The death of Queen Elizabeth II is the end of an era. The Queen ruled for 80 years from 1952 - 2022. During that time from the age of 25 to 96, she oversaw Britain's change. From one of empire to one of post-empire with all that that entails.
Whatever happened in our nation the Queen was regarded as comfort by many. They saw in her stability and the personification of everything it meant to be British. Now Queen Elizabeth is no more and no doubt many Royalists will be worried. Can her successor Charles III be an anchor in uncertain times as she was?
The UK monarchy as we know it today has existed for 1000 years or more. Kings and Queens had absolute power and often abused that power for their own ends. Look at Henry 8th one of the most despotic kings ever to rule this land. They thought they had been chosen by God. However, the monarchy's rule came crashing down in the English Civil War. Cromwell leader of the Parliamentarian forces saw to it royalty would never rule with full power again. Charles I was beheaded and Cromwell ruled as virtual dictator in a short-lived republic. When Cromwell died his son took on the role of Lord Protector. However, he was not up to the job and Charles II became king coming back from exile.
After this, it was a shift from total rule by the monarchy to being constitutional. In other words, monarchs would never again enjoy the total rule of the country. They would be answerable to parliament and the people. As was the case with Elizabeth II and royalty before her time. Queen Victoria, however, was once called 'the Empress of India'. The monarchy at that time went hand in hand with the British Empire. This empire at its most imperial ruled a quarter of the world's surface. Even today, the British monarch as exemplified by Elizabeth II is the Head of the British Commonwealth. Commonwealth nations are independent nations but choose to have the Queen as head of state. Republicanism, however, is growing particularly in the Caribbean. Australia, Canada, etc, are also starting to think of republicanism. If some Commonwealth nations do become republics they then have the right to stay or leave the Commonwealth. For me, the Commonwealth should be put into the dustbin of history.
Charles III on the death of his mother automatically became King. His wife Camilla, cannot be called Queen instead she was given the rather curious title of Queen Consort. Britain has always been a hereditary monarchy hence Charles became king on the death of the queen. Charles has been in training all of his life for this moment. Now it has come we will have to wait and see what manner of king Charles becomes. Charles as the Prince of Wales was outspoken on many issues but now he will be expected to stay silent. Whether Charles Windsor can keep quiet will remain to be seen. For many Camilla becoming Queen Consort will be bittersweet when they remember Diana.
Some see with the advent of Charles III the UK monarchy is on its last legs. Depending on how long Charles III's reign lasts given that he is in his 70s. Whether William becomes king in the future will remain to be seen. Many feel amongst the UK republican community that the monarchy belongs to the past. The idea of having unelected aristocrats lord it over us is to some immoral. Frankly, when you consider how British people at the bottom of the pile have to live they have a point.
You would expect the BBC, Sky, ITV, etc, to lead the nation in mourning. However, when you see men and women in black attire and saturation coverage people get bored. It's like watching something from the days when the BBC was only the broadcaster. When everyone spoke with preciseness as exemplified on old Pathe newsreels.
Of course, with the passing of Queen Elizabeth, the second Elizabethan age ended. What comes next for Britain is a matter one cannot really speculate on.