The Coronation Liturgy: ‘Called to Serve’

The Coronation Chair Jim Dyson/Westminster Abbey

‘Called to Serve’

The Coronation Liturgy

The Liturgy will be a Christian act of worship that honours the ancient tradition of anointing and crowning Monarchs. It will also reflect the Monarch’s role, while celebrating the character of Britain as it is today and looking forward to the future with hope.

By longstanding tradition, the Archbishop of Canterbury authorises a new Liturgy for every Coronation. Commissioned by the Most Reverend and Right Honourable Justin Welby, the new Liturgy is based on ancient texts and ceremonial elements that draw on many centuries of tradition. The Liturgy is focussed on the theme of loving service to others, which is central to Christian teaching, and to the character of contemporary Monarchy. The Liturgy is accompanied by a Commentary commissioned by the Archbishop, which explains the Christian meaning and symbolism of the key elements of the service.

Read the liturgy below or download the files:

The Procession of Faith Leaders
& Representatives of Faith Communities

Faith Leaders and representatives from the Jewish, Sunni and Shia Muslim, Sikh, Buddhist, Hindu, Jain, Bahá'í and Zoroastrian communities will be part of the procession into Westminster Abbey.

This represents the multi-faith nature of our society and the importance of inclusion of other faiths whilst respecting the integrities of the different traditions.

The Procession of Ecumenical Leaders

This reflects the diversity and richness of the Christian church in the UK today.

The Realms Procession

A procession of the national flags of the Realms. These are the nations of which His Majesty is Head of State, in total fifteen.

The Procession of The Choir

The Procession of The King & The Queen

The anthem ‘I was Glad’ is a version of Psalm 122. It has been used at the Entrance of the Monarch since at least 1626. The celebrated setting by Sir Charles Hubert Hastings Parry (1848-1918) composed for the Coronation of Edward VII in 1902 includes the cry ‘Vivat Rex!’ (Long Live The King!) which is, by tradition, loudly proclaimed by scholars from Westminster School.

Throughout the service you will hear the familiar cries of ‘God save King Charles’, ‘God save The King’ or ‘Long Live The King’. These are in themselves a form of prayer calling upon God to protect The King.

Greeting The King

Young Person
(Chapel Royal chorister):

Your Majesty,
As children of the Kingdom of God
We welcome you
In the name of
the King of Kings

The King:
In His name and after His example
I come not to be served
but to serve.

The Kingdom of God is not a place, but a way of being – a reign of justice, mercy, and love which Jesus came to bring (Mark 1.15). 'King of Kings' is a title that is given to Jesus in the Bible (Revelation 19.16). Christians profess the belief that He reigns for ever as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. In this greeting, His Majesty’s reply echoes the truth of Jesus Christ who came, not to wield power by force, but to show the power of love (Matthew 20.28).

This new inclusion marks the tone of the service from its beginning. The magnificence and beauty of the processions and costumes is a great celebration of tradition and joy. But behind the pageantry lies another message which the words and ceremonies to come will demonstrate – our King commits himself, through prayers and oaths, to follow the Lord he serves in a life of loving service in his role as Monarch.

Silent Prayer

The King stands at his Chair of Estate, head bowed, in a moment of silent prayer.

A moment of silent prayer in which Their Majesties can reflect, contemplate and bring themselves and the Coronation service before God. As in 1953, this reflects Their Majesties’ homage to God before any person pays homage to them.

Greeting and Introduction

Archbishop of Canterbury:
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit
be with you.
And with thy spirit.

Alleluia. Christ is risen!
He is risen indeed. Alleluia.

Dearly beloved,
we are gathered to offer worship
and praise to Almighty God;
to celebrate the life of our nations;
to pray for Charles, our King;
to recognise and to give thanks
for his life of service to this nation,
to the realms, and to the Commonwealth;
and to witness with joy
his crowning and anointing,
as he is set apart and consecrated
for the service of his people.
Let us dedicate ourselves alike,
in body, mind, and spirit,
to a renewed faith, a joyful hope,
and a commitment to serve one
another in love.

All services of Holy Communion begin with a greeting and introduction. Therefore the service starts with a blessing of God's love, grace and presence for all who have gathered in God's name. The congregation reciprocate the blessing: 'And with thy spirit.' The introduction seeks to focus the service as a whole, laying out its theological, geographical, historical and personal contexts, declaring before all the service’s intention.

The Coronation takes place during the season of Easter, which lasts from Easter Sunday until Pentecost, when the church remembers and celebrates the gift of the Holy Spirit, coming upon the Church, a sign of God's constant presence with us. It is because of Easter that the greeting is ‘Alleluia’, a word which means ‘praise God’, and is especially associated with the resurrection of Jesus Christ (John 20).

The introduction which follows, written for the Coronation, sets out what is to take place, and invites all those who participate, wherever they are, to share in a commitment to love and serve one another.

Kyrie eleison
Paul Mealor

A sung Kyrie

Arglwydd, trugarha.
Crist, trugarha.
Arglwydd, trugarha.

Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.

Kyrie eleison is Greek for ‘Lord, have mercy’. Kyrie eleison is an ancient prayer of the church that has been used at the beginning of the Eucharist (Holy Communion) for around 1600 years. We use it still to remind ourselves that no human being is perfect in their actions, thoughts and relationships; in other words, 'all have sinned ' (Romans 3.23). It is therefore a moment in a service where all are on a level, as human beings who are frail and imperfect, coming before a God who reaches out to them.

In this service the Kyrie is a new commission sung in Welsh.

The Recognition

Archbishop of Canterbury:
I here present unto you
King Charles, your undoubted King:
Wherefore all you who are come this day
to do your homage and service:
are you willing to do the same?

God save King Charles

Lady Angiolini, LT
(A Lady of The Thistle):

I here present unto you
King Charles, your undoubted King:
Wherefore all you who are come this day
to do your homage and service:
are you willing to do the same?

God save King Charles

Christopher Finney, GC
(Chair of the Victoria Cross &
George Cross Association):

I here present unto you
King Charles, your undoubted King:
Wherefore all you who are come this day
to do your homage and service:
are you willing to do the same?

God save King Charles

Baroness Amos, LG
(A Lady of The Garter):

I here present unto you
King Charles, your undoubted King:
Wherefore all you who are come this day
to do your homage and service:
are you willing to do the same?

God save King Charles

The Recognition is the first element of the traditional English Coronation Rite. It became known as the Recognition in mediaeval times, though a version of it, an election by the bishops and nobles of the Kingdom, is attested for the Coronation of King Edgar in Bath Abbey on Whitsunday 973 AD.

Although the ceremony is now entirely symbolic, it is a powerful moment. The four sides of the ‘theatre’ (the special platform built inside the Abbey) are the four points of the compass. Each time that His Majesty is presented to the people, they are given the opportunity to show their support for him as their King by shouting ‘God Save King Charles’. It is a moment for the congregation, as representatives of the Realms, to affirm and acknowledge that The King is the one they ‘recognise’ as Head of State.

The Archbishop makes the first declaration, facing towards the High Altar. New to this Coronation, the subsequent declarations are made by Lady of the Garter (representing the oldest Order of Chivalry in England), Lady of the Thistle (representing the oldest Order of Chivalry in Scotland), and a George Cross Holder from the Armed Forces, chosen for their distinguished service and bravery as a representative of those who serve the Crown, and as Chair of the VC & GC Association, representing all recipients of those medals.

All the representatives demonstrate different elements of service, honour, and duty, and have historic links to the Crown.

The Presentation of the Bible

The Moderator of the General Assembly of The Church of Scotland:
Sir: to keep you ever mindful of the law and the Gospel of God
as the Rule for the whole life and government of Christian Princes,
receive this Book,
the most valuable thing that this world affords.
Here is Wisdom;
This is the royal Law;
These are the lively Oracles of God.

The Bible (‘the Word of God') is the church’s first gift to the King. The words, spoken by the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, sets the ‘word of God’ above all human laws: “This is the royal Law”. To accept the gift is for The King to recognise its authority and to accept that constitutionally there should not be any attempt by human authorities to overrule it. Because it is “lively” it should be studied so that its words may speak into The King’s life. Its presentation before any of the regalia reminds us all, as well as The King, that he is called to govern with good conscience in the sight of God.

