Little attention has recently been given to sovereignty, and yet it is a matter of the greatest political consequence to the people of Northern Ireland, the Falklands and Gibraltar. The development of the EU has important implications for the nations of Europe. The intervention of the Queen in the Fiji coup and the dismissal of the Australian Prime Minister in 1975 are examples of sovereignty at work. Were there to be a hung parliament in the United Kingdom, the Queen would have to exercise the powers vested in her as sovereign of the realm to choose a Prime Minister who could command a majority in the House of Commons.

Much has been written on the Queen’s ceremonial functions as Head of State, with all the pomp and pageantry, contrasting this with the exercise of political power by her ministers. In this provocative book the author suggests that the role of the sovereign is not as limited as is generally thought but on the contrary this “power beyond politics” may play a crucial role in the destiny of a people, depending on whether the long-term best interests of the nation are kept in view. The author examines the nature of sovereignty with particular reference to the British experience, but other systems are discussed and compared. The subject is not treated legalistically and may be read and appreciated by anyone.


L.L. Blake, is a barrister, writer and lecturer on legal and constitutional affairs. His 0ther books include: Young People’s Book of the Constitution, Young People’s Book of Law, The Prince and the Professor and The Royal Law.


“An excellent book, something everyone should read.”
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