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Last updated at 15:09 GMT, Friday, 12 March 2010

News Words: Monarchy

HRH Queen Elizabeth II

The BBC's Clare Arthurs looks at some of the words and phrases often used in the news and their meanings in various contexts.

This week: monarchy


Clare Arthurs on: monarchy

Related vocabulary

a constitutional monarchy

a country which has a monarch whose power is limited by the state

an absolute monarchy

a country where the monarch is head of the government as well as the head of state. The monarch has the power to govern the country

a monarchist

a person who supports the idea of a monarchy in his or her country

a republican

a person who believes there shouldn't be a monarchy and power should only be in the hands of elected officials

A challenge for you

Does your country have a monarchy? If so, how much power does the monarch actually have? If not, would you like to have a monarch?

Send us your short 'news story' on this topic and don't forget to use the word 'monarchy'.

We'll publish our favourites on this page.

This topic has now closed. Thanks for all your comments.

Walter, Germany
Hi. We don't have a monarchy and I think it's very well. A monarchy is for our country very expensive. We don't need either a king or monarchy

Vishal, India
My country India was ruled by Monarchy like every other country in the world was till it became a republic. Now we are ruled by the Political class elected by the people. This system also works but Monarchy has its own benefits and offcourse, broadly speaking, the development of a country and its people largely depends on the rulers, be it in a democracy or a monarchy. A Monarchy can do marvels for a country if the rulers are development minded, and also since they can bring out any change because the final powers rest with them.

Iza, Poland
Poland is a republic, with a president as a head of state and the government led by a prime minister. But monarchy had existed in my country since the very beginning, until we lost it, together with our independence, in 1795 when Poland's territory was partitioned among the three neighbouring countries: the Kingdom of Prussia, the Russian Empire and Habsburg Austria. We regained our independence in 1918, but we have never been a monarchy since then. However, the last days of Polish monarchy were very significant because they were days when The Constitution of May 3, 1791 was designed and ratified as Europe's first and the world's second modern codified national constitution, following the United States Constitution.Although it is difficult for me to say whether a monarchy as a political system is good for a country or not,I think that it may have a positive influence on the nation making them identify stronger with their country, remember about their history and preserve customs and traditions.

Osman, Somalia
Somalia has had somekind of monarchy,during Siad Barre's was a monarchy that every Somali detested.but when it comes to what we have now in our country,it stands to reason that Siad Barre's regime, as the best Monarchy.

Chiara, Italy
We don't have monarchy anymore, and I don't think either it's a great loss or that someone here is behaving as he were a king. Simply there're powerful people like everywhere, so I don't like this kind of criticism.I think we earned in health not having that family as representer of Italy anymore.

My Binh, Vietnam
Vietnam no longer has a monarchy, since Bao Dai the last monarch abdicated in August 1945. Looking at other countries, there are only a few monarchies existing in the world. It is difficult to say if I like a monarchy, since I have not experienced it. However, I think constitutional monarchy might be better for common people and more relevant to the modern world than absolute monarchy. In constitutional monarchy, a king or a queen cares about spirit of the whole country by making greetings in the first day of a year, encouraging people in difficult times, doing charity for disadvantaged people, etc. Absolute monarchy might be good only for the monarch, his family and relatives.

Mark, New Zealand
New Zealand is independent nation within the British Commonwealth . therefore, we have a monarchy, and our monarch is British queen Queen Elizabeth II. however, she plays no active role in the administration of our government. actually, we have our own prime minister and parliament. nevertheless, we still respect British Royal family.

Loc, Vietnam
Life would be more beautiful, romance and lovely if my country had a crown like other constitutional monarchy countries.

JH, South Korea
Unfortunately we don't have monarchy. Personaly, a constitutional monarchy could be good for the country itself. Royal family could be the simbol of the country. And also that made people love their own country. Of course some people in Korea insists "we don't need the king anymore". But if monarchy can makes the profit to the country, this must be reconsidered. Even though Joseon dynasty was fallen by Japan, royal family is still exist. To correct the history and justice, Korea should restore the constitutional monarchy. But for now, it is very hard to do this. Because to do this, Korea shoud correct the lots of laws, policies and even country's name. So, for now, this is hard to actualize. I'm very sorry for this.

Maria, Argentina.
Fortunately we don't hava a monarchy in this part of the world. I believe in democracy, with its positive and negative aspects. Authorities in a government must be chosen by the people.

Khaled, Bangladesh
I have fascination on monarchy though Bangladesh doesn't have monarchy. Countries those have monarchy have a lots of festivals in a year. I think a king is like a guardian and in any disaster they can guide the person which is not possible in republic nation.

Marta, Italy
In Italy there is not a monarchy, although it there has been for a long period.I cannot say what could be the best form of power, as it does often depend on the behaviour of a single person.Some politics might act as a "king", and some monarch might act as liberal state man.It is not important the kind of government of a country. What is fundamental is the ability in dealing with serious social problems and in solving them.