The formal Presentation of the Bible to the Sovereign dates back to the joint Coronation of William III and Mary II in 1689. In 1953 it was brought towards the start of the service; it was also in 1953 that the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland took part in the service for the first time.

The increased involvement and support in the service by the Moderator is in its own way symbolic of the progression and improvement of ecumenical relations and how as Christians we are united in our diversity under the word of God.

This service is full of Scripture. This presentation, and the beautiful language which accompanies it, is a reminder that careful and prayerful attention to the Bible is at the heart of Christian worship and devotion, as well as being the historical foundation of so much of Britain's culture and ethics.

The Oath

Archbishop of Canterbury:
Your Majesty, the Church established by law,
whose settlement you will swear to maintain,
is committed to the true profession of the Gospel,
and, in so doing, will seek to foster an environment
in which people of all faiths and beliefs may live freely.
The Coronation Oath has stood for centuries and is enshrined in law.
Are you willing to take the Oath?

The King:
I am willing.


The King places his hand on the Bible,
and the Archbishop administers the Oath.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Will you solemnly promise and swear to govern
the Peoples of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland,
your other Realms and the Territories
to any of them belonging or pertaining,
according to their respective laws and customs?

The King:
I solemnly promise so to do.

Archbishop of Canterbury:
Will you to your power cause Law and Justice,
in Mercy, to be executed in all your judgements?

The King:
I will.

Archbishop of Canterbury:
Will you to the utmost of your power maintain
the Laws of God and the true profession of the Gospel?
Will you to the utmost of your power maintain
in the United Kingdom the Protestant Reformed Religion established by law?
Will you maintain and preserve inviolably
the settlement of the Church of England,
and the doctrine, worship, discipline, and government thereof,
as by law established in England?
And will you preserve unto the Bishops and Clergy of England,
and to the Churches there committed to their charge,
all such rights and privileges as by law do or shall appertain to them or any of them?

The King:
All this I promise to do.
The things which I have here before promised I will perform and keep.
So help me God.

Archbishop of Canterbury:
Your Majesty, are you willing to make, subscribe and
declare to the statutory Accession Declaration Oath?

The King:
I am willing.

The King:
I Charles do solemnly and sincerely in the presence of God
profess, testify, and declare that I am a faithful Protestant,
and that I will, according to the true intent of the enactments
which secure the Protestant succession to the Throne,
uphold and maintain the said enactments to the best of my powers according to law.


A short anthem is sung during the signing of the Oath.

The wording before the Oath explains that the Church of England seeks to foster an environment where people of all faiths and beliefs may live freely. In the words of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, “gently and assuredly, the Church of England has created an environment for other faith communities and indeed people of no faith to live freely”. King Charles III, at a reception at Buckingham Palace days before his late mother’s funeral, drew attention to this same fact. He reflected that his Anglican Christian confession committed him to the common good of freedom for all faith and belief traditions, as articulated in this wording.

An oath or promise made by the monarch has always been part of the Coronation Rite. In 973 King Edgar’s promise was to defend the church in peace, to forbid extortion and crime, and to be equable and merciful in his judgements. King Edgar’s Promise was largely unchanged for three hundred years, when a fourth clause was added. In 1689 the Oath was expanded and reformulated for the joint Coronation of William and Mary.

This Oath is prescribed by the Coronation Oath Act 1688, an Act of Parliament. An innovation in this service is that the Oath is preceded by a short paragraph in which the Archbishop reflects that the church will continue to seek to foster an environment where all people may live freely. This reflects the words of Her Late Majesty in 2012, when she said ‘The concept of our established Church is occasionally misunderstood and, I believe, commonly under- appreciated. Its role is not to defend Anglicanism to the exclusion of other religions. Instead, the Church has a duty to protect the free practice of all faiths in this country.’

‘Prevent Us, O Lord’, William Byrd

Prevent us, O Lord,
in all our doings with thy most gracious favour,
and further us with thy continual help;
that in all our works begun, continued, and ended in thee,
we may glorify thy holy Name,
and finally by thy mercy obtain everlasting life;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

This Collect (prayer) was written by Archbishop Thomas Cranmer (1489-1556) for the Book of Common Prayer, first published in 1549. ‘Prevent’ here means ‘go before’. The Book of Common Prayer is the foundational text of the Church of England’s doctrine and worship, as well as being a major contribution to British literature. Cranmer’s words are still used in churches and cathedrals every day.

The King’s Prayer

God of compassion and mercy
whose Son was sent not to be served but to serve,
give grace that I may find in thy service perfect freedom
and in that freedom knowledge of thy truth.
Grant that I may be a blessing to all thy children,
of every faith and conviction,
that together we may discover the ways of gentleness
and be led into the paths of peace.
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Having fulfilled his legal and constitutional obligations to the nation and the realms, The King offers this, and the vows he has made to God, in a prayer specially composed for His Majesty to pray alone in response to the promises made. The prayer continues to reflect the theme of loving service. It is inspired by biblical language (Galatians 5) and also the language of the much-loved hymn ‘I vow to thee my country’, itself inspired by words from the Bible (Proverbs 3.17).

This is possibly the first time in our history that such a personal prayer has been voiced so publicly by the Sovereign.

‘Mass for Four Voices’, William Byrd

Gloria in excelsis Deo
et in terra pax hominibus bonae voluntatis.
Laudamus te,
benedicimus te,
adoramus te,
glorificamus te,
gratias agimus tibi propter magnam gloriam tuam,
Domine Deus, Rex cælestis,
Deus Pater omnipotens.
Domine Fili Unigenite, Iesu Christe,
Domine Deus, Agnus Dei, Filius Patris,
qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis;
qui tollis peccata mundi, suscipe deprecationem nostram.
Qui sedes ad dexteram Patris, miserere nobis.
Quoniam tu solus Sanctus, tu solus Dominus, tu solus Altissimus,
Iesu Christe, cum Sancto Spiritu: in gloria Dei Patris.

Glory be to God on high,
and in earth peace, goodwill towards men.
We praise thee,
we bless thee,
we worship thee,
we glorify thee,
we give thanks to thee for thy great glory,
O Lord God, heavenly King, God the Father almighty.
O Lord, the only-begotten Son, Jesu Christ;
O Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,
that takest away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us.
Thou that takest away the sins of the world, receive our prayer.
Thou that sittest at the right hand of God the Father, have mercy upon us.
For thou only art holy; thou only art the Lord; thou only,
O Christ, with the Holy Ghost, art most high in the glory of God the Father.

Gloria in excelsis is one of the ancient songs of the church. Based on the song of the angels at the birth of Jesus (Luke 2.14) it was originally associated with the service of Midnight Mass at Christmas. This joyful song has become a part of the Eucharist (Holy Communion) service on Sundays and Feast Days, and so is used today as a hymn of celebration and praise.

The Mass for Four Voices is a choral Mass setting by the English composer William Byrd (c.1540–1623). It was written around 1592–1593 during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, and is one of three settings of the Mass Ordinary which he published. It is composed as a musical setting for a four-part choir.

This Gloria comes from a Mass setting originally composed for recusant Roman Catholics (those who refused to adopt the doctrine of the newly established Church of England after the Reformation). It has since been embraced into the central repertoire of many Anglican Cathedrals and choral foundations. It provides a delicate simplicity and intimacy that musically and thematically balance some of the grander and stronger pieces of music.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Let us pray

Lord, enthroned in heavenly splendour:
look with favour upon thy servant Charles our King,
and bestow upon him such gifts of wisdom and love
that we and all thy people
may live in peace and prosperity
and in loving service one to another;
to thine eternal glory,
who with the Father and the Holy Spirit
reigns supreme over all things,
one God, now and for ever.

This prayer is a Collect - a summary and thematic type of prayer generally used at every Church of England service. This Collect has been written specially for this service. The first line is taken from the popular hymn ‘Lord, Enthroned in Heavenly Splendour’ and continues to expound the themes of loving service which are at the heart of the Coronation celebrations.

The Epistle
Colossians 1:9-17

Reader: The Prime Minister – The Rt Hon. Rishi Sunak, MP
The reading is taken from the first chapter of the Epistle
to the Colossians, beginning at the ninth verse.

