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A guide to the coronation on 6th May 2023

A coronation is when a King or Queen is given their royal powers in a special ceremony. This is a big, happy event where the king or Queen gets special things like the Crown Jewels. They put the crown on the King or Queen's head in front of many important people. They have been doing coronations for a long time, almost 1,000 years! Soon, we will see the coronation of King Charles III. This is the first time a coronation has happened in the United Kingdom since Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. 

Before 1707, there were two kingdoms in Great Britain - England and Scotland. Even though they had one King or Queen, there were separate English and Scottish coronations with different ceremonies. English monarchs have usually had their coronation at Westminster Abbey in London since William the Conqueror in 1066. In Scotland, the coronation happened at Scone Palace for over 1000 years, and they used something special called the Stone of Destiny. The last coronation in Scotland was in 1651 for Charles II. After that, most coronations happened at Westminster Abbey.

Source: Shutterstock

When the King or Queen of the United Kingdom passes away, the next person who becomes King or Queen will start their job right away. This is called their Accession. Later on, there is a big and happy ceremony called the coronation. The coronation happens after some time has passed since the last King or Queen died. This is because it takes a lot of time and work to plan such a big event, and also because people need time to be sad and respectful. The next coronation will happen on Saturday 6 May this year for King Charles III, almost eight months after he became a King.

A coronation is a big event where a new King or Queen is officially crowned. Many important people are invited, like royalty, politicians, and experts in their field. If you're invited, you have to behave well and wear your best clothes. It's a big party, but it's also a serious and important religious ceremony.

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Since 1066, the Archbishop of Canterbury has been the one to crown most monarchs in the Church of England. The monarch is very important in the Church of England, and the Archbishop and other clergy wear special clothes during the ceremony. The last coronation in the United Kingdom was in 1953 for Queen Elizabeth II, so the upcoming coronation of King Charles III will be a very special event.

When a new King or Queen takes the throne, they have a special ceremony called a coronation. Although each coronation is different, there are certain things that have been done for almost a thousand years. During the ceremony, the new King or Queen will promise to follow the laws of the country and the Church. They will sit on a special chair, be blessed with oil, and dressed in special clothes before being officially crowned. After the ceremony, the new King or Queen will go outside and wave to the people. This is a very important event because it is one of the few times that the Crown Jewels, which are very valuable and special, are taken out and used.

The Crown Jewels are a group of special treasures that are used during important ceremonies in the United Kingdom, such as the coronation of a new King or Queen. There are over 100 different items in the Crown Jewels, some of which are very old and important. The Crown Jewels of England are kept in the Tower of London, while the oldest Crown Jewels, called the Honours of Scotland, are displayed at Edinburgh Castle.

The Crown Jewels (Picture: Royal Collection Trust)

  • The Crown Jewels of the United Kingdom, which are used during the coronation of a British monarch today, are special because they include the Coronation Regalia. The Regalia consists of many different items, including robes, a spoon, and a sword. However, the most famous items are the Sceptre, the Orb, and two different crowns.
  • The Sovereign’s Sceptre is very special because it has the largest clear diamond in the world, called the Cullinan I. The Sovereign’s Orb is a gold globe with a cross on top that represents the monarch's power coming from God. St Edward’s Crown is the most important of the crowns and is only used during the actual crowning of the monarch. It is made of solid gold and decorated with different jewels.
  • The Imperial State Crown is worn by the monarch as they leave Westminster Abbey after their coronation. This crown is also used for other important events such as the State Opening of Parliament. It is decorated with many famous gemstones, such as the Black Prince’s Ruby, the Stuart Sapphire, and the Cullinan II Diamond.

You can see more on the Historic Royal Palaces website

Source: Shutterstock

On Saturday 6 May 2023, a special event will take place in Westminster Abbey. King Charles III will become the new leader of the United Kingdom in a ceremony called a coronation. He is 74 years old and he became the oldest British monarch on 8 September 2022. This is a big change for the country, as we haven't had a new monarch in many years. When a new monarch takes over, many things change in the country. For example, the King's face will be added to our coins and money, and a special symbol called a royal cypher will be made for the King. This symbol will be put on things like post boxes, flags, and uniforms to show that they belong to the King's kingdom.

King Charles III banknotes (Source: Bank of England)

To see the full guide to King Charles III's coronation and the key times click here


This article is written at English level B1

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