One of the biggest days in His Majesty King Charles III’s life is quickly approaching.
Charles, 74, immediately ascended the British throne after his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, died in September, however, his official coronation is set to take place on Saturday, May 6.
Charles’ wife, Camilla, will also be crowned queen during the ceremony.
Here is everything to know ahead of the king of England’s coronation day.
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The big day
Charles and Camilla will be crowned at Westminster Abbey on Saturday, May 6. Buckingham Palace shared the announcement in October of last year.
Coronation services begin at 11 a.m. local time, and will be followed by a “much larger in scale” procession back to the Palace, including Armed Forces from across the Commonwealth and the British Overseas Territories alongside The Sovereign’s Bodyguard and Royal Watermen.
Their Majesties will travel from Buckingham Palace in The King’s Procession to Westminster Abbey in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach, which was created for Queen Elizabeth II to commemorate the 60th anniversary of her reign in 2012.
Charles’ coronation will be different from Queen Elizabeth’s
Although Charles’ coronation will continue British tradition, there are some differences from Elizabeth’s coronation in 1953.
Charles’ ceremony is expected to be much shorter than Elizabeth’s – roughly an hour long while his mother’s was three hours.
The Palace hasn’t revealed the guest list, but said that “2,000 guests” will form the congregation. Elizabeth invited about 8,000 people decades ago.
“It will be shorter and simpler than 1953 but absolutely still on the scale and spectacle befitting of sovereignty, history and tradition,” a palace source told Vanity Fair in October.
Prince William’s son will have a role
Prince William’s oldest son, Prince George, was announced by Buckingham Palace as a member of Charles’ four Pages of Honour. Camilla also has her own four Pages of Honour for the ceremony.
Lord Oliver Cholmondeley, Master Nicholas Barclay and Master Ralph Tollemache will also be included in the King’s Pages of Honour. The Queen’s Pages of Honour will be Her Majesty’s grandsons, Master Gus and Master Louis Lopes, and Master Freddy Parker Bowles, in addition to her great-nephew, Master Arthur Elliot.
According to The Telegraph, George will be the youngest future king to partake in a coronation.
William’s two other children, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, are not expected to have as important of a role as their brother, but will attend their grandfather’s coronation and likely will sit with the audience.
During the procession, William’s children will wear scarlet uniforms and hold a small, ceremonial sword as they make their way to Westminster Abbey.
A tweak to the dress code
Differing from Elizabeth’s coronation, Charles’ will see guests in a more casual way.
Women were instructed to wear “day dress” and men were prompted to either wear a morning coat, a suit or a military uniform.
Members of the House of Lords have been instructed to swap their traditional crimson robes for business attire this upcoming Saturday, according to The Telegraph.
In previous coronations, men and women would either wear coronets, or small embellished crowns, which demonstrated their rank. That will not be seen in Charles’ coronation ceremony.
Stephen Jones, who created hats for the coronation, shared with WWD Magazine that he believes guests will wear more “modern” looks, in line with Charles’ wishes.
“The message King Charles will want to send out is a very contemporary one, not one of an imperial ruling family, as it was many years ago. He, more than anybody else, is aware of trying to make the monarchy modern – it’s something he’s been doing his entire life,” he shared with the outlet.
The guest list
About 2,000 people received invitations for the monumental day, which includes members of the royal family.
Buckingham Palace previously confirmed that Prince Harry will attend his father’s coronation day, but his wife, Meghan Markle, will remain in California with their two children.
“Buckingham Palace is pleased to confirm that The Duke of Sussex will attend the Coronation Service at Westminster Abbey on 6th May. The Duchess of Sussex will remain in California with Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet,” the palace said in the statement.
Saturday is also Prince Archie’s fourth birthday. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex removed themselves from royal responsibilities in January 2020 and moved to Canada before settling in Southern California.
Royals from across the globe also received an invitation. King Carl XVI of Sweden and King Felipe of Spain will be in attendance, which is a change from previous coronations, where foreign monarchs typically sent their heirs or consorts for the crowning ceremony.
The late Prince Philip’s cousin, Lady Pamela Hicks – who was also one of Queen Elizabeth II’s bridesmaids – recently responded after finding out she would be left off the scaled-back guest list.
“How very, very sensible,” Pamela’s daughter, India Hicks, wrote in an Instagram post of her mother’s reaction after receiving the call from the king’s personal secretary.
