Kingdom of Armenia
Hello, does anyone have any information concerning this monarchy and any chance of a possible claimant to this defunct throne. I've heard that the Crown Prince Vittorio Emmanuele of Italy has a claim but I also read that the Bagration dynasty (a branch of the Royal House of Georgia and Imereti) was Kings of Armenia at one point in the history. Thank you in advance
The Kingdom of Armenia came to an end in 1045 when the last King of the Bagratuni dynasty, Gagik II, was forced to cede his kingdom of Ani to the Byzantine Empire. By that stage the Kingdom of Armenia had been dismembered and Ani was the last remnant. It is believed that the Bagrations of Georgia are an offshoot of the Bagratunis.
Prince Ruben, a Bagratuni and relation of Gagik II, founded the Rubenid dynasty and what became the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia. As the surrounding Mongols became Muslim and the Crusader states disintegrated, Christian Cilicia was left without any regional allies. Under the Lusignan dynasty (which had married into the Rubenids) the Kingdom fell to the Mamluks in 1375.
The claim to the Kingdom of Armenia then fell to the Cypriot branch of the Lusignans who styled themselves Kings of Jerusalem and Cyprus. The last ruling monarchs were Charlotte I followed by her usurping half-brother James II. James died in 1473 but had a posthumous son, James III, who died a year later. Venetian merchants had a significant presence in Cyprus and both deaths were suspicious; soon after the death of the baby James the Venetian Republic took control and made Cyprus a Venetian colony.
The usurped Queen Charlotte, married to her cousin Louis of Savoy, outlived her half-brother and his son. Two years before she died in 1487 she resigned her claims in favour of the next legitimate heir, Charles I of Savoy, her 1st cousin once removed.
Hence the Savoy claim to the title of King of Jerusalem and Cyprus, and if they wanted to push it, to the Kingdom of Armenia.
The House of Savoy did inherit the claim after Queen's Charlotte's death; however, at some point the pretender to the Kingdom of Armenia and the Head of House of Savoy ceased to be the same person because of Savoy's Salic Laws: Armenia (neither Kingdom of Armenia, nor Cilician Kingdom of Armenia) never had any laws that forbade women from ascending to the Throne. In fact, there had been several Queens Regnant throughout history of Armenia.
This is how the title passed from one titular Monarch to the other (not necessarily from parent to child; sometimes, more remote relatives inherited the claim):
- Leo V, King of Armenia
- James I of Cyprus
- Janus of Cyprus
- John II of Cyprus
- Charlotte I
- Charles I, Duke of Savoy (son of Amadeus IX, Duke of Savoy, himself son of Anne de Lusignan, herself daughter of King Janus of Cyprus)
- Charles II, Duke of Savoy (son of Charles I)
- Yolande Louise of Savoy (daughter of Charles I)
At this point, the Houses of Savoy and claimants to the Throne of Armenia parted their ways.
- Charlotte of Naples (daughter of Anne of Savoy, herself daughter of Amadeus IX, Duke of Savoy, himself son of Anne de Lusignan)
- Anne de Laval (daughter of Charlotte of Naples)
- Louis III de La Tremoille (son of Anne de Laval)
- Claude de La Tremoille (son of Louis III de La Tremoille)
- Henry III of Tremoille (son of Claude de La Tremoille)
- Henri Charles de La Tremoille, 4th Duke of Thouars (son of Henry III of Tremoille)
- Charles Belgique Hollande de La Tremoille (son of Henri Charles de La Tremoille, 4th Duke of Thouars)
- Charles Louis de La Bretagne Tremoïlle (son of Charles Belgique Hollande de La Tremoille)
- Charles Godefroy de La Tour d'Auvergne (son of Marie Armande Victoire de la Tremoïlle, herself daughter of Charles Belgique Hollande de La Tremoille)
- Jacques Leopold de La Tour d'Auvergne (son of Charles Godefroy de La Tour d'Auvergne)
- Henri Louis de Rohan, Prince de Rohan-Guemene (son of Marie-Louise de La Tour d'Auvergne. herself daughter of Charles Godefroy de La Tour d'Auvergne)
- Charles IV Alain Gabriel de Rohan, Prince de Rohan (son of Henri Louis Marie de Rohan, Prince de Rohan-Guemene)
- Jules Armand Louis de Rohan (son of Henri Louis de Rohan, Prince de Rohan-Guemene)
- Prince Benjamin Armand Rohan-Rochefort-Guemene (son of Marie Louise de Rohan, herself daughter of Henri Louis de Rohan, Prince de Rohan-Guemene)
- Prince Arthur Carl de Rohan (son of Prince Benjamin Armand Rohan-Rochefort-Guemene)
- Karl Viktor Alain de Rohan (son of Prince Arthur Carl de Rohan)
- Alain Benjamin, Furst von Rohan (son of Prince Arthur Carl de Rohan)
- Alain Anton, Furst von Rohan (son of Alain Benjamin, Furst von Rohan)
- Princess Marie-Jeanne de Rohan (daughter of Alain Anton, Furst von Rohan: she is currently alive but childless)
- Princess Marguerite Johanna de Rohan (sister of Princess Marie-Jeanne)
- Louisette Kottulinsky (daughter of Princess Marguerite Johanna de Rohan; currently alive but childless)
- Marguerite Jamila Kottulinsky (sister of Louisette Kottulinsky)
- James Alexander Maule Durie of Durie (son of Marguerite Jamila Kottulinsky; born in 1978, he has no issue as of now. James was born and lives in England)
Even accepting that Philip II of Savoy inherited his cousin Charles II's claims to the Thrones of Armenia, Jerusalem and Cyprus (ahead of Charlotte of Naples, who had better claims by primogeniture), the House of Savoy would have still not remained pretenders to the Throne of Armenia.