For this cause we also, since the day we heard it,
do not cease to pray for you,
and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his
will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding;

That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing,
being fruitful in every good work,
and increasing in the knowledge of God;

Strengthened with all might,
according to his glorious power,
unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;
Giving thanks unto the Father,
which hath made us meet to be partakers of

the inheritance of the saints in light:
Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness,
and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:
In whom we have redemption through

his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:
Who is the image of the invisible God,
the firstborn of every creature:
For by him were all things

created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth,
visible and invisible, whether they be thrones,

or dominions, or principalities, or powers:
all things were created by him, and for him:
And he is before all things,
and by him all things consist.

This is the word of the Lord.
Thanks be to God.

Epistle is Greek for ‘letter’, and the epistles of St Paul and others are the major component of the New Testament. The Epistle to the Colossians proclaims the loving rule of Christ over all people and all things. Jesus Christ is the image (ikon) of the God we cannot see – it is through Jesus’ teaching and example that we discover the love and truth of God. As well as declaring the Lordship of Christ, the reading is a prayer which we can use for The King today.

The Archbishop of Canterbury has selected this reading. Colossians refers to the Christian community in Colossae (now a part of Turkey). Colossae was one of the first churches to be established after the resurrection of Jesus.

The Prime Minister is invited to read, as has become modern custom seen at other State Ceremonies, by virtue of his public office, being the Prime Minister of the nation in which the Coronation takes place.

Sung Alleluia
Psalm 47:1-2
Debbie Wiseman

Alleluia, Alleluia!
O clap your hands together, all ye people;
O sing unto God with the voice of melody.
For the Lord is high and to be feared;
he is the great King upon all the earth.
Alleluia, Alleluia!

A gospel acclamation is the welcoming and celebration of the word of the gospel.

The music is a new commission composed for this service.

Luke 4:16-21

Reader: The Rt Revd & Rt Hon. Dame Sarah Mullally, DBE
Dean of HM Chapels Royal:

The Lord be with you
and with thy spirit.

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke.
Glory be to thee, O Lord.

Jesus came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up:
and, as his custom was,
he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day,
and stood up for to read.

And there was delivered unto him
the book of the prophet Isaiah.
And when he had opened the book,
he found the place where it was written,

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he hath anointed me
to preach the gospel to the poor;
he hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted,
to preach deliverance to the captives,
and recovering of sight to the blind,
to set at liberty them that are bruised,
To preach the acceptable year of the Lord.

And he closed the book,
and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down.

And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him.
And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.

This is the Gospel of the Lord.
Praise be to thee, O Christ.

The Gospel (from the Old English word ‘Godspell’, which is itself a translation of a Greek word meaning ‘Good News’) is St Luke’s account of Jesus at worship in the synagogue. A synagogue is a local place of Jewish worship and teaching, and there are many in this country. Jesus was an observant Jew and is here shown reading from the prophet Isaiah. Jesus applies the words of the text to himself, and it is these words which are the hallmark of what Christians understand the kingdom of God to be about: healing, freedom, justice, and peace. The language of anointing points to the most solemn element in this Coronation service, when His Majesty will himself be anointed – set apart – for service of his people.

The St Augustine Gospels, a Latin translation of the Gospels, are a UNESCO World Heritage object, and precious historic artefact. As a tangible link to this country's faith heritage throughout the centuries, they are the liturgical Gospel Book for this procession and reading. The St Augustine Gospels were carried to England by St Augustine of Canterbury from Rome in 597, where Pope Gregory the Great had presented them to him.

Sung Alleluia
Psalm 47:6-7
Debbie Wiseman

Alleluia, alleluia!
O sing praises, sing praises unto our God:
O sing praises, sing praises unto our King.
For God is the King of all the earth.
Alleluia, alleluia!

The music is a new commission composed for this service.


Given by the Archbishop of Canterbury

This is an opportunity for the Archbishop to address Their Majesties, the congregation, and those participating elsewhere, drawing on and contextualising what we have already seen, and setting out the themes and desires of the Coronation, and how they relate not only to Their Majesties but to all people.

A sermon is an essential aspect and feature of Anglican liturgy. It is a moment to reflect on Scripture readings, to learn, to be challenged and to explore the core themes and motifs of a Eucharistic service, to hear the call of God’s Word, and discover within our own context how we are being called to serve.

With very few exceptions a sermon has always been a part of the Coronation service.

Veni Creator
Plainsong, mode VIII

Come, Holy Ghost, our souls inspire,
And lighten with celestial fire.
Thou the anointing Spirit art,
Who dost thy sevenfold gifts impart.

O gynorthwyydd oddi fry,
Rhodd werthfawrocaf Duw wyt ti:
Ffynhonnell bywyd, dwyfol dân
Eneinia ni â’th Ysbryd Glân.

(Scots Gaelic)
Fada bhuain iomain ar nàmh
Agus builich sa bhad do ghràs
Ò, treòraich sinn, a Cheannaird àird
Bho bhuaidh gach beud agus cràdh.

(Irish Gaelic)
Go dtí dhíot gurb aithnid dúinn
An t-AthairMhac, a Spioraid, a rún,
Tú leo an Triúr i n-éinphearsa
Creidimis ionaibh tré bhiotha na mbeatha.

Praise to thy eternal merit,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.


Come, Holy Ghost, our souls inspire,
And lighten with celestial fire.
Thou the anointing Spirit art,
Who dost thy sevenfold gifts impart.

Thy blessed unction from above
Is comfort, life, and fire of love.
Enable with perpetual light
The dullness of our blinded sight.

Anoint and cheer our soiled face
With the abundance of thy grace.
Keep far our foes, give peace at home:
Where thou art guide, no ill can come.

Teach us to know the Father, Son,
And thee, of both, to be but One.
That, through the ages all along,
This may be our endless song:

Praise to thy eternal merit,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Veni Creator Spiritus (Come Creator Spirit)

The Veni Creator Spiritus is a significant moment. It follows the oaths and prayers that state and illuminate the unique demands of monarchy. In so doing it recognises that such a calling can only be fulfilled with the sustaining strength and grace of God.

This ancient text became part of the Coronation Service in the fourteenth century. It is always a part of ordination services in the Church of England, and echoes some of the themes of the Gospel reading. It is best known in the translation by Bishop John Cosin (1594-1672): Come Holy Ghost, our souls inspire. Today we hear it sung in a variety of languages associated with the United Kingdom, and in a new arrangement of the plainsong tune.

The languages used are the traditional languages of the four nations that make up the United Kingdom. The use of languages from around the United Kingdom here is a beautiful way to acknowledge the rich heritage of our country and these communities, while demonstrating the importance of maintaining and preserving these languages.

Thanksgiving for the Holy Oil

The Archbishop of Canterbury is presented with the oil,
by The Most Reverend Dr Hosam Naoum,
The Anglican Archbishop in Jerusalem.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Blessed art thou, Sovereign God,
upholding with thy grace all who are called to thy service.
Thy prophets of old anointed priests and kings to serve in thy name and in the fullness of time

thine only Son was anointed by the Holy Spirit
to be the Christ, the Saviour and Servant of all.
By the power of the same Spirit,

grant that this holy oil
may be for thy servant Charles
a sign of joy and gladness;
that as King he may know the abundance of thy grace
and the power of thy mercy,
and that we may be made a royal priesthood, a holy nation,
a people for thine own possession.

Blessed be God, our strength and our salvation,
now and for ever. Amen.

At this moment in the service the Archbishop is presented with and formally receives the Coronation Oil, praying and giving thanks for it.

The Coronation Oil has been created using olives harvested from two groves on the Mount of Olives, at the Monastery of Mary Magdalene and the Monastery of the Ascension. The Monastery of Mary Magdalene is the burial place of His Majesty’s grandmother, Princess Alice of Greece, and the olives were pressed just outside Bethlehem.

The oil has then been perfumed with essential oils - sesame, rose, jasmine, cinnamon, neroli, benzoin, amber and orange blossom.

The oil was co-consecrated by the Patriarch of Jerusalem, His Beatitude Patriarch Theophilos III, and the Anglican Archbishop in Jerusalem, The Most Reverend Dr Hosam Naoum.

The Archbishop in Jerusalem presents the oil in this moment, symbolically completing the oil’s journey and helping to emphasise the strong historic link between the Coronation, The Old Testament and the Holy Land, drawing on the imagery of the oil and the narrative thread that runs from King Saul.

