Toast to the Queen


It is my privilage to give the Loyal Toast tonight, but first I’d like to give you a very brief history of some of the traditions of the toast.


- Many British institutions and military regiments have their own variations. For example, the lawyers of Lincoln's Inn traditionally take the toast sitting down. This commemorates an occasion when Charles II dined at the Inn, and the entire company was too drunk to stand up.


- The Royal Navy also deliver the toast seated, due to the inadvisability of standing up suddenly below decks; this custom dates from King William IV, who had served as a naval officer, and authorized the Royal Navy to toast him sitting down.


- The Black Watch of Canada takes a different approach, reciting the toast standing on their chairs with one leg on the table.


- Some Highland regiments pass their glasses over a water jug to symbolize the King “over the water”.


I’ll not ask you to do any of this, however, I’ll ask you all to please be upstanding to toast the Queen.


Long may her Majesty be spared 
to grace her high position
to rule us all, both great and small
with wisdom and discretion


Gentlemen….To Queen Elizabeth the second, Queen of Canada.







This speech was written and delivered by Bill Hughes at the Burns Supper in 2007.