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» Ship of Fools   » Community discussion   » Purgatory   » Why doesn't the UK have King Consorts? (Page 2)

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Source: (consider it) Thread: Why doesn't the UK have King Consorts?
simontoad
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Stonespring, as far as I am concerned you and indeed any American from any region are most welcome to express interest in the governance of Great Britain and the Commonwealth of Nations.

Wouldn't it be lovely if you were able to put your questions to an expert on the Royal Family such as Terry Devlin, Royal Correspondent for the Armstrong and Miller Show. It is worth watching to the end [Yipee]

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The opinions expressed above are transitory emotional responses and do not necessarily reflect the considered views of the author.

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Gee D
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quote:
Originally posted by Jane R:
No, the requirement for the monarch to be Protestant was removed in 2015, placing Prince Michael of Kent and his heirs back in the line of succession and making it virtually certain that at some point in the future the C of E will be disestablished.

If you look at the Succession to the Crown Act 2103 (UK), you will see that what has been removed is the bar upon marriage to a Papist; there has been no alteration to the requirement that the heir cannot be one. That could not be changed while the UK monarch remains Supreme Governor of the C of E. Given the need to have the same person occupy the throne of the other Commonwealth realms, that bar was not removed in those countries either.

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Nick Tamen

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quote:
Originally posted by M.:
I believe there was a case taken through the courts at the Queen's accession to determine whether she was Queen Elizabeth II of England etc but Queen Elizabeth I of Scotland, the answer being, just Queen Elizabeth II.

My memory might be playing tricks of course.

There was a court case—MacCormick v. Lord Advocate—but it was dismissed, and the dismissal was upheld.

According to the linked article, it was Churchill's suggestion that was followed. A monarch would use the number that would be highest as between England and Scotland. So a new King James would be James VIII, even though England has only had two Jameses, because Scotland had seven. Likewise, a King David would be David II, and a King Henry would be Henry IX. And Elizabeth is Elizabeth II.

[ 04. March 2017, 11:31: Message edited by: Nick Tamen ]

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The first thing God says to Moses is, "Take off your shoes." We are on holy ground. Hard to believe, but the truest thing I know. — Anne Lamott

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Nick Tamen

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Meanwhile, I am reminded of Lord Steele's opening address at the opening of the Scottish Parliament in 1999, when he said: "It is good that today, once again, we the elected representatives of the people are able to welcome your majesty, not only as Queen of the United Kingdom, but seated as you are among us, to greet you in the historic and constitutionally correct manner, with warmth and affection, as Queen of Scots."

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The first thing God says to Moses is, "Take off your shoes." We are on holy ground. Hard to believe, but the truest thing I know. — Anne Lamott

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Barnabas Aus
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Gee D wrote:
quote:
HM is, of course, Duke of Lancaster, not Duchess.
And also Duke of Normandy, as we discovered on visiting Guernsey in 2011, the Channel Islands being the remnant of the dukedom.
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Callan
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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
I thought it was due to the William-an-Mary joint thingamejig. It caused such a mess that we now only have one Monarch at a time and having someone near the top with a confusing title "King" would mess up all the legislation which talks about the King and Crown interchangeably.

I'm not sure why having a Queen-consort doesn't mess with the legislation, possibly because King is the default term and Queen is the alternate.

The William and Mary business worked reasonably well. William wasn't exactly well liked but he was one of the ablest statesmen of his day and his lack of title to the throne meant he couldn't use his abilities to subvert the constitution.

The problem is more to do with the fact that whilst the monarch is de jure ruler of the UK all Queens of England have, hitherto, taken an oath to obey their husband. Like Desdemona they have, therefore, a divided duty. The diminishment of the husband's status is, therefore, necessary to make it apparent to everyone that the Queen had the right and duty to act in the interests of the realm and against her husband's urgings, should it be necessary.

