Experts: Coronation of King Charles III

Published: 2 May 2023

King Charles III is set to be crowned alongside the Queen Consort at a lavish ceremony in Westminster Abbey on Saturday, May 6. The investiture will form part of a long weekend filled with celebrations for the new monarch, ranging from street parties to concerts. The King ascended the throne after the death of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, in September last year, making him the oldest new monarch in British history. (The Telegraph)

Here are some experts from McGill University that can provide comment on this issue:

Brian Cowan, Associate Professor, Department of History and Classical Studies

The coronation of King Charles III is part of the tradition of sacral monarchy that used to be standard in European monarchies but may appear somewhat archaic in the 21st century. King Charles will be crowned as king of the United Kingdom and its commonwealth realms (including Canada) in a ceremony that has evolved over the centuries. He is a constitutional monarch, subject to his Parliaments; he will also pledge to uphold the Protestant episcopalian settlement of the Church of England and the Protestant presbyterian settlement of the Church of Scotland in his role as supreme governor of both churches.”

Brian Cowan is an Associate Professor in the Department of History and Classical Studies and holds the Canada Research Chair in Early Modern British History. He studies the social and cultural history of ideas in early modern Britain and Europe.

brian.cowan2 [at] (English)

Peter McNally, Professor Emeritus (Retired), School of Information Studies and Director, History of McGill Project

The coronation of King Charles III is a thousand-year-old ceremony where the King dedicates himself to promoting the good of people throughout the Commonwealth, particularly in countries where he serves as Head of State. Some people may dismiss the coronation as meaningless, but others will see it as a significant moment for acknowledging and building community.”

Peter McNally is a Professor Emeritus (Retired) at the School of Information Studies and Director of the History of McGill Project. Having dedicated his academic career to the history of McGill University, he also considers himself a ‘self-proclaimed palace watcher’.

peter.mcnally [at] (English)

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