Author Topic: The House of Windsor and The Press  (Read 23803 times)

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ilyala

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #15 on: November 03, 2006, 02:16:17 AM »
You are certainly right about the discreet nature of Scandinavians - it is to their credit.  The image of Britain as the center of the universe - at least royally - is really only a couple centruies old.

...not really.

britain has always been there after the middle ages. yes, in roman times it was the end of the world, but the center shifted towards western europe and after william the conqueror's conquest, britain was always in the middle of things. i am not british, not american, my country has nothing to do with britain. and yet in a very generalized universal history course i studied the conquest, the hundred years' war, the english civil war, the wars with napoleon, the victorian era... these were all considered key points in the world history and were presented. the only mention i ever heard in that course of any scandinavian country was charles 12th's war with russia and that was not in a course of scandinavian history but rather a course of russian history (peter 1st). completely circumstantial.

i think today the only monarchy that is close to the british one as fame (close and yet so far) is the spanish one. they have been quite important over the years too. had france maintained a monarchy, it would have probably as in the center of attention as the british one.

as for what they actually did... ivan the terrible also had 7 wives and yet that is a less known fact. i didn't know it till i read a book on him. even more, his marital history is even more dubious than that of henry 8th. he also had a conflict with the church who refused to aknowledge his last four wives... but although his name is familiar to many, how many know this? not many. henry's wife conflict and church conflict was in the center of a european conflict - the french - spanish fight for supremacy and catholic - protestant wars. ergo - people remembered it.

compare elizabeth's fame with that of catherine the great's and that of catherine's predecessor (elizabeth of russia was, in my opinion a very interesting and important empress). also compare her with another important female ruler - isabelle of castille. people know much more of elizabeth because she was in the center of the same conflict her father was.

now it's the same thing. britain is in the center of the iraqi conflict - it's always in the center of attention. that projects on its monarchy.

Offline ChristineM

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #16 on: November 03, 2006, 04:28:14 AM »
It would be a great pity if the Iraqi conflict were to impact on the British monarchy.   We will never know what the feels about this particular episode in history, but I cannot imagine she will feel very comfortable.   

Therefore, I have to say there is something more to the British monarchy than British foreign policy.   A something which attracts attention from virtually the entire globe.   There are also echoes of the days when Great Britain 'ruled the waves'.   Who knows, if the US had had a monarchy, the British monarchy would have been viewed in a similar category to Scandinavian thrones.   None of us have known a British monarch apart from Elizabeth II.  She has reigned with discretion but at the same time has projected a moral force in the nation.   Perhaps we have been fortunate in having monarchs who have managed to reflect the times in which they reign.   The Queen's father certainly achieved this during the war years.   British monarchs have been adept at adapting (Edward VIII being the one exception in modern history.   Surrounded by a court which is still living somewhere in the reign of Edward VII, this is quite a remarkable feat.   It might all be down to genes.   If this is the case, we should have no worries about Charles' accession.

Ivan the Terrible and the Orthodox Church's disapproval of his multi-marriages, is possible to witness it to this day.   In the beautiful little Cathedral of the Annuciation in the Kremlin, a new porch was built for each wife who, due to her status, was not permitted to join the rest of the congregation within the Cathedral.   The Cathedral of Annunciation is where, traditionally, all imperial babies were baptised prior to the Court moving to St Petersburg.   There are a total of seven porches.   Each one to accommodate Ivan the Terrible's succession of wives.

tsaria     

basilforever

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #17 on: November 03, 2006, 09:10:57 AM »
I think the British Monarchy does not get more attention than the Scandinavian monarchies simply because Britian is involved in the war in Iraq. Since it is not the monarchy's decision to go to war, I don't think many people make a connection. I don't. Britain is just considered more of an ''important'' country and has much more ties to my country (Australia) than the Scandinavian countries do so it is natural that the British royals get more attention, irrespective of what they do. The British Royals are just much more familiar and interesting to most people. With most other royal families, they (the ordinary non-royalty interested people) would have to learn about them and their country's history to really know what was going on, and they are probably not willing to do this or interested to do this, or motivated enough. But with the British monarchy we already know so many of the famous figures and what they did and about so many key historical events which are a part of any educated person's general knowledge, moreso than Scandavian countries of course, so that is why the British Monarchy gets so much more attention.

Offline Romanov_fan

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #18 on: November 03, 2006, 10:22:28 AM »
Is it possible that sharing the English language has something to do with it? N.

I think so. England has always been central to the history of many countries, and if we know the past of that, we are interested in the present as well. Other monarchies had interestng stories, as much as that of England, the person who stated that was right. But the Danish, Swedish royals were mostly a bland lot then and they are still today. Christina of Sweden, the 17th century Queen was quite interesting, but beyond that, there wasn't much there. So, that's why no one has ever been as much interested in these royals. But the other countries did have interesting royals, whose stories have not been as written about, or culturally well known. I think the last person is right, it is hard to put them into context too, and people don't want to go through the effort of learning the country's history, etc. Denmark and Sweden as countries have always been dull, in my view, and Norway never had much culture until later and even then Ibsen was not typical of the majority of that race ( he was intellectual, unlike most), these countries didn't have the literature, culture nor history of other countries. So, historically, and with royalty, these were dull countries.

