Minor British Institutions: The Royal Society of St George

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The Independent Online

It is difficult to know quite what to make of the Royal Society of St George. Having purloined the Union flag, the Far Right has also, over the past few years, annexed the flag of St George to its cause, and the idea of "English nationalism" is now no more savoury than that of Scottish nationalism (though it has a less bloody history than Irish nationalism and is not as comical as Welsh or Cornish nationalism).

However, we'll take the Royal Society at its word that it is "unsectarian and independent of party politics" and note its willingness to accept as members those "not of English descent who nevertheless support the aims of the Society".

These are mainly about fairly harmless romanticising of England, thus: "Even today, though some of the old glories have dimmed, England maintains her inner strength, her quiet dignity.

No longer the hub of a great Empire, but still a bastion of freedom, gentility and human decency – values which give meaning to the clarion cry: Saint George for England!" The Society's regalia looks suitably camp, should you be interested.

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