A limited monarchy is a system of government where a ruler (often a king or a queen) is head of state but does not have unlimited power. Limited monarchies are often called constitutional monarchies because the ruler's power is limited by a constitution. Limited monarchies are very different from absolute monarchies where the ruler's word is law. Absolute monarchies where formerly more common, but many absolute monarchies have since become constitutional monarchies. Read on to learn about several examples of limited monarchies.
There are many examples of limited monarchies, particularly in Europe. The United Kingdom is perhaps the best-known limited monarchy in the world. In the UK, the monarch's official duties are mostly ceremonial. However, the monarch still holds considerable influence over public affairs due to their popularity with the voting public. Countries with similar limited monarchies include Spain, the Netherlands, and Sweden.
Litchenstein is also a limited monarchy in Europe, though it is quite different than the United Kingdom's limited monarchy. In Litchenstein, the ruling prince still has significant power. The Prince of Litchenstein can call referendums, veto legislation, and appoint judges, and dismiss government ministers.
Monaco is another European limited monarchy where the monarch still has considerable power. Monaco is ruled by a Council of Government, which is presided over by the Prince. The Prince also appoints the head of the Council of Government, who is known as the Prime Minister. Additionally, the Prince of Monaco also has the power to veto legislation.
Morrocco is a limited monarchy in Africa. However, some political experts have claimed that Morrocco blurs the line between limited monarchy and absolute monarchy. There is a democratically elected legislature in Morrocco. However, the King of Morrocco can dissolve the legislature after consultation with the Prime Minister and the President of the Constitutional Court. The King of Morrocco can also issue edicts that instantly become law.
There are several important differences between limited monarchies and absolute monarchies. In a limited monarchy, the ruler cannot simply create laws whenever they like. In an absolute monarchy, the ruler has complete power over the country's legal system. Also, a limited monarchy should have a democratically elected head of government who is the most powerful person in the country. The monarch is still technically the head of state, but monarchs in a limited monarchy cannot run the government as they please.