire, Sage Truthbearer or Manadar the Healer for paladins, etc.) but if there are more heroes than there are names, the list rolls around with the new ones having II, III, etc. added to their names (highly unlikely unless every player picks the exact same heroes though, or is playing a custom map).
  • The main conflict of Demon's Souls started when King Allant XII woke up the Old One, which proceeded to unleash the Deep Fog over the Northern Kingdom of Boletaria, summoning powerful demons in the process.
  • In Tales of the Abyss, we find out when his full title is used that Peony is Emperor Peony IX. His father was Emperor Karl VI, and there's a statue of a different Emperor Karl in Keterburg.
  • Final Fantasy XV: Lucis has made it to its 113th king, Regis Lucis Caelum CXIII, when the story starts. This is the number of the king, by the way, not the number of Regises the country has had. The crown prince, Noctis, is crowned Noctis Lucis Caelum CXIV.
  • Played for Laughs in Encarta Mind Maze, where a uniquely stingy king styles himself "the First" just to stretch out his official title.
  • An interesting case in Homeworld with the Taiidani Emperor Riesstiu IV the Second. The reason for the weird name is that he's actually a clone of Emperor Riesstiu IV, who was so paranoid that he had all potential heirs killed and decreed that all future emperors would be his clones. Riesstiu I was an admiral, who seized power after the ancient Hiigarans laid waste to the Taiidani homeworld and declared himself emperor.
  • Dragon Quest: In the Dragon Quest I NES manual, the King of Tantegel is named King Lorik XVI, descendant of Lorik I from Dragon Quest III.

    Web Animation 
  • One Strong Bad Email from Homestar Runner had Strong Bad mention that there were actually twelve King of Towns. And for some reason, the fourth King of Town was an onion.
    • He was the most popular one.

  • Erfworld has King Saline the Fourth (IV). Think about it.
  • Girl Genius has Aaronev Wilhelm Sturmvoraus, also known as Aaronev VI, the Prince of Sturmhalten. It can only be presumed that if his son, Aaronev Tarvek Sturmvoraus (who is generally referred to by his middle name to distinguish him from his father), was allowed to remain in the city and became officially recognized as its ruler, he would be known as Aaronev VII.

    Western Animation 
  • The minor character King Bushwick the Thirty-Third (or "Thoity-Thoid") of Rocky and Bullwinkle seems to invoke this, but then it is revealed that he is the island's first king, who is called that because he lives on Bushwick and 33rd.
  • Parodied in The King and the Mockingbird with the titular King Charles V+III=VIII+VIII=XVI.
  • At the end of the Pilot Movie of Sofia the First, Sofia asks her stepfather why he's called King Roland the Second; he explains that his father was the first King Roland. Cue a Title Drop from Sofia.

    Real Life 
  • Regnal numbering only began in 12th or 13th century Europe; numbers prior to this have been applied in retrospect by historians. Before this, monarchs were distinguished by nicknames (e.g. the English kings Edmund the Magnificent and Edmund Ironside) or by paternity.
    • This is why Edward Longshanks of The House of Plantagenet (r. 1272-1307) is called Edward I even though three previous Edwards (Edward the Elder, Edward the Martyr, and Edward the Confessor) had been King of England (well, King of the English...) before the Norman Conquest of 1066. Indeed, English regnal numbering only started when it was realised that there were going to be three King Edwards in a row, and so they were called Edward I, Edward II and Edward III to tell them apart.
