Royal Consort

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In English usage, a royal consort is the name of the spouse of a sovereign ruling monarch .

The Queen Consort in the United Kingdom

The recognized wife of a king is a queen consort ( German  royal consort , Latin: regis uxor ) or mostly just queen , while there is no generally applicable form for the husband of a queen (but a prince consort or king consort are possible ).

The male form of a royal consort finds its equivalent in German in the terms prince consort or titular king . Although often referred to as the Prince Consort , a male Royal Consort , unlike the female and more common Queen Consort, does not have a set formal title. Philip II. Of Spain was given by his wife Queen Mary I. the title of King Consort , Queen Victoria appointed Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha to the Prince Consort , while Prince Philip , as husband of Elizabeth II. , Of her the title Prince .

Under British law, a Queen Consort , although its consort, is a subject of the King. However, she shares his dignity with him and enjoys certain privileges. Her formal title is Queen Consort and, analogous to the salutation of King His Majesty , the salutation Her Majesty applies . Planning her death was treason, as was being in sexual relationship with her. After the death of her royal husband, she becomes Queen Dowager ( German Queen Widow).

Nevertheless, in contrast to a Queen Regnant , a Queen Consort does not have the same status as a King, but is subordinate to this in terms of rank. The male counterpart - namely the spouse of a Queen Regnant - also has a lower rank than his wife and sovereign monarch, which is also reflected in his address as Royal Highness .

When transferring the female form is the German is the problem that both the term Queen Regnant ( German  reigning queen ) and Queen Consort of Queen can be translated. In German, on the other hand, there is no distinction between a queen ruling sovereignly in her own right and a queen elevated to this rank due to her marriage to a king, since in the German-speaking area only queens in the latter sense existed due to the general practice of Salic law . The only exception is Maria Theresa as Queen of Bohemia and Hungary in her own right from 1740.

The designation ruling queen in Germany

The term ruling for the wife of a king was used in German monarchies to distinguish between the previous crown princess who had become queen as a result of her husband's accession to the throne and the now widowed queen. In Prussia in particular , two queens lived for many years. After the death of his father, King Friedrich II ordered that his wife Elisabeth Christine, as reigning queen, should allow Sophie Dorothea, who was now to be addressed as Queen Mother , to go first. The distinction was common without being a title . Friedrich Schiller appropriated the monologue of the Maid of Orleans in the play of the same name to the ruling Queen Luise of Prussia. Johann Daniel Friedrich Rumpf used the term in a city guide for Berlin and Potsdam and Johann Wolfgang von Goethe wrote songs To Ihro Majestät, the reigning Queen of Prussia , which Johann Friedrich Reichardt set in notes in 1809 . In the 1850s, Karl Eduard Vehse , the chronicler of the Prussian court , used the name for Elisabeth Christine. The queens in Bavaria called themselves according to this distinction.

Historians use the term to describe German courts up to the present day .


Individual evidence

  1. ^ Consort , in: Charles Arnold-Baker: The Companion to British History , Longcross Press 1996, p. 353.
  2. Consort , in: Encyclopædia Britannica , 14th ed., Vol. 6, London [u. a.]: Benton 1964, p. 377.
  3. A contemporary source is the German Encyclopedia or General Real Dictionary of all Arts ... , Volume 17, p. 649 .
  4. Karin Feuerstein-Praßer: The Prussian queens . Pustet, Regensburg 2002², ISBN 3-7917-1681-6 . Quoted by Friedrich on the salutation p. 150, on the “reigning queen” p. 176 f.
  5. See general musical newspaper . 5th year (October 1, 1802 to September 21, 1803). Breitkopf & Härtel, Leipzig, Sp. 335 .
  6. ^ Berlin and Potsdam. A complete display of the strangest objects. Volume 1, Oehmigke jun, Berlin 1804 , pp. 215, 217
  7. ↑ Performed again in 2010 by the Berliner Singakademie .
  8. ^ Eduard Vehse: Prussian court stories. Newly published by Heinrich Conrad . Georg Müller, Munich 1913, Volume 3, p. 152.
  9. When subscribing to a subscription list .
  10. As John CG Röhl in relation to Auguste Viktoria , in Wilhelm II. , Volume 2: The structure of the personal monarchy 1888-1900 . Beck, Munich 2012², ISBN 978-3-406-48229-8 , in the subchapter “The ruling Empress”, pp. 694–702 , Daniel Schönpflug: Luise von Preußen. Queen of the Hearts. A biography . CH Beck, Munich, 2010, ISBN 978-3-406-59813-5 , p. 83, AP Hagemann in The King, the Queen and the Prussian Court , p. 17 and 13 and Helmut Trunz: Queen Elisabeth. The Welfin at the side of Friedrich II. Sutton, Erfurt 2011, ISBN 978-3-86680-768-6 , p. 7.