- Charles II, Duke of Savoy
- Philip II, Duke of Savoy (son of of Anne de Lusignan, herself daughter of King Janus of Cyprus)
- Philibert II, Duke of Savoy (son of Philip II)
- Charles III, Duke of Savoy (son of Philip II)
- Emmanuel Philibert, Duke of Savoy (son of Charles III)
- Charles Emmanuel I, Duke of Savoy (son of Emmanuel Philibert)
- Victor Amadeus I, Duke of Savoy (son of Charles Emmanuel I)
- Charles Emmanuel II, Duke of Savoy (son of Victor Amadeus I)
- Victor Amadeus II of Sardinia (son of Charles Emmanuel II)
- Charles Emmanuel III of Sardinia (son of Victor Amadeus II of Sardinia)
- Victor Amadeus III of Sardinia (son of Charles Emmanuel III)
- Charles Emmanuel IV of Sardinia (son of Victor Amadeus III)
- Victor Emmanuel I of Sardinia (son of Victor Amadeus III)
At this point, the Headship of the House of Savoy and title of King of Sardinia was inherited by Victor Emmanuel I's younger brother, Charles Felix of Sardinia. However, Victor Emmanuel had daughters (who were ineligible to inherit the throne because of Salic laws) who could very much inherit the claims to the Throne of Armenia, Cyprus and Jerusalem.
- Maria Beatrice of Savoy (daughter of Victor Emmanuel I)
- Francis V, Duke of Modena (son of Maria Beatrice of Savoy)
- Maria Theresa of Austria-Este, Queen of Bavaria (daughter of Archduke Ferdinand of Austria-Este, himself son of Maria Beatrice of Savoy)
- Rupprecht, Crown Prince of Bavaria (son of Maria Theresa of Austria-Este)
- Albrecht, Duke of Bavaria (son of Rupprecht, Crown Prince of Bavaria)
- Franz, Duke of Bavaria (son of Albrecht, Duke of Bavaria; currently alive but no issue)
- Prince Max, Duke in Bavaria (younger brother of Franz, Duke of Bavaria)
- Sophie, Hereditary Princess of Liechtenstein
- Prince Joseph Wenzel of Liechtenstein
Thus, Prince Joseph Wenzel will one day inherit not only the Throne of Liechtenstein, but will also become the Jacobite pretender to the Thrones of England and Scotland, as well as pretender to the Thrones of Armenia, Jerusalem and Cyprus. Again, none of these countries had Salic Laws and females could (and did) inherit the Throne, and were certainly able to pass the claims to their own descendants.
Has any Armenian royal dynasty survived till this day?
Any royal family has any claim or can claim for a throne in Armenia?
No, there aren't. Most Armenian royal houses were pretty much exterminated by consecutive Arab and then Seljuk invaders.
There are descendants of noble houses; in fact, every Armenian can probably claim a descent from one of the noble families (we had quite a few of them).
Even if we wanted to reinstate Monarchy in Armenia, there is no heir to the Throne of the Kingdom of Armenia.
The claims to the Throne of Cilician Armenia are said to belong with the House of Savoy, but that would have only been true if Armenia had Salic Laws, which we didn't: like Georgia, we could and did have female Monarchs. Thus, the claimant to the Cilician Kingdom of Armenia (by rules of primogeniture) is either James Alexander Maule Durie of Durie, or Prince Joseph Wenzel of Liechtenstein (both direct descendants of the House of Lusignan).
Alternatively, the Georgian Royal House could actually be accepted as Royal House of Armenia (not Cilician Armenia) through the Bagration/Bagratuni line.
How can Georgian dynasty be accepted in Armenia?
Can that actually be possible? And how?
I'm not certain how possible it would be though: while there is no reason why we would not accept the Bagration dynasty from our brother nation as our own royal house (possibly, in a union of Crowns, kind of like the UK and Canada now), restoration of monarchy is probably the very last thing Armenians think about. It may be different in Georgia, where you have a clear-cut heir: with the birth of your Prince Giorgi (the son of Prince David and Princess Anna), the two rival branches have united. But in Armenia, there is no heir, no one.
Interesting. But anyway how do you see is there any demand in an Armenian society of thinking about the monarchy or getting back to it? I mean what's public's attitude towards Armenian monarchy? The ancient one but still.
We are proud of our history, but even if we did have a candidate with undisputed claims to the Throne, a restoration would definitely not happen.
We have lived without a monarchy for nearly a thousand years; it's just no longer part of us, our identity and culture.
Thank you Artemisia :smile:
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