Mike, Hong Kong
There is no monarchy in Hong Kong, even in China. Hong Kong is a special administrative regions of the People's Republic of China. The head of the government of Hong Kong is the Chief Executive of Hong Kong, Donald Tsang. I don't like to have a monarch because we don't need this form of government nowadays. Donald Tsang is not selected from open voting. People presents we would like to vote our governor ourself in the future.

Aman, Afghanistan
In our country we don't have any monarchy government now days..After thirty year figting the people of afghanistan have more hurted now the people want to be democracy government.every person have equal rights afghan people.

Niclore, China
China is country with a long history of monarchy. but now we are republican and we can elect the officials. evolution is vital for huuman , obviously , we have better life than before~

Anna, Hong Kong, China
We don't have a monarchy system in Hong Kong and even in China now. During the colony time, Hong Kong was governed by the Officer who sent by the United Kingdom. As in China, it is famous of the monarchy system, the King was inherit by one of his sons, generation by generation, until the dynasty was demolished.

José, Spain
Years ago kings had effective power in all Europe. I wish spanish kings had been like english ones. Today there would be no one writing lies about us from Venezuela

Ai, Korea
In my country, a mornachy finished in the early of 20th C. Republicanism gave freedom and political open to the public. But, I think keeping a mornachy is necessary. the reason I insist of a mornachy, a mornachy can help improving a sense of history. Today, people doesn't think that a sense of history is important. but a country with no sense of history won't retain life. For this reason, I want to say that a mornachy need to maintain in this period.

Mohamed, Somalia
here in somalia we don't have monarchy or functioning sounds unbelievable,isn't it? people in this country become used to managing their lives without constitutions for the last two decades

Giang, Vietnam
In my country,the government isn't allowed to be a monarchistic country.Instead that, we're allowed to be Socialist Republic country. Because I don't live in a monarchistic country so i don't know much about advantages and disadvantages of monarchy.In the past time , our country have absolute monarchy ( In those day, we have royal family) but it doesn't lead our country become a strong country So that, I think when the government chose the morphological political, they always want to make our country become the stronger country and I believe in our government.For that reason, I don't think I want have a monarch

Sofia, Italy
When I was born, monarchy was already over and Italy was a -so called- republic. But it looks like Italians have never given up completely the idea of monarchy: the unjustified devotion to our Prime Minister shows it.Maybe Italians just need a strong point of reference and identity, 'cause they've completely lost it.

Nelly, Argentina
We , in Argentina,were part of Spanish monarchy until 1810.When Napoleon invaded Spain, he put his brother José Bonaparte to rule Spain and its colonies, instead of Fernando VII , king of Spain.Here , our patriots thought if we no longer belong to Spain , we might fight for our independence.

Priya, India.
Our country was ruled by many monarchys.Now it is being ruled by people. So, it became Democratic country. When a country is being ruled by monarch,obviously, there will be no chance to people to express their views for country's development. The lower comunities will be used by monarchys as slaves.though some monarchys ruled according to peoples wish, I can't support monarchys. we Indians are very lucky enough to not having any monarchys.

Nowadays spain has a constitutional monarchy,so the king is state chairman but he does not make laws or rules,this issues are for parlament , but in my opinion, we are a king very relieve and I think many countries have great respect about him, however for me monarchy is not the best political shape I prefer republican because not being our case , monarchy seem to me a hollow type of goverment and a great waste of money

Ndakala, Republic Democratic of the Congo
The monarchy is vry bad system of ruling public affairs. The monarch rules a state for life. If he is a bad man. You have to wait until he dies. There is no possiblity to try an alternative. Meanwile,in a republican system, people has the possibility to change ea leader if he failled in governin public affairs.

Lyubov, Russia
I am Russian and nowadays my country does not have monarchy. Russia stopped having monarchy in 1917.

Alex, Ukraine
Our country hasn't monarchy. We have democratic repablic. But I think that better life and discipline in monarchy state system. If you have powerful monarch you will have proper life. Democracy is relaxing piople, most of all - officialls and low is not always doing concerning them.

Amado, Spain
We have a monarchy in my country. In my opinion, the role of the King is only testimonial because he is only useful to deliver the Football Cup to the captain of the winner team and for appearing his face in the mail stamps.

Erica, Brazil
I wouldn't like to have a monarch here in Brazil because I think it's unfair a person to have so much power above a country.(because we can't choose a monarch, we just accept him).

Jessica, Japan
We have a monarchy but,which has quite limited power .For example,in national event,japanese imperial family take part in ceremony and they award to winners.They are to be symbol in Japan. However,they had politycal controll in hundred's years ago.It was finished monarchy system after World War II.

Selina, China
in our country, we don't have a monarchy nowadays, neither a constitutional monarchy nor an absolute monarchy. on the contrary, we have a powerful government that is communist party instead of a monarchy. on the other hand, we had many famous absolute monarchies that monarchs completely governed our country in the past thousands of years, for example the Tang dynasty. in my opinion ,i would imagine if we have a monarch at present, maybe we would have a prince like prince William. i think that would be a totally different situation. however, we can't change history. certainly, i am proud of our present government which brings us a peace country.

