Letter: Sailing into the sunset of monarchy

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The Independent Online
Sir: All across the land the cry goes up: "Vivat Elizabetha!", "Viva Portillo!" From the heath-covered mountains of Scotia to the shop- doorways of the Strand, old ladies on trolleys in hospital corridors wipe a proud tear from a rheumy eye; rosy-cheeked schoolchildren, 40 to a leaking classroom, break forth in joyful song; taxpayers swallow a rapidly rising lump-sum.

Ring out, wild bells! Other nations may choose to blink in the blinding dawn of the 21st century, but Britannia steams majestically into comforting sunset of the 19th.

ANDREW MONTGOMERY

Richmond, Surrey

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