1772 Royal Marriage Act, Act of Settlement 1701, Act of Union (Ireland) 1800, Bill of Rights 1689, Buckingham Palace, Duke of Cambridge, King George V of Great Britain, Kings and Queens of England, kings and queens of the United Kingdom, Prince Charles, Queen Elizabeth II, Sophia of the Rhine (Electress Sophia), Treason Act 1351, Union with England Act 1707, Union with Ireland Act 1800, Union with Scotland Act 1706
Here is more information on the law that is to be passed changing the succession to the throne.
Here are the main issues this bill will cover.
1. Gender: There was speculation that like the 1701 Act of Settlement which limits those eligible for the Crown to be the Protestant descendants of the Electress Sophia of Hanover, this new law would limit the succession to the Crown to the Descendants of George V. Instead the succession will go to the eldest child, regardless of gender, for those born after October 28, 2011.
2. Marriage to Roman Catholics: When this law passes those in line will be able to marry Roman Catholics without losing their place in the line of succession. The good news is that people who had married Catholics will be restored to their place in the succession. This means that Prince Michael of Kent for example, will regain his place in the succession. What is not known at this time is whether or not the Monarch themselves can be Catholic or marry a Catholic.
3. Sovereign’s consent for marriage: The 1772 Royal Marriage Act will be repealed. This act was created to prevent those in line from marrying unsuitable individuals and still retaining their right to the throne. However, the first 6 in line to the throne will be required to seek the sovereign’s consent before they can marry.
Here are some other amendments to the law: source: wikipedia.
Provisions in the Union with Scotland Act 1706, Union with England Act 1707, Union with Ireland Act 1800 and Act of Union (Ireland) 1800 involving the crown will be “subject to provisions of” this bill. Several clauses in Bill of Rights 1689 and Act of Settlement 1701nvolving marriages with “papists” will be repealed.
As the monarch’s eldest son would no longer automatically be heir apparent, the Treason Act 1351 will also be amended such that an act or attempt to murder the monarch’s “eldest Son and Heir” will become “eldest child and Heir”, while the “if a Man do violate […] the Wife the King’s eldest Son and Heir” will become “… son if the heir”. The result of the second amendment is that rape of the eldest son’s wife will only be high treason if that son is the heir apparent. That act already provided for high treason in the case of “if a Man do violate […] the King’s eldest Daughter unmarried”.
Some previous acts (like those mentioned in the two paragraphs from Wikipedia) will not be completely repealed but only amended.
What has not been mentioned is what to do with the title “Prince of Wales.” I am not sure if there is an Act or Law that covers this and maybe this title is under the Sovereign’s prerogative as the Font of All Honours and will be decided at a later date.
I am happy to see these changes and they are historical changes in the history of the British monarchy. I am pleased with the removal of the prohibition against Catholics. But what is even more fair, and makes me happy, is to see that those who have already married Catholics will be restored to their proper place in the succession.