Monarchies in Asia

There are several monarchies in Asia, while some states function as absolute monarchies where the king has complete authority over the state, others are constitutional monarchies where a monarch exercises authority in accordance with a constitution and is not alone in decision making.[1]

A map of monarchies in Asia (in orange).

National monarchies

StateTypeSuccessionDynastyTitleImageIncumbentBornAgeReigns sinceFirst-in-line
 Kingdom of BahrainMixedHereditaryKhalifaKingHamad bin Isa Al Khalifa28 Jan 195073 y.6 Mar 1999
(as emir)
14 Feb 2002
(as king)
heir apparent: Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince of Bahrain (eldest son)
 Kingdom of BhutanConstitutionalHereditaryWangchuckKingJigme Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck21 Feb 198042 y.9 Dec 2006heir apparent: Jigme Namgyel Wangchuck, Crown Prince of Bhutan (eldest son)
 Brunei DarussalamAbsoluteHereditaryBolkiahSultanHassanal Bolkiah15 Jul 194676 y.4 Oct 1967heir apparent: Al-Muhtadee Billah, Crown Prince of Brunei (eldest son)
 Kingdom of CambodiaConstitutionalHereditary and electiveNorodomKingNorodom Sihamoni14 May 195369 y.14 Oct 2004None; appointed by the Royal Council of the Throne within the Royal Family members
 JapanConstitutionalHereditaryYamatoEmperorNaruhito23 Feb 196062 y.1 May 2019heir apparent: Fumihito, Crown Prince of Japan
(younger brother)
 Hashemite Kingdom of JordanConstitutionalHereditary and electiveHashemiteKingAbdullah II bin Al Hussein30 Jan 196261 y.7 Feb 1999heir apparent: Hussein, Crown Prince of Jordan (eldest son)
 State of KuwaitMixedHereditary and electiveSabahEmirNawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah25 Jun 193785 y.30 Sep 2020heir presumptive: Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Crown Prince of Kuwait (younger half-brother; appointed by the reigning emir within the Royal Family members)
 MalaysiaConstitutional ElectedBendaharaYang Di-Pertuan AgongAbdullah30 July 195963 y.31 January 2019None; appointed by the Conference of Rulers every five years or after the king's death
 Sultanate of OmanAbsoluteHereditaryAl SaidSultanHaitham bin Tariq13 Oct 195468 y.11 Jan 2020heir apparent: Theyazin bin Haitham, Crown Prince of Oman (eldest son)
 State of QatarMixedHereditaryAl ThaniEmirTamim bin Hamad Al Thani3 June 198042 y.25 June 2013None; will be appointed by the reigning emir within the Royal Family members
 Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaAbsoluteHereditary and electiveSaudKingSalman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud31 Dec 193587 y.23 Jan 2015Heir apparent: Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia (eldest son)
 Kingdom of ThailandConstitutionalHereditaryChakriKingVajiralongkorn (Rama X)28 Jul 195270 y.13 Oct 2016Heir presumptive: Dipangkorn Rasmijoti (only legitimate son)
 United Arab EmiratesMixedHereditary and electiveAl NahyanEmirMohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan11 Mar 196161 y.14 May 2022None; appointed by the seven emirs of UAE (normally the Emir of Abu Dhabi is always appointed as President, while the Emir of Dubai is always appointed as Prime Minister

Constituent monarchies

United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates consists of seven emirates that are all ruled by absolute monarchs. The President of the United Arab Emirates is an office held by the Ruler of Abu Dhabi and the office of Prime Minister is held by the Ruler of Dubai. The seven Emirates of the UAE are:

Note: Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi of Ajman, Saud bin Rashid Al Mu'alla of Umm al-Quwain, Saud bin Saqr Al-Qasimi of Ras al-Khaimah, and Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi of Fujairah are not pictured.


Malaysia, where the Yang di-Pertuan Agong (Supreme Head of State) is elected to a five-year term. Nine hereditary rulers from the Malay States form a Council of Rulers who will determine the next Agong via a secret ballot. The position has to date, been de facto rotated through the State rulers, originally based on seniority. The nine Malay States are the;

The monarchy of Negeri Sembilan is itself elective.

