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King Charles, Siblings Anne, Andrew And Edward Stand Guard By The Queen’s Coffin

The King and his family stood alongside four suited members of the Royal Company of Archers, who were standing guard dressed in long-feathered hats and armed with arrows and quivers.
14 Sep 2022 09:40
King Charles, Siblings Anne, Andrew And Edward Stand Guard By The Queen’s Coffin
King Charles III, Anne, the Princess Royal, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward each stood on one of the four corners of the coffin in a ceremony known as the Vigil of the Princes. Members of the public - who have been filing past the coffin in their thousands throughout the afternoon - continued to file past as the royals stood completely still. Photo: PA/ DailyMail

The Queen’s four children gathered around her coffin on Monday in a poignant evening vigil inside St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh.

After a short procession, King Charles III, Anne, the Princess Royal, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward each stood on one of the four corners of the oak coffin with their heads bowed in a ceremony known as the Vigil of the Princes.

The Duke of York kept his eyes closed for a period of time during the 10-minute vigil, while the Princess Royal and Earl of Wessex had their eyes fixed towards the floor.

 

The King – his eyes moistening – kept his hands joined and also looked towards the floor as members of the public filed past.

The King and his family stood alongside four suited members of the Royal Company of Archers, who were standing guard dressed in long-feathered hats and armed with arrows and quivers.

Members of the public – who went past the coffin in their thousands throughout the afternoon – were briefly held back to allow the royals to take their place.

As God Save the King was sung in the church, King Charles III looked mournfully at his mother’s coffin. Photo: DailyMail

As God Save the King was sung in the church, King Charles III looked mournfully at his mother’s coffin. Photo: DailyMail

However, they continued to file past once the vigil began, offering them an extraordinary perspective on the historic moment.

A number of members of the public bowed as they passed the King, with others walking solemnly by with heads down.

Charles wore the Prince Charles Edward Stuart tartan and white heather in his lappelle from Balmoral, while Anne and Edward appeared in military uniform.

 

However, Andrew – despite having served in the Falklands War – wore only a morning suit, having been banned from wearing uniform on public occasions following his exile from public life amid the fallout from his role in the Jeffrey Epstein scandal.

The Duke of York will only be permitted to appear in military dress during a second Vigil of the Princes in Westminster Hall.

The tradition has been honoured since the death of King George V in 1936, with Princess Anne today becoming the first female royal to take part.

 

The Queen Consort and Countess of Wessex sat on seats opposite the coffin while the vigil took place in the ancient cathedral.

The Archers have been completing 20-minute periods of standing guard at the coffin, which will remain at St Giles’ for 24 hours before it is taken to London to lie in state.

 

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