It seems that the monarchy is a relic of the past. Today, most countries have democratic forms of government. However, some states have not been able to get rid of the monarchy.
Somewhere the king has full power, but in most cases it is still constitutionally severely restricted. The most classic example is the British monarchy. It has already become a symbol of the country, like tea, football or Big Ben.
But many people either know little about this phenomenon, or attribute to it non-existent features. The queen, princes, questions of rights and heritage – this is not so easy to understand. That is why the most popular myths about the British monarchy we will try to debunk.
Elizabeth II – Queen of England.
The very definition is wrong. Over 400 years ago, acts of the Union were adopted. Elizabeth is the monarch not only of England, but also of 16 other countries. That is, she is the queen of Great Britain, the United Kingdom. Calling her queen only one of the parts of the union is offensive to others, for the same Scotland. After all, when appealing to the monarch, it is quite possible to call him a head and another part. Thus, Elizabeth II is also the queen of Canada, no less than the queen of Scotland. It is interesting that in each of the countries under its control, it has its official title. Thus, in New Zealand it is called “Her Majesty Elizabeth II, by the grace of God Queen of New Zealand and her other kingdoms and territories, Head of the Commonwealth, Protector of the Faith.”
All members of the royal family are princes and princesses.
This myth concerns mostly female figures. In fact, Princess Diana did not officially exist. No, no, such a person was, but she was not the princess. This is a fairly common myth, which concerns not only Diana alone. For example, Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, is called Princess Keith. Diana was also called the Princess of Wales. That’s just the title of it is never received in connection with marriage, it is received only by members of the royal family by birthright. And princesses of such persons name only from politeness. In the case of Katherine, it is right to speak Her Royal Highness Princess William of Wales, and Diane must accordingly be called Her Royal Highness Princess Charles.
Prince Philip is the King of England.
It is quite logical that if Elizabeth is a queen, then her husband, Prince Philip, should be considered king. Despite the long historical tradition, in England this rule does not work. Then, if a woman takes the title of her husband, entering into marriage, the reverse does not always work. That’s why before the wedding of Philip Mountbetten and Princess Elizabeth, the man was given the title of Duke of Edinburgh. Before that, he was a nee-Prince of Greece. But he did not become a king.
The Queen does not pay taxes.
The father of the present Queen, George VI, has always fought for not paying taxes. He considered it a royal privilege. Every couple of years there was a financial debate in Parliament on this issue. In the end, it was decided that the queen paid taxes, just not all. Her Royal Majesty was exempt from stamp duty, inheritance tax. And from all private domains, for example, the Duchy of Lancaster, income tax is paid. Also, the queen pays a capital gains tax.
The Queen has two birthdays.
Queen Elizabeth II was born on April 21, 1926, having received the title of Princess of York. This event is celebrated on the first Saturday of June, like the Trooping The Color Ceremony or the Queen’s Birthday Parade. Elizabeth II’s great-grandfather, King Edward VII, appointed the date of such a celebration for June. This month, the weather was best for the festival. Edward VII himself was born in November, when in England it is not necessary to count on sunny and clear days. Since then, the birthday of the monarch is always celebrated in the summer, regardless of the actual date.Currently, the exact birthday is celebrated only in a narrow circle of the family, but on that day a salute from 41 volleys rattles.
The queen has a driving license.
In fact, this is the only person in the UK who does not need a driver’s license legally. Her car does not need a license plate. The fact that this is a royal car, indicates a crown painted on a red background behind the windshield. Crowned driver prefers not to use seat belts. And I learned to drive the car of Elizabeth II even during the Second World War, when she used the service of the Additional Territorial Service. She then learned how to repair cars. But other members of the royal family, including Prince Philip, have no privileges to go without a number.
The Queen rules the country.
Since, in 1215, the Great Magna Carta was signed by King John the Landless, no king or queen in England actually rules it. The absolute monarchy was limited, the queen reigns, working with the government. This form of government is called a constitutional monarchy. The queen reigns “above us”, corresponding to the words of the national anthem “Long reign over us, God save the Queen.”
Queen constantly wears a crown.
