How Truly Democratic And Stable Is The British Monarchy?


How Truly Democratic And Stable Is The British Monarchy?
by Darius Kadivar

As the UK is rocked by riots concerns are raised as to the stability of the democratic institutions in Great Britain and the role of the Royal Family. This Excellent documentary offers some interesting and surprising revelations on the pros and cons of the British Institutions: Is Queen Elizabeth II as powerless as it is often claimed or does the Queen of England have Royal Prerogatives ? Can she influence her country's politics ? Or is she Only a symbolic figurehead as for instance is the case in a Truly Constitutional Monarchy like Sweden ( which has a much younger dynasty than that of the House of Windsor) Is the Labor Party inspired by Republican ideas ?

Power & Glory of the British Monarchy (1/3)

Power & Glory of the British Monarchy (2/3)

Power & Glory of the British Monarchy (3/3)

The Crown: PBS Report on how and when it can be borrowed  by the Queen for ceremonial duties:

And Explained by Her Majesty The Queen Herself:


New Rules Set for the British Monarchy and it's Constitution:

Ten things you didn't know about the British monarchy
(Not all is applied as strictly as proclaimed here except on paper):

England's Budget-Conscious Queen


Queen Elizabeth cracks a Joke at White House State Dinner with George W. Bush on 1776

( Date of the American Revolution):






The "Glorious" Revolution" of 1688 and the Bill of Rights of 1689




The Glorious Revolution, also called the Revolution of 1688, was the overthrow of King James II of England (VII of Scotland and II of Ireland) in 1688 by a union of Parliamentarians with an invading army led by the Dutch stadtholder William III of Orange-Nassau (William of Orange) who, as a result, ascended the English throne as William III of England. It is regarded as  the begining of parliamentary democracy in Great Britain which saw the drafting of the Bill of Rights. A Document that was to also subsequently inspire the American Constitution. 

The expression "Glorious Revolution" was first used by John Hampden in late 1689,and is an expression that is still used by the British Parliament. The Glorious Revolution is also occasionally termed the Bloodless Revolution, albeit inaccurately. In England there were two significant clashes between the two armies, and anti-Catholic riots in several towns. There was also the Williamite War in Ireland and serious fighting in Scotland (notably the Battles of Killicrankie and the Dunkeld). The revolution also led to the collapse of the Dominion of New England and the overthrow of Maryland's government.


It can be argued that James's overthrow began modern English parliamentary democracy: never since has the monarch held absolute power, and the Bill of Rights has become one of the most important documents in the political history of Britain.



British Restoration VS French Revolution :


Another interesting Take on the same topic from the view point of an Intellectual Bijan Abdolkarimi in Iran today and his take on the differences between the British Glorious Revolution (of 1688 and the British Restoration) which led to a Parliamentary System as opposed to the French Secular Revolution of 1789:


Except the scholar makes a mistake by claiming that Charles Ist was not beheaded butreplaced by his daughter. I suppose he confused Queen Elizabeth Ist ( who succeeded to King Henry VIII, the latter having failed to have a son) with Charles II who was restored on the throne a few years after Cromwells death.


Or was he thinking and or secretly hoping the same destiny for Crown Prince Reza'seldest daughter Noor ? ;0) 

The English Bill of Rights and it's influence in Drafting the Constitution of the United States:


The Bill of Rights laid out certain basic rights for (at the time) all Englishmen. These rights continue to apply today, not only in England, but in each of the jurisdictions of the Commonwealth realms as well. The people, embodied in the parliament, are granted immutable civil and political rights through the act, including:

  • Freedom from royal interference with the law. Though the sovereign remains the fount of justice, he or she cannot unilaterally establish new courts or act as a judge.
  • Freedom from taxation by Royal Prerogative. The agreement of parliament became necessary for the implementation of any new taxes.
  • Freedom to petition the monarch.
  • Freedom from the standing army during a time of peace. The agreement of parliament became necessary before the army could be moved against the populace when not at war.
  • Freedom for Protestants to have arms for their own defence, as suitable to their class and as allowed by law.
  • Freedom to elect members of parliament without interference from the sovereign.
  • Freedom of speech and debates; or proceedings in Parliament ought not to be impeached or questioned in any court or place out of Parliament.

