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A puppet monarch is a majority figurehead who is installed or patronized by an imperial power in order to provide the appearance of local authority, while allowing political and economic control to remain among the dominating nation.
Figurehead monarch, as source of legitimacy and possibly divine reign, has been the used form of government in several situations and places of history.
There are two basic forms of using puppets as monarchs (rulers, kings, emperors):
- figurehead: the monarch is a puppet of another person or a group in the country, who are ruling instead of the nominal ruler.
- puppet government under a foreign power.
Examples of the first type are the Emperors who were the puppets of the shōguns of Japan and the kings who were the puppets of the Mayor of Palace in the Frankish kingdom. Client kingdoms under Roman Republic and Empire, British Empire's colonial relationship with King Farouk of Egypt, in the 1950s, is an example of the second type.
List of puppet kings and queensEdit
- Qin Er Shi, Emperor of China's Qin Empire – dominated by his eunuch Zhao Gao
- Emperor Xian of Han of China – dominated by the warlord Dong Zhuo, his successors Li Jue and Guo Si, and finally the Wei Kingdom founded by Cao Cao before being forced to abdicate
- Philip II Philoromaeus of the last Seleucid, King of Syria – ruled as client king for the Roman Republic and Pompey
- Leo I the Thracian, Roman emperor appointed by Aspar, but broke free
- Majorian, first Roman emperor appointed by Ricimer
- Libius Severus, second Roman emperor appointed by Ricimer
- Olybrius, third Roman emperor appointed by Ricimer
- Glycerius, Roman emperor appointed by Ricimer's nephew, Gundobad
- Romulus Augustulus, Roman emperor appointed by his general father, Orestes
- Ecgberht I of Northumbria puppet ruler for the Danes
- Baldwin I, Latin Emperor – installed to rule the Latin Empire by the Republic of Venice after the Fourth Crusade
- John, King of England – nominally ruled as a vassal for Pope Innocent III after 1213
- John Balliol of Scotland – puppet king for King Edward I of England
- Musa, a puppet Ilkhan ruler in Mongol Persia
- Henry VI Lancaster of England – largely dominated by advisors such as Queen Margaret of Anjou and William de la Pole, 1st Duke of Suffolk
Early modern periodEdit
- John Sigismund Zápolya, Ottoman puppet king of Hungary contesting Holy Roman Emperor Ferdinand I of Hapsburg's claim to the throne
- Manco Inca, Sapa Inca of Tawantinsuyu – installed by the Spanish Empire, later revolted and founded the Neo-Inca State
- Simeon Bekbulatovich Russian Tsar – ruled for one year as Puppet monarch of Ivan the Terrible
- Moctezuma II, Tlatoani (Emperor) of Tenochtitlan and Aztec Triple Empire
- Elisa Bonaparte, Italian ruler as Grand Duchess of Tuscany and Princess of Lucca
- Louis Bonaparte of the Kingdom of Holland
- Jérôme Bonaparte, of Kingdom of Westphalia created from territories of Prussia and the former Holy Roman Empire (present-day cultural Germany) after the Battle of Jena-Auerstedt
- Joseph Bonaparte, of Napoleonic Spain during the Peninsular War and of the Neapolitan Kingdom after the French invasion of Naples
- Elector and later King, Frederick Augustus I of Saxony, appointed as Napoleonic Duke of Warsaw (present-day Poland, Belarus, and Lithuania)
Late modern periodEdit
- Rulers of the princely states of India under paramountcy of the British East India Company and later the British Raj
- Mubarak al-Sabah – signed an agreement with the British Empire to make the Sheikhdom of Kuwait a British protectorate
- Pedro V of Kongo – ruled the Kingdom of Kongo (modern-day Angola, Gabon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Republic of the Congo) as a client king for the Portuguese Empire
- Gungunhana – Portuguese client ruler of the Gaza Empire, exiled after unsuccessful rebellion against Portuguese rule.
- Osman Mahamuud – client king of the Majeerteen Sultanate (modern-day Puntland) for the Italian Empire
- Muhammad Rahim Bahadur II and Isfandiyar Jurji Bahadur – Russian client rulers of the Khanate of Khiva
- Emperor Gojong and Sunjong of Korea – ruled as puppets of the Japanese Empire after the Russo-Japanese War
- Aimone of Savoy, King of Croatia – appointed by Fascist Italy after the Axis invasion of Yugoslavia as figurehead for Ante Pavelić's Ustaše reigime
- Aisin-Gioro Puyi, Emperor of Manchukuo – Former Emperor of China appointed to lead Japan's puppet state of Manchukuo
- Bảo Đại, Emperor of Vietnam – Emperor of the French protectorate of Annam and Japanese-occupied Vietnam, later chief of state of South Vietnam
- Sisavang Vong, King of Luang Phrabang – client king of the French protectorate of Laos
- Tashi Namgyal and Palden Thondup Namgyal – ruled Sikkim as protectorate of India after 1950.
- Sisowath Monivong, of Cambodia – King of the French Protectorate of Cambodia