Thursday, April 21, 2011

Anglophilia...

Anglophile (noun): a person who greatly admires or favours England and things English.

It must be said, I am an unabashed Anglophile, hence this rather random post about the things I love about England and We English...

Firstly: The Royal Family

Finally the long awaited wedding of William and Kate is upon us. Next Friday millions of loyal subjects around the empire, oops commonwealth, will be glued to their sets. A royal wedding- is there anything lovelier than a huge to do. Although The Daily Mail (whom we dislike in the strongest possible terms) and some other tabloids, are bemoaning the fact they they don't want tax payers to contribute to the wedding of the century and to one of the most glorious institutions of Britain, one which does more PR for Britain, does more personal charitable work than most misanthropic tycoons and has more charitable sway than other establishments, and one which visitors all over the globe flock to see. It is a shining light in the period of austerity and economic woe. If you can blow a billion on fireworks over Libya, what's a few million for bunting on the home front?



Then there's Prince Philip, who has a reputation for political incorrectness and social faux pas par excellence...



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The Queen still commands the admiration of the British public, despite her family's rather modern exploits.


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Above: Annie Leibowitz's portrait of The Queen

We have met Her Majesty several times over the years...





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Then there's Charlie boy and his inexplicable second wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall...





Above and Below: Camilla has a penchant for hats made out of birds' nests.


and which double as convenient cake covers to protect One's petit fours from butterflies when out on a picnic...


Charles' other son, HRH Prince Henry of Wales...




Above: Nicky Phillips' oil painting of the two princes.

Then there's Charlie's sister, HRH Princess Anne Elizabeth Alice Louise, The Princess Royal...




Below: Princess Anne (background not foreground).


Below: Again The Princess Royal (again, background not foreground).


Yet her daughter is the stunning Zara Philips, Equesterian extraordinare and face of Rolex Oyster Perpetuals...


Second Take - No It's not Professor Higgins and Eliza Doolittle, it's Zara and her uncle Charlie!...


Let's not forget the completely forgettable Earl and Countess of Wessex, Andrew and Sophie, and their children, Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor, Princess Louise of Wessex...


and Prince James of Wessex, The Viscount Severn...


However, other members are unforgettable (an unfortunately irrepressible): Fergie, mother of Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, and ex-wife of HRH Prince Andrew, The Duke of York.


Andrew, The Duke of York...

Not such a grand old Duke of late!



Apart from the Royal family the other things We love about the English are:

Manners - We invented manners during the reign of Queen Victoria. Before that all people were mere savages.

Customs - The inexplicable way We do things, even, no especially when it takes twice as long and complicates matters, and even better when there is livery and regalia involved.

Traditions - Like customs, but with less regalia and more tea.

History - A short or long account of how We were right and the other side was wrong, esp. when it comes to the French, and the Germans, and well, most people really. As Winston Churchill said: "History will be kind to me, for I intend to write it."

Sense of Humour - There is nothing like a British wit. Call it cynical, call it dry, call it cruel. If you don't understand it don't panic, it is just over your head.

Eccentricity - The word we use to describe being weird. Unlike being weird, being eccentric is not a bad thing, in fact, some people strive towards it (c.f. the Royals, the C.of E., the Bloomsbury set, the Oxbridge set, the Badger cette).

The Language... Spoken by the Queen, and until ca. 1960, most of her subjects.

Regional dialects... A way of telling who's related to whom.

A sense of Decorum and Propriety - something in fast decline, along with the language and the manners and the customs etc. etc. etc.


For others out there who may just be a little anglophilic, here are some other blogs to check out...


One London One





Please note: Vast segments of the above prose is written tongue in cheek, and is not intended to offend (either royalists nor republicans). It is meant as a glib trifle, hopefully not triflingly glib.

3 comments:

  1. Great post. Thanks for the laughs too.

    ReplyDelete
  2. My all-time favourite WP post! You've pipped me boys, as MOTH was planning to do a guest post over @ The Hedge on Royal Wedding Guests From Hell & most of them appear here!! Got to love those Pommie Royals though.
    Millie x

    ReplyDelete

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