London, May 6 (EFE).- Charles III was crowned King of the United Kingdom on Saturday at a solemn ceremony at Westminster Abbey in the heart of London.
Presiding over the ceremony, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, placed the crown of St. Edward – which dates back to the 17th century – onto Charles III’s head, before shouting “God Save the King!” to the congregation of thousands of guests, which included the Spanish King and Queen, Felipe VI and Letizia among 100 heads of state.
It is the only time Charles III will wear the crown, which is made of gold and is decorated with rubies, amethysts, sapphires, garnet and topaz.
The abbey bells then rang for two minutes, trumpets played and gun salutes took place across the UK, including a 62-round salute fired at the Tower of London.
Seated in St. Edward’s oak chair, considered the oldest piece of furniture in the UK which was set on a medieval mosaic floor, Charles III was crowned after receiving the various royal regalia, symbolizing his responsibilities as the British head of state until the day of his death.
The king was presented with the sovereign’s orb, symbolizing the world; the scepter with cross, representing the Christian world; and the dove scepter, symbolizing the monarch’s spiritual role.
During his Coronation oath, Charles III promised to uphold the law and said he would “foster an environment in which people of all faiths may live freely.”
Dressed in an ermine cloak, Charles III entered the abbey followed by several children, including his grandson, Prince George – second in line to the British crown – who played the role of page boy along with Charles’ wife Camilla’s grandchildren.
The princes of Wales, William and Catherine, both dressed in ceremonial attire, entered the church behind the king.
Camilla, who has been Charles’ wife since 2005, was crowned Queen later during the ceremony.
The coronation is the first to be held since June 1953, when Charles’ mother Queen Elizabeth II was crowned in the Anglican church, which since 1066 has been the location of the coronations of 39 English and British monarchs.
The coronation was the climax of a day that saw the British capital dripping in regalia as huge crowds gathered in central London for the historic occasion.
Royal fans camped out overnight along the London procession route, hoping to secure front-row seats to the celebration and procession to Westminster Abbey.
The procession left Buckingham Palace at 10.20 am local time and wound through the streets of central London, carrying Charles and Camilla to Westminster.
A military flypast of 60 planes at 2.30 pm will end the festivities, before Charles and Camilla will greet the public from the balcony at Buckingham Palace, before retiring in private with their families.
In a message on Friday night, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak stressed that the coronation would be a “moment of extraordinary national pride.”
“No other country could put on such a dazzling display – the processions, the pageantry, the ceremonies, and street parties,” he said in a statement.
“But this is not just a spectacle. It’s a proud expression of our history, culture, and traditions. A vivid demonstration of the modern character of our country. And a cherished ritual through which a new era is born.” EFE