Orange (dynasty)

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The royal house of Orange has only one member who reigned in England: William III. He reigned from 1689 (the Glorious Revolution) to 1702, equally with his wife Mary II until her death in 1694. The marriage was childless, and William was succeeded by Mary's sister Anne, a Stuart, who was succeeded in her turn by the Hanoverian dynasty in 1714.

William's claim to the thrones of England and Scotland was through his mother Mary (1631-1660), eldest daughter of Charles I. He had a less good claim than his wife Mary, apart from the fact that she was female: it was he that was first invited to replace his wife's father, James II, although he and his wife were crowned as equal partners in government. He was Prince of Orange through his father, William II of Orange (1626-1650). (He as the only son, born posthumously.)

The ruling family in the Netherlands is the House of Orange. It is so called because the head of the house has the title Prince of Orange, although the actual principality (based on a town in Provence in southern France called 'Orange', and independent since 1163) was ceded to France in 1713. The House of Orange has had great prestige and power since William 'the Silent' of Orange (ruled 1544-1584) led the revolt which eventually won the independence of the United Provinces, which became the Dutch Republic, and is now the kingdom of The Netherlands. See also Orange (disambiguation)