Offline trentk80

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #19 on: November 03, 2006, 11:12:55 AM »
Is it possible that sharing the English language has something to do with it? N.

I think it has a lot to do with the language indeed. There are many books in English about the British royals; you can find several English titles about the Tudors, Elizabeth I, the Stuarts, the Hannoverian dynasty, Queen Victoria, her descendants, etc. you name it. On the other hand, there aren't many books written in English about the royals of Scandinavia, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, etc. There are some, of course, but not as many as in their respective languages (French, Spanish, Italian, etc.) and that means that English-speaking people don't have access to those non-English books, unless they speak other languages, which is not always the case.

Regarding the popularity of the British royals... well, I'm sure that some English-speaking people know that King Alfonso XIII of Spain existed only because he married Victoria Eugenia of Battenberg. Had he married another princess (non-British) I bet he would be much more unknown to English-speaking people. Likewise, some persons are interested in Nicholas II of Russia only because he married a granddaughter of Queen Victoria.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2006, 11:30:25 AM by trentk80 »
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ilyala

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #20 on: November 03, 2006, 11:15:13 AM »
I think the British Monarchy does not get more attention than the Scandinavian monarchies simply because Britian is involved in the war in Iraq. Since it is not the monarchy's decision to go to war, I don't think many people make a connection. I don't. Britain is just considered more of an ''important'' country and has much more ties to my country (Australia) than the Scandinavian countries do so it is natural that the British royals get more attention, irrespective of what they do. The British Royals are just much more familiar and interesting to most people. With most other royal families, they (the ordinary non-royalty interested people) would have to learn about them and their country's history to really know what was going on, and they are probably not willing to do this or interested to do this, or motivated enough. But with the British monarchy we already know so many of the famous figures and what they did and about so many key historical events which are a part of any educated person's general knowledge, moreso than Scandavian countries of course, so that is why the British Monarchy gets so much more attention.

i used the iraqian war as an example. it's one of the main conflicts of the day and the british are in it. just like the british were involved in napoleonic wars, in french-spanish wars for european supremacy and so on. of course it's not the reason why they're famous. the reason they're famous is because britain is somehow always there. i can't think of one single important global event in the last few centuries to which britain hasn't participated in one way or another. on the other hand at the moment i have no idea what the scandinavian countries' attitudes are on matters like the iraqian war, north korea, whatever. however, i have seen declarations from president bush and tony blair instantly after each and every global event from the past year.

in short: britain is in the center of attention and, whether they like it or not, it dragged its monarchy into it. my personal opinion.

Zanthia

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #21 on: November 03, 2006, 11:27:30 AM »
I really can't agree with the royals in Sweden and Denmark are blend and dull. There's certainly many exciting fates and stories from the danish and swedish monarchy, just as many as the ones England can provide with. If Denmark or Sweden had been a superpowers throughout many centuries like England has, this thread would most likely be about the Glucksburgs or Bernadottes.

Offline ChristineM

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #22 on: November 03, 2006, 11:38:05 AM »
I agree that the universality of the English language has a lot to do with the popularity of the Windsors, thus making them, their history and their story so much more accessible to a large number of people.   The Scandinavian and Dutch languages are not so widely spoken.   It is unfair and untrue to say these monarchs and their families are dull.   The Spanish language being another major language will probably contribute to greater awareness of the Spanish royals.   The Grimaldis too are fashionable and fascinating, but it is rather a minor princely house whose members manage to capture the headlines for a variety of reasons.   The single reason for the heightening of the Grimaldi's profile lies in Prince Grace.

tsaria   

tsaria

Offline Romanov_fan

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #23 on: November 03, 2006, 11:57:22 AM »
Well, it is true that if there is not much about certain royals in a language, like English less is known of them. I think the statement concerning English though had more to with the centrality of the English language, and how it is important to the world, and so on, and thus that makes the royals of that country particularly well known, if not important.  That is true, although the observation about books in languages is true as well. If there is not something quite headline grabbing about these dynasties, and royals usually there isn't much written about them in English, no matter how much you would read about them if there was. I know there are royals that interst me, that I can't read about as much as I would like because there is just not enough about them in English, or at least books that I can find, like the Hapsburgs of Austria.

The royals of those Scandinavian countries are not dull, perhaps, but just not as interesting. If you know much about their history you realize that. Chrustina of Sweden was an exception, she has interested people more than most. But the rest of them have been largely forgotten, whether that is relevant or not, at least in the English language, although I can't speak for any other, myself. Less historically, and more recently, have not the royals of these countries been accused of popularizing monarchy, that is making it seem more common, and less regal and full of distant glamour? The Windsors have tried to keep the mystery, although there have been, in the past so many scandals that perhaps they don't have that anymore. It is said the royals of the Scandinavian countries are more about just acting like everybody else, and maybe that makes them seem less interesting, because there is more mystery in the Windsors, and other dynasties?
« Last Edit: November 03, 2006, 11:59:33 AM by imperial angel »

Nadezhda_Edvardova

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #24 on: November 03, 2006, 01:44:06 PM »
So are the British royals prominent because Britian is prominent?  That only explains outsiders' attentions, i.e. Americans notice the Windsors more than the Bernadottes because Britian is more important to the US than is Denmark. 

