Europe

England Political System

England is part of the United Kingdom whose government is based in the English capital, London. In contrast to Scotland and Wales, England has no state parliament and no state government; the UK Parliament and Government perform these tasks. MEPs from the other member countries of the United Kingdom generally abstain on matters that are heard in Parliament and concern England only. England also does not have a constitution of its own, so the question of the country’s status is not clear and England can be viewed as a region or a kind of “federal state” of Great Britain. With regard to the political system, the Kingdom of Great Britain must be presented at this point.

The Parliament of Great Britain has its seat in England’s capital London. It consists of the House of Lords and the House of Commons. Parliament, along with the Queen, represents the sovereign power of the United Kingdom. The “House of Lords” is the highest English court and processes the bills of the lower house. The House of Lords is not determined by general elections but consists of bishops, nobles and lords. Issues of domestic and foreign policy in the country are dealt with here. The House of Lords now has fewer powers than the “House of Commons”, which represents the British people and is now the most important part of Parliament. The “House of Commons” is elected democratically. The deputies are elected within a constituency and represent it in parliament until it is dissolved after five years at the latest. The House of Commons decides on legislation and the state budget and the respective government must always be accountable to this political body. The Prime Minister is only entitled to govern as long as the House of Commons supports him with a majority. The prime minister is appointed by the monarch and is the majority leader of the lower house. He has the authority to appoint the heads of department of the ministries to the cabinet. The members of the government are appointed by the ruling monarch on his proposal. The prime minister sets the guidelines for politics. It is up to him to dissolve the House of Commons and thus to call new elections. The monarch himself opens parliament once a year. In practice, within today’s constitutional monarchy, he has only few powers and acts according to the advice of the prime minister; he has mainly representative tasks.

England is part of the United Kingdom, whose official name is:

United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Regarding the administrative structure, England is subdivided into 39 so-called “Counties” (historical counties), which have existed since the Middle Ages, but only took over their function as administrative districts since the middle of the 20th century and were redistributed several times in the course of this. For example, the administrative structure had to be adapted to the new metropolitan areas, so from 1965 on there was “Greater London” as an administrative unit, from 1974 six “Metropolitan Counties” and the rural counties, the “Non-Metropolitan Counties”. These counties were in turn subdivided into districts. Under Thatcher’s government, the counties’ administrations were dissolved and the tasks were transferred to the subdivided Metropolitan Districts, which have since been called “.

Listing of the kings of England and Great Britain

Normans

  • William the Conqueror (“William the Conqueror”, 1066-87) – The Normandy king triumphed over the Saxon king Harold and subjugated the entire country.
  • William II (1087-1100)
  • Henry I (1100-35)
  • Stephen (1135-54)

Plantagenet

  • Henry II (1154-89)
  • Richard I (1189-99)
  • John I (1199-1216)
  • Henry III (1216-72)
  • Edward I (1272-1307)
  • Edward II (1307-27)
  • Edward III (1327-77)
  • Richard II (1377-99)
  • Henry IV (1399-1413)

Lancaster

  • Henry V (1413-22)
  • Henry VI (1422-61 and 1470/71)

York

  • Edward IV (1461-70 and 1471-83)
  • Edward V (1483)
  • Richard III (1483-85) – was king during the bloody Wars of the Roses between the Houses of York (white rose badge) and Lancaster (red rose)
  • Henry VII (1485-1509)

Tudor

  • Henry VIII (1509-47) – founder of the “Royal Navy” and famous for his numerous marriages. Break with the Roman Catholic Church through his divorce from Catherine of Arag√≥n and the secularization of the monasteries.
  • Edward VI (1547-53)
  • Mary I (1553-58) – “Bloody Mary”, tried to reintroduce Catholicism in a very brutal way.
  • Elizabeth I (1558-1603) – finally established the Protestant Church and helped England to gain naval rule against Spain by defeating the Armada. Her reign shaped the cultural development and arrival of the Renaissance in England, also through important personalities such as William Shakespeare.

