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View Poll Results: Vote for the UKs greatest monarch
William the Conqueror 1 4.55%
Henry I 0 0%
Henry II 1 4.55%
Richard the Lionhearted 1 4.55%
John 0 0%
Edward I 0 0%
Edward III 1 4.55%
Edward IV 0 0%
Edward V 0 0%
Henry IV 0 0%
Henry V 0 0%
Richard III 1 4.55%
Henry VII 1 4.55%
Henry VIII 0 0%
Edward VI 0 0%
Mary I 0 0%
Elizabeth I 0 0%
James I 0 0%
Charles I 0 0%
Charles II 0 0%
Anne 0 0%
George II 0 0%
George III 0 0%
Victoria 6 27.27%
Elizabeth II 10 45.45%
Voters: 22. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 08-09-2007, 01:23 AM
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Britain's Greatest Monarch: New BBC poll

Well the choices are limited to Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, and Victoria but the new BBC poll to rate the UKs greatest monarch should be interesting since each of the nominated monarchs has a heavy hitter in the literary world to extol their praises:

BBC NEWS | UK | Magazine | The UK's greatest monarch is...

So who do you think should the TRF selection of the UKs greatest monarch?
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  #2  
Old 08-09-2007, 02:15 AM
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Edward III. He picked up the pieces after the reign of his father, who must be a good candidate for our worst king ever, and also did a better job of keeping his sons under control than Henry II did. A lot of the groundwork of the English parlimentary and legislative systems was laid during his reign because of the relative stability resulting from his strong leadership. And he created the Order of the Garter.

His worst problem was that he pretty much outlived himself, so he couldn't maintain his grip on his achievements when he grew old.
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  #3  
Old 08-09-2007, 02:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ysbel View Post
Well the choices are limited to Henry VIII, Elizabeth I, and Victoria but the new BBC poll to rate the UKs greatest monarch should be interesting since each of the nominated monarchs has a heavy hitter in the literary world to extol their praises:

BBC NEWS | UK | Magazine | The UK's greatest monarch is...

So who do you think should the TRF selection of the UKs greatest monarch?
What has happened to the once so exemplaric British Broadcasting Corporation, which was always shown as THE example of how a public broadcasting system should work.

Besides the never-ending cooking, gardening and auctioning programs now these silly polls (Greatest Briton, Greatest Monarch...)

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Old 08-09-2007, 02:26 AM
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I miss William III and Mary II: after the Glorious Revolution and under their Reign it saw the early begining of the present parliamentary sytem, and the recognition of subjects' rights, opposed to the absolutist monarchies on the Continent, for an example.

Also their Reign was one of peace, prosperity and happiness.
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Old 08-09-2007, 02:31 AM
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Its not a silly question at all, Henri to ask the UKs greatest monarch...I'm sure the BBC has conducted sillier polls than this...just their poll choices for this are a bit limited with 3 monarchs and predictably the BBC are sticking with the media friendly choices. But I am sure that at TRF we can do better than that. Therefore we have more choices because we actually know who some of these lesser known kings are in contrast to the general population.

Quote:

I miss William III and Mary II: after the Glorious Revolution and under their Reign it saw the early begining of the present parliamentary sytem, and the recognition of subjects' rights, opposed to the absolutist monarchies on the Continent, for an example.

Also their Reign was one of peace, prosperity and happiness.
Good choice. Unfortunately we only have 25 choices and the site owner will kill us if we ask him for more choices. I don't think the Duke of Marlborough favored William and Mary but otherwise I think they were good. I have to think a bit before I choose the greatest monarch in my opinion. Edward III who Elspeth chose is a strong contender.
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  #6  
Old 08-26-2007, 10:35 AM
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Including bloody Mary in this poll gave me a smile, I wonder if she will receive any votes, maybe by some fiercly catholic admirors, but otherwise her reign was an absolute disaster.

