Previous king: George V (father) Reigned: 1936 Next king: George VI (brother)Edward VIII became king in 1936 but was never crowned. He wished to marry Mrs Wallace Simson, an American divorcée. The British government were opposed to this, and were prepared to resign over the issue. Edward decided to abdicate, and hand over the crown to his younger brother (later George VI). Edward is the only English king to give it up voluntarily.