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Benedict Arnold's Oath of Allegiance, May 30, 1778

An oath of allegiance is an oath wherby a subject or citizen acknowledges a duty of allegiance and swears loyalty to monarch or country. In republics, modern oaths specify allegiance to the country in general, or to the country's constitution. For example, officials in the United States, a republic, take an oath of office that includes swearing allegiance to the United States Constitution. However, in a constitutional monarchy, such as in the United Kingdom and other Commonwealth realms, oaths are sworn to the monarch.

In feudal times a person would also swear allegiance to his feudal superiors. To this day the oath sworn by freemen of the City of London contains an oath of obedience to the Lord Mayor of the City of London.

Oaths of allegiance are commonly required of newly naturalised citizens (see Oath of Citizenship), members of the armed forces, and those assuming public (particularly parliamentary and judicial) office. Clergy in the Church of England are required to take an Oath of Supremacy acknowledging the authority of the British monarch.

A typical example of an oath of allegiance is that sworn by Members of Parliament in the Netherlands:

I swear (affirm) allegiance to the King, to the Statute for the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and to the Constitution. I swear (affirm) that I will faithfully perform the duties my office lays upon me. So help me God almighty! (This I declare and affirm)[1]

In many Commonwealth realms all that is required is an oath to the monarch, and not the constitution or state. There have been moves in some of the realms to make the oath of citizenship sworn by new citizens refer to the country rather than the monarch. However, the oaths sworn by judges, members of parliament, etc., have not been changed. All of these moves have not succeeded as the Queen is the personification of the Canadian, British, or Australian state (or that of any other Commonwealth realm). Allegiance sworn to the monarch is the same as to the country, its constitution or flag. The New Zealand Oath of Allegiance still refers to the Queen of New Zealand. The European Court of Human Rights ruled in 1999 that the oath of allegiance to a reigning monarch is "reasonably viewed as an affirmation of loyalty to the constitutional principles which support... the workings of representative democracy in the respondent State."[2]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Translated from the 'Wet beëdiging ministers en leden Staten-Generaal' on [1]. (Dutch)
  2. ^ McGuinness v. United Kingdom; Application No. 39511/98, decision June 8, 1999 Reports and Judgements and Decisions 1999/V, ISBN 3-452-24950-6, p. 483

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oath_of_allegiance — Please support Wikipedia.
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Push to change MPs' oath of allegiance. Swearing allegiance to the Queen has come under scrutiny once again as MPs prepare for the opening of the 51st parliament. 20 October 2014. Opening the 51st parliament by swearing allegiance to the Queen and ...

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Tue, 21 Oct 2014 06:52:30 -0700

The statement reiterated TTP leader Mullah Fazlullah's oath of allegiance to the Afghan Taliban leader, Mullah Mohammad Omar, and added that a new spokesman would be made public in due course. Maqbool and five other commanders pledged ...
 
Scoop.co.nz (press release)
Sun, 19 Oct 2014 13:48:45 -0700

"The out-dated Oath of Allegiance that every MP repeats is an obvious example of why we need to shift to a New Zealand Head of State. Our MPs should be swearing allegiance to New Zealand, to New Zealanders or to a New Zealand Head of State".
 
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Tue, 21 Oct 2014 08:06:18 -0700

2012, Ansar al Jihad publicly swore an oath of allegiance to Ayman al Zawahiri. US officials said at the time that the group was the military wing of Al Qaeda in the Sinai Peninsula, which was "seeking to coordinate operations" with other groups in the ...
 
Esquire (blog)
Tue, 21 Oct 2014 07:00:39 -0700

He was told to put one thumb in his ear and to recite the oath of allegiance. As he was doing so, the symbolic stick was placed up his ass as a symbol of the society of fellows he had come to join. "Bipartisum non superbo," Douthat repeated. "Sides of ...

The Tennessean

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Fri, 26 Sep 2014 15:45:00 -0700

Children's playful chatter hummed along while U.S. District Judge Todd J. Campbell read the oath of allegiance that officially welcomed the group as United States citizens. The milestone brought Lanfear excitement — and relief. She said she hopes her ...
 
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Speaking at the well-guarded Umm Al-Taboul mosque on the outskirts of the capital, as walkie-talkies crackle in the background, Mr. Sumaidai claims to have the files of “130,000 volunteers” and an oath of allegiance from the tribes Janaba, Ghrer ...
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