This is a newly composed prayer for this service, but it remains faithful to the style of the Book of Common Prayer. The prayer recalls how kings were anointed in the Old Testament (1 Kings 1.38-40). It also serves to be a reminder that the word Christ itself means ‘anointed one’ (in Hebrew, Messiah). The language of royal priesthood comes from the First Epistle of Peter (1 Peter 1.9), and makes connections between the consecration - setting apart - of His Majesty, and our own callings to serve God and one another.

The Anointing
Zadok the Priest, George Frideric Handel

The choir sing the anthem.

Zadok the priest
and Nathan the prophet
anointed Solomon king.
And all the people rejoiced and said:
God save the King!
Long live the King!
May the King live forever!
Alleluia! Amen!


The Anointing screen is arranged around the Coronation Chair.

The Dean pours oil from the ampulla into the spoon and the Archbishop anoints the King.

The King is anointed on Hands, Breast, and Head,
with the associated words (sotto voce):


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Be your hands anointed with holy oil.
Be your breast anointed with holy oil.
Be your head anointed with holy oil,
as kings, priests, and prophets were anointed.

And as Solomon was anointed king
by Zadok the priest and Nathan the prophet,
so may you be anointed, blessed,
and consecrated King over the peoples,
whom the Lord your God has given you to rule and govern;
in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.


The Archbishops and Dean return to the High Altar.

The screen is removed to the Shrine.

The King moves to the faldstool
in front of the High Altar, kneeling.

The Archbishop continues with the
'Oil of Gladness’ prayer of blessing (sotto voce):


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God,
who by his Father was anointed with the Oil of gladness
above his fellows,
by his holy Anointing
pour down upon your Head and Heart
the blessing of the Holy Spirit,
and prosper the works of your Hands:
that by the assistance of his heavenly grace
you may govern and preserve
the People committed to your charge
in wealth, peace, and godliness;
and after a long and glorious course
of ruling a temporal kingdom
wisely, justly, and religiously,
you may at last be made partaker of an eternal kingdom,
through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.


The King is vested in the Colobium Sindonis, Supertunica and girdle.

As The King prepares to be anointed upon the Coronation Chair, he removes the Robes of State. Drawing upon the imagery and symbolism of The King’s simple clothing, we see him prepare to undergo an anointing or consecration. The King’s anointing sets him apart to fulfil a vocation and begin a new life as Sovereign, dedicated to the service of all.

The Coronation Chair was made by order of King Edward I, and has been part of Coronation Services in the abbey since 1399. It has a rich and fascinating history.

It is designed to hold the Stone of Scone, the ancient stone on which the Kings of Scotland were inaugurated. Since 1996 the Stone has been kept in Edinburgh Castle, but is returned to the Abbey for the Coronation. A beautiful and ancient legend suggests that it is the stone upon which the prophet Jacob rested his head at Bethel (Genesis 28.10-17).

The placement of the Scottish Stone within the English Coronation Chair, lent for this Coronation with the consent of the Scottish Government and people, is an important symbol of unity of shared history and heritage between the nations of the United Kingdom.

The text of the anthem ‘Zadok the Priest’ has always been a part of the English Coronation Rite, but most famously since it was set to music by Georg Frideric Handel (1685-1759) for the Coronation of George II.

As the anthem is sung the Archbishop anoints The King on his hands, breast and head.


Throughout the known history of Coronations in England, the anointing has been a constant feature. Anointing emphasises the spiritual role of the Sovereign.

The Anointing is the most sacred part of the service, using the Ampulla and Spoon, the latter dating back to either Richard I or Henry II. The Ampulla was supplied for the Coronation of King Charles II in 1661 and is based on an earlier, smaller vessel, which in turn was based on a fourteenth-century legend in which the Virgin Mary appeared to Archbishop Thomas Becket and presented him with a golden eagle and a vial of oil for anointing future Kings of England.

As was the case in 1953, this ceremony will not be visible to those watching on television (or online, nor indeed for those people in the Abbey) due to the presence of a newly-commissioned screen that will be held around the Coronation Chair. It is The King’s only moment of privacy during the Service, as he contemplates how he is called by God. Canopies such as these can be traced back to the Old Testament. In the Middle Ages it was custom for Sovereigns to travel beneath such a canopy. In this context, it is to signify the presence of God over this covenant of anointing. In this Coronation it also symbolizes the embrace, enveloping power, and presence of God during this moment.

The prayer of blessing is adapted from the Latin prayer also used for the Coronation of King Edgar.


The Colobium Sindonis is a sleeveless linen tunic which corresponds to garments worn in the ancient world by many, and is not unlike some of the white robes we see clergy wearing today. It symbolises purity and simplicity. The King, divested of all worldly honours and adornments, anointed under God stands humbly and simply, ready to begin a new dedicated life of service.

The King is then vested with the Supertunica, an embroidered gold coat. Its origins can be traced back to royal ceremonies across Europe and as far away as ancient Byzantium. The Supertunica is a form of priestly robe, which reminds all who see it that The King has been consecrated before God and in service of God.

The Presentation of Regalia

The Presentation of the Regalia will be made by Peers from the House of Lords, and Senior Bishops in the Anglican Church.

In acknowledgement to tradition some of those presenting regalia have an historic claim, as established through the Coronation Claims process.

The regalia presented by peers from non-Christian faith traditions have been chosen because they do not bear explicit Christian motifs. Each contribution affirms our mutual interdependence as neighbours of whatever faith tradition or belief, and that His Majesty is invested with these ‘instruments of state’ by all people, not just the Christian Church.

The Spurs

The Spurs are brought forward from the altar
by the Dean and handed to The Lord Great Chamberlain.

The Lord Great Chamberlain approaches
The King, presenting the regalia.
The King acknowledges them.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive these spurs, symbols of honour and courage.
May you be a brave advocate for those in need.


The spurs are returned to the altar.

The Spurs were made in 1661 for King Charles II, but the use of spurs at Coronations dates back to King Richard I, and his Coronation in 1189.

The original symbolism of the Spurs dates from an era when the Monarch would have ridden at the head of an army and derives from ceremonies for the creation of knights. The revised wording retains the significance of courage associated with the symbol of the Spurs whilst drawing out advocacy for those in need, whether that be in the area of defence of the realm or in practical service for the most vulnerable.

Psalm 72 (Psalm 71 in the Greek Septuagint Psalter)
During Exchange of Swords

Ὁ Θεός, τὸ κρίμα σου τῷ βασιλεῖ δὸς καὶ τὴν
δικαιοσύνην σου τῷ υἱῷ τοῦ βασιλέως κρίνειν
τὸν λαόν σου ἐν δικαιοσύνῃ καὶ τοὺς πτωχούς σου ἐν κρίσει.

Κρινεῖ τοὺς πτωχοὺς τοῦ λαοῦ καὶ σώσει
τοὺς υἱοὺς τῶν πενήτων καὶ ταπεινώσει
συκοφάντην. Ἀλληλούΐα.

Καὶ συμπαραμενεῖ τῷ ἡλίῳ καὶ πρὸ τῆς
σελήνης γενεὰς γενεῶν. Ἀλληλούΐα.

Ἀνατελεῖ ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις αὐτοῦ δικαιοσύνη
καὶ πλῆθος εἰρήνης, ἕως οὗ ἀνταναιρεθῇ ἡ
σελήνη. Ἀλληλούΐα.

Δόξα Πατρί, καὶ Υἱῷ, καὶ Ἁγίῳ Πνεύματι.
Καὶ νῦν καὶ ἀεί, καὶ εἰς τούς αἰῶνας τῶν αἰώνων.

Κύριε, σῶσον τὸν Βασιλέα καὶ ἐπάκουσον
ἡμῶν ἐν ᾗ ἂν ἡμέρα ἐπικαλεσώμεθά σε.

Δόξα σοι ὁ Θεός ἡμῶν, δόξα σοι.


Give the king your judgements, O God,
and your righteousness to the son of a king.
Then shall he judge your people righteously
and your poor with justice.

May he defend the poor among the people,
deliver the children of the needy
and crush the oppressor. Alleluia.

May he live as long as the sun and moon endure,
from one generation to another. Alleluia.

In his time shall righteousness flourish,
and abundance of peace
till the moon shall be no more. Alleluia.

Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.
As it was in the beginning,
is now, and shall be for ever. Amen

O Lord, save the king and answer us
when we call upon you.

Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
Glory to you, our God, glory to you.

This moment has been specially commissioned to reflect His Majesty’s paternal heritage. His Late Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh was born a Prince of Greece, and as such, in a service so deeply reminiscent and steeped in the memories of His Majesty’s Late Mother, Queen Elizabeth II, The Greek Choir were invited to remind His Majesty of his Father’s influence, and dedicated service to the Late Queen, his family, the United Kingdom, the Realms and the Commonwealth.

The Sword

The Jewelled Sword is presented to The Lord President of the Council
in its scabbard and passed to the Archbishop.
It is held up, before the altar.

The Archbishop says a prayer.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Hear our prayers, O Lord, we beseech thee,
and so direct and support thy servant King Charles,
that he may not bear the Sword in vain;
but may use it as the minister of God
to resist evil and defend the good,
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


The Archbishop returns the sword to The Lord President
and it is carried to the King.

The sword is placed in the King’s right hand.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive this kingly Sword.
May it be to you, and to all who witness these things,
a sign and symbol not of judgement, but of justice;
not of might, but of mercy.
Trust always in the word of God,
which is the sword of the Spirit,
and so faithfully serve our Lord Jesus Christ in this life,
that you may reign for ever with him
in the life which is to come. Amen.


The King stands.

The sword is clipped on the girdle.

The King sits.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
With this sword do justice,
stop the growth of iniquity,
protect the holy Church of God and all people of goodwill,
help and defend widows and orphans,
restore the things that are gone to decay,
maintain the things that are restored,
punish and reform what is amiss,
and confirm what is in good order:
that doing these things you may be glorious in all virtue;
and so faithfully serve our Lord Jesus Christ in this life,
that you may reign for ever with him in the life which is to come. Amen.


The King stands.

The sword is unclipped and The King steps forward
and offers the sword to the Dean, who places it on the altar.

The sword is redeemed from the altar by The Lord President of the Council,
who places the redemption money on the almsdish, held by the Dean.

The sword is handed to the Lord President of the Council,
who carries it thereafter before The King.

This will be the first time that the Sword of State and Sword of Offering will be carried and presented by a woman - The Lord President is the Rt Hon Penny Mordaunt MP.

The Jewelled Sword or The Sword of Offering was made in 1820, and has a steel blade, mounted in gold and set with jewels, which form a rose, a thistle, a shamrock, oak leaves, acorns, and lion’s heads. The sword is contained in a gold-covered leather scabbard. It was first used at the Coronation of King George IV.

The Jewelled Sword is a visual representation of the meaning and symbolism of the other swords on display in the Coronation:

  • The Sword of State
  • The Sword of Spiritual Justice
  • The Sword of Mercy or Curtana

The Archbishop blesses the Sword and it is then delivered to The King with the injunction that it should be used for the protection of good. The Sword is then offered on the altar.

Swords in this context are not used as violent weapons but are symbolic of defence, advocacy, and are an ancient symbol of authority and justice being served quickly and mercifully. Justice and peace are inextricably linked and thus the Sword sets a standard for good government by the Crown and its officers.

The Sword has a double meaning – a symbol of defence of the defenceless, but also of the word of God which St Paul compares to a sharp sword (Ephesians 6:17).

The Armills

The Armills are taken from the altar
and given to Lord Kamall by the Dean.

The Peer approaches The King, presenting the regalia.
The King acknowledges them.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive the Bracelets of sincerity and wisdom,
tokens of God’s protection embracing you on every side.


The Armills are returned to the altar.

The Armills or Bracelets of Sincerity and Wisdom have deep echoes of Coronations back to the time of King Solomon, who prayed for wisdom. They are a bond, uniting the Sovereign to the People.

The Armills bear symbolism about the protection that God gives.

The Robe and Stole Royal

HRH The Prince of Wales enters the theatre.

The Stole Royal and Robe Royal are brought to The King.

The Bishop of Durham vests the King in the Stole Royal.

Baroness Merron with The Prince of Wales
and Assisting Bishops clothe The King in the Robe.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive this Robe. May the Lord clothe you with the robe of
righteousness, and with the garments of salvation.

At this point the ceremony returns to the sense of ordination of a Christian minister. The Robe, or Mantle, and Stole Royal represent what The King, as Sovereign, has been given by God.

A new Stole (from an ancient Greek word meaning ‘scarf’) has been commissioned for the Coronation as the traditional gift of the Worshipful Company of Girdlers, bearing significant Christian iconography, including the gridirons of St Lawrence (the patron saint of the Girdlers Company who produced the Stole), and palm branches. Palms are both a symbol of martyrdom but also a reminder of the humble entry of Jesus as a Servant King into Jerusalem.

The words that provide the symbolism for the Robe echo the words of the Prophet Isaiah (Chapter 61) in the Old Testament where the Servant of the Lord is clothed in ‘garments of salvation’ and ‘the robe of righteousness’.

The Orb

The Dean gives the Anglican Archbishop of Armagh the Orb,
who brings the Orb to the Archbishop of Canterbury,
who places it in the King’s right hand.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive this Orb, set under the Cross,
and remember always the kingdoms of this world
are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ.


The Orb is retrieved by The Archbishop of Armagh,
who gives it to the Dean, who places it back on the altar.

The Orb is a representation of the Sovereign’s power and symbolising the world under the cross of Christ. The Sovereign’s Orb was made in the seventeenth century and is divided into three sections with bands of jewels, for each of the three continents thought to exist in this period.

The Ring

The Ring is taken from the altar and given to
The Lord Patel, KT, by the Dean.

The Peer approaches The King, presenting the regalia.
The King acknowledges it.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive this Ring, a symbol of kingly dignity,
and a sign of the covenant sworn this day
between God and King, King and people.


The Ring is returned to the altar.

The symbolic significance of the Sovereign’s Ring is comparable to that of rings exchanged in marriage, or papal, archiepiscopal or episcopal rings: they are all a symbol of promise and commitment. They signify covenant and agreement, an unbroken bond, without end. It ‘marries’ The King to God in duty, and to the People in loving service. In turn, it acts to assure His Majesty of God’s unfailing love.

The Glove

The Glove is taken from the altar and given to
The Lord Singh of Wimbledon, CBE by the Dean.

The Peer approaches The King, presenting the regalia.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive this glove. May you hold authority with gentleness and grace,
trusting not in your own power but in the mercy of God
who has chosen you.


The King picks up the glove and places it on his right hand.

The Glove is a demonstration of the Sovereign as advocate and challenger for the protection and honour of the People. It also bears a second meaning, as a reminder of holding power, symbolised in the Sceptre, gently in a gloved hand.

The Sceptre and Rod

The Sceptre and Rod are taken from the altar and given to
The Archbishop of Wales and The Primus of Scotland by the Dean.

The Archbishop of Canterbury delivers them into
The King’s right and left hands respectively.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive the Royal Sceptre, the ensign of kingly power and justice;
and the Rod of equity and mercy, a symbol of covenant and peace.

May the Spirit of the Lord which anointed Jesus at his baptism,
so anoint you this day, that you might exercise authority with wisdom,
and direct your counsels with grace;
that by your service and ministry to all your people,
justice and mercy may be seen in all the earth:
through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Sovereign’s Sceptre with Cross represents the Sovereign's temporal power and authority. It is associated with good governance, which is to be exercised wisely; hence the gloved hand in which The King holds that authority.

The Sovereign’s Sceptre with Dove, traditionally known as ‘the Rod of Equity and Mercy', represents the Sovereign’s spiritual role, with the enamelled dove with outspread wings representing the Holy Spirit, and the Monarch’s pastoral care for the People.

The Crowning

The Dean brings The Crown of St Edward to The Archbishop,
who says the prayer of blessing.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
King of kings and Lord of lords,
bless, we beseech thee, this Crown,
and so sanctify thy servant Charles
upon whose head this day thou dost place it
for a sign of royal majesty,
that he may be crowned with thy gracious favour
and filled with abundant grace and all princely virtues;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who with thee and the Holy Spirit liveth and reigneth,
supreme over all things,
one God, world without end. Amen.


The Archbishop brings the crown down onto The King’s head.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
God save The King!