    • James I and James II are properly "James I and VI" and "James II and VII" (of England and Scotland respectively), double dipping this trope. Most of the other monarchs of the UK, both before and after the act of Union, haven't recycled names from before the Scottish and English thrones merged. The only other monarch with dual numbers was William III and II, as there had been two prior English kings named William, but only one in Scotland. Current protocol is that the higher number takes precedence, hence William IV, Edward VII, Edward VIII and Elizabeth II. In the case of Mary II the numbers happen to match: England and Scotland had each had one Mary before the crown union. Neither had an earlier Charles or George or Victoria, so that wasn't an issue. Conveniently, since 1707, no monarch has had a name with a higher Scottish numbering than English, and the royals are unlikely to do so; thus we are unlikely to see James VIII, Malcolm V, Kenneth IV, Donald IV, Constantine IV, Alexander IV, Robert IV, David III, Duncan III or Macbeth II on the throne any time soon.
      • In the 1950s, Scottish extremists began a campaign of blowing up mailboxes with the "EIIR" cypher (characteristically punishing the senders) to highlight that Scotland never had an "Elizabeth I", so could not have an "Elizabeth II".
    • There was some talk about the eldest son of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge being named Alexander, in which case he would have had to be "Alexander IV", but in the end he was named George (full name George Alexander Louis). (The boy could choose to reign under his second baptismal name as Alexander IV if he wanted, but see further below.)
    • The British monarchy is also relatively tame on this trope and none of the numbers have gotten into the double digits yet. Eight Henries and Edwards, seven Jameses, and six Georges. There's also four Williams in England plus one in Scotland, which also had four Malcolms.
    • Averted with, among others, King Stephen, King John and Queen Anne. No numbers since they're the only monarchs to bear that name on the English/British throne.
      • Anne doesn't stand out since there haven't been that many reigning queens but Stephen hasn't been recycled since 1154. This isn't all that surprising, since King Stephen reigned during a disastrous civil war and also was the first and only member of the House of Blois to sit on the English throne, without becoming part of the ancestry of his successors. Queen Anne, on the other hand, was quite a successful monarch, so the current queen had no problem using that name for her daughter.
      • Contrary to a popular misconception, the name John has been reused in the English and British royal family, though admittedly mostly for younger sons; while King John's grandson Edward I "Longshanks" named his eldest son John (who died before his father), later royals named John have all been younger sons. The most significant of these is probably John of Gaunt, the third surviving son of Edward III, a major political and social figure in his daynote  and founder of the House of Lancaster (and thus ancestor of all English and British monarchs since Henry VII.note  More recently, the youngest son of George V was Prince John (1905–19).
    • Queen Victoria has also not been recycled, but considering that she was relatively recent and that there has only been one queen regnant since her, this may not mean anything. It may be permanently unused to preserve the uniqueness, but then people thought the same thing about Elizabeth until 1952 (when the present monarch first learned of her accession, her personal secretary Martin Charteris asked her, "By what name shall you be known?" expecting her to pick a different regnal namenote ; the ever-practical Queen surprised him and said, "My own, of course.")
      • Victoria, apparently a bit full of herself, hoped that all her successors would be named Albert or Victoria (or Victor). Her son Prince Albert Edward ditched that idea to become King Edward VII, claiming he wished to honour the memory of his father by keeping the name unique to him. His eldest son was named Albert Victor, but predeceased his father and grandmother without issue. His grandson Albert thought the name a bit too Germanic for a British king (especially so soon after a war with Germany and with another looming), and became King George VI (though he had a younger brother named George), as a symbol of continuity with his father King George V, which was meant to try to bring stability back to the country after the Abdication Crisis. (It also helped he could claim he was just continuing his grandfather's tradition of reserving the name "Albert" for the revered Prince Consort.)
    • Charles Philip Arthur George, the present Prince of Wales, once said he intended to be "King George VII", not "Charles III", as the two previous Kings named Charles had been rather unlucky. This means that his grandson will in all likelihood be George VIII (assuming he doesn't want to troll his people by becoming Louis Inote  or Alexander IV).note  Charles' first son William on the other hand will presumably be become "William V" (which, interestingly, probably puts a William on the throne for the 1000th anniversary of the Conquestnote ).
