The Modern Monarchy of Britain

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When one thinks of Britain, perhaps the first thing that comes to mind is the iconic figures of the Royal Family. This hallowed line of descendants makes up the British Monarchy, serving above the people of the Commonwealth under the control of Britain. With such fanfare and dignity come an equally great responsibility. While the structure and ceremonial hype surrounding the British Monarchy has remained nearly unchanged since its creation, the role and powers of Britain's current Monarchy is significantly different.

The British Monarchy is composed of a King or Queen and their family, whose heirs inherit the throne when the King or Queen dies. The current Royal family is known as the “House of Windsor” and was created in 1917 (Whitelock). Before 1917, the British Royal family name was “Saxe-Coburg-Gotha,” which was derived from the numerous intermarriages between the English and Germans. In the midst of World War I, the relationship between England and Germany came into question, and in a pretentious attempt to distance itself from its Germanic roots, the name of the Monarchy was changed by King George V (Marr 17). Along with the renaming of the Royal Family, King George V also made several changes to the functionality of the monarchy at that time. For the first time in the history of the Monarchy, King George V not only permitted, but promoted the marriage of the royal family to other British nobles, instead of royals of other countries (Whitelock). The era of the House of Windsor also encouraged increased development in the area of the arts, which Britain had long been accused of lacking prior to this time (Marr 21).

Even with the many changes the Monarchy has undergone over the years, the basic structure has stayed the s...

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