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The watchman and southron. (Sumter, S.C.) 1881-1930, June 25, 1902, Image 8

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Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn93067846/1902-06-25/ed-1/seq-8/

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[Copyright, 19C2, by W. L. ValL]
SINCE the last coronation of a
sovereign of England, sixty
four years ago, manners and !
tastes have undergone a won- ]
derf ul change. While none o? j
the essential features of the actual cor- j
^nation ceremony can be omitted or j
changed, the investiture of King Ed- j
ward VII. with a crown and his en
thronement are unlike any similar evenl
in the annals of England. The king
dom has advanced in wealth, in art
and culture, and the coronation is what
may be expected under the highest civ
ilization of the twentieth century. An
event at once formal and magnificent
has been the aim of the king. In the
royal proclamation announcing the cel
ebration of the coronation King Ed
ward enjoined upon all who are to do
any service ia that ceremony to appear
"in all respects furnished and appoint
ed as to so great a solemnity appertain
eth and answerable to the dignities and
places which every one of them respec
tively holdeth and enjoyeth, and of this
they or any of them are not to fail, as
they will answer the contrary at their
King Edward having abandoned that
part of the ceremonial which for cen
turies has taken place in Westminster
hall, the center of interest for the day
of coronation is the service in West
minster Abbey. At the moment the
royal pair eater the door the choir
greets them with an anthem beginning
"I was glad when they said unto me,
."vre vriil go into the house of the Lord."
Proceeding tlrough the body of the
church, the king and queen kneel in
front of the state or coronation chairs,
say their pr?vete prayers and then take
seats in the chairs.
The first important ceremony is the
so called 'Yeco pii tien" of EdwarjLJPife*
as the lawful monarcJa_-ofs12nglan(L a
seemingly useless performance in view
of-tfcefsret that he has ruled as king
more than a year. But the coronation
is a ceremonial formal, political and
When all have taken their places in
the Abbey, the archbishop of Canter
bury makes "the recognition'* of the
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The lymn, "Corne, Holy Ghost, Our
Souls Inspire," follows; also the" an
them, "Zadck the Priest." Then comes
the ceremony of anointing. The sword
of kingship is th?n delivered by the
archbishop into the king's right hand,
with the words, "With this sword do
justice." The king returns it to the
archbishop, and it is laid upon the al
tar, and his majesty is then invested
by the dean of Westminster with the
imperial mantle or dalmatic robe of
cloth of gold. The orb, a ball of gold
surmounted by a cross and set with
jewels, the emblem of supreme power,
is also placed in the king's right hand
and on the fourth finger of that hand a
ruby ring. The scepter with the cross
is then put into his left hand. Now
comes the central act of the ceremo
nies?namely, the crowning of the king.
The crown, which has been resting on
the altar, is consecrated and blessed by
the archbishop and placed on his maj
esty's head.
"God save the king;" will then be
shouted by the assembly, trumpets will
sound and drums be beaten. The arch
bishop pronounces the exhortation, "Be
strong and of good courage," and 4<The
King Shall Rejoice In Thy Strength, O
Lord!" is rendered by the choirs. The
crowning of the queen follows.
King Edward receives the old St.
Edward's crown, enlarged at the rim
to fit his head. When the king has been
crowned, the princes of the blood royal
and peers put on their coronets,
the bishops their caps and the kings of
arms their crowns. After the king has |
been crowned the Bible is placed in his
hand. The "Te Deum" is sung, and the
king is formally enthroned.
King Edwnrd^trrrcne rests upon a
plat?form,-e?vered with the richest cloth
^o^-gold and raised above the pavement
the height of five steps and is directly
beneath the- central tower of the Ab
bey. At the close of the 14Te Deum" he
ascends the platform and is lifted up
into his throne by the archbishop and
bishops and other peers of the realm.