God save The King!

The St Edward’s Crown was made for the Coronation of Charles II in 1661, after the previous one was melted down in 1649. It is made of solid gold and set with precious stones. Though valuable beyond earthly price, it is nevertheless surmounted with a cross - a reminder that Jesus gave his life for us. The crown, therefore, signifies more than kingly dignity, but also costly sacrifice – the sacrifice of love.

It is the visible symbol of one who has been anointed before God for this purpose and this service to the nation.

It represents The King's vocation before God. It is a constant reminder of the promises and vows he has made to the People, and of the virtues of the crown, demonstrated by its own crafted symbolism, that The King will strive to embody every day, to which the people cry the prayer ’God, Save The King!’

The Crowing is a moment of joy and celebration when past, present, and future are interlinked.

This prayer of blessing was used at the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953.

The cries of ‘God save The King!’ became part of the service at this point in 1689 and have remained so ever since.

Strauss: Wiener Philharmoniker

The Abbey bells ring for 2 minutes.

A fanfare is sounded followed by a Gun Salute which will be fired by
The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery stationed at Horse Guards Parade.
This will be accompanied by Gun Salutes at His Majesty’s Fortress the Tower of London
fired by the Honourable Artillery Company, and at all Saluting Stations
throughout the United Kingdom, Gibraltar, Bermuda, and Ships at Sea.

The Blessing

Archbishop of Canterbury:
The Lord bless you and keep you.
The Lord make his face to shine upon you
and be gracious to you.
The Lord lift up the light of his countenance upon you,
and give you his peace.


The Greek Orthodox Archbishop
of Thyateira & Great Britain:

The Lord protect you in all your ways
and prosper all your work in his name.


The Moderator of The Free Churches:
The Lord give you hope and happiness,
that you may inspire all your people
in the imitation of his unchanging love.


The Secretary General of Churches Together in England:
The Lord grant that wisdom and knowledge
will be the stability of your times,
and the fear of the Lord your treasure.


The Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster:
May God pour upon you the riches of his grace,
keep you in his holy fear,
prepare you for a happy eternity,
and receive you at the last into immortal glory,


The Archbishop of Canterbury:
…and the blessing of God Almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
be with you and remain with you always.

Blessings are a precious and valuable part of services, especially in marriages and ordinations, to both of which a Coronation can be compared. They summarise all that has gone before, and entreat God’s love, protection, grace, and wisdom upon The King, now, and in all the days of his reign.

Blessings are a precious and valuable part of services, especially in marriages and ordinations, to both of which a Coronation can be compared. They summarise all that has gone before, and entreat God’s love, protection, grace, and wisdom upon The King, now, and in all the days of his reign.

Thomas Weelkes

O Lord, grant the king a long life, that his years may endure
throughout all generations.
He shall dwell before God for ever.
O prepare thy loving mercy and faithfulness,
that they may preserve him.
So shall we always sing and praise thy name.

This anthem sets verses from Psalm 61. 2023 marks the 400th anniversary of Thomas Weelkes' death, as well as the death of William Byrd, whose music was heard earlier. 

Enthroning The King

Archbishop of Canterbury:
Stand firm, and hold fast
from henceforth this seat of royal dignity,
which is yours by the authority of Almighty God.
May that same God, whose throne endures for ever,
establish your throne in righteousness,
that it may stand fast for evermore.

Setting The King in the crown upon his throne is a moment which recalls the past through its historic significance, but it also establishes the present reign and looks forward with eternal hope through the prayer of blessing.

The exhortation to ‘stand firm’ (Sta et retine) is another of the ancient texts attested for the Coronation of King Edgar. Its meaning is one of stability and constancy. The throne is described as a seat of royal dignity, a reminder of this seat’s enduring symbolism.

The Homage of The Church of England

The Archbishop leads the words of fealty

I, Justin, Archbishop of Canterbury,
will be faithful and true,
and faith and truth will bear unto you,
our Sovereign Lord, Defender of the Faith,
and unto your heirs and
successors according to law.
So help me God.

Oaths of allegiance have always been sworn to the newly anointed and crowned Sovereign. Historically this had great significance in maintaining law and order within the Kingdom.

In accordance with tradition the Archbishop leads the words of fealty on behalf of the Church, of which The King is Supreme Governor. Clergy within the Church of England swear an Oath of Allegiance to the Monarch and their heirs and successors at their ordination, and again when consecrated as a Bishop. Those Bishops present pledge these words of fealty here symbolically on behalf of the church’s clergy, demonstrating that continuity of allegiance and support.

The Homage of Royal Blood

HRH The Prince of Wales leads the words of fealty


I, William, Prince of Wales,
pledge my loyalty to you
and faith and truth I will bear unto you,
as your liege man of life and limb.
So help me God.

Giving homage in a symbolic act of kneeling before The King and placing his hands between the hands of the King, the heir giving homage becomes the ‘liege man’ of the Sovereign. A ‘liege man’ has a mutual obligation to the Monarch.

The Homage of The People

Archbishop of Canterbury:
I now invite those who wish to offer their support to do so with a moment of private reflection,
by joining in saying ‘God save King Charles’ at the end, or,
for those with the words before them, to recite them in full.


All who so desire, in the Abbey,
and elsewhere, say together:

I swear that I will pay true allegiance to Your Majesty,
and to your heirs and successors according to law.
So help me God.


A fanfare is played.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
God save The King.

God save King Charles.
Long live King Charles.
May The King live for ever.

In previous Coronations, the Homage has been the prerogative of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Heir to the Throne, followed by the Royal Dukes, and then the hereditary peerage in order of degree. The homage of peers alone has been replaced by the Homage of the People. The Archbishop will invite those who wish, from the United Kingdom and the other Realms both within the Abbey, and those watching and listening at home, to make their homage by sharing in the same words - a chorus of millions of voices enabled for the first time in history to participate in this solemn and joyful moment.

This is a new and significant moment in the tradition of the Coronation. Never before in our history have the general public been offered such an opportunity to join with national figures in declaring their allegiance to a new Sovereign.

Confortare – Sir Walford-Davies

An anthem is sung


Be strong, and show thy worth:  keep the commandments
of the Lord thy God, and walk in his ways.

This anthem was written for the Coronation of King George VI in 1937. The text comes from 1 Kings 2.2, the final words to King Solomon from his father, King David.

The Coronation of The Queen

The Dean pours oil from ampulla into spoon,
and holds the spoon for the Archbishop of Canterbury.

The Queen is anointed on the forehead with the associated words.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Be your head anointed with holy oil.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Almighty God, the fountain of all goodness;
hear our prayer this day for thy servant Camilla,
whom in thy name, and with all devotion,
we consecrate our Queen.
Make her strong in faith and love,
defend her on every side,
and guide her in truth and peace;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

The Coronation of a Sovereign’s Consort follows a familiar albeit slightly different process to that of the Sovereign’s own Coronation, as this confers upon the consort the honour and position to serve beside their spouse.

The Crowning of the Consort is a ceremony last seen at the Coronation of 1937, with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, later The Queen Mother. It is a ceremony that is only conferred upon female consorts, hence His Late Royal Highness Prince Philip had no such ceremony or crowning.

In a similar way to that of The King, The Queen is anointed by the Archbishop. However, this anointing will happen without a screen or canopy to demonstrate the different nature of anointing a consort compared to a reigning sovereign, as this anointing is at the permission of the Sovereign.

The Ring

The Ring is presented by The Keeper of The Jewel House
to The Queen. She acknowledges it.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive this Ring, a symbol of royal dignity,
and a sign of the covenant sworn this day.


The Ring is returned to the High Altar.

First to be presented is the Consort’s Ring. In parallel to the Sovereign’s Ring it bears the same symbolism of a ring exchanged in marriage, it is a symbol of promise, of commitment. It signifies covenant and agreement, an unbroken bond, without end. It “marries” Consort to King, and them both to God in duty and to the People in loving service, and in turn acts as an assurance of God’s unfailing love.

The Crowning

The Dean returns with the Crown,
handing it to the Archbishop of Canterbury.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
May thy servant Camilla, who wears this crown,
be filled by thine abundant grace and with all princely virtues;
reign in her heart,
O King of love, that, being certain of thy protection,
she may be crowned with thy gracious favour;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

After the outward symbol and expression of The Queen’s anointing she is crowned with Queen Mary’s Crown. It has undergone minor changes and additions to include the Cullinan III, IV and V diamonds which were part of Her Late Majesty’s personal jewellery collection for many years.