    • In the (now highly unlikely) event that Prince Harry became king, he would likely be Henry IX. (Although the last Henry was somewhat unsavoury, the alternatives are worse; his full name is "Henry Charles Albert David," considering that "Charles" is probably more of a no-no than "Henry"—see the bit about his dad—"Albert" is permanently reserved for Queen Victoria's Prince Consort, and "David" would not only require English people to be confused about "David III" but would also remind his uncles about the other David—their late and unpleasant great-uncle Edward VIII, known to his family by that name.)
  • Pope John XXIII (actually the 21st Pope of this name, due to some confusion in numbering; Antipopes make everything terrible — the 20th century John XXIII is also the second John XXIII), plus John Paul II. And to complete the dual names, there was Paul VI. Also Benedict XVI, Gregory XVI, Pius XII, Leo XIII, Clement XIV, Innocent XIII, Stephen IX (once called Stephen X, due to one dying before officially becoming Pope), Boniface IX, Urban VIII, Alexander VIII, Adrian VI, Celestine V, Nicholas V, Sixtus V, Martin V (technically there were only three of the name, but a mistranslation of two Popes named Marinus led to the confusion), Anastasius IV, Eugene IV, Honorius IV, Sergius IV, and Felix IV, plus an Antipope Felix V. There were also two different Antipopes Victor IV and an Antipope Sylvester IV. Before our current Pope Francis, the last Pope to have an original name was Lando (no, honestly!), reigned AD 913–14 (unless one counts "John Paul" as original).
    • Interestingly, the first John Paul actually called himself "John Paul I" Latin , which means Francis is unquestionably the first since Lando not to have an ordinal.
    • Also, there's confusion in the numbering of several papal names, including numbers that were mistakenly skipped over. This is a plot point in James Branch Cabell's Jurgen, A Comedy of Justice.
  • In fact, the French had approximately 18 kings named Louis. And one Louis-Phillippe. Oh, and ten named Charles note  and six named Philip and five named Henry. The current heir to the house of Bourbon styles himself as Louis XX (Louis XIX having been the nominal king of France for 20 minutes in 1830).
    • Deliberately invoked from the 17th Century through to the French Revolution: every heir in direct line for the throne was given the first name Louis, for eight generations beginning with Louis XIII.note  In fact, Louis XVI and Louis XVIII were brothers, both named Louis but with different middle names. The first Bourbon king (Henry IV, who succeeded in 1589) was ten generations from his last royal ancestor, Louis IX (who died in 1270), and it was perhaps to reinforce their claim to the throne that the Bourbons named most of their sons Louis, although the fact that Louis IX was the only Capetian king to be canonised as a saint may have been even more important.
    • There were also four Frankish kings named Clovis, which was an early form of the name that became Louis, so the real number could arguably be 22.
  • The numbering of the kings and emperors of the Holy Roman Empire not surprisingly is a bit chaotic, even though the ordinal numbers go up as high as 7 (Henry (Heinrich) VII and Charles (Karl) VII); whether a king was crowned Holy Roman Emperor or not did not affect the ordinal number. However, as at various points you had a ruler appointing his eldest son co-ruler and having him crowned during his lifetime in a bid to turn the elective monarchy into a hereditary one or two rulers vying for the title, often when either the great feudal lords or the pope set up an "anti-emperor". Co-rulers who predeceased their fathers and anti-emperors usually did have a number assigned to them, but that rule was not strictly enforced. In one case they may also have forgotten that there already was a king or emperor of the same name and number, thus the list includes two rulers called Louis (Ludwig) IV, to wit Louis the Child (r. 900-911) and Louis the Bavarian (1314-1347). There are also rulers listed as Henry (VI.) (crowned in 1147 as co-ruler of Conrad III, but predeceased him) and one called Henry (VII.) (he was the son of Frederick II, crowned as co-emperor in 1222, but deposed by his father after he rebelled against him) as well as Henry VI (1169-1197) and Henry VII (1308-1313). Another complication occurred when Frederick of Habsburg came to the throne: when he was made king in 1440, he was assigned the number IV, counting his Habsburg predecessor Frederick the Fair (anti-king to Louis IV the Bavarian 1314-1330) as legitimate, but when he was crowned as Holy Roman Emperor in 1452 he was renumbered Frederick III. There was also an Otto IV. There was also a co-ruler named Ferdinand IV.
  • Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden is probably only the 10th king named Carl/Charles/Carolus; when Swedish kings first adopted regnal numbers in the 16th century, they based them on a history that was pretty much entirely fabricated for events before the 11th century, and this history listed a number of Carls who likely never existed. It also lists a few rulers who did exist, but whose described connection to Sweden is questionable — for instance, in the unlikely event that an Attila rises to the throne of Sweden, he would be Attila II according to that history. (That's a common name in Iceland, spelt Atli.)
    • Another Swedish example is Erik XIV, who was probably something like the seventh or eighth Erik to rule Sweden. Like some English examples of less successful monarchs, he is and will probably remain the last king of that name.
    • More recently, there were six kings named Gustaf. Earlier, there was Magnus IV.
  • Heinrich LXXII, Prince of Reuss-Lobenstein-Ebersdorf. But unlike with most European monarchies, his number does not indicate that he was preceded by 71 previous rulers also named Heinrich. By tradition, all male members of the House of Reuss are named Heinrich, and are numbered by order of birth within the family in general. In the Reuss Younger Line, the numbering system was reset at the beginning of each century; thus Heinrich LXXII's high number is directly related to his having been born at the very end of the 18th century (1797).
    • This is an enforced and exaggerated example of Naming After Somebody Famous; the House of Reuss requires all male descendents to be named Heinrich after Henry (Heinrich) VI, Holy Roman Emperor, since the 12th century. In the Elder Line the numbers increase and are reset at the start of each century. That's why the current head of the House is Heinrich XIV (son of Heinrich IV), though the last actual ruler of Reuss (Elder Line) was Heinrich XXVII, who was the grandson of Heinrich LXVII. Confusing, no?
  • Ancient Egypt was ruled by thirty-three separate dynasties over the course of 3,000 years.
    • The epithet that would ultimately hold the record for most used would be "Ptolemy", which was held by almost every ruling member of the Ptolemaic Dynasty, with a grand total of sixteen rulers holding the name. In second place was "Ramesses", which would have eleven.
    • It bares noting, however, that the names most people now know them for were not the names that would have appeared in Egyptian records. Rather, upon assuming the throne, the pharaoh would assume a "throne name", which would be how they would be referred to by the Egyptians—and everyone else (diplomatic correspondence of the era is almost invariably in Akkadian cuneiform, and Egyptian monarchs are almost invariably referred to by an Akkadian approximation of the throne name). Since the pharaohs would often choose these names very deliberately to suit their agendas and legitimize their rule, there were rarely, if ever, any repeats. Unfortunately, those names are generally rather complicated and hard to pronounce (often having extensive meanings behind them), and while there are rarely any exact repeats, many names are confusingly similar (e.g. Thutmose III was Menkheperre, while his grandson Thutmose IV was Menkheperure). The given names are usually easier to pronounce, and while there are repeats, numbers can disambiguate pretty easily, so most Egyptologists use those.
    • The Cleopatra who wooed Caesar and Marc Antony was actually Cleopatra VII. But not the seventh ruling Cleopatra.
    • Other examples include Neferkare VIII, Sobekhotep VIII, Intef VII, Shoshenq VII, Amenemhet VI, Mentuhotep VI, Mentuhotep V, Senusret IV, Thutmose IV, Amenhotep IV (though he was later known as Akhenaten), Osorkon IV, Berenice IV, and Arsinoe IV.
