Is An Empress Higher Than A Queen

Is An Empress Higher Than A Queen?

The titles of monarchs have always been a matter of fascination for people. The regal titles are not just symbolic but hold a deep meaning in the hierarchical structure of a kingdom. Among the most recognized and powerful titles are the queen and the empress. But many people often wonder, is an empress higher than a queen? To understand the answer, we must delve into the history and meaning of these titles.

What Is A Queen?

A queen is a female monarch who rules a kingdom either as a constitutional sovereign or an absolute monarch. The title “queen” is usually inherited through bloodlines but can also be achieved by marriage or election. A queen is typically referred to as the ‘royal highness’ and is addressed as ‘Your Majesty.’

Historically, queenship has been very influential, but the role and power of the queen have varied throughout history and cultures. In modern times, the power of the queen has been greatly reduced and is more of a symbolic figurehead.

What Is An Empress?

An empress is the female equivalent of an emperor which is a supreme ruler of an empire. The title “empress” is given to a female monarch who holds more power and authority than a queen. The term “empress” evolved from the Latin word ‘imperator’ which means ruler or commander of an army. The title was often used for powerful women who ruled an empire throughout history.

The empress title is also associated with the royal family and can only be achieved through inheritance, marriage, or appointment. However, in modern times, the title has lost its power and is mostly considered as merely a ceremonial title.

Difference Between Queen and Empress

The main difference between a queen and an empress is in their title and the extent of their power. A queen is generally associated with a kingdom or country, while an empress is associated with an empire, which is a group of nations or territories ruled by a single monarch or ruler. An empress has greater power and authority than a queen.

A queen is usually a constitutional monarch, which means that she governs according to the constitution of the state, while an empress is usually an absolute monarch, which means she has supreme authority over her subjects.

In terms of rank, an empress is higher than a queen. An empress can also bestow the title of ‘queen’ on a female member of the royal family or on the wife of a king or emperor.

Examples of Empresses and Queens in History

Some of the most notable empresses throughout history include:

1. Empress Wu Zetian of China- The only female emperor in Chinese history who ruled from 690 to 705.

2. Empress Theodora of Byzantium- The wife of Emperor Justinian, who ruled Byzantine Empire.

3. Empress Catherine the Great of Russia- Ruled the Russian Empire from 1762-1796.

4. Empress Victoria of India – The last Empress of India.

Some of the most notable queens throughout history include:

1. Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom- Currently ruling monarch of the United Kingdom.

2. Queen Cleopatra of Egypt- One of the most powerful female rulers in history.

3. Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom- Ruled the British Empire from 1837-1901, and was the longest-reigning monarch in the British history.

4. Queen Nefertiti of Egypt – An Egyptian queen known for her beauty, who ruled alongside King Akhenaten.


In conclusion, an empress is higher than a queen in terms of rank and power. While both titles indicate a female monarch that rules over a territory, an empress has greater authority and is usually associated with an empire. Both titles hold a significant place in the history of royal families and ruling systems. However, the power and influence of these titles have evolved dramatically over time, with modern monarchs serving mostly as ceremonial heads of state.