So long, for now: The Royal Rep is on hiatus.

Update: For all of my royal projects, see Mandy’s British Royalty, where it all began!

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As you know, I put out the call for writers for my blog, The Royal Representative. I crafted a specific structure for the site in order to expand its commentary style. Thanks to several contributors, The Royal Rep has many unique articles from the past year. My gratitude to these contributors is immense!

As far as forming a permanent team, no one heeded the clarion call! Without the support of a team, consistent blog content became difficult. So at this time, I have decided to put The Royal Rep on hiatus.

When major royal events occur (or if controversies pop up), you can be sure that I will write about them! You may even see me on television discussing royal news. Week-to-week blog content is not possible, however. Hopefully it will be possible in the future.

I firmly believe that putting The Royal Rep on hold is a blessing in disguise: I can devote more time to my original site, Mandy’s British Royalty. Support has increased for the new style planned for MBR, as well as for another project I am launching. It’s a whole new chapter in my royal work, one in which I can be more creative and mobile.

A tremendous thank you to my audience, as always, for coming along on the ride. I love talking about royal history and you all help drive my purpose. Keep up with the latest over at Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. You won’t be disappointed.

All the best,
Mandy

5 Royal Births That Changed History

5 Royal Births That Changed History
by Sam McCann – originally published May 5th, 2015 for the Royal Oak Foundation. Royal Oak is the American partner of the National Trust, of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Its mission is to encourage Americans to learn about, experience and support places of historic and natural significance throughout the United Kingdom. Royal Oak members receive unlimited entry to all National Trust UK properties. You can read more about their work on their blog, The AngloFiles.

The English world got some big news this weekend, as it welcomed Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana! Royal births are always big news, but their full impact is felt decades down the line. Here are five Royal babies who unexpectedly changed English and world history.

English: The "Darnley Portrait" of E...

The “Darnley Portrait” of Elizabeth I of England. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Queen Elizabeth I

From pioneering New World exploration to defeating the Spanish Armada, Elizabeth’s reign undoubtedly changed the course of England. However, at birth her fate wasn’t as clear: the daughter of Henry VIII’s second wife, Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth had an older brother, Edward, and older half-sister Mary I, standing between herself and the throne. In fact, her birth itself was a political controversy: Henry VIII broke away from the Catholic Church in order to divorce his first wife to marry Anne Boleyn and father Elizabeth.

Elizabeth wasn’t acknowledged as sovereign until Mary’s death, but she quickly brought stability to the tumultuous political landscape her father’s action wrought. Her reign established England’s empire and her birth must be recognized as one of the most momentous in British history.

John

Like Elizabeth’s, John’s birth was hugely unexpected: when he arrived on Christmas Eve, 1166, his mother, Eleanor of Aquitaine, was 44 years old. John was a flawed ruler, and his actions led to English barons forcing him to sign the Magna Carta in 1215.

While John might not have the treasured history of Elizabeth, his reign is responsible for one of the watershed moments in Western democracy. Visit the site of the Magna Carta’s signing, Runnymede, with your Royal Oak membership.

queenVicQueen Victoria

Victoria was born in 1819; by 1820 her father, Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, was dead after a bout of pneumonia. Under supervision from her Belgian mother, also named Victoria, and her uncle, the famous King Leopold of Belgium, Victoria prepared for the throne.

Following the early deaths of King George III and King William IV when she was a child, Victoria was crowned queen at age 18. Her birth, then, represents another improbable ascension to the monarchy. Her reign, the longest in British history, was marked by the growth of the English Empire and the rise of many integral aspects of the modern world, from industrialization to urbanization.

 

Queen of United Kingdom (as well as Canada, Au...

Queen Elizabeth II (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Elizabeth II

Like her namesake, our current Queen wasn’t expected to reach the throne. However, in 1936, at age 10, Elizabeth grandfather died. Her oldest uncle abdicated within a year to marry Wallis Simpson, leaving Elizabeth’s father, George, the throne.

Since she became Queen in 1952, Elizabeth has obviously been instrumental in guiding England through a tumultuous century. From the Cold War to globalization, she’s been at the helm of the last 60+ years of English history and is nearing Victoria’s record as longest-reigning monarch.

