In Britain the excitement is building for the coronation of King Charles III on May 6. Who’s coming, who’s not, what will the royals wear, what will they eat, who will make it onto the balcony? At least we know the Spare, Prince Harry or Duke of Sussex is coming and there has been celebrating that the Duchess is not. That’s one thing sorted for the king and the organisers of the coronation.
It’s been a long time since a coronation in Britain. They’ve had births, deaths and marriages and a few divorces thrown in, but coronations don’t come around so often. Just as well as it takes a lot of organising. As it is never known when a reigning sovereign will pass, it can’t be totally organised beforehand.
For King Charles III, it’s been a long wait
Queen Elizabeth II reigned for 70 years. She ascended the throne at 25 years. This was unexpected as her father was only 56. But he was in ill health and had been a chain smoker, possibly due to his nervous disposition. He died of a lung condition. So the last coronation in Britain was in 1953.
Her oldest son, Prince Charles, now King Charles III has spent his life waiting in the wings to take over as king. From when he was just three years old when his mother took the throne.
So now we have a new king in England, the first male sovereign for 70 years. The males don’ t seem to last as long as the female ones. Queen Elizabeth I and Queen Victoria had long reigns of 45 and 63 years respectively. . All three only took the throne because a male heir was not available. They ruled in a man’s world but ruled well for the people not for themselves.
Some heirs do not want the throne
But Edward VIII, Elizabeth’s II’s uncle did not want the throne. In 1936, he abdicated to marry the twice divorced American Wallis Simpson. History repeated itself when Prince Harry also married a divorced American woman older than him. This abdication in 1936 put Elizabeth II’s father the then Duke of York into the position.
He did not want to be king either. he was shy and had a bad stutter. being in the public spotlight must have been part agony for him and possibly contributed to his early death. This then thrust Elizabeth his oldest daughter into the position at just 25. She was a young married woman with two very young children, Charles and sister, Anne.
You know the rest. It is current history and still history in the making.
What future for the monarchy and Charles?
What will be the future of the monarchy? Will King Charles III, aged in his seventies, have the will, the personality and the strength to equal the popular public figure of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II? Will the rest of the family, too, behave themselves in a manner appropriate to their position?
We can only wait and see what unfolds. There never seems to be a dull moment in the lives of the royals. They like us are human and make mistakes, bad choices and let down their people. Charles has a tainted history due to his adulterous relationship with Camilla Parker Bowles while they were both married to other people, namely Princess Diana and Andrew Parker Bowles.
Camilla will be Queen to Charles
They do not share children, just a history that dates back to their youth. Charles really should have married her and would have but she was deemed unsuitable at the time. She was not innocent and virginal like Diana. What sort of Princess of Wales would she have been? Probably not as popular as both Diana and Kate have been.
But Camilla is now Queen Consort which is what Queen Elizabeth II, her mother-in-law said she would be named. However, it seems already the term ‘consort’ has been dropped making some angry. Camilla did come to her position of power by an unusual way, not the orthodox way, but by default.
Despite this, many Britons have taken her to heart and forgiven her part in the divorce of Charles and Diana. They now judge her for who she is and her abilities to support Charles and give back to the British. Perhaps it is good to forgive and not hold grudges in this case as it serves no one to old a grudge.
Fergie, the corgis and a slice of quiche
Well, enjoy watching the coronation on TV as Fergie, the Duchess of York will be. Surprisingly, as she is the King’s sister-in-law and the owner now of the late Queen’s corgis, she was not invited. Even though Andrew her ex husband who she still lives with and her two daughters, Beatrice and Eugenia will be there. I find this strange. However, news has it she will be at the concert afterwards.
Another strange snippet of gossip is that the signature dish for the coronation is just a plain broad bean quiche. This is rather comic considering there is a vast shortage of eggs at the moment in Britain. It will be hard for the people to make a quiche to celebrate with the king if they can’t buy eggs.
The late queen’s signature dish was a bit more flash. It was a chicken specialty, Poulet Reine Elizabeth, still enjoyed by people 70 years on.
Joni Scott is an Australian author with three published novels: Whispers through Time and The Last Hotel and Colour Comes to Tangles. Joni also co-hosts a women’s blog; https://whisperingencouragement.com/ and has her own website; https://joniscottauthor.com.