The Rod & Sceptre

The Rod is presented by The Bishop of Dover,
and the Sceptre by Lord Chartres to The Queen.
She acknowledges them both.


Archbishop of Canterbury:
Receive the Royal Sceptre and the Rod of equity and mercy.
May the Spirit guide you in wisdom and grace,
that by your service and ministry,
justice and mercy may be seen in all the earth.

The presentation of sceptre and rod bears similar symbolism and significance to The King’s. As the Consort is presented with, and acknowledges, the responsibilities of such an undertaking, she commits herself to a life of service in support of her husband and her sovereign.

Enthroning The Queen

An anthem is sung.


Make a joyful noise unto the Lord
for he hath done marvellous things
and his holy arm hath gotten him the victory.
He hath remembered his mercy
and his truth toward the house of Israel,
all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.

O make a joyful noise unto the Lord all the earth.
Make a loud noise, rejoice and sing his praise.
Let the sea roar, the world and they that dwell within.
Let the floods clap their hands,
let the hills be joyful together.

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord all the earth.
Rejoice and sing his praise.
For he cometh to judge the earth.
And with righteousness shall he judge the world
and the people with equity.

O make a joyful noise unto the Lord all the earth.
Sing unto the Lord with the harp
and the voice of a psalm.
With trumpets and sound of cornet make a
joyful noise before the Lord, the King.

This is the moment in which The King and The Queen are united in their joint vocation before God. She too is set apart and ‘consecrated’ for service to the nation.’

This setting of verses from Psalm 98 was commissioned for this service.

Offertory Hymn

Christ is made the sure foundation,
and the precious corner-stone,
who, the two walls underlying,
bound in each, binds both in one,
holy Sion’s help for ever,
and her confidence alone.

All that dedicated city,
dearly loved by God on high,
in exultant jubilation
pours perpetual melody,
God the One, in threefold glory,
singing everlastingly.

To this temple, where we call thee,
come, O Lord of hosts, today;
with thy wonted loving-kindness,
hear thy people as they pray;
and thy fullest benediction
shed within its walls for ay.

Here vouchsafe to all thy servants
what they supplicate to gain;
here to have and hold for ever,
those good things their prayers obtain,
and hereafter, in thy glory,
with thy blessed ones to reign.

Laud and honour to the Father;
laud and honour to the Son,
laud and honour to the Spirit,
ever Three, and ever One,
consubstantial, co-eternal,
while unending ages run.

The tune ‘Westminster Abbey’ comes from the end of Henry Purcell’s anthem ‘O God thou art my God’.

The words are well over one thousand years old but were translated in the 19th century by John Mason Neale, a Church of England priest. The text is rooted in the Bible, based on passages from the Old and New Testaments and the Psalms.

During this moment, the gifts of bread and wine are brought before The King for him to acknowledge, and in doing so, makes formal presentation of them as they are taken to the High Altar.

Prayer over the Gifts

Archbishop of Canterbury:
Bless, O Lord, we beseech thee, these thy gifts,
and sanctify them unto this holy use,
that by them we may be made partakers of the Body and Blood
of thine only-begotten Son Jesus Christ,
and fed unto everlasting life of soul and body:
And that thy servant King Charles
may be enabled to the discharge of his weighty office,
whereunto of thy great goodness thou hast called and appointed him.
Grant this, O Lord, for Jesus Christ’s sake,
our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.

This prayer over the bread and wine is a translation of another prayer to be found in the Liber Regalis (The King’s Book), one of the oldest and most important sources for the English Coronation service. The prayer was used in this form at Her Late Majesty’s Coronation in 1953.

The Eucharistic Prayer

Archbishop of Canterbury:
The Lord be with you
and with thy spirit.

Lift up your hearts.
We lift them up unto the Lord.

Let us give thanks unto the Lord our God.
It is meet and right so to do.

It is very meet, right, and our bounden duty,
that we should at all times and
in all places give thanks unto thee,
O Lord, holy Father,
almighty, everlasting God,
through Jesus Christ thine only Son our Lord;

who hast at this time consecrated
thy servant Charles to be our King,
that, by the anointing of thy grace,
he may be the Defender of thy Faith
and the Protector of thy people;
that, with him, we may learn
the ways of service, compassion, and love,
and that the good work which
thou hast begun in him this day
may be brought to completion
in the day of Jesus Christ.

Therefore with angels and archangels,
and with all the company of heaven,
we laud and magnify thy glorious name,
evermore praising thee and saying:

The Coronation has always been set within the context of the celebration of the Eucharist (Holy Communion) and this is no exception. This is the principal act of worship of the Christian church, the ultimate act of remembering Jesus. The great prayer of thanksgiving and consecration over the bread and wine is called the Eucharistic Prayer (‘Eucharist’ is the New Testament word for ‘thanksgiving’). The central section of the prayer recalls the words of Jesus over the bread and wine at the Last Supper. The beginning of the prayer takes words used at the 1953 Coronation, and adds further words from the Bible which continue to emphasize the theme of loving service (Philippians 1.6).

Roxanna Panufnik

To be sung.


Holy, holy, holy, Lord God of hosts,
heaven and earth are full of thy glory.
Glory be to thee, O Lord most high.

Sanctus means ‘holy’. The Sanctus has been a consistent part of the Eucharistic Prayer since the fifth century. Its origins are found in the angelic song heard by the prophet Isaiah in the Temple (Isaiah 6) which becomes part of the worship of heaven in the New Testament (Revelation 4). In this service the Sanctus is a new commission.

Eucharistic Prayer continues

Archbishop of Canterbury:
All glory be to thee,
almighty God, our heavenly Father,
who, of thy tender mercy,
didst give thine only Son Jesus Christ
to suffer death upon the cross for our redemption;
who made there,
by his one oblation of himself once offered,
a full, perfect and sufficient sacrifice,
oblation and satisfaction
for the sins of the whole world; and did institute,
and in his holy gospel command us to continue,
a perpetual memory of that his precious death,
until his coming again.

Hear us, O merciful Father,
we most humbly beseech thee,
and grant that, by the power of thy Holy Spirit,
we receiving these thy creatures of bread and wine,
according to thy Son our Saviour
Jesus Christ’s holy institution,
in remembrance of his death and passion,
may be partakers of his most blessed body and blood;

who, in the same night that he was betrayed, took bread;
and when he had given thanks to thee,
he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying:
Take, eat; this is my body which is given for you;
do this in remembrance of me.

Likewise after supper he took the cup;
and when he had given thanks to thee, he gave it to them, saying:
Drink ye all of this;
for this is my blood of the new covenant,
which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.
Do this, as oft as ye shall drink it,
in remembrance of me.

Wherefore, O Lord and heavenly Father,
we thy humble servants, having in remembrance
the precious death and passion of thy dear Son,
his mighty resurrection and glorious ascension,
entirely desire thy fatherly goodness
mercifully to accept this our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving;
most humbly beseeching thee to grant that
by the merits and death of thy Son Jesus Christ,
and through faith in his blood,
we and all thy whole Church may obtain remission of our sins,
and all other benefits of his passion.
And although we be unworthy, through our manifold sins,
to offer unto thee any sacrifice, yet we beseech thee
to accept this our bounden duty and service,
not weighing our merits, but pardoning our offences;
and to grant that all we, who are partakers of this holy communion,
may be fulfilled with thy grace and heavenly benediction;

through Jesus Christ our Lord,
by whom, and with whom, and in whom,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
all honour and glory be unto thee,
O Father almighty,
world without end.


These words, which recall the Last Supper Jesus held with his disciples before he died, are in two sections. The first is a present-day realisation of the second English language Communion Service written in the reign of Edward VI, with a strong emphasis on the salvation which was wrought for us by Christ in the cross.

The second section recalls the words of Jesus at the Last Supper which are recorded in the Gospels, and in the First Epistle of St Paul to the Corinthians.

The Lord’s Prayer

Archbishop of Canterbury:
Let us pray with confidence
as our Saviour has taught us:

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever.