 

 

William-conquerorWilliam the Conqueror

Known as “William the Bastard” for much of his life, William was the product of an affair between his father and a woman named Herleva. Because of this ancestry, William faced a fight to consolidate power, but he ultimately succeeded in that regard. He then used his power to invade England, defeating King Harold II at the Battle of Hastings and ushering in a new period of British history.

Despite never speaking English, he had an incalculable effect on the language, infusing it with his native French. It’s also believed that every English monarch to follow is descended from him.

 

 

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Visit the country homes that hosted royalty for centuries with the Royal Oak Foundation. Members enjoy unlimited access to these special properties protected by the National Trust. Join Now!

Queen’s “Nazi salute” photo causes outrage

I had a chance to appear on Canada’s CTV to discuss and refute the alleged Nazi salute given by the queen as a child. In 1933, then-Princess Elizabeth is shown giving what appears to be a Nazi salute along with her mother, the Duchess of York. Her uncle David, the future Edward VIII and subsequently Duke of Windsor, is also seen helping Elizabeth’s sister Margaret “salute”.

Royal Expert Mandy Littlefield reacts to the footage that has surfaced of Queen Elizabeth making the Nazi salute as a child.

Posted by CTVNewsChannel on Saturday, 18 July 2015

The Magna Carta – celebrating 800 years of the democratic legacy

Americans celebrate Independence Day on July 4th, the day that the Continental Congress approved the final wording of the Declaration of Independence. In that document, we declared that our colonies were no longer part of Great Britain.

Farewell, Britain – you deal with us on our terms now!

Since that time, America has blossomed into The United States, stretching from the Atlantic ocean to the Pacific ocean. We are now allies with the United Kingdom and even refer to the alliance as the “Special relationship”. It is indeed unique for a former colony to become even bigger than its mother country, even equalling them in economic and military might.

King John of England signing Magna Carta on Ju...

King John of England signing Magna Carta on June 15, 1215, at Runnymede; coloured wood engraving, 19th century. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The one question is: would it have all been possible without the Magna Carta?

June 15th, 2015 marked the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta. The Great Charter was signed by King John to appease his rebellious barons in the midst of battle. Eight centuries later, its enduring legacy has transformed countries all over the world. It outlined the basic rights of man and established that no one was above the law, including the king. It heralded a major shift in the balance of power between the monarch and his people.

Celebrating the events this summer were the staff and students at the Magna Carta School. Below, their celebration of the Great Charter’s 800 years.

We began the Anniversary year with an invitation to visit Number 10 Downing Street to meet the Prime Minister and other government ministers. As the only school in the UK with the name Magna Carta, as well as being located in the heart of Runnymede, we had already caught the attention of ministers due to our work on Magna Carta. It was a fantastic opportunity for both students and teachers to be present at the official launch of the Anniversary year.

Our students and teachers have also been working with the National Archives and Egham Museum to help develop teaching resources on Magna Carta for all age groups in schools. While students and teachers attended the events at Runnymede on 15th June, others were guests of Discovery Education at the official launch of the National Assembly on Magna Carta, which our students had helped to create. We were also fortunate to be invited to the House of Lords to witness the launch of the online teaching resource first hand.

Our students have participated in a national project to draft a modern version of Magna Carta, working with the UK’s Supreme Court and Judge Neuberger. Our clauses can now be seen in this new document, which can be seen by students across the UK and USA.

Students within our Art and Textiles Departments have worked with a highly skilled team of artists to help produce the wonderful tapestries depicting the events of 1215, currently on display at Royal Holloway University.

We are thrilled that our Drama and Dance students played such an integral role in the events of 15th June and had the opportunity to meet the Duke of Cambridge and other guests.

Our school has been gripped by the spirit of the Anniversary and we have seen it as an opportunity to feature important aspects in both lessons and assemblies. We have a permanent reminder of our commitment to the Anniversary, with 25 shields, each measuring 1 metre in height, and depicting a modern interpretation of the emblems of the 25 Barons present at the sealing of Magna Carta, displayed along the front of our school.

Thanks to Tim Smith, Head of the Magna Carta School. Find them at www.magnacarta.surrey.sch.ukand on Twitter as @MagnaCartaHead and @MagnaCartaSch

Mandy discusses the Royal christening – CTV

The royal baby Princess Charlotte of Cambridge will be christened tomorrow. Royal expert Mandy Littlefield weighs in on News Channel.

Posted by CTVNewsChannel on Saturday, 4 July 2015