  • The kings of Thailand, who have traditionally adopted the regnal name "Rama" since the late 18th century. The current monarch, Vajiralongkorn, has the regnal name Rama X. It's variable whether a king of Thailand will actually treat "Rama" as a regnal name or merely a title. In the current Chakri dynasty, only Vajiravudh (Rama VI) has actually called himself Rama. But it's considered an appropriate way for other people to refer to any king as "Rama (number)", because Thai tradition is that the king's name is sacred and should not normally be spoken.
    • The kings of earlier Thai/Siamese dynasties included four kings named "Ramathibodi" (Overlord Rama), four named "Borommarachathirat" (or "Borommaracha Thirat" or "Boromma Rachathirat"), nine named "Sanphet", and four named "Borommaracha", all of which are numbered. Though many were ultimately better known by their birth names.
  • In the British peerage, a hereditary peer of the realm gets a number with his title rather than with his name: thus "The Nth Duke of Somewhere". If a title lapses and is later created again, the numbering starts over again. To clarify, let's look at the title of Andrew Russell, 15th Duke of Bedford:
    • Andrew Russell is the 15th Duke of Bedford, of the Fifth Creation (1694) of that title. The First Creation was in 1414; and before that, there were two creations of Earls of Bedford, one of which remains as a subsidiary title of the Duke of Bedford, so the Duke of Bedford is also the (N+4)th Earl of Bedford, as the Dukedom was created for the 5th Earl. As a result, in addition to being the 15th Duke of Bedford of the Fifth Creation, Andrew Russell is also the 19th Earl of Bedford of the Third Creation. This isn't entirely academic; if the male heirs of the first Duke ever die out, the heir of a younger son of the fourth Earl will become Earl but not Duke of Bedford.
    • The Duke is also the 15th Marquess of Tavistock. The title was given to the 5th Earl at the same time as his dukedom. However, the person usually who uses the title and is thus called Lord Tavistock is the Duke's (eldest and thus far only) son Henry, as a courtesy title—but although Lord Tavistock uses that title, he is not actually the 15th Marquess of Tavistock (which is his father) or the 16th (which he will only become when his father dies).
    • Now, although Andrew Russell is (among other titles) an earl (again, specifically, the 19th Earl of Bedford), he is not the Earl Russell: that's his distant cousin John Francis Russell, 7th Earl Russell, heir of a title created for the junior line descending from John Russell, third son of the 6th Duke.
    • On yet another hand, the Duke is also the 19th Baron Russell, a title awarded to his ancestor in 1539 for services to The House of Tudor...which is not to be confused with the title Baron Russell of Liverpool, which belongs to the descendants of an unrelated Victorian and Edwardian-era journalist and Liberal politician (the 2nd Baron Russell of Liverpool and the 3rd Earl Russell sent a joint letter to the Times in 1951 clarifying that "that neither of us is the other" after confusion relating to references to "Lord Russell"). And now you know why it's critically important to include both the number and the full title when referring to British peers on first reference.
  • In the Eastern Ijaw Kingdoms of Nigeria (Okrika, Opobo, Bonny, Kalabari, Nembe), kingship is the property of a particular War Canoe House (a trading company), and with its Chief becoming the Monarch. Each monarch officially reigns under the House name, adopting the regnal number following his predecessor. Most of them are in the double digits now.
    • For instance, the King of Kalabari is the tenth from the Amakiri House/Dynasty, and has the given name Abiye Suku, so he reigns as King Abiye Suku, Amakiri X.
  • Averted with the actor David H. Lawrence XVII. He is not the seventeenth David H. Lawrence in his family... he is the seventeenth David H. Lawrence to be registered on IMDb.
    • Matt Smith, who plays the Eleventh Doctor, managed to get the title of Matt Smith XI on IMDb as well.
    • A similar numbering was also used in some armies to distinguish officers of the same name within one unit (or, ca. 1800, officers of the rank of colonel and above within the entire Russian army), or even privates within a regiment.
