At King Charles III Coronation, processions and a Sonam Kapoor performance

Amrutha Pagad
Amrutha PagadMay 01, 2023 | 10:30

At King Charles III Coronation, processions and a Sonam Kapoor performance

King Charles III's coronation ceremony to be attended by about 2,000 guests. Photo: Twitter/RoyalFamily

Immediately after Queen Elizabeth II's death in September 2022, Charles III became the King and he was formally proclaimed the new monarch of Britain in the following days. But it is after nearly eight months that King Charles III's coronation ceremony is here. 

  • King Charles III will be officially crowned on May 6, Saturday, in a ceremony that's almost a thousand years old.  

Here's all that is known about King Charles III's coronation ceremony: The coronation ceremony will be drawn out over three days starting on May 6, Saturday. 

May 6

Where: The ceremony will be held at Westminster Abbey where coronation has traditionally taken place for the last 900 years in the UK.  The coronation ceremony is a symbolic coming together of the monarchy, the church, and the state for a deeply religious ritual. 

  • This time, however, King Charles III's coronation ceremony is said to be more religiously inclusive with other faiths also being acknowledged. 

Procession: There cannot be a British royal event without a procession. On the coronation day, formal celebrations will begin with a procession starting from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey. 

  • After the crowning of the King and also the Queen Consort Camilla, who will drop the word "Consort" after being crowned, there will be another procession returning to Buckingham Palace. 
  • After returning to Buckingham Palace, the King, Queen, and other royal family members will greet the crowd from the balcony of the Buckingham Palace. 

Anti-monarchy protests: Several anti-monarchy groups in the UK are scheduled to stage peaceful protests around the country. There are reports that some may try to disrupt the ritual by spooking the horses during the procession, but security is on alert to prevent disruptions. 

What happens during a coronation ceremony?

  • The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, will helm the coronation ceremony. 

  • There are six core aspects of the ceremony - recognition, oath, anointing, investiture, crowning, and homage. 
  • As part of the "recognition", the sovereign or the King stands in the theatre of the abbey to present himself to the people. 
  • Then comes the oath, which is the only legal requirement of the ceremony. King Charles III is mostly expected to keep the same oath as his mother the late Queen Elizabeth II, but there could be minor tweaks. 

  • Anointing is a ritual where the monarch is anointed with holy oil by the archbishop. This is considered to be the most sacred part of the ceremony and will reportedly not be televised. It will also involve the use of a 12th-century silver-gilded spoon, which is the oldest surviving item of the coronation regalia pieces. 

  • Coronation regalia are the symbols of royalty, a set of sacred artifacts dating back almost 1,000 years. According to the British Royal Family website, the UK is the only European country to be still using the regalia. 

  • As part of the investiture, the monarch is dressed in sacred coronation robes and presented with regalia that include the ob, the coronation ring, scepters, and others. 
  • Crowning marks the end of the ceremony, where the St Edward's Crown is placed atop the monarch's head. The crown weighs almost five pounds and the late Queen Elizabeth II once said that the weight of the crown can break the neck if the wearer were to bend down while wearing it. 

  • And as part of the homage, princes and other attendees pay their respects to the sovereign. 

Queen Consort Camilla's coronation ceremony will be held after the King has been crowned. Queen Consort Camilla has chosen to go with the Queen Mary crown and the ceremony will not include the controversial Koh-i-Noor diamond. 

Prince Harry will be attending the ceremony, while his wife Meghan Markle has chosen to stay behind in California with their children. Since Prince Harry has stepped down from his royal duties, he will not have any part to play in the ceremony. The disgraced Prince Andrew will also be attending the ceremony but will not have any part to play. 

According to reports, Prince Harry is to be seated 10 rows behind the royal family and will also reportedly make a quick exit from the ceremony due to their ongoing friction. 

Who will be attending the ceremony? 

  • Breaking some royal traditions, this time several crowned monarchs of European and other countries are expected to attend the ceremony. Usually, no other crowned monarch is invited to the coronation ceremony. 
  • So far, Monaco's Prince Albert II, his wife, Princess Charlene, Spain's King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia, Sweden's King Carl XVI Gustaf, his daughter, Crown Princess Victoria, and more have confirmed their attendance. 
  • Reigning royals from Arab countries to the Japanese Crown Prince are all said to attend. 

  • World leaders such as French President Emmanuel Macron are also said to be in attendance. While US President Joe Biden said he won't be going, first lady Jill Biden will be representing the country. 
  • India is sending Vice President Jagdeep Dhankar as its representative. 

May 7

  • The day after the coronation is expected to be filled with several events across the UK as part of the "Coronation Big Lunch", whose purpose is to bring the ceremony to the people's backyard. 
  • Several celebrities will be headlining the "Coronation Concert" on Sunday at Windsor Castle in the evening. Celebs from Tom Cruise, Katy Perry, Bear Grylls Chinese pianist Lang Lang to Bollywood actor Sonam Kapoor will be participating in the concert. 
  • So far, Sonam Kapoor is the only Bollywood celebrity to confirm her attendance. She is said to perform a spoken word about the British Royal Family but the details of her performance remain unknown. 

May 8

May 8, Monday will be a public holiday in the UK, and the public is urged to volunteer in their communities. 

The coronation ceremony will be funded by the UK taxpayers since it's a state affair. It will reportedly cost around £100 million (over Rs 1021.5 crore). Reports say the cost is expected to be covered by worldwide TV rights for the event and will be a boost to tourism. 

Last updated: May 01, 2023 | 10:37
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