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What’s the point of the monarchy?

The British monarchy is an antique institution, peopled by eccentrics and governed by arcane rules and customs. But it works—and we would struggle to find a better alternative

By Simon Jenkins   April 2011

The Queen opens parliament in 2010. As a constitutional form, the monarchy has proved astonishingly robust, argues Simon Jenkins

Best not to think about it. Best to block the mind, sink back in a chair and enjoy a ceremony well-staged, a dress well-chosen, and the heart-warming spectacle of Prince William and Kate Middleton in their matrimonial bliss. The British do national ritual with panache. Revel in that. Otherwise you will start asking why the classiest internship in the land, second in line to the throne, should go to the elder son of the elder son of the elder daughter of…

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