So Philip of Spain got to be King subject to a detailed treaty which limited his power (and meant that any issue would have also got to be Duke of Burgundy as well as K of E) and William the Deliverer got to be King as he was basically what Parliament wanted and the marriage to Mary was a convenient legal fiction. Queen Anne's husband, George of Denmark was an amiable non-entity, so there was no question of his becoming King. The Prince Consort was distrusted as being a foreigner and Victoria was a comparatively young woman, both of which were considerations in leading Lord Melbourne to advise that the title of King Consort not be offered to Albert. This seems to have set the precedent for Elizabeth II. The first Elizabeth ducked the question completely by remaining single.

Barring some kind of catastrophe there is not likely to be a Queen Regnant for the century after Elizabeth's death. By which time it is possible either that the United Kingdom no longer exists as a unitary state or has become a Republic. If George's oldest girl scoops the pot she might feel moved to suggest that her husband becomes King Consort. But that theoretical possibility hardly seems worth being concerned about.

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How easy it would be to live in England, if only one did not love her. - G.K. Chesterton

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Enoch
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quote:
Originally posted by Callan:
... William the Deliverer got to be King as he was basically what Parliament wanted and the marriage to Mary was a convenient legal fiction. ...

Up to a point Lord Callan.

William was also of Stuart descent. Charles I was the grandfather of both him and Mary. Mary, though, as the daughter of James the VII and II had a better claim than anyone else at the time except James who had jumped ship and the baby in the warming pan - hence the story about the warming pan. And both of them were Papists.

It was essential to keeping what were about to become the Tories on side that Mary, as the Prod with the best claim, be queen. The convenient legal fiction wasn't her taking her father's throne. It was allowing William's Stuart blood to let him be king. It was the price of getting him over, but it also meant that he remained king after 1694. Anne did not succeed then but when he died in 1702.

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stonespring
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Sorry to resurrect this thread, but it turns out the Prince Consort of the Danish Queen just announced he will not be buried with her because he feels he has not been afforded enough er, status? attention? relative to his wife the Queen, and specific mention in the article is made of his desire to be a King Consort.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/03/world/europe/denmark-prince-henrik-burial-wishes.html

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Nick Tamen

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Bless his heart.

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The first thing God says to Moses is, "Take off your shoes." We are on holy ground. Hard to believe, but the truest thing I know. — Anne Lamott

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Augustine the Aleut
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I found Prince Henrik's stance a bit odd, as the Danes have never AFAIK had a King Consort-- in any case, such a decision would have to be a governmental matter rather than Queen Margret's decision. Perhaps he had a fit of self-promoting egalitarianism?

As the most recent European example of a King Consort was Queen Isabella's consort Francis, I'm not sure that this would be a precedent one would want to emulate.

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orfeo

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They've never had a King Consort because this is the first Queen in about 600 years.

[ 13. August 2017, 22:36: Message edited by: orfeo ]

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L'organist
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Prince Henrik has been a pain in the neck for years. He has a habit of ranting on about not being made King which has become a bit of a joke in Denmark.

From the beginning he's been in a sulk about not being titled "King Consort", yet has done little to endear himself to the Danes. First, he decided that learning the language was not a priority and to this day his linguistic howlers are a national joke. Then he has constantly claimed to be the only person married to a queen not called Prince Consort, conveniently forgetting our own Prince Philip has never been so titled. There have been various scandals about his womanising and dodgy business dealings over the years, and he didn't do his cause any favours when he decided he was "too ill" to take in part in Queen Margrethe's 75th birthday celebrations but then left on a junket to Venice with some of his buddies.

As for why the UK doesn't have King Consorts, well, the record of men marrying queens of England/the UK isn't great.

Geoffrey of Anjou supported Matilda in protecting Normandy but gave her little help in England.

Philip II of Spain was always rumoured to be more interested in Elizabeth than in Mary Tudor, his wife, and his insistence of bringing his mistress to England with him at the time of their marriage doesn't speak well...

William III may have been "invited" to take the crown but is was his wife's rather than his. And although he restricted himself to one mistress - stark contrast to his father-in-law - it was always rumoured that his eagerness to consummate his marriage with Mary (just 15 at the time of the wedding) led to medical complications causing their childlessness.

