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Thursday, 8 June 2017

Queen (royalty)

In a country whose system of government is a monarchy, the ruler, or head of state, is decided by inheritance. When a ruler dies their child, or nearest relative, takes over. A queen regnant is a female monarch, equivalent in rank to a king, who reigns in her own right.

Elizabeth II of the UK, here with her husband on the occasion of her coronation in 1953

In Ancient Egypt, Ancient Persia, Asian and Pacific cultures, female monarchs have been given the title king or its equivalent, such as pharaoh, when gender is irrelevant to the office.

A queen consort is the wife of a reigning king, or a queen regent. However the husband of a female ruler is not called a king.

Many European realms forbade succession by women or through a female. No queen regnant ever ruled France, for example.

The kingdom of the Sabeans, who lived in south-west Arabia, were merchants and slave-traders, and men of large structure. Cush, the grandson of Noah, was their traditional ancestor. One of their notable monarchs was the Queen of Sheba, who made a twelve-hundred-mile journey to visit Solomon. The Queen of Sheba made a tribute to the Israeli ling in the form of spices, gold, and precious stones.

Matilda of Flanders, the ‘excessively beautiful’ wife of William the Conqueror, was just 50in (or 4 ft 2 in) tall — the smallest queen to reign over England.

Empress Matilda,  the daughter of King Henry I of England, became the first female ruler of England on April 7, 1141. She adopted the title 'Lady of the English'.

Portrait of Empress Mathilda, from "History of England" by St. Albans monks (15th century

The youngest queen consort was Isabella of Valois (November 9, 1389 – September 13, 1409) who was Queen consort of England as the second spouse of King Richard II. She became queen at 6 years of age in 1396.

When Pedro I was crowned King of Portugal in 1357, he proclaimed his lover, Ines de Castro, Queen despite the fact that she had died in 1355.

When Geraldine Apponyi married King Zog of Albania on April 27, 1938 she became the first American woman to become a queen.

Queen Geraldina. Wikipedia Commons

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