Stuart

  • Maria Stuart – The great-granddaughter of Henry VII laid claim to the English throne in 1559. In 1567 Elizabeth I had her locked up in the Tower of London for twenty years and executed in 1587 for high treason.
  • James I (1603-25)
  • Charles I (1625-49) – was executed by Oliver Cromwell during the Civil War that arose out of the Crown’s dispute with Parliament.
  • 1649-60 Commonwealth under Oliver Cromwell
  • Charles II (1660-85) – Restoration of the Monarchy
  • James II (1685-88)
  • William III and Mary II (1689-1702)

Hanover

  • Anne (1702-14)
  • George I (1714-27) – beginning of the Georgian era
  • George II (1727-60)
  • George III (1760-1820)
  • George IV (1820-30)
  • William IV (1830-37)
  • Victoria (1837-1901) – The Victorian era, significantly shaped by the World Exhibition in 1851 and England’s industrial supremacy in world economy and politics.

Saxe-Coburg

  • Edward VII (1901-10

Windsor

  • George V (1910-36)
  • Edward III (1936)
  • George VI (1936-52)
  • Elizabeth II (since 1952)

National anthem

The national anthem of both England and the whole of Great Britain is entitled “God Save the Queen”. The authorship of the hymn is unclear; according to the son of Henry Carey (poet and composer, 1687-1943) the piece of music in words and text can be traced back to his father. It is believed that the lyrics actually came from Henry Carey, but no statement can be made regarding the melody. Among other things, the composition Dr. John Bull (Kapellmeister and organist, 1563-1628) from 1619, as well as a number of pieces by Henry Purcell (composer, 1659-1995).. The first publication of the hymn was in the songbook “Thesaurus Musicus” in 1744 and it was performed publicly for the first time for King George II the following year. Although she is not the oldest, ”

In English In the German translation
God save our gracious Queen,
Long live our noble Queen,
God save the Queen:
Send her victorious,
Happy and glorious,
Long to reign over us:
God save the Queen.O Lord, our God, arise,
Scatter her enemies,
And make them fall.
Confound their politics,
Frustrate their knavish tricks,
On Thee our hopes we fix:
God save the Queen.Thy choicest gifts in store, on her be pleased to pour;
Long may she reign:
May she defend our laws,
And ever give us cause
To sing with heart and voice
God save the Queen
God protect our gracious queen!
Long live our noble queen,
God protect the queen!
Send her victory,
happiness and glory,
That she may rule over us long!
God Save the Queen!O Lord our God, help her,
Scatter her enemies,
And let her perish;
Confuse their (the enemy’s) policy,
Thwart their scoundrels!
We place our hopes on you.
God Save the Queen!Shower her with your choicest gifts, to please you,
That she will rule for a long time,
That she will enforce justice
And always give us reason
to sing
loudly and from the heart: God protect the Queen!

Note
Depending on whether the monarchy is led by a king or a queen, in addition to Queen/King and her/his, the last two lines of the third stanza change to: “With heart and voice to sing/God save the King. ”
The last three of the original six stanzas hymns are no longer sung today, if only because of the lines “And like a torrent rush, Rebellious Scots to crush.”

Bexit

On June 3, 2016, the EU membership referendum took place in the United Kingdom (UK), at which a total of 51.89% of the participants voted in favor of leaving the EU. In England 58.8% and in Wales 52.5% had voted, while in Scotland 62% and in Northern Ireland 55.8% against. After the vote, a long-term debate with considerable political upheaval began. Brexit only made progress after Boris Johnson became Prime Minister of the United Kingdom on July 24, 2019.

The UK’s exit from the EU, usually referred to as Brexit, took place with effect from January 31, 2020 at midnight CET and was regulated by the exit agreement signed on January 24, 2020. The agreement provides for a transition phase until December 31, 2020. Until then, relations between the United Kingdom and the European Union are to be renegotiated. Until this date, the UK – and thus also England – will initially comply with all EU rules and continue to pay contributions, but will no longer have a say in EU bodies and will no longer be represented in the EU Parliament. The transition period can be extended again beyond December 31, 2020 at the latest on June 30, 2020.

England Political System