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Imperial Majesty (His/Her Imperial Majesty, abbreviated as HIM) is a style used by Emperors and Empresses. It distinguishes the status of an emperor/empress from that of a King/Queen, who are simply styled Majesty. Holders of this style have sometimes been observed to follow religious leaders who are styled "His Holiness" in public ceremonies.
A style of office, honorific or manner/form of address, is an official or legally recognized form of address, and may often be used in conjunction with a title. A style, by tradition or law, precedes a reference to a person who holds a post or political office, and is sometimes used to refer to the office itself. An honorific can also be awarded to an individual in a personal capacity. Such styles are particularly associated with monarchies, where they may be used by a wife of an office holder or of a prince of the blood, for the duration of their marriage. They are also almost universally used for presidents in republics and in many countries for members of legislative bodies, higher-ranking judges and senior constitutional office holders. Leading religious figures also have styles.
An emperor is a monarch, and usually the sovereign ruler of an empire or another type of imperial realm. Empress, the female equivalent, may indicate an emperor's wife, mother, or a woman who rules in her own right. Emperors are generally recognized to be of a higher honour and rank than kings. In Europe, the title of Emperor has been used since the Middle Ages, considered in those times equal or almost equal in dignity to that of Pope due to the latter's position as visible head of the Church and spiritual leader of the Catholic part of Western Europe. The Emperor of Japan is the only currently reigning monarch whose title is translated into English as Emperor.
King, or king regnant is the title given to a male monarch in a variety of contexts. The female equivalent is queen regnant, while the title of queen on its own usually refers to the consort of a king.
King-Emperors and Queen-Empresses sometimes have used the style Imperial and Royal Majesty (e.g., The Empress Frederick's style Her Imperial and Royal Majesty The German Empress and Queen of Prussia). The reigning British monarchs from 1876–1948, also being the Emperor/Empress of India had the style of “His/Her Imperial Majesty” in English and “Kaisar-i-Hind” in Hindi/Urdu.
A king-emperor, the female equivalent being queen-empress, is a sovereign ruler who is simultaneously a king of one territory and emperor of another. This title usually results from a merger of a royal and imperial crown, but recognises that the two territories are different politically or culturally and in status. It also denotes a king's imperial status through the acquisition of an empire or vice versa.
Imperial and Royal Majesty was the style used by King-Emperors and their consorts as heads of imperial dynasties that were simultaneously royal. The style was notably used by the Emperor of Austria and by the German Emperor. The Austrian and Bohemian monarchies were abolished in 1918 while the vacant throne of Hungary continued to exist until the 1940s.
Victoria, Princess Royal was German Empress and Queen of Prussia by marriage to German Emperor Frederick III. She was the eldest child of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, and was created Princess Royal in 1841. She was the mother of Wilhelm II, German Emperor.
The last Shah of Iran, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, also used the style of "Imperial Majesty". Today, the style is assumed by Farah Pahlavi, the exiled Shahbanu of Iran.
Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, also known as Mohammad Reza Shah, was the last Shah of Iran from 16 September 1941 until his overthrow by the Islamic Revolution on 11 February 1979. A close ally of the United States, he tried to use vast oil revenues to generate a rapid industrial, cultural and military modernisation, as well as economic and social reforms. In reaction religious forces revolted and overthrew him.
A courtesy title is a title that does not have legal significance but rather is used through custom or courtesy, particularly, in the context of nobility, the titles used by children of members of the nobility.
Farah Pahlavi is the widow of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and the former shahbanu (empress) of Iran.
Incongruously, in modern times the Emperor of Japan rarely uses the style of "Imperial Majesty", instead preferring the simpler style of "Majesty". This is despite the Imperial titles still used by the rest of the Imperial household.
The Emperor of Japan is the head of the Imperial Family and the head of state of Japan. Under the 1947 constitution, he is defined as "the symbol of the State and of the unity of the people." Historically, he was also the highest authority of the Shinto religion. In Japanese, the Emperor is called Tennō (天皇), literally "heavenly sovereign". In English, the use of the term Mikado for the Emperor was once common, but is now considered obsolete.
Majesty is an English word derived ultimately from the Latin maiestas, meaning greatness, and used as a style by many monarchs, usually kings or sultans. Where used, the style outranks the style of (Imperial/Royal) Highness, but is inferior to the style of Imperial Majesty. It has cognates in many other languages, especially Indo-European languages of Europe.
The Imperial House of Japan, also referred to as the Imperial Family or the Yamato Dynasty, comprises those members of the extended family of the reigning Emperor of Japan who undertake official and public duties. Under the present Constitution of Japan, the Emperor is "the symbol of the State and of the unity of the people". Other members of the Imperial Family perform ceremonial and social duties, but have no role in the affairs of government. The duties as an Emperor are passed down the line to their children and so on.