This is a pretty hilarious myth. The Queen does not wear her crown permanently, for a simple reason. Her name is comfort. Regularly used only one crown, Crown of the British Empire. It looks beautiful and richly decorated, but also weighs more than 1.1 kilograms. An elderly woman avoids long wearing this thing, which is given a pain in the neck. The crown is worn once a year, at the opening ceremony of the Parliament. The appearance of the monarch in this form symbolizes his power. A few days before, the Queen from time to time trying on a crown, getting used to her weight. Prince Charles said that one of his most vivid memories of childhood was how his mother washed him with a crown on his head, preparing for the solemn ceremony. It looked pretty funny. In general, Her Majesty has many ordinary headgear for everyday life.
We are not enthusiastic.
Queen Victoria was, without a doubt, one of the most popular queens in history. She is credited with many trends and trends, including wearing a white wedding dress. She is known for her phrase “We are not enthusiastic”. It was believed that the queen can not express her emotions violently, especially rage. And with such a reserved, majestic phrase, Victoria showed dissatisfaction on the part of the whole of Great Britain. In fact, such words, most likely, for the first time did not say it, but one of the waiting ladies of the court. And in cases described by biographers, when the queen spoke this phrase, she had in mind herself. Although it may seem strange that a person calls himself a plural, it is not uncommon for crowned persons. Over the centuries, the word “we” or plural denoted the power of the sovereign and his power as the leader of the nation.
The next king will not be Charles, but his son William.
This is absolutely impossible in terms of the constitution. Principles inheritance of the British throne do not take into account the popularity of individuals in the people. Charles actually has no right to choose, he just outstripped his son in the line of inheritance. Refuse this he can only by dying or by marrying a Catholic. Charles has been preparing for his role for over 60 years, he is not going to give it up. Many monarchs in the history of England came to power, being unpopular, but then all of them could successfully get accustomed to the role. Undoubtedly, it will be possible for the current heir to the throne. There is only one possibility for William to enter the throne with a living father. This will happen if he renounces the throne. This happened with Edward VIII, Uncle Elizabeth II, that some still remember. But it is difficult to imagine because of the numerous delays in the implementation of such a procedure.
Buckingham Palace guards are hired actors.
Looking at the carefully marching guards near the palace, on their bright outfits, it seems that they are just disguised actors. In fact, these are quite real soldiers, from one of the five regiments of the foot guard. One half of their duties are devoted to the same ceremonies around the palace, but the other assumes the performance of an ordinary soldier’s service. This is the nature of their work, that they can beautifully guard Buckingham Palace one week, and on the next one already be sent to some hot spot somewhere on the other end of the planet. Guardsmen not only decorate the palace, but also are part of royal security. Weapons are loaded with live ammunition in order to protect the queen if necessary.
The Queen can be called “Her Royal Highness”.
So they call only the relatives of the ruling monarch. The Queen herself is called “Her Majesty.” There are still only three types of royal persons who are entitled to such treatment: the king, if he exists, the reigning queen or the wife of the king and the dowager queen, she is also the queen mother. Queen Highness can not be called, it’s a mistake.
The Queen is old, she just does not catch the modern trends.
In fact, Her Majesty is a very technologically advanced person, giving odds to many young people. She sent the first e-mail from the military base back in 1976. The Queen owns a mobile phone, which she uses to communicate with her grandchildren.
The monarchy is obsolete and generally useless.
Many people think that the Republic of Great Britain would look better in the modern world. However, the monarchy gives the country stability, continuity and distinctive qualities. Yes, this form of government is dying out – there are only 28 monarchies left in the country. It is difficult for them to adapt to the modern world, but the UK managed to do this by forming the Commonwealth. The monarchy helps to improve relations between the countries entering into it.
The queen has no rights at all.
Constitutionality of the monarchy does not mean its lack of rights. The Queen is far from being just a symbol that exists by tradition and for beauty. In England, the monarch has the right to declare war, without explaining the reasons and without legislative confirmation. The queen can resign parliament or government. Every year she addresses a message to the parliament, voicing her demands to him, actually forming a state policy. It is the queen who should appoint the Prime Minister. By tradition, this is the leader of the party that won the election, but the choice can be in theory by anyone. It is the queen who formally leads the army.
The rights of the queen are limited by the Constitution.
Although England is considered a constitutional monarchy, a single law, the Constitution in our understanding, does not exist there. It is replaced by normative legal acts, constitutional customs and precedents.