The Our Father, known by English speakers as ‘The Lord’s Prayer’, was the gift of Jesus to his followers when they asked him how they should pray. We use this version, based on Jesus’ words as they are recorded in Matthew’s Gospel. In his introduction, the Archbishop invites everyone to join in, wherever they may be, in the language they use for prayer.

Agnus Dei
Tarik O’Regan

To be sung:

O Lamb of God,
that takest away the sins of the world,
have mercy upon us.

O Lamb of God,
that takest away the sins of the world,
have mercy upon us.

O Lamb of God,
that takest away the sins of the world,
grant us thy peace.


During which Holy Communion
is received by The King & Queen.


Archbishop of Canterbury (sotto voce):
The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ, which was given for thee,
preserve thy body and soul unto everlasting life:
Take and eat this in remembrance that Christ died for thee,
and feed on him in thy heart by faith, with thanksgiving.

The Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, which was shed for thee,
preserve thy body and soul unto everlasting life:
Drink this in remembrance that Christ’s Blood was shed for thee,
and be thankful.

Agnus Dei is Latin for ‘Lamb of God’. This was the title used by St John the Baptist to describe Jesus (John 1). It probably became part of the Communion service in the seventh century as a chant to be sung as the bread and wine were prepared for distribution.

This setting was commissioned for this service.

Prayer after Communion

Archbishop of Canterbury:
O Almighty Lord,
and everlasting God, vouchsafe,
we beseech thee, to direct,
sanctify and govern both our hearts and bodies,
in the ways of thy laws,
and in the works of thy commandments;
that through thy most mighty protection,
both here and ever, we may be preserved in body and soul;
through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.


This is a Collect from the Service of Holy Communion in the Book of Common Prayer. It asks God to direct all of us in his holy ways, so that we may live lives of service, and know his divine protection and peace.

The Final Blessing

Archbishop of Canterbury:
Our help is in the Name of the Lord;
Who hath made heaven and earth.

Blessed be the Name of the Lord;
Now and henceforth, world without end.

Christ our King, make you faithful
and strong to do his will,
that you may reign with him in glory;
and the blessing of God almighty,
the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit,
rest upon you, and all whom you serve,
this day, and all your days.

The setting of 'Amen' was composed by Orlando Gibbons.

Sung Amen


Praise, my soul, the King of heaven;
to his feet thy tribute bring.
Ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven,
who like me his praise should sing?
Praise him! Praise him!
Praise the everlasting King.

Praise him for his grace and favour
to our fathers in distress;
praise him still the same for ever,
slow to chide, and swift to bless.
Praise him! Praise him!
glorious in his faithfulness.

Father-like, he tends and spares us;
well our feeble frame he knows;
in his hands he gently bears us,
rescues us from all our foes.
Praise him! Praise him!
widely as his mercy flows.

Angels, help us to adore him;
ye behold him face to face;
sun and moon, bow down before him;
dwellers all in time and space.
Praise him! Praise him!
Praise with us the God of grace.

The hymn ‘Praise my Soul’ was written by Henry Francis Lyte (1793-1847), based on Psalm 103.


An anthem is sung:

The King shall rejoice in thy strength
O Lord,
Exceeding glad shall he be of thy salvation.
Thou shalt prevent him with the blessings of goodness:
And shalt set a crown of pure gold upon his head.

This anthem was composed for the Coronation of George III in 1761 by William Boyce (1711-79) It sets verses from Psalm 21.

The Coronation Te Deum
Sir William Walton

We praise thee, O God; we acknowledge thee to be the Lord.
All the earth doth worship thee, the Father everlasting. 
To thee all angels cry aloud, the heavens and all the powers therein.
To thee cherubin and seraphin continually do cry,  
Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Sabaoth;  
Heaven and earth are full of the majesty of thy glory.  
The glorious company of the apostles praise thee.  
The goodly fellowship of the prophets praise thee. 
The noble army of martyrs praise thee.  
The holy Church throughout all the world doth acknowledge thee:
the Father of an infinite majesty;
thine honourable, true and only Son;
also the Holy Ghost the Comforter.

Thou art the King of glory, O Christ.  
Thou art the everlasting Son of the Father.  
When thou tookest upon thee to deliver man,  
thou didst not abhor the Virgin’s womb.  
When thou hadst overcome the sharpness of death,  
thou didst open the kingdom of heaven to all believers.  
Thou sittest at the right hand of God, in the glory of the Father. 
We believe that thou shalt come to be our judge. 
We therefore pray thee, help thy servants,  
whom thou hast redeemed with thy precious blood.  
Make them to be numbered with thy saints in glory everlasting.  

O Lord, save thy people and bless thine heritage.  
Govern them and lift them up for ever.  
Day by day we magnify thee; 
and we worship thy name, ever world without end.  
Vouchsafe, O Lord, to keep us this day without sin. 
O Lord, have mercy upon us, have mercy upon us. 
O Lord, let thy mercy lighten upon us, as our trust is in thee. 
O Lord, in thee have I trusted; let me never be confounded. 


Te Deum Laudamus is sometimes called ‘The Hymn of the Church’. It dates from the fourth century and has always been a part of the Coronation Rite, sometimes at the beginning, more often towards the end or at the very end. This setting by Sir William Walton OM (1902-83) was written for Her Late Majesty’s Coronation.

During the Te Deum Their Majesties move into St Edward’s Chapel behind the High Altar. Here they are vested in the Robes of Estate, and His Majesty exchanges the St Edward’s Crown for the Imperial State Crown.

The term ‘Imperial State Crown’ dates back to the fifteenth century when English monarchs chose a crown design closed by arches to demonstrate that England (and now the United Kingdom) was not subject to any other earthly power. This Imperial State Crown was made for the Coronation of King George VI in 1937, but is closely based on a crown designed for Queen Victoria in 1838.

The National Anthem
arranged by Gordon Jacob

God save our gracious King!
Long live our noble King!
God save The King!
Send him victorious,
Happy and glorious,
Long to reign over us,
God save The King.

Thy choicest gifts in store
On him be pleased to pour,
Long may he reign.
May he defend our laws,
And ever give us cause,
To sing with heart and voice,
God save The King.

‘God save The King’ (…or Queen, when the Sovereign is female) has been the national anthem for more than 250 years.

‘God save The King’ is both anthem and prayer, invoking God to spare and protect the Sovereign to ensure good governance. The phrase is much older than the song, appearing, for instance, several times in The King James Bible.

The King’s Outward Procession & Organ Voluntaries
Pomp & Circumstance March no 4, Sir Edward Elgar, arranged by Iain Farrington
March from The Birds, Sir Hubert Parry, arranged by John Rutter

Greeting Faith Leaders & Representatives
and The Governors-General

At the end of the procession, The King receives a greeting
by Leaders and Representatives from Faith Communities
(Jewish, Hindu, Sikh, Muslim, Buddhist).

As the King stands before the Leaders and Representatives
of the Faith Communities, they deliver the following greeting in unison.


Faith Leaders & Representatives:
Your Majesty, as neighbours in faith,
we acknowledge the value of public service.
We unite with people of all faiths and beliefs
in thanksgiving, and in service with you for the common good.


The King acknowledges the greeting,
and turns to greet the Governors-General.

The King acknowledges their greeting
and proceeds to the Gold State Coach.

The newly-crowned monarch, His Majesty King Charles III, will greet the Governors-General.

In an unprecedented gesture consolidating the significance of the religious diversity of the Realms, the Sovereign will take his final moments of the service to receive a greeting from the leaders and representatives of the major non-Christian faith traditions.

In a spoken greeting these faith leaders and representatives speak with their own voices, as communities, but deliver the greeting in unison, as a community of faiths, united in the service of others, and in thanksgiving for His Majesty’s example this day, and every day of his reign.

We remain grateful to all faith communities for exploring ways in which such an act of unity could be produced, and especially to the Jewish community for finding ways to make this possible without compromising the observance of Shabbat.

The Coronation Liturgy for HM King Charles III has been commissioned by The Most Rev’d & Rt Hon. Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, and approved under Canon B 4. It includes newly devised material as well as The Order for Holy Communion: Order Two in Traditional Language from Common Worship (2000) which is copyright © The Archbishops’ Council of the Church of England, along with material from the 1953 and earlier Coronation Services and from The Book of Common Prayer (1662) which is © The Crown’s Patentee, Cambridge University Press.