Can You Identify These European Heads of State?

WORLD

By: Tasha Moore

6 Min Quiz

Image: Wiki Commons by Number 10

About This Quiz

Can you recognize the faces of today's top European leaders? Allow our challenge to inventory your heads-of-state ID skills on this quiz. Identifying the names of lesser-known regions of Europe is a great first step to scoring high!

The dissolution of the Soviet Union in the early 20th century created voids of leadership throughout Europe, mainly in Eastern Europe. Different political parties continue to vie for their nations' top government spots with hopes of steering their people along the right post-Communist paths. Luminaries have promoted conservative nationalist rule in many parts of the continent, and judging by the current roster of select European leaders, many constituents agree. New leaders, eager to advance their societies, cite border security and economic issues as major reasons certain countries have suffered stagnation. A quick survey of political campaigns of some European leaders would pattern similar themes.

Our world leaders test also highlights a few of the more progressive states that have elected liberal-leaning statesmen and women. Estonia, for example, elected its first female president in 2016, and Iceland's prime minister was born in 1976. And of course, we don't fail to mention the monarchs of Europe, many of whom have ruled their respective countries in virtual silence for hundreds of years.

Mosey on through to see how many European officials you already know and discover the ones you don't!


Name the Russian leader with a huge love for animals.

President of Russia Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin is fond of animals. His elderly dog, Koni, has accompanied him at his press events. Putin also has owned a Bulgarian breed dog named Bafik and a Japanese dog named Yume, among other creatures.

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He is a ruler of candy and the Ukraine. Who is he?

The president of Ukraine is known as "Chocolate King." Billionaire businessman and politician Petro Poroshenko made a fortune on the sweet confectionery. Poroshenko is reportedly worth approximately $1.3 billion.

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Do you know the French leader who married a teacher?

Brigitte Trogneux, also known as "Bibi," is wife to French President Emmanuel Macron, and she is 24 years his senior. Trogneux has been instrumental in her husband's political life. The two met when Macron was a schoolboy, and she was a teacher.

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How well do you know this distant relative of Russian czars who reigns in Spain?

King Felipe's parents are King Juan Carlos, who was born in Rome, and Princess Sofia of Greece, who is related to Queen Victoria of Britain and the czars of Russia. King Felipe VI has two other siblings.

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Who began adulthood around the same time he began to rule Sweden?

Carl XVI Gustaf ascended to Sweden's high throne as king in 1953 at the young age of 27. He has three children with Queen Silvia, whom he met at the Munich Olympics in 1972. Their daughter Crown Princess Victoria is heir to the throne.

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Try to select the name of the Norwegian king who, as a youth, sought exile with his mother in the United States during World War II.

Harald V, King of Norway, fled to the United States with his mother when the Nazis attacked the country in 1940. After World War II, he returned to Norway and married Sonja Haraldsen, a commoner, in 1968.

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Do you recognize this German head of state?

Dr. Frank-Walter Steinmeier is Germany's current president and former Minister of Foreign Affairs. Steinmeier is a member of the Social Democratic Party and served as Chief of Staff in the German Chancellery from 1999 to 2005.

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This Finnish leader leans conservative. Can you guess his name?

Sauli Väinämö Niinistö was born in Salo. His mother, Hilkka Heimo, was a nurse and his father, Vaino Niinisto, a circulation manager. The president is the youngest of three siblings, Virve, Kari and Kirsi.

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Is it a challenge for you to guess the identity of this Polish president?

President Andrzej Duda of Poland was born on May 16, 1972, in Krakow, Poland. As a member of the conservative Law and Justice party, he served as an adviser to its caucus in parliament in 2005.

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In a sense, the Mafia made Italian president ________ what he is today.

Sergio Mattarella is a former judge from Sicily. Mattarella also served as defense and education minister before winning the presidency in 2015. The president was inspired to start a political career after his brother Piersanti was killed by the Mafia in 1980.

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Name this Oxford grad and UK prime minister.

United Kingdom Prime Minister Theresa May is the only child of an Anglican vicar. May grew up in Oxfordshire, located in central England. She married an investment banker before starting a political career as a member of parliament in 1997.

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He is one of the four Romanian presidents the Eastern European country had after the fall of communism. What is his name?

Born in Sibiu, Romania on June 13, 1959, Klaus Iohannis became Romania's fourth president in 2014. He was mayor of Sibiu from 2000 to 2014. Iohannis is an ethnic German from Transylvania.

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Critics of the Belarusian president abhor his ruling style. Pick the correct head of state shown in the image.

Dubbed "the last dictator in Europe" by his critics, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko is affectionately called "batka," or father, by his supporters. A former farm director, Lukashenko has ruled Belarus since 1994.

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Who's this Greek statesman and scientist?

Prime Minister of Greece Alexis Tsipras was trained as a civil engineer, earning his Master's degree from National Technical University in Athens. Tsipras was a member of the Communist Youth while in secondary school.

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Don't be surprised if this prime minister requests a stop-drop-and-role vote in Bulgaria's parliament. Choose your best guess among the options.

Born on June 13, 1959, in Bankya, Bulgaria, Boyko Borisov learned fire and safety procedures at the Higher Special School of the Ministry of Interior. He began a political career in 2001, serving as the secretary general of the Ministry of Interior.

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What Icelandic prime minister leads the popularity polls in her country?

Born in Reykjavik, Iceland on February 1, 1976, Katrin Jakobsdottir earned her undergraduate and master's degrees at the University of Iceland. The Icelandic prime minister's constituency has regarded her as one of the nation's most trusted politicians.

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This Hungarian prime minister studied law. Can you ID him?