Certain acts of James II were also specifically named and declared illegal by the Bill of Rights, while James' flight from England in the wake of the Glorious Revolution was also declared to be an abdication of the throne.

Also, in a prelude to the Act of Settlement to come twelve years later, the Bill of Rights barred Roman Catholics from the throne of England as "it hath been found by experience that it is inconsistent with the safety and welfare of this Protestant kingdom to be governed by a papist prince"; thus William III and Mary II were named as the successors of James VII and II and that the throne would pass from them first to Mary's heirs, then to her sister, Princess Anne of Denmark and her heirs and, further, to any heirs of William by a later marriage. The monarch was further required to swear a coronation oath to maintain the Protestant religion.

More on the Glorious Revolution by Historian Michael Barone:

Michael Barone is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and author of "Our First Revolution: The Remarkable British Upheaval That Inspired America's Founding Fathers". A political analyst and journalist, Michael Barone studies politics, American government, campaigns and elections. The principal coauthor of The Almanac of American Politics, he has written many books on American politics and history. Barone is also a senior writer for U.S. News & World Report.

The Causes of The Glorious Revolution :

Where Did The Idea of a "Bill of Rights" ? :

What Was Glorious About The Glorious Revolution ?:

Religious Tollerance and the Glorious Revolution:

How the Glorious Revolution Changed Foreign Policy:

Was King Williams Embrace of Parliament Purely Pragmatic?:

How did the American founders of the American Constitution differe from the English Bill of Rights ?:








Assassination Attempts on the Queen and Royal Family  




The Queen's assasination attempt in Australia (1971):


1981 - Trooping the Colour - Queen Shot At:

Prince Charles attacked during a State visit to Australia in the mid 1990's:

Royal Scare: Prince Philip Prostate Cancer denied:


UK protesters- 'Off with their heads' to royals (CNN December 10, 2010):

BBC News interview with Alex Bomberg on Royal Protection after attack on Charles and Camillia:









George Galloway and Piers Brendon, author of Decline and fall of the British Empire, discuss the British Monarchy and their hopes of seeing Britain Become a Republic. From Talksport radio show, December 19th, 2009.










Contrary to George Galloway's Republican Take on the British Monarchy, Comedian Stephen Fry speaks about the British monarchy and aristocracy as analogous to his crooked nose and precisely why that means they should be maintained. 

Stephen Fry on the British monarchy and aristocracy and how they're analogous to his crooked nose:

(NOTE: An excerpt from his wonderful autobiography Moab Is My Washpot)

Prince Charles, Emma Thompson, Hugh Laurie talk about Stephen Fry and Blackadder:


Stephan Frye on The difference between the English and Americans and French in terms of Political philosophy and understanding of Democratic ideals and of Justice:





Horrible Histories: A Satirical look at British Royal History 




The Wives of Henry VIII (Terrible Tudors):

Charles II: King of Bling:


The 4 Georges: 'Born 2 Rule':





Great Britain From an Iranian Perspective ;0) 



Monty Python's John Cleese Introduces Omid Djalili ( After GW Bush's Introduction) for the 60th Birthday of His Majesty Prince Charles:




Ahmad Shah Qajar welcomed at Guildhall, London by Albert Frederick Arthur George 
Future King George VI (1919)


Omid Djalili an Iranian in UK song:






The Incomparable David Starkey Explains It All ;0) 



An interesting and often humorous Lecture at The University of Cambridge by Dr. David Starkey on the significance of the Monarchy. More than the biographies of the kings and queens of England, this lecture is an in depth examination of what the English monarchy has meant, in terms of the expression of the individual, the Mother of Parliaments, Magna Carta, the laws of England and the land of England.The importance of the rich heritage of the Anglo Saxon kings is featured but it does not stop there. This is the history of ideas and ideals, as well as colourful characters.