  • The House of Savoy, formerly reigning over Italy, tried to do this with the names Vittorio Emanuele and Umberto, their last four kings being, in order, Vittorio Emanuele II (originally King of Sardinia, his minister Cavour managed to expand the state enough to claim kingship over Italy), Umberto I, Vittorio Emanuele III and Umberto II, with the heir and only male child being named Vittorio Emanuele. The situation is made more complex by the existence of three previous Umberto with the title of Count of Savoy, including the founder Umberto I the White-Handed. Other popular names were Amedeo (they got to Amedeo IX between counts and dukes, plus its presence as the second part of the regnal names of a duke, a duke-turned-king and a king) and regnal names containing Carlo and Vittorio as the first name and Emanuele as second.
    • It is an Italian tradition to name first and second son after paternal and maternal grandfathers.
  • The current Queen of Denmark may only be the second Margrethe, but her predecessors embodies this trope to its fullest: She is the first monarch in more than 450 years who isn't named either Frederick or Christian, with her father being Frederick IX and her grandfather being Christian X, and probably only because both were considered somewhat unsuitable names for a woman. She overlooked the fact that "Margrethe I" was only regent of Denmark (and Norway and Sweden, which she united with Denmark in the Kalmar Union), since medieval Nordic sensibilities did not stretch to accepting the concept of a Queen Regnant. The naming tradition caused a bit of trouble when naming Margrethe II's heir apparent, her first son, since she wanted to keep going with the custom; they eventually decided that since her father was a Frederick, she would be counted as a Christian, and thus he was named Frederick. As Crown Prince Frederick has named his son and eldest child Christian, it appears the tradition will resume with Frederick X followed by Christian XI.
    • It is worth noting, however, that Margrethe wasn't the heir to the throne when she was bornnote , as the line of succesion at the time was still very much an Heir Club for Men. And Margrethe naming her son Frederik also solved a long-running issue of the Christians and Frederiks being out of sync note . Curiously, the one time a King tried to break the synchronized linenote , the heir died before him, and the second in line became king as Frederik III.
    • Earlier in Denmark's history, there were Eric VII, Canute VI, and Valdemar IV.
  • The Arab monarchies traditionally avert this—although names repeat, the tradition was to identify rulers as Fulan bin Allannote , there are two modern monarchies which are easing into this:
    • Jordan is currently on Abdullah II, son of Hussein, who has named his son and heir Hussein, making "Hussein II" likely...and it's likely that Hussein II will name his son and heir (when he has one) "Abdullah."
    • Morocco is already here; the current king is Muhammad VI, and has named his son Hassan after his father Hassan II.
    • Note that it's an Arab tradition to name your eldest son after your father. Assuming Jordan and Morocco remain monarchies (and the eldest sons consistently live long enough to inherit the thrones), we can look forward to some very high-numbered Husseins alternating with Abdullahs in Jordan and Hassans alternating with Muhammads in Morocco in the future... (A bit like Denmark, actually...)
    • The last Muslim king of Granada, while commonly called Boabdil, had the regnal name Muhammad XII. He vied for the throne with his uncle El Zagal, also known as Muhammad XIII. It is possible that there was a failure in record keeping and that they should be called Muhammad XI and Muhammad XII instead.
    • The former emir of Kuwait was the fourth named Sabah.
  • In Tsarist Russia, the most often used name for the Tsars was, unsurprisingly, Ivan. There were six of them, alternating with Vasilies and Feodors. But after the final two Ivans turned out to be ill-fated (Ivan V was a weak-minded co-regent to the more famous Peter the Great, and Ivan VI was deposed as a baby, grew up in prison, then was killed), the Romanovs ceased to use this name (the name Feodor turned out to be even less lucky, with none of the three Feodors turning out to be any good). Soon after they started to alternate Alexanders and Nicholases, but Revolution happened before they managed to accumulate a lot of these.
