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Gustaf Mannerheim as regent of Finland (sitting) and his adjutants (from the left) Lt.Col. Lilius, Cap. Kekoni, Lt. Gallen-Kallela, Ensign Rosenbröijer.

A regent, from the Latin regens "one who reigns", is a person selected to act as head of state (ruling or not) because the ruler is a minor, not present, or debilitated.[1]

In a monarchy, a regent usually governs due to one of these reasons, but may also be elected to rule during the interregnum when the royal line has died out. This was the case in Finland and Hungary, where the royal line was considered extinct in the aftermath of World War I. In Iceland, the regent represented the King of Denmark as sovereign of Iceland until the country became a republic in 1944.

In the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth (1569–1795), kings were elective, which often led to a fairly long interregnum. In the interim, it was the Polish Roman Catholic Primate who served as the regent, termed the "interrex" (Latin: ruler "between kings" as in ancient Rome).

Currently there are only two ruling Regencies in the world, sovereign Liechtenstein and the Malaysian constitutive state of Terengganu (see below).


[edit] Regents in various current monarchies

It should be noted that those who held a regency briefly, for example during surgery, are not necessarily listed, particularly if they performed no official acts; this list is also not complete, presumably not even for all monarchies included. The list includes some figures who acted as regent, even if they did not themselves hold the title of regent.

[edit] Belgium

[edit] Japan

[edit] Jordan

[edit] Liechtenstein

[edit] Luxembourg

[edit] Malaysia and its constitutive monarchies

[edit] Terengganu

[edit] Monaco

[edit] Netherlands

[edit] Norway

[edit] Oman

[edit] Qatar

[edit] Saudi Arabia

[edit] Spain

[edit] Sweden

[edit] Thailand

[edit] United Kingdom and its constitutive realms

[edit] England

[edit] Scotland

[edit] Regents in various former Monarchies

The same notes apply; inclusion in this list reflects the political reality, regardless of claims to the throne.

[edit] Afghan monarchies

Before the 1881 unification, there were essentially four rulers' capitals: Kabul, Herat, Qandahar and Peshawar (the last now in Pakistan); all their rulers belonged to the Abdali tribal group, whose name was changed to Dorrani with Ahmad Shah Abdali. They belong either to the Saddozay segment of the Popalzay clan (typically styled padshah, king) or to the Mohammadzay segment of the Barakzay clan (typically with the style Amir, in full Amir al-Mo´menin "Leader of the Faithful"). The Mohammadzay also furnished the Saddozay kings frequently with top counselors, who served occasionally as (Minister-)regents, identified with the epithet Mohammadzay.

[edit] Brazil

[edit] Bulgaria

[edit] China

[edit] Egypt

[edit] Ethiopia

[edit] Finland

After the abdication of Nicholas II of Russia, the throne of the Grand Duke of Finland was vacant and according to the constitution of 1772, a regent was installed by the Finnish Parliament during the first two years of Finnish independence, before the country was declared a republic.

[edit] France

[edit] Greece

[edit] German monarchies

[edit] Anhalt

[edit] Baden

[edit] Bavaria

[edit] Brunswick

[edit] Hanover

[edit] Hesse-Kassel

[edit] Lippe

[edit] Mecklenburg-Schwerin

[edit] Mecklenburg-Strelitz

[edit] Prussia

[edit] Saxe-Coburg and Gotha

[edit] Saxe-Meiningen

[edit] Saxe-Weimar

[edit] Waldeck

[edit] Hawaii

[edit] Hungary

[edit] Iceland

[edit] India

[edit] Vakataka Kingdom

[edit] Madurai

[edit] Travancore

Both before and during the British raj (colonial rule), most of India was ruled by several hundred native princely houses, many of which have known regencies, under the raj subject to British approval

[edit] Iraq

In the short-lived Hashemite kingdom, there were three regencies in the reign of the third and last king Faysal II (b. 1935 – d. 1958; also Head of the 'Arab Union', a federation with the Hashemite sister-kingdom Jordan, from 14 February 1958) :

[edit] Italian former principalities

[edit] Parma

[edit] Savoy

[edit] Korea

[edit] Mongolia

[edit] Portugal

[edit] Romania

[edit] Russia

[edit] Serbia

[edit] Yugoslavia

[edit] Other uses

In the small republic of San Marino, the two Captains Regent, or Capitani Reggenti, are elected semi-annually (they serve a six-month term) as joint heads of state and of government.

Occasionally, the term regent refers to positions lower than the ruler of a country. In the Dutch republic of the United Provinces, the members of the ruling class, not formally hereditary but de facto patricians, were known collectively as regenten (the Dutch plural for regent). In the Dutch East Indies, a regent was a native prince allowed to rule de facto colonized 'state' as a regentschap (see that term). Consequently, in the successor state of Indonesia, the term regent is used in English to mean a bupati (local government official).

The term may be used in the governance of organisations. Some university managers in North America are called regents and a management board for a college or university may be titled the "Board of Regents". The term "regent" is also used for members of governing bodies of institutions, such as the national banks, in France and Belgium. Again in Belgium and France, (Régént in French, or in Dutch) Regent is the official title of a teacher in a lower secondary school (junior high school), who does not require a college degree but is trained in a specialized écôle normale (normal school). In the Philippines, specifically, the University of Santo Tomas, the Father Regent, who must be a Dominican priest and is often also a teacher, serves as the institution's spiritual head. They also form the Council of Regents that serves as the highest administrative council of the university.

[edit] See also

[edit] Sources and references

  1. ^ The Oxford English Dictionary defines the term as "A person appointed to administer a State because the Monarch is a minor, is absent or is incapacitated."
  2. ^ "Kuhina Nui 1819-1864". Centennial Exhibit. State of Hawaii Department of Accounting and General Services. http://hawaii.gov/dags/archives/centennial/kunina-nui. Retrieved 2009-10-03. 
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