A New Era in History
It is certainly not an easy task for the sovereign, who finds himself wearing the crown of the United Kingdom after the beloved, long-lived and lamented previous monarch. After seventy years of reign, the handover was an epochal moment, which is still not completely over. The coronation in May, the official portraits, the institutional commitments: every step taken in these months has been an additional piece in the path of affirmation that the sovereign must make to enter the hearts of his subjects, after a troubled private life that has not always put him in a good light in front of the people. Now, another element in the construction of his official image of monarch has been formally added: from this week, the sovereign will appear for the first time in the passports of citizens of the United Kingdom.
Passports to a New Reign
British passports issued from now on will, in fact, for the first time in decades, bear the phrase “His Majesty”, in the masculine, instead of “Her Majesty”, in the feminine, as it has been for the seventy years of the reign of the previous monarch. It is the first time since 1952 – when the reign of the last male monarch ended – that the passports of the United Kingdom bear the masculine phrase. The old passports will remain valid – the authorities explain – but they will gradually run out, being replaced by those in which the new sovereign formally requests to allow travelers with valid documents to travel and request assistance and protection, as the official formula printed on the passports reads.
A New Chapter
“For 70 years, Her Majesty has appeared on British passports and many of us will not remember a moment when she has not appeared,” said Home Secretary Suella Braverman presenting the new documents. “It’s a new era in history.”