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Queen's Speech

Info about Queen's Speech

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In the Commonwealth realms, the speech from the throne is an oration that forms part of a ceremony marking the opening of parliament. Some records indicate the ceremony has taken place since the Medieval era, while others place its origins in the 16th century, when England was an absolute monarchy. The speech explained to parliament the reasons it was summoned and sometimes set out the sovereign's policies and objectives. The monarch would sometimes speak to parliament in person; King Edward III (in 1365), Richard II, and Edward IV (to both houses of parliament on multiple separate occasions) did so. However, various other figures gave the oration on the sovereign's behalf: between 1347 and 1363, it was read by the Chief Justice; by the Chief Justice of the Common Pleas in 1401; the Archbishop of Canterbury in 1344, 1368, 1377 (speaking for a presiding Edward III ), 1399, and 1422; and in 1343, 1363, and, usually after 1368, by the Lord Chancellor —who was then the Prolocutor, or chairman of the House of Lords. It was given on his behalf by the Bishop of Winchester in 1410; in 1453 and 1467, the Bishop of Lincoln; the Bishop of Rochester in 1472; and the Keeper of the Privy Seal in 1431. It may have been written by or with the input of the king or queen's advisers, but, the monarch, as supreme governor, was the principal author. [citation needed]