The coronation of King Charles III is set for May

LONDON — The coronation ceremony of King Charles III will take place on May 6 next year at Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace announced on Tuesday.

The coronation of the British king, the first such ceremony since the late Queen Elizabeth II in 1953, marks the moment when the monarch officially assumes royal power. The Queen, Camilla, will also be crowned during the event. The ceremony is largely symbolic as King Charles became monarch when his mother died last month.

The British monarchy is the last European monarchy to continue with the coronation tradition.

The ceremony, which has remained largely the same for centuries, sees the monarch take a coronation oath to uphold the law and the church. King Charles III will then be anointed with holy oil and placed on his head the St Edward’s Crown – made of solid gold and dating from 1661. The Queen Consort is crowned with the King, in a similar but simpler ceremony . It will be held at Westminster Abbey in central London, continuing a 900-year-old tradition.

This moment of royal celebration, which traditionally takes place several months after the previous monarch to allow for planning and mourning, will be presided over by the Archbishop of Canterbury. “The coronation will reflect the monarch’s role today and look to the future, while being rooted in long traditions and grandeur,” Buckingham Palace said.

Royal watchers expect the ceremony to be renewed in both length and scale. The coronation of Queen Elizabeth II lasted about four hours. The King Charles could be significantly smaller. The event is funded by British taxpayers, so the government can choose who attends.

However, it will be another defining moment for the British royal family to come together and be at the center of the nation’s attention. After the recent coronation, the royal family gathers at Buckingham Palace and greets well-wishers from the balcony.

Buckingham Palace said more details would be announced in due course.

Queen Elizabeth II was a universally popular unifying figure. The WSJ explains how King Charles III—who is not so popular—will steer the royals through a delicate transition to ensure the family’s moral authority as it enters a new era following the Queen’s death. Photo: Olivier Hoslet/Shutterstock

Write to Max Colchester at [email protected]

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