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Regent

regents governing monarchies mentally

Regent, in monarchies, person designated to rule when the rightful ruler is absent, ill, mentally incapable of ruling, or a minor. A regent may be a single member of the nation's royal family or a council of several persons in line for the succession to the crown. Throughout the history of England and other European monarchies, regents often directed the affairs of state when a child of a deposed or deceased king succeeded to the throne; other regents ruled when the rightful monarch was in exile or judged to be mentally unstable. Prior to passage of the Regency Act in England (1937), no specific guidelines existed governing the selection of a regent, and past regents were acknowledged by common consensus. In the United States, members of governing bodies of schools, higher learning facilities, and other institutions are often called regents.

See also: Monarchy.

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