The archbishop then exclaims. "Stand
firm and hold fast from henceforth the
seat and state of royal and imperial
dignity which is delivered unto you in
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king fonr times, presenting in as many
directions Kin;? Edward as the "un
doubted king of the realm." each de
mand being greeted with loud acclaims
of "God save King Edward VII.."' and
at the last recognition trumpets sound
and drums are beaten. After the litany
has been said the king and queen, each
kneeling before the a!tar. make sep
arately their "first offering"?namely,
an altar cloth of gold, and the king also
an ingot of gold, one pound6 in weight,
which the archbishop of Canterbury
places in the oblation basin, the pall
of gold being laid , on the altar. His
grace meantime says the prayer. "0
God. who dwellestf in the high and
Jioly place!*'
i The king and queen then return to
their state chairs. The communion
* ?ervice is commenced, and the sermon
hy the bishop of London follows. The
coronation oath is then administered
to the king by the archbishop of Can
terbury, which he receives kneeling be
fore the. altar and with his hand upon '
Hi? holy gospels. He appends to the
Jorrn of oath his roysl sien manual.
the name and by the authority of Al
mighty God!"
Homage is then paid to his majesty
by the archbishops and bishops, who
kiss his left cheek, by the princes of
the blood royal and by dukes, mar
quises, earls, viscounts and barons.
Amid shouts of the people?"God save
King Edward!" "Long live King Ed- j
ward!" "May the king live forever!"? j
and the sound of trumpets and drums
j the king leaves his throne and descends
; to the altar.
! The holy sacrament is then adminis
! tered to the king and queen, and the
i archbishop reads the rest of the com
; munion service and pronounces the
! blessing.
The final act of the coronation cere
mony is the changing of the imperial
i mantle for the royal robe of purple vel
! vet in St. Edward's chapel. Finally the
king, wearing his crown and bearing
? the scepter and orb, passes through the
I choir of the Abbey to the door where
I he entered attended by the peers, the
i archbishops and bishops in fui! re
' .
::drcxat:cm oho im wes"k;hsteh abbey,
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[Copyright. 1SC2. by . ilusk.]
ACOMPLETE t?nsform?ion of
the interior of Westminster
Abbey was found necessary
for the ceremony of crown
ing King Edward VII. and
Queen Alexandra. In fact, the vener
able and historic sanctuary will be
barely recognizable. The south side
of the sacristy is flanked by the royal
box. and from the stage whereon the
ceremony is enacted tiers of galleries
mount toward the rcof for the seating
of noble guests.
During the sermon King Edward
and Queen Alexandra win sit in two
chairs in front of the royal box. with
officers of state on either side. The
ceremony of anointing and crowning
King Edward, however, takes place
while he is seated in St Edward's
chair, directly in front of the altar.
From the time of St. Edward, or Ed
ward the Confessor, to Queen Victoria
the monarccs of England have been
crowned in Westminster Abbey, and
many of them are buried there. Ed
ward the Confessor is honored by a
chapel containing a shrine to his mem
ory. Queen'Elizabeth and Mary Stu
art have monuments.
In the south transept of the Abbey
there are monuments to most of the
famous poets of England, and else
where in the aisles are memorials to
Englishmen illustrious in various
fields. Officially the Abbey is known
! as the Collegiate Church of Westmin
ster and is governed by a dean.
The ancient chair used for the crown
ing of King Edward VII. has stood in
the chapel of Edward the Confesser,
called also the Chapel of the Kings,
for over six centuries. Originally used
in Scotland for the coronation of Scot
tish kings, it was brought as an offer
ing at the shrine of Edward the Con
fessor in 1297. Since that time it has
been designated as St. Edward's chair.
In height the coronation chair of
England is G feet 7 inches. At the
seat it is 3 feet 8 inches broad and in
depth 2 feet At the corners four
Hons support the structure, leaving a
space of about nine inches between
the seat and the bottom board. With
in the space between the bottom board
I and seat is inclosed the famous Stone
of Scone, so called.
No end of iegends have grown up
around the coronation chair and the
stone. The stone was brought from
Scotland with the chair. One tradition
has it that the stone originally came'
from Ireland, where it was known as
the Liasfail. or Stone of Destiny. It
was used at the Irish national corona
tion seat from the seventh century
B. C. It was supposed by the people
of Ireland to be the very stone upon
which Jacob rested his head during his
vigil at Bethel. One legend is to the
effect tbat when the rightful monarch
takes his sent upon the stehe it emits
a loud musical note. Among other
names the stone has been called .la
ebb's Stone and the Fatai Marble
The use of the stone in coronation
ceremonies is traced to tbc primitivi'
practice of raising Gothic and Celtic
kings to an elevated seat of natural
stone at th? time of ;::?.? crowning. An
glo-Saxon tnonarebs were crowned at
Kiu?Stou-on-Th;;ui? s on the Kings
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g Where Ate Coronation
? of King Edward VII. ^
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Stone, and even at Westminster hall
from a very early date the king was
lifted to a marble seat at the upper end
of the hall, then known as the King's
In a work on "Memorials of West
minster Abbey" the venerable Deaa
j Stanley states that the stone of the
! coronation chair is very probably the
! stony pillow on which Columba rested
I and on which his dying bend was laid
? in the abbey of Iona. "If so, it belongs,"
says the dean, "to the minister of the
first authentic coronation of Christen
dom, the coronation of Aidan by Colum
ba, A. D. 571."
