So, as you have probably heard, it has been a rather interesting few days in the UK. An era has ended. For the past two years I’ve made a point of watching the Queen’s speech at Christmas in full awareness of the fact that it might be the last chance we get to do so, and now, of course, that has proved to be the case.
I feel a little sad, not so much about the death of a lady who led an extremely long and full life and died comfortably (as far as we know) in her home in the company of people she loved, but about the end of an era. The main thing that bothers me is the inevitable change we now face in the lyrics of our national anthem. (Yes, I do recognise the irony of posting that on here given the wording of both versions of that anthem. Shut up, I’m having a moment.) For my entire life, the title and wording has been ‘God Save The Queen’, and it feels deeply strange to know that it won’t be that again in my lifetime. I mean, I can’t actually remember the last time I sang the national anthem (it might well have been the time in my 20s when I was on a coast-to-coast bus tour in the USA and one evening around the camp fire we all decided to take turns singing our respective anthems/any others we happened to know), but I always knew that that would be the wording if I did. And now it isn’t.
While acknowledging the controversy over the very existence of Her Majesty’s lifelong job as well as the ways in which that role has been shockingly abused over the centuries (neither of which I wish to debate further on this post, because, for goodness’ sake, there’s a time and place), I still have enormous respect for her for the way she did it. It’s often assumed that because she was astonishingly privileged in many ways this must mean her life was easy or frivolous. It was, in fact, immensely hard work, and I respect and admire her for the dedication she gave to it and the dignity with which she carried out the role. I wish her son all the best as he takes over that same role, and I wish comfort to him and to the rest of her grieving family, as well as to all those families that are less publicly affected by bereavement every day. RIP, HM Queen Elizabeth II.
Rob Grigjanis says
“Queen Elizabeth On-Screen Portrayals”. IMDb Supercuts. “Here’s a look back at various portrayals on-screen of Queen Elizabeth over the years.”
Tabby Lavalamp says
Well, it can, but today’s royal families don’t have the same gumption, ambition, and go-getter attitude of royal families past.
Raging Bee says
And now a man is taking the job of the Queen? A MAN?!! This woke nonsense has gone too far! TOO FAR I say!
I have respect for the woman, though she may be the most privileged person in the world, she had a horrible job which she did well. It’s a horrible gig for all the royals. We shouldn’t do that to anyone. I mourned Dianna. She was beautiful and seems to have been a very nice person who was beginning to find herself when she died. As an American, I just can’t understand the appeal of a monarchy; it’s not been rational since king was a synonym for warlord. A fond farewell to Elizabeth II, but I hope for a farewell to monarchy in Charles III’s realms, if not immediately in the UK. “His Majesty’s Ship” (how fortunate in English that his and her start with the same letter, otherwise we’d have to be repainting), “God Save the King”, it’ll be strange.
Well, your blog, your rules, of course. But if I may be permitted a meta-comment, what better time to debate the future of the monarchy than when a new monarch is proclaimed?
Raging Bee says
Perhaps the title of this post should be “Long to Reign Somewhat Off to One Side of Us.”