Like Henri, I would like an honourable mention for ´King Billy´ and his ´Faultless Queen´ aka William III & Mary II. They might not be the greatest of them all but their reign certainly stabelized the country, saw the declaration of the bill of rights and they curtained Louis XIV. More on them in this thread btw

I hope Queen Anne doesn´t receive any votes, she was IMHO an awfully unpleasant, spitefull, coniving woman.

My vote goes to William the Conquerer btw, I like these medieval Kings who weren´t afraid of a good adventure. If you had included the non-exsisting Arthur in this poll I would probably have voted for him .
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Old 08-30-2007, 09:15 PM
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This isn't an easy question but I probably opt for Henry II for his instigation of the legal system which we enjoy today. In his well-known dispute with Thomas a'Beckett, I've always believed that the King was right and that Thomas was completely in the wrong. Between that and his woeful sons' behaviours his massive contribution to law and process are often overlooked - except by historians and lawyers, of course.

However, it depends on how 'great' is interpreted. If the poll concerns the most intelligent and purposeful, then I think it a toss up between Henry VIII and his daughter, Elizabeth. Both were blessed with superb intellects.

Nonetheless, I take nothing away from Elizabeth II. Hers has been a remarkable accomplishment in a democratic, critical, accountable and intrusive age. She's done very well, very well indeed, to maintain her dignity and role in such high regard despite all odds in this rapidly changing and increasingly complex world. We've all been very lucky in our monarch - long may she reign!
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Old 08-30-2007, 09:19 PM
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Including bloody Mary in this poll gave me a smile, I wonder if she will receive any votes, maybe by some fiercly catholic admirors, but otherwise her reign was an absolute disaster.
Well, Richard III received a vote; if someone thinks he was the greatest monarch ever, there's hope for Bloody Mary!
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Old 08-30-2007, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Henri M. View Post
I miss William III and Mary II: after the Glorious Revolution and under their Reign it saw the early begining of the present parliamentary sytem, and the recognition of subjects' rights, opposed to the absolutist monarchies on the Continent, for an example.

Also their Reign was one of peace, prosperity and happiness.
Not if you were Scots, Irish and Catholic, it wasn't
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  #10  
Old 09-01-2007, 06:04 AM
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Well, Richard III received a vote; if someone thinks he was the greatest monarch ever, there's hope for Bloody Mary!
But, Elspeth, we remember that Richard III's reputation rests on Shakespeare's magnificent play. We also remember that WS was writing for the Tudor court, which was the beneficiary of Richard's overthrow and dethronement.

Richard III wasn't a bad monarch at all, and there's a huge historical movement afoot to acquit him of the iniquity of causing his nephew's deaths. They are called The Ricardians, and mightily influential they're becoming in historical circles.

I haven't heard of any historical movement to resurrect Bloody Mary's reputation, but.
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Old 09-01-2007, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
I haven't heard of any historical movement to resurrect Bloody Mary's reputation.
I believe it's called the Catholic Church.
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Old 09-02-2007, 03:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Polly View Post
But, Elspeth, we remember that Richard III's reputation rests on Shakespeare's magnificent play. We also remember that WS was writing for the Tudor court, which was the beneficiary of Richard's overthrow and dethronement.

Richard III wasn't a bad monarch at all, and there's a huge historical movement afoot to acquit him of the iniquity of causing his nephew's deaths. They are called The Ricardians, and mightily influential they're becoming in historical circles.

I haven't heard of any historical movement to resurrect Bloody Mary's reputation, but.
Well, no, I certainly don't think he was a bad monarch; however, I don't think he comes anywhere near being the greatest one. The fate of his nephews, together with his resultant problems in consolidating his position, dogged his reign to the point where he really couldn't get a lot done.
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Old 09-02-2007, 02:12 PM
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I think (honestly), that the suggestion that Elizabeth II can even be considered for the designation is pretty laughable. In impact on the United Kingdom and degree of actual power, she is probably the last on the list of English/British monarchs in history. Personally, I tend to think either Edward III, Henry VII, or Elizabeth I is truly worthy of being called Britain's 'Greatest Monarch'.
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Old 09-02-2007, 02:29 PM
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There's a problem in comparing "greatest monarch" from such divergent eras. Part of the difficulty is in identifying what a monarch is (or should be) at a certain time. It's easy to say that Elizabeth I was a greater monarch than Elizabeth II because of the power and role of the monarch in the 16th century. I wonder if Elizabeth I would have been a greater 20th century monarch than Elizabeth II is?
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  #15  
Old 09-04-2007, 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Elspeth View Post
Well, no, I certainly don't think he was a bad monarch; however, I don't think he comes anywhere near being the greatest one. The fate of his nephews, together with his resultant problems in consolidating his position, dogged his reign to the point where he really couldn't get a lot done.