Edward I. was crowned upon the
stone at Scone when he became kins
of the Scots. He brought it to Eng
land, and Dean Stanley declares had
j the chair made to inclose it, thus "the
? fragment of the world old Celtic race
j was imbedded in the new Plantagenel
Only once since the coronation chair
and stone were deposited in the chapel
of Edward the Confessor have they
been removed. That was at the cere
money of installing Cromwell as lord
protector in Westminster hall. At the
joint coronation of William of Orange
and Queen Mary II. a second corona
tion chair was made, like the first, witli
the exception of the supporting lions
and the stone. This has since beer;
used for the crowning of the consort
of the new sovereign. Queen Alexan
dra, however, will not receive the
crown ih the chair, nut kneeling upon
the steps of the altar.
Westminster Abbey was founded in
the eleventh century by Edward L,
and the English people count it most
fortunate that after a lapse of eight
centuries a monarch of the same name
and lineage should receive the homage
of the nation and be crowned king in
that historic pile. No similar succes
sion of events as the crowning of a
line of kings of over 800 years at the
same altar is recorded of any other
building in the world. The Abbey is
officially designated in the proclama
tions of coronation as "Our Palace of
Westminster." The houses of parlia
ment are also called the "Palace of
Westminster," and the Abbey is, with
relation to its connection with the pal
ace, the Church of St. Peter. The
terms of the royal proclamation there
fore designate the Abbey as the cen
tral point of the palace, or the "holy
of holies."
At the coronation service the roya!
procession enters the Abbey by the
west doors. Along the center aisle the
king's and queen's processions move
upon a raised platform to the so called
"theater," or stage, where the principal I
parts of the ceremony are enacted, j
The platform way is carpeted. Along \
the sides, on the pavement of the aisle, !
stand the military. The coronation !
chairs stand in a large free space in ?
the center of the stage. On one hand !
is the royal box for the members of ?
the reigning family. Opposite the roy- ?
al box is that of the bishops and above j
that the gallery, or box, for foreign
embassadors ; .J special envoys. When
fill are in their places, the interior of
:he Abbey presents a brilliant array of ;
colors?scarlet, purple and gold in vel-1
ret, silk and ermine.
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[Copyright, 1002, by C. Lurie.]
[ Alexandra emerges
from Westminster Abbey
after the coronation cere
monies, she will make her
first appearance before
the public as queen consort of Edward
VIL. wearing the crown cf England.
The most gorgeous jewel in that
crown, the Kohinoor diamond, will
then for the first time grace the dia
dem of a newly crowned queen. Queen
Alexandra's crown is that known as
the St. Editha, named in honor cf
Edith, the wife of Edward the Con
fessor. It was made for Queen Mary
of ilodena, the consort of James IL,
and is much the same in shape as that
of Edward VIL, a cap of purple vel
vet, surmounted by two arches and
faced with ermine. It is set with dia
monds of great value intermixed with
pearls and other rare jewels. This
crown is alwajs used when the sov
ereignty exists in the male branch.
As is the case with King Edward's
crown, Alexandra's has undergone
many alterations for the occasion,
which enhance its beauty and value.
The Kohinoor came into the posses
sion of England since the accession of
Queen Victoria; hence it has never be
fore figured in a coronation. The won
derful stone was among the spoils of
a mogul invasion in the sixteenth cen
tury, and after many adventures, be
ing sometimes fought for in battle
and again the jewel of an oriental
princess, it was confiscated by the
East India company for war expenses
in 1S39. So great was the importance
of this gem in the minds of the orien
tals that its acquisition by the English
crown was the subject of a treaty.
