Britain bid farewell Queen Elizabeth II She managed to maintain her remarkable seven-decade reign, with a majestic funeral steeped in tradition and a dispatch of widespread popularity on Monday.
Members of the royal family and dignitaries gathered at Westminster Abbey for a gloomy service. Presidents, prime ministers, princes and princesses, and other public figures sat side by side to pay their last respects—a testament to their far-reaching appeal and shrewd diplomacy.
The funeral, which served as both a state and religious service and marked the culmination of 10 days of mourning, honored the Queen with the kind of spectacle she would use throughout her life for the royal family and “brand”. Britain” to promote.
Tens of thousands of people took to the streets around Westminster Abbey and along the 25-mile processional route from central London to Windsor, hoping to catch a glimpse of the sovereign’s flag-wrapped coffin as he lay in his final resting place. was traveling to the site.
In the third and final procession of the day, the Queen’s coffin was carried by a crowd of well-wishers from the Long Walk to Windsor Castle, where she was served and buried at St George’s Chapel, where she was separated from the crown for the final. . Time.
Later in the evening, she is interred with her husband of 73 years, the Duke of Edinburgh, at the King George VI Memorial Chapel. An annex of St George’s Chapel, it also houses the remains of the Queen’s father, his mother the Queen Mother and his sister Princess Margaret.
Although the death of Queen Elizabeth, Britain’s longest-reigning monarchAnticipated and meticulously planned over the years – the funeral arrangements, codenamed “Operation London Bridge”, had long been the subject of speculation – the magnitude of this moment of mourning and the public outpouring of emotion still left many closed guards. has caught. Even for those who are not fans of the royal family, his death marks the end of an era, a change in the national landscape.
At the age of 96, the Queen had become an almost mythical symbol of stability in the midst of constant change. His 70-year rule was booked due to war and the pandemic due to uncertainty about Britain’s role on the world stage. He was crowned as the sun began to set over the British Empire, and his death has restarted a conversation The country’s dark colonial past, This comes at a time of great political and economic upheaval, not only in the United Kingdom, but around the world.
Over 200 foreign dignitaries were invited For his funeral at Westminster Abbey, which was attended by Commonwealth leaders such as US President Joe Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Many traded limousines for buses to come to the funeral, which is just part of the plan. single largest security operation Which the British authorities have seen since the Second World War.
The 2,000-strong congregation included emergency service workers and public servants as well as representatives of several charities, of which the Queen was patron.
The service took place in the same abbey cave where, 69 years earlier, the queen was crowned and where, 75 years earlier, she was married to her husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, who died last year. The coronation of a sovereign who knew the soft power of spectacle, at his request, was televised for the first time, bringing the splendor of the monarchy to millions of people around the world. On Monday once again all eyes were on him.
Heads of 15 countries in the Commonwealth region, including the UK, and supreme governor of the Church of England, his appeal as a man lies in his extreme sense of duty, hardworking work ethic, and ability to appear neutral yet charming. admiration for the queen has ceased a Major Count of the Crown’s Cruel Legacy In former colonies – including its historical connection to the slave trade – but this is already changing as some Commonwealth countries seek to secede.
Last week, Antigua and Barbuda announced plans to hold a referendum to become a republic, and last November, Barbados became the first region in nearly 30 years to remove a British monarch as head of state.
Many of the Queen’s subjects felt like they knew her—the woman whose image is on coins and postage stamps, which the survey says appears most often in people’s dreams.
“She’s not just the monarch of the 21st century, she’s something else,” Chris Rowe, 60, who had been camping with his wife on a grassy side of The Mall to watch the funeral procession, told CNN . The Queen represents “a continuation of a hundreds of years old tradition”, adding that she had come to London to see “the continuation of the nation”.
While there were no screens, mourners on The Mall were able to hear a radio broadcast of the funeral. The people stood still, their gaze low. Later, as the funeral procession passed, children with shoulder straps were seen marching past military units and people took pictures on their phones – capturing the end of an era.
Over the past four days, a sense of almost family loss was evident among the mourners, who waited in a queue that stretched for miles along the River Thames. Westminster Hall, where the Emperor’s body lay in the stateTo file behind his coffin.
Queen Elizabeth’s childrenKing Charles III, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward entered the cavernous chamber on Friday, bowing their heads, to keep a silent watch over the velvet catapult holding their coffin, the crown adorned with the sovereign’s jewels, Was equipped with orb and scepter. a day later, Prince William and Prince HarryDressed in military uniform, standing beside the Queen’s six other grandchildren, he held his own scandalous vigil.
