Countries with Kings - Does America have a King?

Heraldic Royal Crown of Spain - Countries with Kings, source Wikimedia Common
Heraldic Royal Crown of Spain - Countries with Kings, source Wikimedia Common

I recently stumbled upon a question in Wiki Answers asking "How many countries have kings and who are they?" The answer given was:

  • Countries definitely with a King: Spain, Belgium, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Jordan, Thailand, Norway, Sweden

This is partly correct. Actually, out of 45 countries that have monarchies in 2011, there are fifteen countries with a King.


Countries with Kings

Here are the fifteen countries with kings and their kings, in alphabetical order:

  1. Bahrain - King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa
  2. Belgium - King Albert II
  3. Bhutan - Jigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck
  4. Cambodia - King Norodom Sihamoni
  5. Jordan - King Abdullah II
  6. Lesotho - King Letsie III
  7. Malaysia - King Syed Sirajuddin
  8. Morocco - King Mohammed VI
  9. Norway - King Harald V
  10. Saudi Arabia - King Abdullah
  11. Spain - King Juan Carlos I
  12. Swaziland - King Mswati III
  13. Sweden - King Carl XVI Gustaf
  14. Thailand - King Bhumibol Adulyadej
  15. Tonga - King George Tupou V


Queen Elizabeth II
Queen Elizabeth II

In Canada where I live, we don't have a king but we have a queen - Queen Elizabeth II, who as sovereign is shared equally with fifteen other countries within the Commonwealth of Nations, all being independent and the monarchy of each legally distinct.


WHAT ABOUT THE USA?

Yes, what about the United States of America? Does America have a king? Well, what a silly question, isn't it? The USA is a democratic country, not a monarchy. But yes, America does in fact have kings, or I should say, had kings. There was Elvis Presley, the King of Rock and Roll. There was Michael Jackson, the King of Pop. And lest we forget Yul Brynner, the King of Siam in "The King and I". Sadly, the King of Rock and Roll, the King of Pop, and the King of Siam, are now all gone, but they were most definitely kings.


Michael Joseph Jackson - The King of Pop (August 29, 1958  June 25, 2009)
Michael Joseph Jackson - The King of Pop (August 29, 1958 June 25, 2009)

MICHAEL JACKSON - The King of Pop

Michael Jackson, referred to as the King of Pop, is one of the most widely beloved entertainers and profoundly influential artists of all-time.

Five of Jackson's solo albums - Off the Wall, Thriller, Bad, Dangerous and HIStory, all with Epic Records, a Sony Music label - are among the top-sellers of all time. During his extraordinary career, he sold an estimated 750 million records worldwide, released 13 No.1 singles and became one of a handful of artists to be inducted twice into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Guinness Book of World Records recognized Jackson as the Most Successful Entertainer of All Time and Thriller as the Biggest Selling Album of All Time. Jackson won 13 Grammy Awards and received the American Music Award's Artist of the Century Award.

In the early 1980s, he defined the art form of music video with such ground-breaking videos as "Billie Jean", "Beat It" and the epic "Thriller". Jackson's sound, style and dance moves inspired subsequent generations of pop, soul, R&B and hip-hop artists.

On Thursday June 25, 2009, Michael Jackson died of overdose. His death was the lead story on Friday's newspapers nationwide, from the big national papers to the local Indiana dailies near his hometown of Gary. Most notable were USA Today's headline - MICHAEL - King of Pop dies - and The Los Angeles Times' headline - "King of Pop is dead at the age of 50."


ELVIS PRESLEY - The King of Rock and Roll (January 8, 1935  August 16, 1977)
ELVIS PRESLEY - The King of Rock and Roll (January 8, 1935 August 16, 1977)

ELVIS PRESLEY - The King of Rock and Roll

Elvis Presley was one of the most popular American singers of the 20th century. A cultural icon, he is widely known by the single name Elvis. He is often referred to as the "King of Rock and Roll" or simply "the King".

Elvis began singing locally as "The Hillbilly Cat", then signed with a local recording company, then in 1955 with RCA. He did much to establish early rock and roll music, bringing black blues singing into the white, teenage mainstream. Teenage girls became hysterical over his blatantly sexual gyrations, particularly the one that got him nicknamed "Elvis the Pelvis", which nickname he hated. At the time of his death, he had sold more than 600-million singles and albums.

Elvis Presley died on Tuesday, August 16, 1977 at his mansion in Graceland, near Memphis at age 42. His last public words were "I hope I haven't bored you," ...ending his last press conference.

Privately, according to some reporters his last words were "Okay, I won't" ... last words spoken to fiancé Ginger Alden, who told him on the way to the bathroom not to "fall asleep in there." Ironically, he didn't fall asleep in the bathroom... he died.


YUL BRYNNER, King Mongkut of Siam in "The King and I" by Rodgers and Hammerstein
YUL BRYNNER, King Mongkut of Siam in "The King and I" by Rodgers and Hammerstein

YUL BRYNNER

Yul Brynner was best known for his spectacular portrayal of Mongkut, king of Siam, in the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The King and I on both stage and screen. And who can forget his riveting performance as Rameses II in the 1956 Cecil B. DeMille film The Ten Commandments and as Chris Adams in The Magnificent Seven. Brynner was noted for his deep, rich voice and for his shaven head, which he maintained as a personal trademark after adopting it for his role in The King and I. He was also a photographer and the author of two books.

