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History Corner





Winston Churchill On The British Monarch-1909

Winston Churchill, in a speech at the Victoria Opera House, Burnley, December 17, 1909; reproduced in Churchill Speaks: 1897-1963,

ed. Robert Rhodes James (New York & London: Chelsea House; 1980), p. 180.


‘In this country the Sovereign reigns but he does not govern.

The King acts on the advice of Ministers.

The Crown in England has not had for hundreds of years the power of making laws, and for two or three centuries has not had the power of stopping laws when they have been passed.

It is a very wise thing in every State that the supreme office should be removed beyond the reach of private ambition and should be above the shock and change of party warfare.

It is as a constitutional Monarchy that we reverence and honour the British Crown.

I do not think the people of England would be prepared for one moment to agree to the Sovereign of these realms exercising the power which the Tsar of Russia exercises. . . .’