Prime Minister of Hungary Viktor Orban was president of the Fidesz-Hungarian Civic party. Orban graduated from Eotvos Lorand University in 1987 with a degree in law, and he founded the center-right political group one year later.

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Is it difficult for you to choose the president of Portugal?

On January 24, 2016, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa won Portugal's presidential election with 52 percent of the votes. The center-right Social Democratic Party backed Rebelo de Sousa's presidential bid.

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Do you recognize this Austrian statesman?

In 2014, Sebastian Kurz seized the role of Austrian Foreign Minister at the age of 27, and was the world's youngest foreign minister at the time. Kurz currently serves as Chancellor.

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Select the Czech prime minister with a checkered past.

Czech Republic Prime Minister Andrej Babis is a billionaire and former Finance Minister. Before becoming prime minister, Babis was accused of unlawfully securing EU funds for his wife and daughter.

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Can you ID the Serbian president who considerably outpaced his competition during his election?

President Aleksandar Vucic had served as Serbia's first deputy prime minister. In 2017, Vucic secured the presidency, winning 55.7 percent of the votes cast. His nearest contender, Sasa Jankovic, won 15.6 percent of the votes.

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Ireland's president has advocated for the poor in his country. Who is he?

Ireland elected Michael Daniel Higgins, a Limerick native, as president in October 2011. Higgins had served previously as a member of parliament for a few decades. The Irish president, who lived in poverty as a youth, has long promoted an anti-poverty agenda.

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Guess this multi-talented top Lithuanian official?

Lithuanian president Dalia Grybauskaitė is a martial arts expert and holds a Ph.D. in social science. Grybauskaite is not married and does not have children. She began her professional life working the night shift at a Russian fur factory.

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Who manned defense before taking office as Latvia's president?

Lativia swore in its ninth president, Raimonds Vejonis, on July 8, 2015. Vejonis had previously served as Minister of Defense starting in January 2014, and from 2011 to 2014 he was a National Security Committee member.

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Are you confident that you know one of Croatia's most influential leaders?

Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic served in the Foreign Affairs Ministry in the early 1990s. Considered one of the most powerful leaders in Croatia, Plenkovic is the leader of the HDZ, Croatian Democratic Union.

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Who achieved an Estonian first?

In October 2016, at the age of 46, Kersti Kaljulaid made history, becoming the first female president of Estonia. Kaljulaid had been a member of the European Audit Board for 12 years before winning the Estonian presidency.

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What Danish royal do you see?

The same royal family has reigned over Denmark for nearly 50 generations. The current Queen of Denmark is Margrethe II, who can trace her lineage to Gorm the Old, a Viking who once ruled over a thousand years ago.

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His mom was Queen of the Netherlands. Who is this Dutch monarch?

Before King Willem-Alexander's ascension to the throne, his mother Beatrix was queen. Beatrix married Claus von Amsberg, a German diplomat, in 1966. In 1982, Claus was relieved of his royal duties after the court announced he was suffering from depression.

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This Moldovan president's post-Communism political views are very familiar. Try to quickly ID him?

Igor Dodon is a self-proclaimed "pro-Moscow" president. The Moldovan head-of-state won nearly 56 percent of the vote in his country's 2016 presidential election. His wife Galina heads "Din Suflet," a family charity foundation.

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Does this Belgium head of state ring a bell?

Before Philippe became king of the Belgians, King Albert II was chief monarch. Albert II is a descendant of Leopold II and married Queen Paola of Italian royal lineage. King Philippe is married to former speech therapist Mathilde d'Udekem d'Acoz.

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Who cornered Turkey's prime minister position before mastering the presidency?

Born in Istanbul in 1954, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had served as Turkey's prime minister for a little more than a decade. The controversial leader is married and has four children.

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What elected official campaigned on the same ticket with his father for Azerbaijan's high office?

During the Azerbaijan presidential election held on October 15, 2003, then prime minister of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev campaigned on behalf of his father, incumbent President Heydar Aliyev, who was hospitalized in the United States at the time. Ilham was elected as president after a swift nomination.

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Who's Grand Duke of the Luxembourg Grand Duchy?

Since 2000, Henri has presided as Grand Duke of Luxembourg, a small European grand duchy. Henri married Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, who was born in Cuba. The couple has five children.

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He's a finance expert from Georgia. Can you pick his name?

Georgian Prime Minister Mamuka Bakhtadz has been tasked with reforming his country economically and politically. Before the prime minister post, Bakhtadz served as the nation's Foreign Finance Minister.

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He's president of a European superpower and moonlights as co-royal of Andorra. Are you aware of his identify?

French President Emmanuel Macron is an official head of state of small and independent Andorra. Macron shares co-prince responsibilities with Catholic Bishop Joan Enric Vives Sicilia.

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She was a Maltese parliament mainstay before procuring the presidency. What is her name?

During her term as minister for the Family and Social Solidarity, Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca secured the presidency. Coleiro Preca started her term as president in April 2014. She also served in Malta's parliament from 1998 to 2014.

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Which royal enjoys both symbolic as well as political power in Liechtenstein?

Prince Hans-Adam II inherited his reign as Prince of Liechtenstein, which is a small European territory with a population of 35,000. The country has one of the highest income per capita. The prince holds substantial political power, unlike the monarchs of many other European states.

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Can you recall Albania's president?

Ilir Meta was elected as Albania's seventh president on April 28, 2017. Before his appointment as president, Meta was speaker of parliament, and he led the Socialist Movement for Integration, a junior ruling party.

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From this image, is it easy for you to spot former actress Grace Kelly's son and current Monacan monarch?

Before Prince Albert's ascension to the Monaco throne, Prince Rainier III ruled the small country until his death in 2005. Rainier was married to Albert's mother, American film actress Grace Kelly.

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