QUEEN

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QUEEN (AngloSaxon, cwen, the wife); the wife of a king. In England, the queen is either queenconsort, or merely wife of the reigning king, who is in general (unless where expressly exempted by law) upon the same footing with other subjects, being to all intents the king's subject, and not his equal; or queenregent regnant, or sovereign, who holds the crown in her own right, and has the same powers, prerogatives, and duties, as if she had been a king (see Great Britain, division English Constitution), and whose husband is a subject, and may be guilty of high treason against her; or queendowager, widow of the king, who enjoys most of the privileges which belonged to her as queenconsort. It is treason to compass or imagine the death of the queenconsort, and to violate or defile her person not only renders the person committing the act guilty of treason, but also the queen herself if consenting. If the queen be accused of treason, she is (whether consort or dowager) tried by the house of peers. Queen Caroline (q. v.) was proceeded against by a bill of pains and penalties. (See Laws of Exception.) By act of parliament, August 2, 1831, the usual provision of £100,000 per annum, with the use of Marlborough house, was made for queen Adelaide, in case she should survive the king. In Prussia, Sweden and France, the succession being confined to the male line, there can be no queen regnant. (See Salic Law.) In Spain (by royal decree of March 29, 1830), Portugal, &c, females are not excluded Irom the succession to the throne.