    • Before Paul I, the standard naming tradition to identify monarchs without an ordinal was by name and patronymic, similar to the Arabic custom above (Anna Ioannovnanote , Alexei Mikhailovichnote  etc). Before Peter the Great, this was used for all tsars at all, the ordinals weren't used and were assigned postfactum by historians.
  • Subverted with King Willem-Alexander from the Netherlands, who would be Willem IV (William the Fourth), but in an interview prior to his inauguration, he said:
    I mean, I'm not a number. You know, Willem Four is next to Bertha 21 in the meadow. note 
    • It is also believed that as Willem-Alexander was nicknamed Prince Pils due to an alleged fondness for lager, he wished to avoid being known as Willem IV (Willem Vier in Dutch) for fear of being nicknamed "Willem Bier" (William Beer).
  • Examples from Spain include Alfonso XIII, Ferdinand VII, Charles IV, and the current monarch Felipe VI. Prior to Spanish unification, there were Ordoño IV of León, Henry IV of Castile, Sancho IV of Castile, and Peter IV of Aragon. Note that the post unification numbers are based on the Castilian/Leonese numbering, although no Aragonese numbering of names was higher. Taking Aragon into the equations, there were an additional five Alfonsos and another Ferdinand (Ferdinand II of Aragon was also Ferdinand V of Castile). There was also a Peter in Castile in addition to the four Aragonese. There's also four Johns and five Ramiros between Castile/León and Aragon.
  • The Byzantine Emperors had Constantine XI, Michael IX, John VIII, Leo VI, Andronikos V, Alexios V, Romanos IV, and Tiberius IV.
  • In Bulgaria, the only ordinals universally agreed upon are those of Boris III, Simeon II, Coloman II and Georgi/George II (plus Ferdinand I and Alexander I, who have ordinals despite being the only ones of their name). The rest are inconsistent:
    • With Tzars named Ioan/Ivan, historians argue whether every instance of the name counts (resulting in Ioan XII), or Tzars also bearing the Asen dynastic name should be numbered separately (Ioan Asen V). Ioans from the last ruling dynasty are better known by their second names, possibly similar to how the related house of Basarab of Wallachia used the name Ιoan/Ion as a title before every ruler's actual name, relying on its original Hebrew meaning of "[by] God's will".
    • Those named Peter number up to II or IV, depending whether royal descendants who unsuccessfully rebelled against Byzantine occupation count.
    • Theodore was the name borne by Peter II/IV before he renamed himself for the sake of continuity, so some consider the later Theodore Svetoslav as Theodore II.
    • The numeral of Tzars named Mikhail/Michael is also disputed because it's not clear if Boris I also counts as Mikhail I after his baptism and renaming.
    • Constantine II was the son of the last independent Tzar before the country fell to the Ottomans, but it's still disputed whether he claimed the title when he rebelled against his sovereigns.
  • Western Roman Emperors are often referred to by nicknames or variants of their surnames, for instance the three Gaius Julius Caesars in the Julio-Claudian dynasty are typically known as Julius Caesar, Augustus, and Caligula.
  • In Norway, the current king is Harald Vnote , with his two immediate predecessors being Olav V and Haakon VIInote . Harald will be succeeded by his son Haakon VIII, which will make Haakon the most common name for Norwegian monarchs when he ascends. Going back farther, we have Magnus VII.
  • The Ottoman Empire had Mehmed VI, Murad V, and Mustafa IV.
  • In Tonga, the current king is Tupou VI. He is only the sixth monarch of the country, as each monarch included the name Tupou, the name of their royal house, in their regnal name along with their personal name, though even that still qualifies as three of the previous monarchs were named George.
    • Interestingly, even though Tupou VI is the sixth monarch of Tonga, he's only the fifth king. Enter Sālote Tupou III, 'Queen' of Tonga (daughter of 'King' George Tupou II and mother of 'King' Tāufaʻāhau Tupou IV). This works because as mentioned Tupou is technically a surname rather than a given name, and thus unisex.
