PUPLE FROM 9 “G” CLASS
OF SCHOOL NO 22
For more than a thousand years Britain has always had kings or queens
except for the ten years between 1649 and 1659. In the past, kings had
great power and they really helped to make history. They started wars,
made lows, and did things in their own way. But gradually more and more
power went to Parliament. What does the queen do now? Why does Britain
need monarchy? And does it?
A job for life
Elizabeth II calls the Windsor family a “Firm”. She thinks
of it as a business rather than a family. And the main business of the
royal family is… well, probably being royal. And they are paid for it.
The queen is one of the richest woman in the world and yet she gets
about 8 million pounds a year to be a queen. But many people agree that
she does her job well and she deserves her salary.
The work of the royal family has continued through all the
changes of the last fifty or sixty years. There are hundreds of
traditional ceremonies which the Queen has to keep. Each year, in
September or October, there is the State Opening of Parliament. The
Queen, wearing her crown, arrives at the Houses of Parliament by
carriage. There she reads the Queens Speech, which discusses the
government’s work for the next year.
Another traditional ceremony takes place on the Thursday
before Easter Sunday. The Queen gives out purses of money to older
people who have done good work. This is called “Maundy money” and the
tradition is almost seven hundred years old.
Every summer the Queen gives three or more royal garden
parties at Buckingham Palace. About 8,000 guests come to each party.
They drink about 27,000 cups of tea and eat 20,000 sandwiches and 20,000
pieces of cake.
The Queen and other members of the royal family often travel
abroad as guests of others countries. They meet important visitors. They
are invited to the opening of hospitals, schools, museums, embassies-not
long ago Princess Anne came to Moscow for the opening ceremony of the
new British Embassy. So their life is quite busy. Besides, the Queen
acts as head of the government and once a week she has a meeting with
the Prime Minister. She also has to read the report of the day from
Parliament. Any law made by Parliament really becomes a law only if the
Queen agrees to it. But no king or queen has refused a new law since
When Elizabeth was born nobody knew she would be queen. Her
grandfather, King George V, had six children. His eldest son, Edward,
was the next in line to be king and Elizabeth’s father, Albert, was only
second child. Edward loved a good time. He enjoyed women, drink a lot,