PRINCE William sealed his father’s Coronation yesterday with a kiss on the cheek.
And the newly crowned King Charles looked back at his eldest son and quietly mouthed: “Thank you.”
PRINCE William sealed his father’s Coronation yesterday with a kiss on the cheek[/caption]
Prince William pledged loyalty to King Charles. And the newly crowned King Charles looked back at his eldest son and quietly mouthed: ‘Thank you’[/caption]
The touching message between father and son — a symbolic moment between the King and his heir — came minutes after St Edward’s Crown was placed on Charles III’s head[/caption]
William, wearing his Order of the Garter Robe, took centre stage on the golden carpet in the Coronation Theatre.
He knelt before his father, who sat on the Coronation Chair as he pledged his allegiance to him. Reading lines from a card to ensure he made no mistakes, the Prince said: “I, William, Prince of Wales, pledge my loyalty to you, and faith and truth I will bear unto you, as your liege man of life and limb. So help me God.”
Standing, William then touched St Edward’s Crown, then placed his left hand on his father’s right shoulder and kissed his left cheek.
Charles was seen quietly saying “Thank you” and nodding appreciatively at his eldest son.
William, who wore his ceremonial Welsh Guards colonel uniform under his robe, was also on hand to help invest his father with his golden Super-tunica coat during the service.
Prince Harry had no ceremonial role in the Coronation and was relegated to the third row of the Royal Family pews, squeezed in next to Jack Brooksbank. He dashed off soon after, back to California.
Following the ceremony, William, wife Kate and children Louis and Charlotte joined the Procession of the King and Queen as they left the Abbey — with eldest George as one of the King’s Pages of Honour.
I watched the two-hour ceremony unfold among the 2,300 guests and gazed in wonder at the ancient service that unfolded before millions of viewers at home and around the world.
The service began with the feeling of a relaxed society wedding, with arriving guests full of smiles and optimism.
Then it soon became a significant constitutional event, steeped in 1,000 years of symbolism and regalia including the Recognition, the Oath, anointing with oil, the Robe of State, Jewelled Sword of Offering and the heavy Orb.
The pale, grim faces and dark suits witnessed in the Abbey just seven months before — when the nation mourned the late Queen — were replaced with joyous and expectant faces, with guests dressed in purples, pinks, lilacs and blues.
I’m A Celebrity TV hosts Ant and Dec received a cheer and some laughter as they gave a wave to the guests on the way to their seats in the nave.
Television screens were even set up around the Abbey to allow everybody to follow the proceedings. Even the ushers wore earpieces.
Amid the ancient traditions, as the King and Queen reached the Coronation Theatre, a solitary mobile phone rang within the congregation.
Prince Harry cut a lonely figure in his morning suit and sat in the third row, obscured from the congregation’s view by Princess Anne’s red plume on her Blues and Royals uniform.
Meanwhile, the King and Queen’s robes looked resplendent on the blue and yellow carpets — specifically chosen to show off the gold and red of their ceremonial regalia.
Then, in the hushed Abbey, St Edward’s Crown was placed upon the King’s head.
The glittering under the television spotlights and the candles above the theatre made the scene in the Abbey dazzle, far more than anyone would have realised, even watching on the most expensive modern TV.
William touches the crown before kissing his father[/caption]
But after waiting 70 years for his crowning moment, the King wore St Edward’s Crown for just 20 minutes.
In two hours, we watched Charles transform into a crowned King, with the congregation perhaps a little too eager to serenade him.
Twice we all stood too early to sing the national anthem.
But when the King finally emerged — now wearing the Imperial State Crown — the congregation belted out “God Save the King” and sent His Majesty and Queen Camilla joyfully on their way back to Buckingham Palace.
STAGES IN THE ANCIENT RITUAL
Here we look back over the stages of the King’s Coronation.
RECOGNITION AND THE OATH
Charles was presented with the new Coronation Bible which he kissed before taking the Oath[/caption]
Each part of it the oath was framed as a question to the King, who placed his hand on the Bible as he replied before signing copies[/caption]
THE Recognition saw King Charles turn to each of the four points of the compass to be recognised as the true monarch.
To the East, by the Archbishop of Canterbury. To the South, by Lady Elish Angiolini, a Lady of the Order of the Thistle. To the West, by Christopher Finney, a holder of the George Cross. And finally, to the North, by Baroness Amos, a Lady of the Order of the Garter.
After each made their declaration, the Abbey replied: “God save King Charles.”
Charles was then presented with the new Coronation Bible which he kissed before taking the Oath. It included a new line in which he pledged to “foster an environment in which people of all faiths and beliefs may live freely”. Each part of it was framed as a question to the King, who placed his hand on the Bible as he replied before signing copies.
He then became the first monarch to pray publicly at a Coronation.
ANOINTING WITH OIL
Shielded from view, holy oil was then poured for the Archbishop of Canterbury to anoint King Charles on his ‘hand, breast and head’[/caption]
PERHAPS the most sacred and symbolic part of the ceremony took place behind screens.
King Charles removed his Robe of State before sitting in King Edward I’s Coronation Chair, which has been part of crowning services dating back to 1399.
Shielded from view, holy oil was then poured from the 1661 eagle-shaped Ampulla into the 12th century coronation spoon for the Archbishop of Canterbury to anoint King Charles on his “hand, breast and head”.
ROBING THE MONARCH
For the anointment, the King put on the Colobium Sindonis, a sleeveless white linen tunic[/caption]
Finally, the Supertunica, a full-length gold coat, was layered on top, along with the Coronation Sword Belt — called The Girdle[/caption]
AS the service began, the King donned a red velvet surcoat, worn by George VI at his Coronation in 1937. On top, Charles wore the Robe of State, trimmed with lace and ermine.
For the anointment, the King put on the Colobium Sindonis, a sleeveless white linen tunic. Finally, the Supertunica, a full-length gold coat, was layered on top, along with the Coronation Sword Belt — called The Girdle.
These precious items are a part of history, with the Supertunica worn by King George V, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth II.
REGALIA & HOMAGE
The King was presented with his regalia — here we see the Orb[/caption]
Other items included the Armills bracelet and the Coronation glove[/caption]
The King with the Jewelled Sword of Offering[/caption]
THE King was presented with his regalia — beginning with the 1661 golden spurs.
The Jewelled Sword of Offering followed, before a small velvet bag, holding 100 newly minted 50 pence pieces featuring the King.
Other items included the Armills bracelet, the Coronation glove and the golden Orb.
Then came the day’s key piece — the dazzling St Edward’s Crown placed on his head.
The homage, led by the Archbishop of Canterbury and Prince William, ended the ritual, as millions swore allegiance to the King.