Of Kings & Queens

Jun 2, 2011, 7:08 PM |

Of Kings and Queens


   Not for the first time, I have been asked again, why is our Queen’s husband not a King (he is Prince Philip), and no, it’s not because he is not of noble blood, because he is ~ he was born Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark!


   Another common question is will Prince William’s wife, Kate, become queen when he succeeds to the throne, and the answer to that question is yes, she will be Queen Catherine, the sixth of that name, i.e.  with five predecessors (most of whom met with rather sticky ends) ~ the first of them being the wife of Henry V more than 600 years ago


   So, with that in mind, why one way, and not the other? King with Queen, but not Queen with King!


   Our present Queen, Queen Elizabeth the Second, is Queen in her own right. Her husband is the Queen's consort and is not entitled to be styled King. But when a King succeeds to the throne his wife takes the title of Queen because this is the title bestowed on the King's consort. The same thing happens lower down in the British Peerage. If a man is created Lord XXX, his wife becomes Lady XXX. But if a woman is created Lady XXX in her own right, her husband remains Mr XXX and does not become a Lord.



   Let me explain; I don't know if this will help you or get you more confused, but here it is anyway.

   Among monarchy titles, just as it is in chess, the King is the highest rank and has the most authority, at least that’s how it worked when monarchs had authority, and certainly how it works on the chess board.


   So that said, a King can make his wife a Queen,
which is a lower rung on the ladder, but a Queen cannot make a King, because that would give him more authority over the Queen, who is the successor to the throne, when her husband is not. It all goes back to the days of class status (of Pride and of Prejudice) and the policy of having all inherited by the first born male, royal or otherwise. That policy is still there (here), but to a much lesser degree.


   Things are changing, slowly, but changing they are. Clearly we live in times of women’s liberation, with laws and lobbyists for equal rights, sexual equality, sexual discrimination, and so forth. There are new proposals going through the house now. Where do I stand on this? Well, I’m very much a Royalist, a traditionalist and a purist. It’s worked perfectly well for more than a thousand years so why rock the boat?


   I think once Prince William becomes King, he
would have reinstated his mother's royal title, if she had not died, and still may, posthumously. I also think that with so-called progress, there is a chance that Prince William's first born will be heir to the throne whether it is a girl or a boy. If this happens, it seems to me that it will be the beginning of the end and there is very much a chance that I could see it happen. There are those of course who will welcome it as something that is long overdue, thinking that it is about time the royal family were pulled out of the dark ages, but I will not be one of them. It will be a sad day! It is our heritage!!!


   Regardless, I hope I have made the situation clear J


~ m8ed