Styles represent the fashion by which monarchs and noblemen are properly addressed. Throughout history, many different styles were used, with little standardization. This page will detail the various styles used by royalty and nobility in Europe, in the final form arrived at in the nineteenth century.
Emperor or Huangdi was the imperial title of the Chinese sovereign from 221 BCE to the early 20th century. It was established by Qin Shi Huang, the First Emperor, after the reunification of the lands of the Zhou dynasty. It replaced the Zhou's own title of wáng ("king"), which had been appropriated by numerous warlords during the Warring States Era. The Chinese title is not grammatically gendered, but the only empress to bear it was Wu Zetian, who briefly replaced the Tang dynasty with her own in the years 690–705 CE. Use of the title is considered to have officially ended with the abdication of Puyi in 1912 following the Xinhai Revolution and the establishment of the Republic of China, although there were two failed attempts to reestablish an imperial government in China in 1915 and 1917.
Shah is a title given to the emperors, kings, princes and lords of Iran. It was also adopted by the kings of Shirvan namely the Shirvanshahs. It was also used by Persianate societies such as the rulers and offspring of the Ottoman Empire, Mughal emperors of the Indian Subcontinent, the Bengal Sultanate, as well as in Afghanistan. In Iran the title was continuously used; rather than King in the European sense, each Persian ruler regarded himself as the Shahanshah or Padishah of the Persian Empire.
A queen consort is the wife of a reigning king. A queen consort usually shares her husband's social rank and status. She holds the feminine equivalent of the king's monarchical titles, but historically, she does not share the king's political and military powers. A queen regnant is a queen in her own right with all the powers of a monarch, who (usually) has become queen by inheriting the throne upon the death of the previous monarch.
Emperor/Empressof India was a title used by British monarchs from 1 May 1876 to 22 June 1948.
The Pahlavi dynasty was the last ruling house of the Imperial State of Iran from 1925 until 1979, when the Monarchy of Iran was overthrown and abolished as a result of the Iranian Revolution. The dynasty was founded by Reza Shah Pahlavi in 1925, a former brigadier-general of the Persian Cossack Brigade, whose reign lasted until 1941 when he was forced to abdicate by the Allies after the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran. He was succeeded by his son, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran. According to Reza Shah, He named Agha Ameri the successor to his dynasty if it fell.
Shahbanu was the title for queen consort in Persian and other Iranian languages. The two Sassanian empresses, Purandokht and Azarmidokht, c. 630, were the last two that carried the title before Farah Pahlavi, the wife of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran, assumed the title on being crowned queen in 1967 for the first time since the Arab conquest of Iran in the 7th century.
Tadj ol-Molouk was Queen of Iran as the wife of Reza Shah, founder of the Pahlavi dynasty and Shah of Iran between 1925 and 1941. The title she was given after becoming Queen means "Crown of the Kings" in the Persian language. She was the first Queen in Iran after the Muslim conquest in the 7th century to have participated in public royal representation and played a major role in the Kashf-e hijab in 1936.
The precise style of British sovereigns has varied over the years. The present style is officially proclaimed in two languages:
A queen regnant is a female monarch, equivalent in rank to a king, who reigns in her own right, as opposed to a queen consort, who is the wife of a reigning king, or a queen regent, who is the guardian of a child monarch and reigns temporarily in the child's stead. An empress regnant is a female monarch who reigns in her own right over an empire.
Until the end of the Ethiopian monarchy in 1974, there were two categories of nobility in Ethiopia. The Mesafint, the hereditary nobility, formed the upper echelon of the ruling class. The Mekwanint were the appointed nobles, often of humble birth, who formed the bulk of the aristocracy. Until the 20th century, the most powerful people at court were generally members of the Mekwanint appointed by the monarch, while regionally, the Mesafint enjoyed greater influence and power. Emperor Haile Selassie greatly curtailed the power of the Mesafint to the benefit of the Mekwanint, who by then were essentially coterminous with the Ethiopian government.
His (Royal) Apostolic Majesty was a styled title used by the Kings of Hungary, in the sense of being latter-day apostles of Christianity.
Although in the past the style of British Emperor has been (retroactively) applied to a few mythical and historical rulers of Great Britain, Ireland or the United Kingdom, it is sometimes used as a colloquialism to designate either Plantagenet and Tudor caesaropapism or, more frequently, the British sovereign of the Empire of India.
Maria Theresa of Naples and Sicily was the last Holy Roman Empress and the first Empress of Austria by marriage to Francis II, Holy Roman Emperor. She was the eldest daughter of Ferdinand IV & III of Naples and Sicily (1751–1825) and Marie Caroline of Austria (1752–1814).