The Windors endure more attention and receive more criticism from their own nation than any other royals. Their perks (perquesites) are either being challenged or taken away, while at the same time, other monarchs continue to enjoy Civil List income for more members, exemption from income tax, yachts, etc.

Imagine, for example, the uproar there would be in the UK if Prince William wanted to marry a girl who already had a child, as Mette-Marit has?  Or was of a different race, as Alexandra of Denmark is?

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Offline Romanov_fan

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #25 on: November 03, 2006, 04:28:19 PM »
Yes, I can imagine the uproar. ;) I think that that those royals you mentioned are less in the public eye, so they can get away with more. The Windsors have more of a public image to maintain, and they know that. They have to be seen a certain way, tradition as much as scrutiny dooming them. The scandals that have happened in their family are made the worse of than they would be elsewhere, because of all this. I think perhaps their traditional values of duty and morality, etc kind of doom them as well to have to maintain a certain image. These virtues may not be as associated with other monarchies as theirs, so they are prisoners of it. Other royals don't have to appear so moral or dutiful, but the British royal family since Queen Victoria's time have supposed to have been moral and dutiful, and well, they have not always been, but they are supposed to be. But people are human, as well, and every family Royal or not, has their share of scandals. I think the British Royal Family is very interesting past, present, and future, and Britain is lucky to have such a wonderful monarchy.

Offline Grace

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #26 on: November 03, 2006, 05:36:31 PM »
Well, I will add that I think Britain is lucky to have such a wonderful monarchy in the hands of the present incumbent -- I am not sure it will fare so well later on, but that is just my opinion.  :-\

Only a century ago, Britain was the centre of an empire that ruled, or had influence over, much of the world.  That is why, in my opinion, the British royal family attracted so much attention in the past.  Over the last generation or so, the behaviour and of course the personal appearance, good and bad, of some of the younger members has ensured that the media focus is on them even more. 

I really can't see there would be much of an approar if William wanted to marry a woman who had a child from a previous relationship.  :(

Generally speaking, people don't seem to care about things like that any longer -- not all, but the majority, I would say. 

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #27 on: November 03, 2006, 07:16:31 PM »
I think the common language is probably the largest factor, at least for the US. Other monarchies used to get more attention in the US papers but that gradually decreased after WW2 through the modern era. British royals probably wouldn't even have the level of attention they do if it wasn't for the impact that Diana had in the early '80s. British royals aren't covered nearly as much as they were in the Diana Years and the European monarchies rarely.

I don't think it has to do with the British presence in Iraq--I think that just enables the US population to actually be able to name the British Prime Minister. The Spanish, Dutch, Norwegian and Japanese all had/have troops there and it didn't increase their press attention. These countries were involved in other wars (most notably WW1 and WW2) that we were involved in and I don't think it boosted the level of awareness here in the US.

The British monarchy is just full of history and glamour and personalities and that just appeals to us here. I'm sure that it would be different though if we had to try and hunt down books because they weren't in English. There are so many interesting stories that could 'hook' people on the other monarchies except that are fairly inaccessible due to the language barrier.
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Offline Ena

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #28 on: November 03, 2006, 09:56:55 PM »
The sun never sets on the British Empire!  ;D  I think this is a huge reason why the British Monarchy over shadows the rest.  Not too long ago, Britain had tons of territories all over the globe.  While many are still there today, they are no longer controlled by Britain.  You had people in countries that were taught more about being British than their own histories.  Part of that history is going to be the glorious kings and queens.  Britain conquered and became the focus of their daily lives.  A person from Jamaica, Australia, Canada, etc says words like "zed" and drinks their tea the "proper" way.  Naturally, they are also going to follow the news of the "Motherland".  :) 

As for the US, we've always had a special bond, language is a one of many parts of it, so it's not surprising that Americans are obsessed with the monarchy. 

Offline Romanov_fan

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Re: The House of Windsor and The Press
« Reply #29 on: November 06, 2006, 12:26:32 PM »
Well, I think people care less about Royals having to be perfect than they use to, like around the time Princess Diana married. Then the royal bride was supposed to be a virgin, and high born, although not royalty. Princess Diana was that, and Camilla was not, so that's why ( among other reasons) Princess Diana became the royal bride. Nowadays, people are more reasonable about who royalty can marry, and that's good, but I feel even in this area that the British Royal family but be subjected to more scrutiny than the Danish, Swedish,etc monarchies might be. But, I think royal marriages are more in the realm of the human, and hopefully that will continue. I think the British monarchy has a bright future.