Other subnational

India and Pakistan

The British ruled Indian Empire became independent from British rule in 1947 and became the Dominion of India and the Dominion of Pakistan and in 1950 India became the Republic of India, in 1956 Pakistan became the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, and in 1971 the province of East Pakistan separated from Pakistan to become Bangladesh. Princely states were only in the present-day countries of India and Pakistan, and not Bangladesh. The princely states who were vassal states of the British, had a certain degree of power and autonomy during the British Raj. The princely states had integrated into the newly independent India and Pakistan between 1947–1975 (the majority of states ascended into India or Pakistan in 1948) and the former monarchs of the princely states who joined before 1971 in India and before 1972 in Pakistan became titular rulers that received a privy purse and initially retained their statuses, privileges, and autonomy. During this time, the former princely states in India were merged into unions, each of which was headed by a former ruling prince with the title of Rajpramukh (ruling chief), equivalent to a state governor.[2]

In 1956, the position of Rajpramukh was abolished and the federations dissolved, the former principalities becoming part of Indian states. The states which acceded to Pakistan retained their status until the promulgation of a new constitution in 1956, when most became part of the province of West Pakistan; a few of the former states retained their autonomy until 1969 when they were fully integrated into Pakistan. The Indian Government formally derecognised the princely families in 1971, followed by the Pakistani Government in 1972, in which their titles, autonomy, and privy purses were take away. Presently the rulers of the former princely states are pretenders who carry out ceremonial roles.

