Crossword Genius

Less friendly, showing back to monarch once (7)


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'less friendly' is the definition.
I can't judge whether this definition defines the answer.

'back to monarch once' is the wordplay.
'back' becomes 'stern' (stern means the back of a boat).
'to monarch once' becomes 'ER' (Elizabeth Regina, ie Queen Elizabeth).

'showing' is the link.

Can you help me to learn more?

(Other definitions for sterner that I've seen before include "Less easy-going" , "More grimly serious" , "Renters of more strict sort" , "More demanding" , "more inflexible anyway" .)

I've seen this clue in The Times.
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