  • Bavaria was particularly fond of having rulers named Ludwig. Not only did they have three kings named Ludwig, when they were a duchy, they had 10 dukes named Ludwig, for a total of 13 rulers named Ludwig. They also had 16 dukes named Henry, five named William, five named Albert, and seven named Otto, which, combined with a later King Otto, left them with eight rulers named Otto. When Bavaria was an Electorate, there were four electors named Maximilian, the last of which became the first king. Combined with the later King Maximillian II, there were five rulers named Maximilian.
  • From the German House of Mecklenburg, the last ruler of Mecklenburg-Strelitz was Adolphus Frederick VI, while the last ruler of neighboring Mecklenburg-Schwerin was Frederick Francis IV. Earlier monarchs from the House include Johann VII, Albrecht VII, Henry V, and Nicholas V of Werle.
  • A twist in the United States: the former Presidents Bush are often called "Bush 41" and "Bush 43", referring to their positions in the overall line of Presidentsnote  rather than direct succession of the name. More poetic writers might stick closer to this trope and call them Bush the Elder and Bush II. Formally, though, similarly-named Presidents are distinguished by their middle names or initials, e.g. John Adams/John Quincy Adams; George H. W. Bush/George W. Bush.
    • There have only been four sets of Presidents that were knowingly related (One geneologist worked out that every president up to Obama is a cousin to some degree of all the others if you trace their lineage back to the 12th Century), the aforementioned Adams and Bushes were both father/son presidents. The two Roosevelt (Theodore and Franklin) are distinguished by nicknames (Teddy and FDR, Respectively). William and Benjamin Harrison (grandfather/grandson) tend not to have much trouble with distinguishing between them, possibly because William died in office after a month without ever having the opportunity to actually do anything. Another trend is to refer to the President by the order in which they ascended (former President Donald Trump is occasionally referred to simply as "45". Roman Numerals are almost never used by Americans when discussing the President, with the earliest known precedence of ignoring this rule established by Washington, who upon retiring after 2 terms (he could have easily managed a third) quipped "I did not fight George III to become George I."
  • In Luxembourg, there were four Grand Dukes named William (Guillaume) with the current heir to the throne set to be the fifth. The first three were also Kings of the Netherlands.
  • The Seleucid Empire had Antiochus XIII and Seleucus VII.
  • The Kingdom of Macedonia had Philip V, Alexander V, and Amyntas IV.
  • Portugal had Afonso VI, John VI, and Pedro V.
  • Poland had Sigismund II who was nicknamed Sigismund Augustus or just Augustus. In deference to him, the first Augustus to ascend the throne called himself Augustus II, with Augustus III later following, but Sigismund also retained his number among the Sigismunds, of which there were three. Other examples include Władysław IV and Casimir IV.
  • In Albania, the medieval King Skanderbeg is the national hero. Subsequent rulers adopted double names and double numbers: Prince Wilhelm I Skanderbeg II, and King Zog I Skanderbeg III. Today, Zog's grandson is called Leka II Skanderbeg V by Albanian monarchists.
  • Georgia, had George XII, David XI, Bagrat VII Alexander V, and Adarnase IV.
  • Ferdinand I of Austria was also Ferdinand V of Hungary and Bohemia. Charles I of Austria was also Charles IV of Hungary. Hungary had also Stephen V, Ladislaus V, and Béla V, while Bohemia also had Wenceslaus IV.
  • While each of the Emperors of Austria was the first of their name, as an archduchy there were many reused names. Prior to Emperors Ferdinand I and Charles I, there were four previous rulers named Ferdinand and three named Charles. Holy Roman Emperor Leopold II was Leopold VII as Archduke of Austria, while earlier Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II was Rudolf V as Archduke of Austria and Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III was Archduke Frederick V. There was also Albert VII, Archduke of Austria.
  • Ethiopia had Yohannes IV and Iyasu IV.

Alternative Title(s): King Trope The Nth