ENGLAND — The Coronation of King Charles III on Saturday is an event for which Britain is making final preparations after years of planning and replanning.
The crowning service and its associated celebrations, a ritual that is both old and built for television, will draw attention to a royal family that has undergone an occasionally rocky transition from imperial authority to international fame.
In strictly political terms, not much has changed since Charles promptly succeeded his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, as head of state of the United Kingdom last year. A critical test of the new king’s ability to uphold the mystique that Elizabeth worked tirelessly to preserve for more than 70 years will be revealed by all the feathers and finery, and it will be an opportunity to showcase the stability of a nation that has recently appeared to be less than predictable. The hospitality sector in Britain is also planning a huge celebration. The three-day holiday weekend will include parades and a concert gala. Some hangovers could linger for longer. Journalists for the New York Times are covering the coronation and its implications in Britain and elsewhere. For additional information about the occasion, what it means for the people of Britain and the rest of the world, and how to follow the weekend’s events, check back throughout the day.
The following highlights:
- On Saturday at 11 a.m. (6 a.m. Eastern time), Westminster Abbey in London will host the coronation service. The celebrations will go on all weekend long and into the British holiday on Monday. Here is the agenda for the day as well as a list of the attendees.
- Prince Harry will attend his father’s coronation by himself after years of family strife. Prince Archie, who turns four on Saturday, and Princess Lilibet, one, are staying at home in California with Harry’s wife, Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex.
- While Charles will undoubtedly be the center of attention on Saturday, Camilla, who has been demonized for years in the British media but is about to be proclaimed queen, will also experience a triumph of image makeover.
- Before the ceremony on Saturday, the Coronation Chair, which has been in used for hundreds of years, underwent refurbishment.
The US First Lady, Jill Biden, will go with a delegation, according to a statement from Washington after Biden informed King Charles by phone that he would not attend the coronation.
Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, is not anticipated to attend the coronation, which is not unusual. Since he invaded Ukraine in February 2022, he has become an outcast on the entire planet. Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, the ex-wife of Prince Andrew, and Earl Spencer, the brother of Princess Diana, will also not be present.