Saturday, March 5, 2011

Reader Comment: Elizabeth I and Winston Churchill

Byter Charles pointed out to me that the Queen Mother was never called Queen Elizabeth I, as I called her in yesterday’s Bytes, that this title belonged to the Queen of a few centuries ago.

I should have realised that but can only plead in mitigation that I took the description from the site that had the pic of King George VI and his family. Charles further advised that he remembered from primary school being told that the wife of a King (by birthright) is called a Queen, but the husband of a Queen (by birthright) only gets the title of Prince.

It is interesting to note that Elizabeth II has a squillion titles after her name if one uses her full official title in Britain, but that shorter versions are used in the various other countries where she is Queen. In Australia this title has changed on a number of occasions:

6 February 1952 – 1953: Her Majesty Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, Ireland and the British Dominions beyond the Seas Queen, Defender of the Faith

1953 – 1973: Her Majesty Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom, Australia and Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith

1973 – :  Her Majesty Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, Queen of Australia and Her other Realms and Territories, Head of the Commonwealth

Byter Steve drew attention to something else arising from the flick The King’s Speech:
One of the interesting facts to come out the film ‘The Kings Speech’ (yes I have seen it and it is exceptional) is that Winston Churchill too had a speech impediment!
Funnily enough, Charles made a similar comment to me last week when we were at the same function. He pointed out that one way Churchill dealt with his speech difficulties was to pause at the end of phrases. Hear an example, Churchill’s So Few speech, at:

Some points about Churchill’s impediment:

• Opinion is divided over whether Churchill’s speech impediment was a lisp or a stutter.

• The more persuasive thinking is that his impediment was a lisp, as his father also had, which he largely overcame with practice and continued rehearsal of speeches. Eventually he was able to declare that “My impediment is no hindrance.”

• The lisp, although less pronounced, can still be heard in his speaking voice in his speeches.
• His dentures were specially designed to be loose fitting so that they would not alter the familiarity of his voice and so that the slight lisp would be maintained:

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