List of Princely States

NameCapitalSalute typeExistedLocation/ Successor state
Ajaigarh StateAjaygarh (Ajaigarh)11-gun salute state1765–1949India
Akkalkot StateAk(k)alkotnon-salute state1708–1948India
Alipura Statenon-salute state1757–1950India
Alirajpur State(Ali)Rajpur11-gun salute state1437–1948India
Alwar State15-gun salute state1296–1949India
Amb (Tanawal)Darband/ Summer capital: Shergarhnon-salute state18th century–1969Pakistan
Ambliara Statenon-salute state1619–1943India
Athgarhnon-salute state1178–1949India
Athmallik Statenon-salute state1874–1948India
Aundh StateAundh (District - Satara) non-salute state1699–1948India
Babariawadnon-salute stateIndia
Baghal Statenon-salute statec.1643–1948India
Baghatnon-salute statec.1500–1948India
Bahawalpur (princely state)Bahawalpur17-gun salute state1802–1955Pakistan
Balasinor State9-gun salute state1758–1948India
Ballabhgarhnon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1710–1867India
Bamranon-salute state1545–1948India
Banganapalle State9-gun salute state1665–1948India
Bansda State9-gun salute state1781–1948India
Banswara State15-gun salute state1527–1949India
Bantva Manavadarnon-salute state1733–1947India
Baoni State11-gun salute state1784–1948India
Baraundha9-gun salute state1549–1950India
Baria State9-gun salute state1524–1948India
Baroda StateBaroda21-gun salute state1721–1949India
Barwani StateBarwani (Sidhanagar c.1640)11-gun salute state836–1948India
Bashahrnon-salute state1412–1948India
Basoda Statenon-salute state1753–1947India
Bastar statenon-salute state1324–1948India
Baudh Statenon-salute state1874–1948India
Beja Statenon-salute state18th century–1948India
Benares State13-gun salute state18th century–1948India
Beri Statenon-salute statec.1750–1950India
Bhaisundanon-salute state1812–1948India
Bhajji Statenon-salute statelate 18th century–1948India
Bharatpur State17-gun salute state17th century–1947India
Bhavnagar State13-gun salute state1723–1948India
Bhopal StateBhopal19-gun salute state1707–1949India
Bhor State9-gun salute state1697–1948India
Bijawar State11-gun salute state1765–1950India
Bikaner State17-gun salute state1465–1947India
Bonainon-salute state12th century–1948India
Bundi State17-gun salute state1342–1949India
Cambay State11-gun salute state1730–1948India
Nawab of the Carnaticnon-salute, annexed by the British Rajc.1690–1801India
Chamba StateChamba11-gun salute statec.550–1948India
Changbhakar (Chang Bhakar)non-salute statec.1790–1948India
Charkhari State11-gun salute state1765–1950India
Chaube Jagirsnon-salute state1812–1948India
Chhatarpur State11-gun salute state1785–1950India
Chhota Udaipur State9-gun salute state1743–1948India
Chhuikhadan Statenon-salute state1750–1948India
Chitral (princely state)Chitral11-gun salute state1560–1969Pakistan
Chota Nagpur Statesnon-salute state12th century–1948India
Chudanon-salute stateIndia
Cooch Behar State13-gun salute state1586–1949India
Cutch State17-gun salute state1147–1948India
Danta State9-gun salute state1061–1948India
Darkotinon-salute state11th century–1948India
Daspalla Statenon-salute state1498–1948India
Datarpurnon-salute, annexed by the British Rajc.1550–1849India
Datia State15-gun salute state1626–1950India
Dewas State15-gun salute state1728–1948India
Dhaminon-salute state1815–1948India
Dhar StateDhar (Dharanagar 1732 -...., Multhan 1728–1732)15-gun salute state1730–1947India
Dharampur StateDharampur, formerly Mandvegan9-gun salute state1262–1948India
Dhenkanal Statenon-salute state1529–1948India
Dholpur State15-gun salute statec.700–1949India
Dhrangadhra State (Kuwa, Halwad(-Dhrangadhra))Dhrangadhra13-gun salute state1742–1948India
Dhrol State9-gun salute state1595–1948India
Dhurwai Statenon-salute state1690–1950India
D(h)irDir (or Dhir)non-salute state19th century–1969Pakistan
Dungarpur State15-gun salute state1197–1947India
Faridkot State11-gun salute state1803–1947India
Gangpur Statenon-salute state1821–1948India
Garhwal KingdomVarious11-gun salute state888–1949India
Gaurihar Statenon-salute state1807–1950India
Gondal State11-gun salute state1634–1949India
Guler Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1415–1813India
Gwalior StateGwalior/Laskar21-gun salute state1761–1948India
Hasht-Bhaiyanon-salute state1690–1948India
Hindol Statenon-salute state1554–1948India
Hunza (princely state)Baltitnon-salute state15th century–1974Pakistan
Hyderabad StateHaydarabad (or Hyderabad)21-gun salute state1803–1948India
Idar State15-gun salute statec.1257–1948India
Indore State19-gun salute state1818–1948India
Jafarabad Statenon-salute statec.1650–1948India
Jaipur StateJaipur (Jayapura)17-gun salute state1128–1949India
Jaisalmer StateJaisalmir (or Jaisalmer)15-gun salute state1156–1947India
Jaitpur Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1731–1840India
Jalaun Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1806–1840India
Jambughoda Statenon-salute statelate 14th century–1948India