While Queen Anne and George of Denmark were a devoted couple, and he himself never sought the title, an attempt by friends to get him named as King Consort was seen off. As for Victoria and Albert, he was viewed as an interfering foreigner and for most of her subjects it was only after his death that his true worth was appreciated.

And that brings us to our present Queen and Philip who had to wait more than 20 years to get to the position where his female descendants could have the name "Mountbatten" tacked onto the front of Windsor for a surname.

I think male consorts are always going to be viewed with suspicion, on-the-make or achieving by hanging onto their wife's coat-tails; in any case, as time goes on it becomes irrelevant.

[ 15. August 2017, 12:13: Message edited by: L'organist ]

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Gee D
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quote:
Originally posted by L'organist:


From the beginning he's been in a sulk about not being titled "King Consort", yet has done little to endear himself to the Danes. First, he decided that learning the language was not a priority and to this day his linguistic howlers are a national joke. Then he has constantly claimed to be the only person married to a queen not called Prince Consort, conveniently forgetting our own Prince Philip has never been so titled.

William III may have been "invited" to take the crown but is was his wife's rather than his. And although he restricted himself to one mistress - stark contrast to his father-in-law - it was always rumoured that his eagerness to consummate his marriage with Mary (just 15 at the time of the wedding) led to medical complications causing their childlessness.

I don't think you're 100% correct in claiming Prince Phillip as your own; he's about 6% yours and the same amount ours, the Canadians, New Zealandrs and all the other Commonwealth monarchies. We're caught with him until the happy day when we become a republic

I did not know about any mistress for William III. I had long understood him as having a liking for the then equivalent of young guardees. It seems much more likely to me that the inability to have children was related to the same problem as affected Anne. I can't remember how many still births and miscarriages she had, let alone children dying in their very early years.
From memory, the oldest child only made it to 11 or 12.

[ 15. August 2017, 12:27: Message edited by: Gee D ]

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Callan
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William III had one mistress - Elizabeth Villiers and a number of close male friends with whom he may or may not have been sexually involved. I incline to the view that he probably wasn't - it was, after all the Jacobites who had a vested interest in bringing him down who promoted the rumour, and I can see that if one's standard of heterosexuality is the Restoration monarchy then William clearly fell short!

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Augustine the Aleut
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quote:
Originally posted by Callan:
William III had one mistress - Elizabeth Villiers and a number of close male friends with whom he may or may not have been sexually involved. I incline to the view that he probably wasn't - it was, after all the Jacobites who had a vested interest in bringing him down who promoted the rumour, and I can see that if one's standard of heterosexuality is the Restoration monarchy then William clearly fell short!

As Charles II produced 6 dukes, an earl, and a countess, to populate the House of Lords, it is unfortunate that future monarchs did not follow with such energy his programme to recruit members of the legislature from diverse backgrounds.
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Gee D
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Thanks Callan - any reading on Elizabeth Villiers that you can quickly suggest please?

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John Holding

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As I recall, WIlliam outdid even James VI and I in the number of handsome young male courtiers he promoted to the House of Lord. The Dukes of Portland and Devonshire among them. Obviously Charles II had the advantage in producing offspring with his paramours.

John

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Enoch
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quote:
Originally posted by John Holding:
As I recall, WIlliam outdid even James VI and I in the number of handsome young male courtiers he promoted to the House of Lord. The Dukes of Portland and Devonshire among them. Obviously Charles II had the advantage in producing offspring with his paramours.

I don't know anything about the Portlands, but the Cavendishes got promoted to their dukedom as a reward for backing William and Mary's accession. His commitment was quite literally at the level of putting his neck on the line. Had the invasion failed, he would have been unlikely to have got away without being executed.

He was also nearly 50. Hardly a 'handsome young male courtier'.

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Gee D
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IIRC, the principal beneficiaries were a couple of his Dutch contingent: Bentinck, who became Earl of Portland, the earldom; and Keppel who became Earl of Albermarle. Both titles later were raised by someone else to a dukedom.

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