Richard did, however, try very hard to improve the living conditions of people in the north of the country by instituting The Council of the North.

I don't think that he was the greatest, either, but he was really very far from being the worst. As for murdering his nephews - tosh, I say.

May I recommend Josephine Tey's famous and multi-award winning , internationally acclaimed novel: The Daughter of Time, which examines, minutely, the entire case?
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Old 09-04-2007, 11:33 PM
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Isn't that the book which reckons that Henry VII did it? If memory serves, Sharon Kay Penman pinned the blame on the Duke of Buckingham.

However, I think one of the problems at the time is that Richard was seen to be the one profiting from the disappearance of the nephews because his reason for claiming them to be illegitimate was rather thin, especially after the way Clarence and Warwick had tried to declare Edward IV illegitimate for their own purposes not all that long before. With the fate of the nephews hanging over him, he was hamstrung a bit like Henry IV because there was a large undercurrent of belief that he wasn't really the rightful king. When a king is forever having to look over his shoulder for other claimants and put down rebellions, it seriously compromises his effectiveness as king and quite often seems to lead to a rather tyrannical rule.

Having said that, I agree he doesn't come close to being the worst. Between John, Edward II, Richard II, Henry III, Henry VI, and even, IMO, Richard I, there are a lot of monarchs ahead of him in that particular category. It's just that at the time I wrote that previous post, there weren't all that many votes, and most of them were for monarchs I think were pretty good. Now, if I was to make the same post, I'd have said "Richard I got a vote, so there's hope for Bloody Mary." I think Richard I was exceedingly overrated as a king of England. Very good crusader, I'm sure; utterly disastrous king.
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Old 09-04-2007, 11:34 PM
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Richard did, however, try very hard to improve the living conditions of people in the north of the country by instituting The Council of the North.

I don't think that he was the greatest, either, but he was really very far from being the worst. As for murdering his nephews - tosh, I say.

May I recommend Josephine Tey's famous and multi-award winning , internationally acclaimed novel: The Daughter of Time, which examines, minutely, the entire case?
I want to second your book recommendation. its scholarly and well researched book, yet an unbelievable page turner.
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Old 09-08-2007, 02:19 AM
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Yes, it is, Pollyemma, and regarded as the standard for intellectual enquiry into historical mysteries and dilemmas. Not that, for one moment, it's a dry and boring discourse - au contraire! It's a fascinating and illuminating book, and a very easy read.

And Elspeth, I couldn't agree with you more about Richard I. He was a shocker of a king - utterly selfish and irresponsible, for starters - bled the country dry, and yet, somehow, the Sheriff of Nottingham who did his utmost to preserve the resources of the realm, became an evil demon, intent on promoting the hapless John, and Robin Hood (a charming fancy, no more, nor less) supposedly the great defender of the Saxons and oppositionally, and at the same time (?) the Plantaganet Richard I, becomes an urban legend and a folk-hero! Well, it's a pleasant and entertaining conceit, after all, so who am I to cavil?
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Old 01-10-2011, 03:06 PM
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Queen Elizabeth II Queen Victoria King George VI
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Old 01-10-2011, 03:42 PM
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Elizabeth I because she gave a national identity, killed Catholic fanatics, created the English East India Company, discovered parts of The New World, helped to civilize Native Americans, resisted the "intrigues" with Spain and France and was a woman who managed to reign in an era dominated by men.
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