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[ Also see Authority Ceremony Courtiers Crowns Dictatorship Favors Government History Kings Loyalty Nobility Politics Power Service Statesmanship Titles Treachery Treason Tyranny War ]

Ten poor men sleep in peace on one straw heap, as Saadi sings,
  But the immensest empire is too narrow for two kings.
      - William R. Alger,
        Oriental Poetry--Elbow Room

Princes are like to heavenly bodies, which cause good or evil times; and which have much veneration, but no rest.
      - Francis Bacon, Essays--Of Empire

Unhappy France! Unhappy King!
  [Fr., Malheureuse France! Malheureux roi!]
      - Etienne Bequet,
        heading in the "Journal des Debats", when Charles X was driven from the throne

And in the years he reigned; through all the country wide,
  There was no cause for weeping, save when the good man died.
    [Fr., Ce n'est que lorsqu'il expira
      Que le peuple, qui l'enterra pleura.]
      - Pierre Jean de Beranger, Le Roi Yvetot,
        rendering of Thackeray's "King of Brentford"

And he said, Who made thee a prince and a judge over us? intendest thou to kill me, as thou killedest the Egyptian? And Moses feared, and said, Surely this thing is known.
      - Bible, Exodus (ch. II, v. 14)

Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.
      - Bible, Psalms (ch. CXLVI, v. 3)

The king reigns but does not govern.
  [Ger., Der Konig herrscht aber regiert nicht.]
      - Karl Otto von Schonhausen Bismarck,
        in a debate in the Reichstag, but he denied the application of the maxim to Germany

The Prussian Sovereigns are in possession of a crown not be the grace of the people, but by God's grace.
      - Karl Otto von Schonhausen Bismarck,
        Speech in the Prussian Parliament

That the king can do no wrong is a necessary and fundamental principle of the English constitution.
      - Sir William Blackstone bk. III, ch. XVII

The king never dies.
      - Sir William Blackstone, Commentaries
         (IV, 249), (Latin),
        also Broom's Legal Maxims (max. 50)

Many a crown
  Covers bald foreheads.
      - Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Aurora Leigh
         (bk. I, l. 754)

Whatever I can say or do.
  I'm sure not much avails;
    I shall still Vicar be of Bray,
      Whichever side prevails.
      - Samuel Butler (1),
        Tale of the Cobbler and the Vicar of Bray,
        in posthumous works

I dare be bold, you're one of those
  Have took the covenant,
    With cavaliers are cavaliers
      And with the saints, a saint.
      - Samuel Butler (1),
        The Tale of the Cobbler and the Vicar of Bray

I loved no King since Forty One
  When Prelacy went down,
    A Cloak and Band I then put on,
      And preached against the Crown.
      - Samuel Butler (1), The Turn-Coat,
        in posthumous works

God bless the King--I mean the faith's defender;
  God bless (no harm in blessing) the pretender;
    But who the pretender is, or who is King--
      God bless us all--that's quite another thing.
      - John Byrom, Miscellaneous Pieces

God save our gracious king!
  Long live our noble king!
    God save the king!
      - Henry Carey

Every noble crown is, and on Earth will forever be, a crown of thorns.
      - Thomas Carlyle, Past and Present
         (bk. III, ch. VIII)

I shall be an autocrat: that's my trade. And the good Lord will forgive me: that's his.
  [Fr., Moi, je serai autocrate: c'est mon metier. Et le bon Dieu me pardonnnera: c'est son metier.]
      - attributed to Catherine, the Great

That man is deceived who thinks it slavery to live under an excellent prince. Never does liberty appear in a more gracious form than under a pious king.
  [Lat., Fallitur egregio quisquis sub principe credet
    Servitutem. Nunquam libertas gratior extat
      Quam sub rege pio.]
      - Claudian (Claudianus),
        De Laudibus Stilichonis (III, 113)

'Tis a very fine thing to be father-in-law
  To a very magnificent three-tailed bashaw.
      - George Colman ("The Younger"), Blue Beard
         (act III, sc. 4)

Clemency is the surest proof of a true monarch.
  [Fr., La clemence est la plus belle marque
    Qui fasse a l'univers connaitre un vrai monqrque.]
      - Pierre Corneille, Cinna (IV, 4)

Now let us sing, long live the king.
      - William Cowper, History of John Gilpin

I am monarch of all I survey,
  My right there is none to dispute,
    From the centre all round to the sea,
      I am lord of the fowl and the brute.
      - William Cowper,
        Verses supposed to be written by Alexander Selkirk

I tell you we will cut off his head with the crown upon it.
      - Oliver Cromwell,
        in "Dictionary of National Biography," vol. XIII, in C.H. Firth's Cromwell article

If any man whatsoever hath carried on the design of deposing the King and disinheriting his posterity; or if any man hath yet such a design he should be the greatest traitor and rebel in the world; but, since the Providence of God hath cast this upon us, I cannot but submit to Providence.
      - Oliver Cromwell,
        in Buchan's "Oliver Cromwell"

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