Post by CDB Post by Peter T. Daniels Post by CDB Post by Jerry Friedman Post by CDB
The definite article doesn't distinguish singular and plural,
and the US is one country, so the transition was made; but it's
"these United States are ...", not "this US is" or "these US
Not that I would ever say "these United States".
Post by CDB Post by Jerry Friedman
It's unusual to put "this" (or "these") before the name of any
other country, unless it's a scepter'd isle and a blessed plot.
Not to be left out, Canadian politicians can be found at GooBoo
talking about "this Dominion", most of them a century ago or more.
Which makes sense, because "Dominion" was the status of a number of
quasi- independent countries (nations?) within the British Empire and
then the British Commonwealth. Did the status "Dominion" exist before
some entities of British North America (still a category in
philately) got together in 1867?
As I understand it, the word began with us. The story as I heard it
mentioned Kipling, but there's no word of him here (there is of "A mari
'Dominion refers primarily to Dominion of Canada (Constitution Act,
1867, preamble and section 3). The Fathers of Confederation wanted to
call "the new nation" the Kingdom of Canada. The British Government
feared this would offend the Americans, whom, after the stresses of the
American Civil War, it was most anxious not to antagonize. It insisted
on a different title. Sir Leonard Tilley suggested "dominion:" "He shall
have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of
the earth" (Psalm 72:8). The Fathers said it was intended to give
dignity to the federation, and as a tribute to the monarchical
principle. The word came to be applied to the federal government and
Parliament, and under the Constitution Act, 1982, "Dominion" remains
Canada's official title."
Post by Peter T. Daniels
Are there still "Dominions" now that it's simply the Commonwealth and
countries (nations?) with no historic connection with the British
Empire are admitted? Do those new admittances have to admit the sort
of fealty to the British Crown still required of Canada?
Yes, but it's silly to think of that in terms of personal allegiance.
The monarch is a human sacrifice, for all the cosseting, a person who
largely gives up an individual life to become a national symbol. What
those citizens do is like pledging allegiance to a flag, as were the
oaths I took as a civil servant.
The real monarch, the person, is of course a Brit. The symbolic monarch
is infinitely divisible, and the one they pledge to is the Canadian bit.
Further to that, the term used today for the countries which have QE2 as
Queen is "Realms".
The Commonwealth dates back to the mid-20th century with the
decolonisation of the British Empire through increased
self-governance of its territories. It was formally constituted by
the London Declaration in 1949, which established the member states
as "free and equal".
The symbol of this free association is Queen Elizabeth II who is the
Head of the Commonwealth. The Queen is also the monarch of 16
members of the Commonwealth, known as Commonwealth realms. The other
Commonwealth members have different heads of state: 31 members are
republics and five are monarchies with a different monarch.
There is a Commonwealth Charter the latest version of which is:
Signed by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Head of the Commonwealth,
Commonwealth Day 2013
WE THE PEOPLE OF
Signed by His Excellency Kamalesh Sharma, Commonwealth
Secretary-General, 14 December 2012, on which day
Commonwealth Heads of Government
adopted the Charter of the Commonwealth
Kamalesh Sharma is an Indian diplomat.
Sharma was for a time Chancellor of my local university (my employer for
28 years). That was after I'd retired so I wasn't aware of his
Peter Duncanson, UK