Jamkhandi Statenon-salute state1811–1948India
Jammu and Kashmir (princely state)21-gun salute state1846–1952India
Jando(o)l (Jandul)Barwanon-salute statec. 1830–1948Pakistan
Janjira State11-gun salute state1489–1948India
Jaoli principalitynon-salute, annexed by Maratha Empire17th centuryIndia
Jaora State13-gun salute state1808–1948India
Jashpur Statenon-salute state18th century–1948India
Jaso Statenon-salute state1732–1948India
Jasrotanon-salute stateIndia
Jaswan Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1170–1849India
Jath Statenon-salute state1686–1948India
Jawhar State9-gun salute state1343–1947India
Jesarnon-salute stateIndia
Jhabua State11-gun salute state1584–1948India
Jhalawar State13-gun salute state1838–1949India
Jhansi Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1804–1858India
Jigni Statenon-salute state1730–1950India
Jind State13-gun salute state1763–1948India
Jobat Statenon-salute state15th century–1948India
Jodhpur State (Marwar)Jodhpur17-gun salute state1250–1949India
Junagadh StateJunagadh13-gun salute state1730–1948India
Kahlur11-gun salute state697–1948India
Kalahandi State9-gun salute state1760–1947India
KalatKalat19-gun salute state1666–1955Pakistan
Kalsianon-salute state1006–1949India
Kamta-Rajaula Statenon-salute state1812–1948India
Kangra Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj11th century–1846India
Kanker StateKankernon-salute stateup to 1947India
Kapshinon-salute statemid 17th century–1956India
Kapurthala State13-gun salute state1772–1947India
Karauli State17-gun salute state1348–1949India
Kawardha Statenon-salute state1751–1948India
Keonjhar Statenon-salute state12th century–1948India
Keonthalnon-salute statelate 18th century–1948India
Khairagarh Statenon-salute state1833–1948India
Khairpur (princely state)Khayrpur (Khairpur)15-gun salute state1775–1955Pakistan
Khandpara Statenon-salute statec.1599–1948India
Khaniadhana Statenon-salute state1724–1948India
Kharan (princely state)Kharannon-salute state1697–1955Pakistan
Kharsawan Statenon-salute state1650–1948India
Khayrpur (princely state)non-salute state1775–1955Pakistan
Khilchipur State9-gun salute state1544–1948India
Kishangarh Statenon-salute state1611–1948India
Kochin = Cochi(n)Kochi (Kochin)17-gun salute state12th century–1947India
Kolhapur State19-gun salute state1707–1949India
Koriyanon-salute state16th century–1948India
Kota State17-gun salute state17th century–1949India
Kotharia, Rajasthannon-salute statec.1527–20th centuryIndia
Kotharia, Rajkotnon-salute statec.1733–20th centuryIndia
Kothi Statenon-salute state18th century–1950India
Kulpaharnon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1700–1858India
Kumharsainnon-salute state15th–1947India
Kurundvad Juniornon-salute state1733–1948India
Kurundvad Seniornon-salute state1733–1948India
Kutharnon-salute state17th–19th centuryIndia
Kutlehar Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj750–1810India
Lakhtarnon-salute state1604–1947India
Las Bela (princely state)Belanon-salute state1742–1955Pakistan
Lathi Statenon-salute state1340–1948India
Lawa Thikananon-salute state1772–1947India
Limbda Statenon-salute state1780–1948India
Limbdi State9-gun salute statec.1500–1947India
Loharu State9-gun salute state1806–1947India
Lunavada State9-gun salute state1434–1948India
 ? Vallavpur?13 -salute state1434–1949India
Maihar State9-gun salute state1778–1948India
Makrai Statenon-salute state1663–1948India
Makran (princely state)Turbatnon-salute state18th century–1955Pakistan
Malerkotla State11-gun salute state1657–1948India
Malpur StateMalpurnon-salute state1466–1943India
Mandanon-salute state1542–1947India
Mandi StateMandi11-gun salute state1290–1948India
ManipurImphal (Bishenpur 1775–1796)11-gun salute state1110–1949India
Mayurbhanj State9-gun salute statelate 17th century–1949India
Miraj Juniornon-salute state1820–1948India
Miraj Seniornon-salute state1820–1948India
Mohammadgarh Statenon-salute state1842–1947India
Mohanpur StateMohanpurnon-salute statec.1227–1948India
Morvi State11-gun salute state1698–1948India
Mudhol State9-gun salute state1465–1948India
Muli Statenon-salute stateIndia
Mundrunon-salute, annexed by the Jaipur State1621–c.1818India
Mysore (Mahisur)Bangalore (to 1831 Mysore [Mahisur]), Srirangapatna21-gun salute state1399–1950India
Nabha State13-gun salute state1763–1947India
Nagar (princely state)Nagarnon-salute state14th century–1974Pakistan
Nagod(h)Nagodh (Nagod)9-gun salute state1344–1950India
Nandgaon Statenon-salute state1833–1948India
Narsinghgarh State11-gun salute state1681–1948India
Narsinghpur Statenon-salute state1292–1948India
Nasvadinon-salute stateIndia
Nawanagar StateJamnagar13-gun salute state1540–1948India
Nayagarh Statenon-salute statec.1500–1948India
Nazargunjnon-salute state1899–20th centuryIndia
Nilgiri Statenon-salute state1125–1949India
Orchha State15-gun salute statec.1501–1950India
Orissa Tributary Statesnon-salute state12th century–1948India
