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Charles is now king, but his coronation may be months away


  • King Charles III became the monarch of England the moment Queen Elizabeth II died.
  • But he will still have a formal coronation after an official period of mourning and planning.
  • The coronation may occur a year after the Queen’s death.

Charles is officially the King of England, but his coronation could still be months away.

Queen Elizabeth II died at Balmoral Castle on Thursday after 70 years on the British throne. The late monarch was 96 at the time of her death. 

The moment Queen Elizabeth died, her eldest son, formerly the Prince of Wales, became King Charles III, per the laws of British succession

Although he is already the king, Charles, 73, will be formally declared the monarch after a meeting of the Accession Council on Saturday at St. James’s Palace, according to the royal family’s website. At the Accession Council, privy councilors will formally declare King Charles the new sovereign in the first televised Accession Council in history. 

But the new king’s coronation at Westminster Abbey won’t take place for months, as the ceremony only occurs after a period of mourning for the late monarch, as the royal family’s website states. Mourning can take up to a year, as Insider previously reported.

The royal family’s site also notes that the elaborate ceremony takes months to plan, much like a royal wedding, so the king could be formally crowned in the second half of 2023. For instance, Queen Elizabeth’s coronation took place 15 months after her ascension to the throne.

Queen Elizabeth II coronation

Queen Elizabeth’s coronation was on June 2, 1953.

AP Images


The king’s coronation will be the first the UK has seen in 70 years, as Queen Elizabeth was formally crowned on June 2, 1953

The coronation itself is a 1,000-year-old tradition, and the Archbishop of Canterbury oversees the ceremony. 

It’s also a worldwide spectacle: Over 27 million people in the UK watched Queen Elizabeth be crowned on television, while 3 million crowded the streets of London to watch the newly crowned monarch make her way to Buckingham Palace, as History.com reported.

King Charles III’s wife, Queen Consort Camilla, will also likely be crowned after the king in a smaller ceremony. 

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