Skip to main content

The Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II – Part 1 : All This and Everest, Too

Queen Elizabeth II
Elizabeth II was crowned in Westminster Abbey on a rainy June 2, 1953. The country was just moving forward from the devastation of World War II and Her Majesty’s coronation was a sign of that recovery, being able to demonstrate for the last time her mighty imperial vigor that was steadily on its decline.

More than 10 thousand servicemen – a quarter of them “soldiers of the Queen” from the Commonwealth – marched in the coronation procession. Two thousand bandsmen, which comprised nearly fifty bands, provided music at the background. Sovereigns and rulers around the world arrived in London to honor her small figure, who now heads the greatest nations in history. More than a hundred thousand of her loyal subjects lined the streets of London, despite the dampened weather. The length of her coronation was such that it took almost an hour to pass any one spot.

The ceremony was organized under the watchful and meticulous eyes of the Bernard MarmadukeFitzalan-Howard, 16th Duke of Norfolk, Premier Duke of England, Master of Ceremonies Extraordinary and the one and only official organizer of all state ceremonies. The duke was also the man behind the coronation of King George VI and he also oversaw the funerals of King George V, King George VI and Queen Mary. Despite the changing of times, the Duke saw to it that the tread of martial feet was carefully stopwatched, masterminded to evoke an aura of timelessness and continuity, which is after all, the essence of royalty.
Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation was the first grand celebration all throughout the Commonwealth since her own wedding in 1947. But unlike the latter, which was overshadowed by a gloomy economy, strict rationing and an empire on the brinks of teetering, the Coronation was gay, festive and pompous. In fact, the ceremony was coincided with Sir Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tensing’s success on reaching the peak of Mount Everest, an omen that meant her reign was to filled by splendor and grandeur—truly a New Elizabethan Age. A newspaper even headlined: “All This and Everest, Too.” Nevertheless, June 1953 was one of the gloomiest days of the 20th century. But the cold and the pouring rain did not stop the crowd from, some of them too old actually, standing all night just to catch a glimpse of their Queen. Lucky for those who were there, the blessings of television allowed them to take part of the pageantry, right at the comfort of their own home. In fact, the Coronation was hailed as the first triumph of the small screen. A lot of people purchased their very first set with the hope of watching two color films of the Coronation – A Queen is Crowned and Elizabeth is Queen, televised to over two million people around the world.

Adapted from: Tribute to Her Majesty. Produced and Designed by Serge Lemoine; text by Don Coolican. Scott Publishing Co. Ltd., 1986.

You may also want to read:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Popular posts from this blog

10 Interesting Facts About Princess Margaret of United Kingdom, Countess of Snowdon

Princess Margaret Rose was one of the most popular, albeit controversial, royals during her lifetime. She was a rather sad figure, a victim of love at an early age and a person who constantly sought affection and attention as she went on to looked for the real meaning of her life. Might as well want to learn about the colorful life of Queen Elizabeth II's younger sister? Here are 10 interesting facts about her.

1. Born on August 30, 1930, in Glamis, the family seat of her mother's family, Princess Margaret was the first member of the British Royal Family to be born in Scotland for over 300 years.

2. Her parents, the then Duke and Duchess of York (later King George VI and Queen Elizabeth) wanted to call her Anne, but her grandfather, King George V, vetoed, so they named her Margaret Rose, instead.

3. In 1936, the princess' relatively peaceful life was altered considerably when his uncle, King Edward VIII, abdicated to marry the woman he loved, the two-time American divorce…

A Day in the Life of The Queen: How Queen Elizabeth II Spends Her Day

Queen Elizabeth II is a stickler for order, and so routine is a part of Her Majesty’s day-to-day life. She rises at around 8.30 am and would be greeted by a piper who plays at 9am on the terrace beneath her apartment at Buckingham Palace. When longtime attendant and confidante Margaret MacDonald was still in service, Don Coolican noted that  Bobo, as The Queen affectionately called MacDonald, would awaken her, “bringing in a cup of tea and a plate of biscuits handed over by the footman.” The Queen’s corgis are the first creatures to grace The Queen , who would also beg to be given biscuits, Coolican writes.

King Edward VIII’s Financial Settlement: How Much Money Did He Get After The Abdication?

King Edward VIII leaped into financial uncertainty the moment he signed the Instrument of Abdication on December 10, 1936. That same day, Edward, now known as Duke of Windsor, entered into an agreement with his younger brother and successor, King George VI, that secured him £25,000 annually for the rest of his life. However, the King later renounced this agreement and instead offered him a smaller amount which would cease upon the King's death. The condition is that Edward should never step into British soil unless invited by government.