Sunday, May 1, 2011
With just a dozen plus largely insignificant territories as overseas footholds, the sun in the British Empire no more sulks to set, of course it orbits away every evening plunging the English land into darkness including the formidable Buckingham Palace. But the grandeur of the British Royalty is as such that it evokes the awe it used to, even when it has ceased to be a truly existing monarchy. Though perched on the ornamental high pedestal now, the Royal family of the British continues to command awe and admiration not only from its subjects but all over the world, most of which are their past colonies. The recent gala wedding of Prince Williams and Catherine Middleton is evidence to the popularity of the British Royalty.
Someone ironically put it that monarchies are nostalgia that nobody wants back and Royalties in the modern world elicit a mix of curiosity and marvel in people like that of those stuffed animals in museum racks. In Britain’s case the English people are magnanimous enough to keep their Royalty as Royalty whereas many nations have thrown them into the cold clipping their wings of authority and opulence. I wonder if British Royalty is not there the world would have been left to rely on the pages of encyclopaedia and decades old grainy film footages to know about Royalties. So, the British Royalty is the best working model of Royalty in the world complete with Kings and Queens, Princes and Princesses, Dukes and Duchesses, palace, guards, chariots, gala weddings etc., except that limitless authority.
The British people have seamlessly embedded their nostalgic Royal line in their social and political system in a way that in no way it intruded into their governmental affairs and yet remained to be the seemingly supreme authority of the land. In history in almost all of the fallen or thrown out monarchies it is the self-serving anarchic agenda of the people at the helm that have soured their relationship with their subjects. Having colonized nearly half of the world and taking decisions for them in crucial periods and important policies whose impacts can be witnessed even today, luckily the British are loved and admired in most of their ex-colonies because the people seem to prefer to remember the good ones rather than the bad ones by them. It is like the people of India thanking the British rule for the Railways and English education and forgiving their plundering of resources here. After all the British Regality looks so down to earth with every now and then the Royal off-springs cutting across the Royal line choosing their to be spouse from the commoners and sometimes in the way losing their status of Royalty. (Or is it ‘Better cease to be a Royal than having to choose a bride or groom within a very limited number of Royalties’?)
So it springs no surprise that Will-Kate (using sobriquets of Royal names isn’t an offence, you see) wedding was a real ‘Wedding Royale’ with millions around the world watching it. Whether it was out of curiosity or love or admiration or the esteemed pride in their Royal family, the multitude gathered in front of Buckingham Palace was indeed a moving sight. Watching the wedding on TV with the undying colonial residuals inside me, I too was virtually waving to the newlywed. It was under their rule that my grandparents lived and my parents were born. Located far away in time from the British Royalty and its rule I write this piece of parody on them in English which might not have been possible if they hadn’t ruled us. I wonder whether it will be right to sloganeer a ‘Jai Hind, Jai British’ and yell it from my rooftop now.