Queen Alexandra, attended by her
ladies, passes in front of the king after
entering Westminster Abbey. The first
act is the changing of the robes of
state for the mantles which form part
of the regalia used in coronations.
After the robing the queen consort
goes to her place on the coronation
platform and stands by her chair of
state until the king arrives at his i
chair, which is beside her own. After
the king has been anointed, crowned
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hand the queen consort's scepter and
cross and in her left the ivory rod
Then the queen consort ascends the
diiis, or highest part of the platform,
to her sent in the throne chair beside
the king.
Throughout the remainder of the cer
emony, which consists chiefly of the
administration of the holy communion.
King Edward and Queen Alexandre
are together. The monarchs descend .
from the throne to the steps of the
altar and, removing their own crowns,
kneel down. Together they receive the
bread and wine of the sacrament and
then, putting on their crowns, return
to their chairs. The final act is the
change of coronation robes for robes of
state, after which the monarchs, still
wearing their crowns and bearing their
scepters of royalty, attended by all the^
peers and peeresses wearing their coro
nets, pass out of the Abbey into the
public place. In their new state coach
the monarchs then ride through the
streets, wearing their crowns in the
presence of the assembled populace, tc
Buckingham palace.
Needless to say that the coronation:
robes of Queen Alexandra, who has a
genius for dress and the purse of a
monarch, excite far greater curiosity
the world over than the dress of King
Edward VIL, And yet the queen con
sort has not ransacked the earth for
beautiful and costly apparel, but de
creed at the outset that her own robes
as well as those of the peeresses in at
! tendance should be made throughout
of materials,manufactured by Britislr
subjects. This does not mean that
there is a monotony of color or a same
ness of fabric in the feminine display.
! for the sun never sets upon the Britisn
! dominions. Whatever the British isles
themselves cannot produce is supple
mented by the skillful needleworkers"
of faroff India.
In the matter of her own robes Queen
Alexandra had but to please her own
sweet self - unless she chose to cater t<r
the wishes of her royal spouse, whielr
is not very probable at an age ap
! preaching threescore, but the peeresses
I were compelled to follow the dicta of
! stage manager of the imperial show.
'.Tarn susetxr watohkah, Kitabiiaaed April, 1850? "Be Just and Fear not?Let all the Ends thou Aims't at, be thy Country's, thy God's and Truth's." the tr?b sout2KOX. Eetabi.ahed June ? 66
; ?<-;-.-?- - - - ?-;
Soscli ate? Aug. S, 1881. SUMTER. S. C WEDNESDAY. JUNE 25. 1908. New Series?Yol. XXI. So. 47
and enthroned the queen consort re
pairs to the altar, attended by her la
dies. There Alexaxidra kneels for the
archbishop's prayer, then returns to
her chair of state. During all this
time Alexandra wears the queen's *Iia
dem. a circlet of gold set with rich
diamonds. The diadem having been
removed for the ceremony of anoint- j
ing. four of the attendant duchesses
hold over the queen's head a pall of
cloth of gold while the archbishop
pours the consecrated oil from a gold- j
en spoon upon the uncovered head.
After the anointing the archbishop j
places the queen's ring upon the fourth ?
finger of her majesty's right hand. |
Then comes the climax of placing St j
EditVa's crown, which has previously j
lain upon the altar, upon Alexandra's j
head. This ceremony is also perform- !
ed by the archbishop, and at the same j
time the princesses and peeresses put I
on their coronets as a symbol of ree- |
ognition of the crowning of their mis- j
tress. After having crowned her maj- j
esty the archbishop places in her right
the earl marshal. And so, after for
tunes had been expended in materials
and labor, it transpired, that designs -
selected for the peeresses in December
would not be the thing for June, and
amid the usual tears and protestations
all had to be cast aside and the agony
endured over again. But what of it all
since the titled ones will be so fortu
nate as to be in evidence at the most
magnificent coronation in the history of
crowned mon?rchs!
And fcr the resuit Queen Alexandra ?
must receive the .dory, since modifica
tions were necessary to bring tLre cos
tumes within the pale of modernity;,
and the taste of the royal consort was
the last arbiter. In the matter of
style the court rulings were supreme,
but the choice of materials was left
largely to individual preference, and
so the peeresses may appear at the
coronation in skirts of gold or silver "
tissue or lace or satin or cloth of gold .
or silver, embroidered according to the - .
fancy of the wearer.

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