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Dig Deeper: The Coronation of King Charles III

Image of King Charles and Queen Camilla.

King Charles and Queen Camilla. PHOTO: CHRIS JACKSON/GETTY

The Coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla will take place Saturday, May 6, at 11 a.m. London time (6 a.m. ET). Most major networks in the U.S. are expected to broadcast the coronation live. Viewers can also live stream the event for free on and BBC News Channel. Coverage on BBC will begin at 7:30 a.m. London time (2:30 a.m. ET).

The first ceremonial crowning of a British monarch in 70 years, the Coronation of King Charles III will be the second-ever to be broadcast (the first being Queen Elizabeth II on June 2, 1953). The ceremonial traditions dating back 1,000 years are mostly for theatre as King Charles III immediately ascended to the throne upon the death of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II on Sept. 8, 2022. “A coronation is both the symbolic religious ceremony during which a sovereign is crowned and the physical act of placing a crown on a monarch’s head. It formalizes the monarch’s role as the head of the Church of England and marks the transfer of their title and powers” (BBC).

King Charles III and Queen Camilla will process from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey (Britain’s coronation church since 1066) before the coronation. The coronation will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby. “While there have been efforts to modernize, the core elements of the historic coronation rite — the recognition, oath, anointing, investiture and crowning, enthronement and homage — all still remain. It is during some of these key moments that the coronation regalia — powerful symbols of the monarchy amassed by Kings and Queens throughout history — will be presented to Charles” (CNN) [For a full breakdown of coronation rituals click here]. After the completion of the ceremony, King Charles III and Queen Camilla will process from Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace. Later in the day they will wave to crowds from the palace balcony during a scheduled flyover.

Saturday’s crowds will be filled with cheers and protests, as the coronation provides both an opportunity to “celebrate being British,” and to “question the legitimacy of the Monarchy” (PBS). King Charles III, while more progressive and modern than prior monarchs, must navigate a new era…one in which British support for the monarchy is dwindling. “There are more questions hanging over the new monarch and indeed the Windsor family itself than at any point in living memory” (PBS). Time will tell what this reign will bring.

Dig deeper and explore the links curated by Merrill Stein, Political Science Librarian.

The previous coronation:

Kallie Stahl ’17 MA is Communication and Marketing Specialist at Falvey Library. She studied abroad in London in 2012 (the Diamond Jubilee of Elizabeth II). 






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Last Modified: May 5, 2023

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