Yul Brynner kept much of his life in mystery. He sometimes claimed to be a half-Swiss, half-Japanese named Taidje Khan, born on the island of Sakhalin. In reality he was the son of Boris Bryner, a Swiss-Russian engineer and inventor, and Marousia Blagovidova, the daughter of a Russian doctor.

Brynner has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6162 Hollywood Blvd, and his childhood home, in Vladivostok, is now a museum.

He won the 1956 Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of the King of Siam in The King and I and made the "Top 10 Stars of the Year" list in both 1957 and 1958.

In 1985, he received a Special Tony Award honoring his 4,525 performances in The King and I.

Knowing he was dying of cancer, Brynner starred in a run of farewell performances of his most famous role, The King and I, on Broadway from January 7 to June 30, 1985, with Mary Beth Peil.

Throughout his life, Brynner was often seen with a cigarette in his hand. Unable to perform the "Shall We Dance" waltz or get all the words out for the song "A Puzzlement," Brynner nonetheless played to packed audiences willing to shell out $75 per ticket. Two months after the play closed, on October 10, 1985, Brynner died in a New York hospital. The king is dead.


In January 1985, nine months before his death, he gave an interview on Good Morning America, expressing his desire to make an anti-smoking commercial. A clip from that interview was made into just such a public service announcement by the American Cancer Society, and released after his death; it includes the warning "Now that I'm gone, I tell you, don't smoke. Whatever you do, just don't smoke. If I could take back that smoking, we wouldn't be talking about any cancer. I'm convinced of that." This advertisement is now featured in the Body Worlds exhibition.



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17 comments

Chuck Bluestein profile image

Chuck Bluestein 4 years ago from Morristown, AZ, USA

Yul Brynner played a king. Did you check to see if there were any other Americans that played kings in movies? I can think of one from The Man In the Iron Mask. Leonardo DiCaprio was the king of England, I think. A married woman was having sex with him and she said "We are going to hell." He said "No, you are going to hell! I am king and ordained by God."


Danette Watt profile image

Danette Watt 5 years ago from Illinois

nice hub, King & I (and Yul Brynner) was one of my favorite movies. Loved the songs and the story


platinumOwl4 profile image

platinumOwl4 5 years ago

Rosie2010, this is a spectacular hub. I vote it up, useful,awesome and interesting. School should be taught like this. Put everybody on the page so kids can make a choice versus telling a one-sided story.


Rosie2010 profile image

Rosie2010 5 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Hiya Pat, thanks for dropping by and for putting up a link from your fiction series. So sweet of you! I can't remember what I was doing when Elvis died, but I remember how I found out when Michael Jackson died.. I was in the emergency waiting room because I was in so much pain.. I fell and hit my ribs I was afraid I had broken them. Thank goodness nothing broken.

Have a nice day,

Rosie


2patricias profile image

2patricias 5 years ago from Sussex by the Sea

What a fun hub! It caught my eye because it had 'king' in the title.

I remember the surprise of hearing that Elvis had died - I was in my car on the way to work.

I will put up a link from my ficiton series.


Rosie2010 profile image

Rosie2010 5 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Hiya shelby, thanks for dropping by. lol where the heck did you hear that? No, I believe he had a stroke and died instantly.

Have a nice day,

Rosie


shelby345 5 years ago

is it true he strained hard on the toilet is that y he died ?? xx


Rosie2010 profile image

Rosie2010 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Hiya my darling handsome cowboy Gets, OMG! I still can't believe you are here in Hubs. Thanks for reading and commenting on my hubs. And I'm glad to hear you like my writing. OMG! I'm so thrilled you're here. Love your pic.

Have a nice day!

Rosie


Gets 6 years ago

Your usual good work Rosie....you know I liked it. I'll keep reading and looking for more of you're always entertaining and informative blogs.


Rosie2010 profile image

Rosie2010 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Hiya my dear friend gmmurgirl, I'm so glad you enjoyed my kings hub and it put a smile on your pretty face.

Have a nice day!

Rosie


Rosie2010 profile image

Rosie2010 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Hiya my dear friend imatellmuva, I'm so glad you enjoyed my king hub. Thanks so much for the lovely compliment. How can there be no kings in the USA?

Have a nice day!

Rosie


Rosie2010 profile image

Rosie2010 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Hi Jon TEP, thanks for dropping by and thanks for the welcome. I'm glad you enjoyed my kings hub.

Have a nice day!

Rosie


gmmurgirl profile image

gmmurgirl 6 years ago from Pilipinas

Hi Rosie, I love this hub! Definitely upped. When I started reading about the Kings in USA, I had a smile on my face all throughout. Nice!


imatellmuva profile image

imatellmuva 6 years ago from Somewhere in Baltimore

Wow Rosie,

I thought I'd stop by. I've been perusing hub pages, just to get a feel of content, flow and energy. It's as wide ranging as I am! I must say that this piece on Kings is very well read and informative. I was curious about where you were leading to with Kings in the USA, and was immediately amused and impressed by your thoroughness on each "King". Great work!


Jon TEP profile image

Jon TEP 6 years ago from Midwest USA

Really enjoy your theme on this one - especially going with the "kings" outside of ruling nations. Great start, and welcome to HubPages!


Rosie2010 profile image

Rosie2010 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada Author

Hi wilderness, thanks for dropping by. Well trivial is a good word to describe what the royalties are doing. lol I'm glad you enjoyed my lens.

Have a wonderful day!

Rosie


wilderness profile image

wilderness 6 years ago from Boise, Idaho

Some neat trivia information here (although the countries involved might not agree that their kings and queens are trivial! :-). Thanks!

The short biographies of American "kings" is interesting as well.

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