May 29, 2023

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Britons can mourn their queen by meditating in front of her coffin

Britons can mourn their queen by meditating in front of her coffin

Britons will finally have access to their most famous queen: Elizabeth II’s coffin will be unveiled to the public on Monday after a procession led by Charles III, after being enshrined in Edinburgh, marking a week’s farewell until her funeral.

Many will no doubt flock to Saint-Gilles Cathedral to try to pay their closest respects to their dead sovereign on Thursday, given the number of people who had gathered the previous day on the way to the funeral procession, clapping, crying or throwing a flower at it. path.

In the Scottish capital, tens of thousands of people greeted the body on Sunday afternoon under chants of “Blessed be you”. 96, two days after his ascension to the throne as the 15th head of government.

“I could only see it from a distance, but it was very moving. He was a wonderful man, it’s very sad, I have a lot of respect for him,” said Theresa Brown, a receptionist who lives in Edinburgh, after the funeral procession passed on Sunday.

Awaiting Elizabeth II’s funeral on September 19, her son, the brand-new King Charles III, settles in as monarch with the heavy task of succeeding his famous mother against a backdrop of severe social crisis and division in England. and resistance against the colonial past in its other 14 kingdoms.

He was 73 years old, the oldest of all British sovereigns to have ascended the throne.

He is due to travel to Parliament in London at 10am (0900 GMT) with his wife, Queen Consort Camilla, to receive condolences from the leaders of both houses.

They will then fly to Edinburgh, the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the official royal residence in Scotland, where the Queen’s remains will spend the night, guarded by the Royal Company of Archers, a ceremonial unit. sovereignty.

The staff of the palace, where the Queen arrives at the start of each summer, and a garden party with around 8,000 guests, can pay their last respects to the Queen, as can the staff of Balmoral Castle. And where she took her last breath on Thursday, she was able to do so.

– Charles and Camilla behind the coffin –

The coffin will leave the Stone Palace and reach Saint-Gilles Cathedral at 2:35 pm (1:35 pm GMT).

During the half-hour procession, the king and queen consort will walk behind the hearse, while the rest of the royal family will follow in a car.

During the religious ceremony that follows, the Crown of Scotland, in solid gold, is placed on the coffin.

The Queen’s remains will be on display in the cathedral for 24 hours, heralding a major visitation.

On Sunday, eager people waited for hours to get a front-row seat if only a few seconds passed by the oak casket in the hearse.

– “Everywhere in our lives” –

Some expats in the United Kingdom at this historic moment are marked by the people’s solidarity with their Queen.

Like William Cowes, an American from Atlanta, was impressed by the absence of “slingers”: “The seriousness with which this country treats its royal family is strong”.

“There’s a real sense of connection with history,” analyzes 28-year-old Rob Parsons, who doesn’t hesitate to travel hundreds of kilometers from York. “We are one of the few countries in the world that has retained this sense of historical ritual and this connection to the past,” he adds.

“Coming here is a show of solidarity,” says his girlfriend Lucy Hampshire. “She was everywhere in our lives, on our currency, on our stamps, everywhere. It’s like someone in your family you’ve never met,” he continues.

After the religious ceremony, King Charles III, who has vowed to serve the people for the rest of his life like his mother, is set to receive Scotland’s independence First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and visit the local parliament with the queen consort. Condolences.

Then, at 7:20 pm (6:20 pm GMT), the funeral procession for the royal family will begin.

After 24 hours in public, the body will leave Edinburgh Airport for London on a royal plane on Tuesday evening.

It will be on public display 24 hours a day, under royal cover, from Wednesday evening on the stage at the Palace of Westminster. He will stay there for five days before a state funeral expected to draw dignitaries from around the world – including US President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron and Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese – a significant security challenge for police. Several crowned heads.

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