On Monday morning, the king and other members of the royal family followed the coffin as it was carried from Westminster Hall on its final visit to the abbey. it was moved On the same gun carriage used for the funerals of the Queen’s father, King George VI and Winston Churchill 15 British Prime Ministers who served under him.
Westminster Abbey’s Tenor Bell tolls once a minute for 96 minutes before the service, which marks each year of the Queen’s life.
Small details such as a garland of flowers atop her coffin provided a view into the queen’s personal tastes. Made from cut flowers and leaves from the gardens of Buckingham Palace and other royal estates, it included pink and gold pelargoniums, garden roses and dahlias, with myrtle cut from a plant grown from a twig featured in the Queen’s wedding bouquet was.
As the coffin moved inside the abbey, the Queen’s great-grandsons Prince George and Princess Charlotte formed part of the procession behind their coffin. Westminster Abbey’s choir in the nave sings sentences – lines of scripture set to music that have been used at every state funeral since the early part of the 18th century.
It was a type of traditional, classical music that Rani carried on in life. Chosen hymns were “The Day Thou Gavest, Lord” and “The Lord Is My Shepherd, I Shall Not Want”, sung at her marriage to Prince Philip in 1947, and the anthem “O taste and see how merciful the Lord is.” ”, which was prepared by Ralph Vaughan Williams for the Queen’s coronation in 1953.
A chorale piece was also specially commissioned for the day, composed by King’s music master Judith Weir, “Like as the Heart”. It is said to be inspired by Queen’s “unbroken Christianity” and is a setting of Psalm 42 to the music.
The Rev David Hoyle, Dean of Westminster, conducted the service. Britain’s Prime Minister Liz Truss, who was appointed by the Queen just two days before her death, and Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland read the text and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, gave a sermon.
“The sorrow of this day, felt not only by the family of the late Queen, but arising from her abundant life and loving service to the entire nation, the Commonwealth and the world – has now passed away from us,” Welby said in his sermon. , recalling Monarch’s 21st birthday broadcast, in which she famously announced that she would devote her entire life to serving the nation and the Commonwealth.
“Service in life, hope in death; All those who follow the Queen’s example and with the inspiration of faith and faith in God can say: ‘We will meet again,’ he concluded, following the Queen’s speech during Britain’s COVID-19 lockdown in 2020. Quoting, a nod to Vera Lynn’s wartime song .
The hour-long service concluded with a two-minute silence, after which the congregation sang the national anthem, “God save the king.” Queen’s PiperWhose music woke the Emperor every morning, played a fitting lament, “Sleep, Dear, Sleep”, to close the proceedings.
The day’s events were a display of centuries-old rituals – a royal cavalry waving by guards in ruffled uniforms, bagpipers and drummers, streets lined with soldiers saluting as coffins pass. Minute guns were fired in Hyde Park and Big Ben marched in full procession to Wellington Arch, where the coffin was placed in a harse to be taken to Windsor.
Once there, the state chariot carried more than 140,000 people on the procession route to Windsor Castle, with crowds packed the length of the Long Walk. The queen’s two lovely corpses were sitting outside the palace, waiting for her final return home.
At a committed service at St George’s Chapel on Monday afternoon, members of the Royal Family and staff at the Queen’s household, past and present, sat together for a more intimate ceremony. Some of the music at the service was composed by Sir William Henry Harris, the organist of St George’s Chapel when the Queen was a girl and is believed to have taught her to play the piano.
In a poignant moment filled with theatre, silence fell over the chapel and the crown jeweler removed the Imperial State Crown and the sovereign’s orb and scepter. The Lord Chamberlain, the head of the Queen’s household, broke his office wand and placed it over the coffin, before it was lowered into the Royal Vault.
Later in the evening, in a private burial, she will be placed together in the King George VI Memorial Chapel with her husband of 73 years, “his constant strength and guide,” the Duke of Edinburgh. An annex of St George’s Chapel, it also houses the remains of the Queen’s father, his mother the Queen Mother and his sister Princess Margaret.
“It means a lot to me,” said Lorraine Calloway, who came to Windsor with her son Cohen at the age of 8 to attend the historic day. “To come and see that the Queen’s final resting place is here is something that is really fundamentally important to me and the family.”
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