Z a c Zack

Live Life Deliberately

The coronation of King Charles III: Memorable moments in photos and videos

King Charles III, wearing St. Edward’s crown, and Queen Camilla, wearing Queen Mary’s crown, sit during the coronation ceremony at Westminster Abbey. (Andrew Matthews)

King Charles III and his wife, Queen Camilla, have been crowned in an elaborate ceremony at Westminster Abbey in London on Saturday, in the company of family, faith leaders and more than 2,000 guests.

Charles became king as soon as his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, died in September. In this sense, Saturday’s ceremony doesn’t carry legal significance. But it’s steeped in symbolism, and — for those who still care about the British monarchy — a chance to celebrate the passing of the baton in a centuries-old institution that still plays a highly visible role in modern British life.

It’s the first coronation in 70 years, and the pomp was on full display.

King Charles III made his first appearance on coronation day riding in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey. (Video: The Washington Post)

The royal couple arrived at Westminster Abbey in the modern Diamond Jubilee State Coach, which was first used in 2014 and features power windows, air conditioning and shock absorbers.

As the king and queen traveled the 1.3-mile procession route, onlookers caught their first glimpse of the monarchs, decked out in antique robes of state that were worn by their predecessors at prior coronations.

Prince George, the eldest son of Prince William and his wife, Kate, served as a page boy, helping to make sure his grandfather’s robe didn’t get dirty after he stepped out of the carriage.

Prince Harry arrived wearing a morning suit with gray trousers, rather than military dress. Harry and his wife, Meghan, stepped down from official royal duties and are embroiled in a public rift with Harry’s father and brother.

A diverse group of faith leaders representing the Jewish, Muslim, Sikh, Buddhist, Hindu, Jain, Bahai and Zoroastrian communities were the first to enter into the abbey.

The guest list, though shorter than Charles’s mother’s seven decades earlier, includes an array of world leaders, first ladies, diplomats and celebrities. President Biden was not in attendance, but first lady Jill Biden arrived at the abbey in a light-blue suit and gloves, along with her granddaughter, Finnegan Biden, wearing yellow.

During the service, Charles put his hand on the bible and took the coronation oath. Hidden by a screen for privacy, he was anointed with holy oil on his hands, chest and head — the only moment of the ceremony not visible to attendees or the public.

King Charles III is anointed during his coronation, a moment hidden from the congregation and seen as one of the most sacred moments of the ceremony. (Video: The Washington Post)

King Charles III and Queen Camilla are crowned

Charles then received symbolic, bejeweled items from the coronation regalia: gold spurs, swords, bracelets, an orb, a ring, a glove, a scepter and a rod. And in the climax of the ceremony, the 361-year-old, solid-gold crown was placed upon Charles’s head, to the sound of trumpets and cheers of “God save the king!”

Next, it was Camilla’s turn to be crowned and receive a scepter and ring, in a moment that captured her unlikely transformation from Charles’s “other woman” to his queen.

King Charles III was crowned at Westminster Abbey on May 6. (Video: The Washington Post)

Prince William, the heir to the throne kneeled before his father, King Charles III, to swear his loyalty during the king’s coronation on May 6. (Video: The Washington Post)

The coronation procession

After the ceremony, the newly crowned king and queen made their way out of the abbey to a different carriage: the Gold State Coach, used to transport every newly crowned monarch since William IV in 1831. It’s apparently a bumpy ride.

Princess Anne, playing the role of “Gold-Stick-in-Waiting,” rode on horseback behind the king and queen as they made their way to Buckingham Palace, followed by 6,000 members of the armed services marching down the Mall.

The Prince and Princess of Wales traveled in a separate carriage, along with their children, George, Charlotte and Louis. In a sign of the lingering family feud, Prince Harry was spotted getting into a car alone after the ceremony.

The Gold State Coach, used to transport every newly crowned monarch since King William IV in 1831, is visually impressive, but is said to be a jarring ride. (Video: The Washington Post)

To cap the official celebration, Charles and Camilla appeared on the back balcony of Buckingham Palace to wave at the crowds below. The pair were surrounded by their grandchildren, along with Prince William and Catherine, Princess of Wales — next in line to be crowned — and the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh, Charles’s younger brother, Edward, and his wife, Sophie. These are the “working royals,” charged with carrying out official duties on behalf of the crown.

In a heartwarming moment, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis also waved to the crowds.

King Charles III and other royals gather on a balcony at Buckingham Palace to greet the crowd of thousands on May 6. (Video: The Washington Post)

Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, the youngest children of William and Kate, wave from the balcony of Buckingham Palace on May 6. (Video: The Washington Post)

Missing from this scene were Prince Harry, who has been publicly critical of his royal family, and his uncle, Prince Andrew, who was sued by a woman over sexual abuse allegations.

As the royals stood in the balcony, jets streaked overhead, in a flyby that was truncated due to the weather.

And with that, the coronation came to a close.


(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)