Weird History
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The Signature Afflictions Suffered By Some Of History's Most Famous Royals

Updated December 3, 2019 601.7k views16 items

Kings and queens sometimes claim divine right or descent from the gods, but at the end of the day, royals are as human as their subjects. Like anyone else, royals throughout history have struggled with health issues. Issues ranging from mild birth defects to diseases that strike in old age have helped to underscore the mortality of royals.

Royal afflictions sometimes have geopolitical ramifications that reverberate the world over. A ruler’s health and well-being have historically been a matter of political consequence since certain conditions might affect a ruler's ability to govern. Some afflictions - ranging from easily disguised physical deformities to excruciating illnesses that unleashed a weird monarch’s quirkiest impulses - have had bigger political ramifications than others.