Three generations stood ready to succeed Queen Victoria when she celebrated her 60th jubilee in 1897: her son Bertie, later Edward VII (1901-10); her grandson George, who as George V led the kingdom through the First World War; and finally her great-grandchildren, Princes Edward, later the short-lived King Edward VIII (1936), and Albert, who ruled the monarchy as George VI.
The British are honouring their current monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, and her nearly 70 years on the throne this week. Three successive generations are also commemorating this milestone, as they were 125 years ago. And, as it was then, the British monarchy confronts a lengthy run of male kings if it survives the twenty-first century intact.
Elizabeth’s son Charles, 73, has never expressed any concerns about his claim to the throne, and neither has his older brother William. Whether the nearly 40-year-old intends to retire as King Emeritus or, like his grandmother, wishes to die in office and with dignity, three children, including the eight-year-old Hereditary Prince George, are poised to follow him.
A monarchy controlled by men
As historian Suzannah Lipscomb points out with a little alarming undertone, a male-dominated monarchy may last well into the 22nd century.
“Of course, her personal character, but also her gender” contributed to the Queen’s success and the monarchy’s global reputation. Following this rationale, it appears all the more vital to publicly involve the royal women more in the celebrations and the forthcoming succession.
Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Queen Elizabeth’s wife, is noted for her charm, discretion, and patience.
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The idea of male succession (primogeniture) was repealed in 2013, but it was too late for Charles’ sister Anne, who was dethroned by her younger brothers Andrew and Edward and their descendants as pretender to the throne.
The now 71-year-old acted pragmatically, establishing herself in the shadow of her brothers and denying her children the title of “Royal Highness.” She has been at the top of the list of royals who attend charity events and so give glamor to them for many years.
The princess, like her father Philip, is “brash, attentive, and realistic,” according to “Times” columnist Libby Purves, who laments that the princess, who is now only the 17th in line to the throne, does not play a more important role. Because she distrusts the media, the woman who promised in this manner would very probably refuse to plead.
Meghan has returned to California.
This resentment is shared by Anne and the woman who was temporarily seen as the monarchy’s new face but has since returned to her native California. Will Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, make a comeback in the name of progress?
Perhaps as a Commonwealth Goodwill Ambassador, as Tina Brown advises. Her new book, “The Palace Papers,” is based on discussions with purportedly more than 120 Elizabethan regency eyewitnesses and propels the 40-year-old American onward, not least for her own career’s sake. “Whose halo is fading,” writes Brown, who was born in England but has resided in the United States for decades.
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge’s power has progressively expanded.
Dominic Lipinski / Reuters photo
The royal biographer, on the other hand, lavishes praise on Charles’ wife Camilla. The Duchess of Cornwall is “charming, discreet, and patient,” and she understands that fame “must be earned.” But what about Diana’s specter? According to Camilla Tominay, royal analyst for the conservative “Daily Telegraph,” the heir to the throne “will never be forgiven by some for his behavior towards Diana.”
The power of Duchess Catherine is rising.
According to polls, Charles’ second wife is a plus for the monarchy a quarter-century after the untimely death of the then “Queen of Hearts”: modest, committed to people, but above all, an indispensable support for the heir to the throne. According to Brown, he changed from an old grumbler to a “unmistakably happy man” as a result of his late marriage to his old flame.
Duchess Catherine of Cambridge’s power has progressively expanded as well. According to royal records, the former Kate Middleton is only of secondary importance: she is the wife of Prince William, the second in line to the throne, and the mother of George, Charlotte, and Louis, the third, fourth, and fifth in line to the throne, respectively.
Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, now resides in the United States.
Photo credit: PA Wire/dpa/Facundo Arrizabalaga
She usually has a nice smile on her face and is eloquently silent. However, she is adamant about bringing issues near to her heart to the public’s attention, such as early childhood help and mental health support. Internally, the woman from a stable, middle-class family looks to be a type of counterbalance to the Windsors, who appear to be mentally disturbed at all times.
The royal women appear to be made to maintain the monarchy’s importance, even in an age of decreasing deference, which the jubilarian has developed over 70 years. Down to earth, balanced, and less status-conscious – with these attributes, the royal women appear to be made to maintain the monarchy’s importance, even in an age of decreasing deference, which the jubilarian has developed over 70 years.