Friday, November 20, 2015

Etiquette History and Monarchs

Nine European Monarchs Gathered in 1910 — Standing, L-R: King Haakon VII of Norway, King Ferdinand I of Bulgaria, King Manuel II of Portugal,Emperor Wilhelm II of Germany (King of Prussia),King George I of Greece, King Albert I of Belgium.
Seated, L-R: King Alfonso XIII of Spain, King George V of the United Kingdom, King Frederik VIII of Denmark.

How to Address a Monarch

The simple title "Madame," reduced in practice to "Ma'am," is, as most people know, all that serves between Queen Victoria and her court to mark the former's dignity as the ruler of a world-wide empire. Had Britain a King he would be no more than "Sire," the old French- form of "Sir," sacred to royalty. 

With us the term "Majesty" is only for servants and ceremonial occasions. There are few other courts where this wholesome simplicity prevails. The Emperor of Germany is "Majestat"— there is no pronoun in the title— to all and sundry, even to his family, except when in absolute privacy. 

The Emperor of Austria is "Eurer Majestat" at all times and under all circumstances, the King of Greece is "Votre Majeste" —French being the court language— and our recent visitor, the King of Sweden, is "Ers Majestat." Their royal consorts are addressed with the same formality. 

Only, at the courts of Belgium and Italy may the sovereign be greeted as "Sire" or "Madame," though the etiquette of the Russian court permits it when the French language is being used. When Russian is being spoken, Nicholas II is to his courtiers and officials "Czar," employed like the Prussian "Majestat," without a pronoun. — The London Mail, 1900

Etiquette Enthusiast, Maura J Graber, is the Site Moderator and Editor for Etiquipedia© Etiquette Encyclopedia

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