Daniela, Italy
My country HAD a monarchy, the Savoia dynasty, which ruled Italy from 1860 (the year of our national unity) until 1946, when a referendum took place establishing that italian people wanted a republican political system. In fact, excepting for our latest king (Umberto, the king of May), who was very well-thought-of and loved, the behaviour of the previous King (Vittorio Emanuele III), his heavy involvment with the fascist government and his weakness caused the decline of italian monarchy's popularity. The Savoia family was condemned to exile and only in this last years the descendants could come back to Italy.

Tien Hoa, Vietnam
Similar to other states, my country Vietnam does not have a monarchy. In my opinion, it is very difficult to say which the form of government we like or dislike because each ruling system has existed positive and negative implications. In my view on the monarchy system, I am in favor of a constitutional monarchy rather than an absolute monarchy. The monarch's power is limited in the constitutional monarchy where people regard him or her as a spiritual leader. Under the monarch's influence, the country stability and social moral are maintained. Alternatively, in the absolute monarchy, the monarch has full power to rule like a family dictatorship or nepotism. Due to the overwhelming authority, it causes negative effects on their decisions.

Caterina, Italy
I am Italian and my country nowadays does not have monarchy. Italy stopped having monarchy after world war II, thanks to a referendum: it was the first time that women could vote. Now Italy is a parliamentary, democratic republic, but I think that someone in my government would like to be an absolute monarch...

Leyan, The Republic Of China
We don't have a monarchy!

Norma, Argentina
we don´t have a monarch ,actually, but i think our people would have loved to have one.The idea of a head of state, who reallyworries about people and country , is naive in most of us.It is not a must to have queen or king,it depends on the honesty and the aim, the compromise and the thruth to leader a country

Misako, Japan
Even though many Japanese might hesitate to say that Emperor of Japan is a "monarch" which seems to connote actual power over people, I think I can say Japan has a monarchy in a similar way to British monarch system. The status of Emperor is hereditary and also has no political power, but it is "symbol" of Japan. I think one of important roles of Emperor is to meet head of states of other countries and to introduce Japan including Japanese culture and views. They learn quite a lot about Japanese traditional culture and customs, because the Emperor system has lasted over 1300 years, which is the oldest among all the countries.

Márcio, Brazil
In my country, about 100 years a go we had got a constitucional monarchy But now we have got a republic. The real family lives in my country yet and they would like to come back one day. The problem is they are too out from our political life and the people badly knows they exist.

Jose Daniel, Venezuela
In my country not have monarchy, the government system is presidential. The President has executive power and he or she has control on State. I think in Venezuela not have culture for a monarchy government because since begun such republic always has a presidential government system. Is relevant to consider Venezuela 200 years ago was liberated of Spain crown. It knowledge as just emancipatory and agree with Venezuelan history studied suggestion to the one crown is bad because the Spanish conquistadors (representatives of the Spain monarchy) devastating all our territories, died many innocent people, raped women and taking gold, silver and other precious metals and beautiful stones then sent that to Spain. They not established in South or Central America to develop new culture. They only took the wealth and got out. However not all monarchy are bad we can know about many monarchy to date in different countries such as Belgium, UK, Spain, Denmark, Japan, Malaysia, Norway, etc . These countries have high life level and its citizens are happy with that. The important in this matter is the monarchy should work for its monarchist.

Yuhan, s.korea
In my country,the Monarchy used to govern the country and peaple with an absolute power. All officials in palace and novels in each local areas couldn't help following his command as well as ordinary people. This system maintained until at the beginning of 20C. I think it's not good that a monarchy dominate a country because this can makes some system involved with social position inevitably. It's really bad and old fashioned thing which goes against the age. Moreover, it is against the equality!

Mathieu, France
My country does not have a monarch. But monarchy is quite funny, I'd like to have a monarchy. So, as I can't support the idea that I will never become the new king of France, I'm about to go to the UK to live in a real monarchy !

Anna, Spain
My country have a monarchy but he doesn't have much power. Spain have a constitutional monarchy. The Spanish king and queen have an active social life but they haven't a very little rol in political life.

Frank, Spain
When the dictator Franco died, a rural- country man asked me a question, listen boy, what does mean Constitutional Monarchy?. My answer was, "I'm not an expert in politics but to make it easy to you we could say that de king reigns but do not rules", his plain answer was, if he do not rules, why we want him?

Walter, Germany
HelloI think we dont need a monarchy.A demokrari is better than amonarchyBest wishes Walter

Gustavo, Brazil
I would like to a have a monarch in my country. In my opnion monarchy could help us to have a better place to live. There are too much corrupt people working in our congress and I think monarchy can ban these people better than police.

Yahia, Algeria
i am sprry for english,i am a debutant but i try to give my my country we do not have monarchy but we "republican monarchy" a president stay on the head of the country until he die.i am noy against the monarchy and i am not with the republic i am with the humai rights and i am with the law.


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