Monarchies have shifted to less political importance over the years in favor to parliament and a democratically elected prime minister. The film The Queen is a great example of the limited power of Queen Elizabeth II in present-day and shows the ceremonial purposes of her role. The main reasons that this role shift has happened is because monarchs abused their unlimited power repeatedly. Oliver Cromwell was one man who did not like the way his King, Charles I, was controlling the country and decided to do something about it. What some find startling is that Charles I reign ended by being sentenced to death, and by being beheaded under the weight of an axe.
Charles I was disliked by many of his people because he was trying to change the church to be more catholic, as opposed to being protestant before. Oliver Cromwell was a puritan and had very strong feelings about his religion. Cromwell & others took the view that Parliament had a say in government while Charles thought he had a divine right. In 1623 he took England to war with Spain and then parliament used this as one reason to bring a charge of treason against him. Another large reason Charles had much opposition is because he lacked money and had to tax the people heavily to make up for the fact that parliament refused to support him or give him money. He also took peoples land without compensation to use for warfare.
Charles I is a prime example of what happens when a person is born into their position of King and believes that he has absolute control over the people in his country. The belief that you were selected by god and are specially chosen puts a very twisted reality to a person with such power. The amount of pressure put on someone born into royalty is very high and that person may not be capable or interested in delegating an entire country. There have been many good Kings and Queens, but the undesirable ones have left a terrible saga in its aftermath. So bad that it has led to the current state of a limited monarchy that is regarded more for historical preservation purposes and tourism.
Monarchies would be fantastic if the royal family is perfect and ruled fairly for the good of its people, but the lavish lives that have been historically accompanied to royalty have...