David Starkey Lecture given on September 29th, 2009 Cambridge University:

About David Starkey:

David Robert Starkey, CBE, FSA (born 3 January 1945) is an English historian, a television and radio presenter, and a specialist in the Tudor period. More on him Here 





Recommended Reading /Watching:


HISTORY OF IDEAS: Ian Davidson on Voltaire's "English Exile"   


Recommended Reading:

GOOD READ: All You Need to Know About The Enlightment Philosophers


HISTORY FORUM: The Age of Enlightment in France and Europe 


Related pictory:

BERTIE & AHMAD: Ahmad Shah Qajar greeted by Future King George VI

ROYALTY:Shahbanou Farah and Queen MUM Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (Mid 1970's)

pictory: Prince Charles and Prince Reza (1974)

EMINENT PERSIANS: Henry Dallal photographer of Queen Elizabeth II

Related Blogs:


ROYAL FORUM: Prince Charles and Camilla's Car has been attacked by protesters


ROYAL FORUM: Prince William and Harry - Prisoners of Celebrity

RESTORATION: Prince Charles, The Meddling Prince (5 Parts)

David Starkey's "Last Word" With Maryam Namazie about Iran and the Monarchy (More4 TV April 19th, 2006)


RESTORATION: Shapour Bakhtiar advocates Restoring the Monarchy

On British Iranians:

EMINENT PERSIANS: Henry Dallal Official photographer of Queen Elizabeth II

HAIL BARONESS AFSHAR!: First Iranian Woman In the House of Lords By Darius KADIVAR

MOON RIVER: Breakfast Talk with British-Iranian Model Sophia (Sepideh) Nooshin by Darius KADIVAR

Ramin Karimloo: A Persian Phantom Unmasked by Darius KADIVAR

Shusha Guppy: The Persian Girl of Saint Germain by Darius KADIVAR

Winds of Change: Darius Danesh cast as Rhett Butler by Darius KADIVAR

Tony Nourmand's Golden Eye by Darius KADIVAR

Doris Lessing: A daughter of Kermanshah Nobelized by Darius KADIVAR 

Howard Lee, author of bestseller children's novel Jamshid and the lost Mountain of Light by Darius KADIVAR

KILLSHOT: Hossein Amini and Quentin Tarantino's New Pulp Movie by Darius KADIVAR 

Other Recommended Readings:

In The Arena With Omid Djalili By Darius KADIVAR

A Monty Python Visits Persia! By Darius KADIVAR

KNIGHTHOOD : Major 'Billy' the Qajar "Goat Mascot" By Darius KADIVAR 


more from Darius Kadivar

British democracy

by anglophile on

The forerunner of all modern parliamentary democracies is the British democracy and at the same time it is the most stable and all-inclusive of them all.

Thanks for reminding us Mr Kadivar. I can see a fellow anglophile in you.

Darius Kadivar

Note: Unlike Spain, UK doesn't even have a written constitution

by Darius Kadivar on

Note that Unlike Spain, Belgium or other European Monarchies (or even Iran under the Qajars and Pahlavi Kings) that Great Britain doesn't even have written constitution:

I hope to blog on this particular but fundemantal difference between Great Britain and other European Monarchies in the future. Which ironically doesn't change the fact that the British System of government is one of the most democratic ones in Europe as well as one of the oldest democracies in the world even prior to the US or France.

Related Pictory:

PARLIAMENTARY DEMOCRACY: Mozaffaredin Shah Signs First Draft of the Constitution (1906)

PARLIAMENTARY DEMOCRACY: First Public Gathering of the Iranian Majlis (1906)

PARLIAMENTARY DEMOCRACY: Shah Delivers Speech to Parliament (1951)


Related Blogs:

RESTORATION: Belgium King Baudouin takes Oath Amidst Republican Animosity (31st July ,1950)

HISTORY FORUM: Franco's Ghost- Spain's Painful Road Towards National Reconciliation

Related Constitutionalist Blogs:

HISTORY FORUM: Nader Naderpour on Iran's Constitutional Revolution and European Rennaissance (1996)

CONSTITUTIONALIST FORUM: Daryoush Homayoun Political and Journalistic life Honored in Germany