India noted her mother appreciated that the invitations were based on “meritocracy not aristocracy.” She said Lady Pamela added, “I am going to follow with great interest the events of this new reign.”
Prince Andrew’s ex-wife Sarah Ferguson also didn’t receive an invitation to the ceremony, confirming the news during an appearance on the talk show “Loose Women.” She then told People, she is “very supportive of the King and the Queen Consort,” and is ready “to do whatever it takes to support them on their road ahead.”
She further explained during an appearance on “Good Morning Britain” that “it’s a state occasion, and being divorced I don’t think you can have it both ways. I am divorced, and I’m really loving being divorced to my ex-husband, not from him but to him, it’s important to differentiate. That’s a lovely feeling to be part of, it really is. As I said you can’t have it both ways. You mustn’t sit on the fence. You’re either in or out, don’t muck around…. The great thing about this moment in time is the unity of family, and I think that Charles and Camilla are doing an exceptional job at unifying the family.”
When asked in February whether he will be invited to the ceremony or not, Princess Diana’s brother Charles, 9th Earl Spencer, told Jane Garvey, host of the “Off Air…with Jane and Fi,” he would be surprised if he did.
“I wouldn’t have thought so – I think it’s only about 2,000 people going,” he said.
“I think we’ve never had an official role in it, just turned up like everyone else used to, when it was the hereditary peers and the House of Lords,” he explained. “That’s no longer the case. There is some old coronet knocking around somewhere, but I won’t be wearing it soon, I don’t think.”
Charles will be crowned with the St. Edward Crown on Saturday.
In December, the crown was removed from the Tower of London to be prepped for the crowning ceremony.
The crown was first created in 1661 for Charles II and replaced the previous crown that was melted down in 1649.
Charles will swap the St. Edward Crown for the Imperial State Crown after the ceremony.
Camilla will be crowned with Queen Mary’s crown, which was worn by Charles’ great-grandmother when she was named queen consort in 1910, alongside her husband, King George V.
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This marks the first time in recent coronations that the queen consort will receive an existing crown instead of something new. Buckingham Palace came to this decision “in the interests of sustainability and efficiency” that are near and dear to Charles’ heart.
Camilla will also wear the Queen Consort’s Ring, a ruby in a gold setting, which has been worn by Queen Alexandra, Queen Mary and Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.
Aside from the royal crowns, Charles and Camilla will have other historical heirlooms used throughout their coronation day, which were passed down through generations of the British throne.
The archbishop is expected to adorn Charles with two armills, which are “bracelets made from gold, champlevé and basse-taille enamel, lined in velvet, and are thought to relate to ancient symbols of knighthood and military leadership.”
Charles will also hold the Sovereign’s Orb, which represents power and symbolizes the Christian world.
The Sovereign’s Ring – which will be placed on Charles’ right hand during the ceremony – is a symbol of kingly dignity, and was made for the coronation of King William IV in 1831.
In addition, a silver-gilt Coronation Spoon is the oldest object in use at coronations, having been first recorded in 1349 among St. Edward’s Regalia in Westminster Abbey, and is the only piece of royal goldsmiths’ work to survive from the 12th century. Spurs, which symbolize knighthood, were made in 1661, and the Sword of Offering was made in 1820.
During the coronation, the king and queen will be anointed with the chrism oil, which was consecrated in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and will be animal cruelty-free.
Their Majesties will travel from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey during The King’s Procession in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach, which was created for Queen Elizabeth II to commemorate the 60th anniversary of her reign in 2012.
Queen Elizabeth died in September at the age of 96. She’s the second longest-reigning monarch in history, and served England and the Commonwealth for 70 years.
The king and queen will then travel in the Gold State Coach, last seen during the Pageant of the Platinum Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II in June 2022, back to Buckingham Palace following the coronation service.
The coach, which was commissioned in 1760 and first used by King George III, has been used at every coronation since that of William IV in 1831, according to the Palace.
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A royal salute followed by three cheers from the assembled service personnel is expected upon arrival at Buckingham Palace.
The invitation for the coronation was designed by Andrew Jamieson, a heraldic artist and manuscript illuminator. Jamieson is a Brother of the Art Workers’ Guild, of which The king is an honorary member.
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The palace previously shared that the featured roles for members of the king and queen’s family are part of a ceremony that “will reflect the monarch’s role today and look toward the future while being rooted in long-standing traditions and pageantry.”
Fox News Digital’s Tracy Wright contributed to this report.