As the Victorian representative of a long line of Irish peers (the premier barons of Ireland), Michael Kingsale claimed the ancient right to appear before the monarch with his head covered. Determined to exercise this right, he appeared before Queen Victoria one day and, without removing his hat, explained that he was simply asserting his ancient privilege. "Don't be so silly," snapped the queen. "It may be your right to keep your hat on before the monarch, but I am a lady, too. Take it off at once!"

[The baronial privilege was granted by Henry VIII, not as the result of royal favor, but because the king feared catching the ringworm which once afflicted the baron.]

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