Oudh Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1732–1858India
Pahranon-salute state1812–1948India
Pal Lahara Statenon-salute state11th century–1948India
Palanpur Statenon-salute state1370–1948India
Paldeonon-salute state1812–1948India
Palitana State9-gun salute state1194–1948India
Panna State11-gun salute state1731–1950India
Patdi StatePatdinon-salute state1741–1947India
Patan, Rajasthannon-salute state12th–20th centuryIndia
Pataudi Statenon-salute state1804–1947India
Pathari Statenon-salute state1794–1948India
Patiala State17-gun salute state1627–1948India
Patna (princely state)9-gun salute state1191–1948India
Pethapur Statenon-salute state13th century–1940India
Phaltan Statenon-salute state1284–1948India
Phulra(h)Phulra(h)non-salute state1828–1950Pakistan
Piploda Statenon-salute state1547–1948India
Porbandar State13-gun salute state1193–1948India
Pratapgarh StatePratapgarh (Partabgarh)15-gun salute state1425–1949India
Pudukkottai state17-gun salute state1680–1948India
Punial Statenon-salute stateup to 1974Pakistan
Radhanpur State11-gun salute state1753–1948India
Raghogarh Statenon-salute state1673–1947India
Raigarh Statenon-salute state1625–1947India
Rairakhol Statenon-salute state12th century–1948India
Rajgarh State11-gun salute statelate 15th century–1948India
Rajgarh State9-gun salute statelate 12th century–1948India
Rajkot State9-gun salute state1620–1948India
Rajpipla State13-gun salute state1340–1948India
Rajpur, Barodanon-salute stateIndia
Ramdurg Statenon-salute state1742–1948India
Rampur StateRampur15-gun salute state1774–1949India
Ranasan Statenon-salute state17th century–1943India
Ranpur Statenon-salute state17th century–1948India
Ratlam State13-gun salute state1652–1948India
Rewa (princely state)17-gun salute statec.1790–1948India
Sachin State9-gun salute state1791–1948India
S(h)ailanaShailana (Sailana)11-gun salute state1736–1948India
Sakti Statenon-salute stateup to 1948India
Sambalpur Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1493–1848India
Samthar State11-gun salute state1760–1950India
Sandur Statenon-salute state1713–1949India
Sangli State9-gun salute state1782–1948India
Sant State9-gun salute state1255–1948India
Saraikela Statenon-salute state1620–1948India
Sarangarh Statenon-salute stateup to 1948India
Sardargarh Bantvanon-salute state1733–1947India
Savanur Statenon-salute state1672–1948India
Sawantwadi State9-gun salute state1627–1948India
Shahpura State9-gun salute state1629–1949India
Siba Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1450–1849India
Sirmur StateSirmür11-gun salute state1095–1948India
Sirohi State15-gun salute state1405–1949India
Sitamau State11-gun salute state1701–1948India
Sohawal Statenon-salute state1550–1950India
Somna Statenon-salute state19th century–1949India
Sonepur State9-gun salute state1556–1948India
Suket StateSundar Nagar11-gun salute state765–1948India
Surgana Statenon-salute statelate 18th century–1948India
Surguja Statenon-salute state1543–1948India
SwatSaidu Sharifnon-salute state1858–1969Pakistan
Talcher Statenon-salute state12th century–1948India
Taraon Statenon-salute state1812–1948India
Tekari Rajnon-salute stateIndia
Thanjavur Maratha kingdomnon-salute, annexed by the British Raj1674–1855India
Tigiria Statenon-salute state16th century–1948India
Tonk Statenon-salute state1806–1949India
Torawatinon-salute state12th–20th centuryIndia
Tori Fatehpurnon-salute state1690–1950India
TravancoreTiruvidamkodu/Tiruvankur/Travancore) (Padmanabhapuram to 1795)19-gun salute state1729–1949India
Tripura (princely state) (Hill Tipperah)Agartala13-gun salute state1809–1949India
Tulsipur Statenon-salute, annexed by the British Raj16th century–1859India
Udaipur State (Mewar)Udaipur19-gun salute state734–1949India
Udaipur State, Chhattisgarhnon-salute state1818–1948India
Vala Statenon-salute state1740–1948India
Varsodanon-salute statec.745–1947India
Vijaynagar StateVijayanagar (previously Ghodasar)non-salute state1577–1948India
Vallbhapur Statenon-salute state16th century–1948India
Wadagam StateWadagamnon-salute state18th century–1948India
Wadhwan StateWadhwan9-gun salute state1630–1948India
Wankaner State (Vankaner)11-gun salute state1605–1948India
Yasin StateYasinnon-salute statec1640–c1972Pakistan


Indonesia is a republic, however several provinces or regencies preserves their own monarchy, although only Special Region of Yogyakarta that retain actual administrative authority, the rest only holds cultural significance.


Although the Philippines is a republic, the Southern Philippines have retained their monarchical traditions and are protected under the Indigenous Peoples' Rights Act of 1997.

See also


  1. Blum, Jerome; Cameron, Rondo; Thomas G., Barnes (1970). The Emergence of the European World. Vol. 1. Boston, MA, USA. pp. 267–268.
  2. Wilhelm von Pochhammer, India's road to nationhood: a political history of the subcontinent (1981) ch 57
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