Queen's crown was TIGHTLY SECURED to her coffin to prevent repeat of Maltese cross mishap at grandfather's funeral
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM: A historical mishap from the funeral of George V was a lesson that was addressed at the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II. The orb, scepter, and Imperial State Crown on the Queen's coffin were all safely secured to prevent a similar mistake.
When George V, the grandfather of Queen Elizabeth II, passed away on January 20, 1936, it appeared that the monarchy was on the verge of dissolution in the days that followed. During the royal funeral procession for George V, the heavily embellished Maltese cross, which houses some of the biggest jewels in the crown, fell into the ditch as it sat on the coffin. This particular incident was believed to portend wrongdoings. Notably after the incident, his son Edward VIII stepped down from the throne which provoked a constitutional crisis shortly after, and soon the throne was then succeeded by Queen Elizabeth II's father, George VI.
In order to prevent the unfortunate events that had occurred in the past, the Queen's crown and all the other valuables that sat atop her coffin throughout the entirety of her funeral services had been secured to it. On September 19, the late Queen's burial was held, and she was laid to rest in the chapel at Windsor Castle.
The late Queen was escorted to the Royal Crypt at the conclusion of the funeral procession where her coffin had it's Imperial State Crown removed. The Imperial State Crown, Orb, and Scepter were taken off the coffin by the Crown Jeweler before the last hymn, as a symbol of the Queen's severance from her public duties in death.
The dean of Windsor, the Rt Revd David Conner, then set the crown on the altar along with the bargemaster and sergeants-at-arms. In 1953, the crown was carried from the altar in Westminster Abbey and put on the head of the Queen, beginning a 70-year reign. Perhaps the most touching part of the ceremony was removing the crown from the Queen's coffin to the altar.
Removing the Imperial State Crown, the Orb and Sceptre from the Queen’s coffinpic.twitter.com/VjeSmvKaDi— Patricia Treble (@PatriciaTreble) September 19, 2022
After the last hymn, King Charles III, the heir to the throne, draped the Queen's Company Camp Color of the Grenadier Guards over the coffin. Lord Chamberlain "broke" his wand at the same moment and set it on the coffin, which signifies that the Queen is now no longer bound to her public duties in death. This is done to achieve symmetry with the three state instruments that have been removed.
"Go forth on your journey from this world, O Christian soul," the Dean of Windsor pronounced these words while the coffin, which was positioned on a catafalque covered in purple velvet, was gradually lowered into the royal vault. Walking slowly in the direction of the deanery in the aisle, the Sovereign's piper played a lament, 'A Salute to the Royal Fendersmith'. The Queen's seat in the chapel located close to the altar, will now be the place where King Charles III will sit throughout the service.
🖤 The Queens Piper, the man who roused Her Majesty to the sound of Bagpipes each morning, plays one final evocative Lament,“A Salute to the Royal Fendersmith”, as Our Late Monarch is poignantly lowered into the Royal Vault. Powerful and Fitting. A tear was shed. Rest Easy Ma'am. pic.twitter.com/agg0mR6oNe— 𝐖𝐞 𝐀𝐫𝐞 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐏𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 (@WATP72RFC) September 19, 2022