Thursday, September 22, 2022

Pictures from the Queen's Funeral


 From The Daily Mail:

The Queen has been laid to rest with her beloved husband Prince Philip after her crown, orb and sceptre was removed from her coffin so she could descend into her grave 'as a simple Christian soul'.

Her Majesty returned home to Windsor to be reunited for eternity with her husband, father, mother and sister in the crypt at St George's Chapel to the sound of a lone piper as her 70-year reign came to an end. The Royal Family stood at the end of the short service as the Queen was slowly lowered down into the royal vault while the Dean of Windsor said: 'Go forth upon thy journey from this world, O Christian soul.' He also offered the commendation - a prayer in which the deceased is entrusted to God's mercy.

Moments earlier the Dean had placed her crown and other crown jewels on the altar before the Queen's staff was snapped - signifying the severing of the Queen from her service in death. The Garter King of Arms then pronounced the styles and titles of the Queen as all power and titles moved to her son, the King. (Read more.) 

On the soldier pallbearers. From The Tatler:

Every soldier in the Queen's Company is required to be over 6ft tall, measured by the famous Queen's Company Stick, which makes it the tallest division by average height. The British Army has said that the eight men chosen were the 'very best soldiers' in the Company – and also that they were the eight tallest men in the Company, chosen for stature and consistent stability, and likely arranged shortest to tallest at the back.

The bearers, eight of a full bearer party of twelve, were led by Company Sergeant Major Dean Jones, from Long Eaton in Derbyshire. Jones is married with a child, but the guards behind him were very young; they included the 19-year-old Fletcher Cox from Jersey, who was awarded the Lieutenant-Governor's medal in 2018 while in the Army Cadet Force there, although the Ministry of Defence has elected to keep the pallbearers' names private.

All have been through a rigorous training process. Recruits to the Guards have to undergo a thirty-week training programme at the Infantry Training Centre, two weeks more than the regular training in order to prepare for drills and ceremonies like these, even before the funeral rehearsals.

Various soldiers across Britain have had some part in carrying the coffin from Balmoral, including eight from the Royal Regiment of Scotland. But the task in Westminster Abbey and St George's Chapel yesterday, which involved navigating around the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in the Abbey, and carrying the coffin up three flights of stairs in the Chapel, before King and country, was the greatest by far. (Read more.

 And many of us will never forget the piper's lament. Also from Tatler:

It was the last act of the funeral service, the Queen’s Piper’s lament. After even the national anthem. Pipe Major Paul Burns of the Royal Regiment of Scotland played Sleep, dearie, sleep, before the bearer party lifted the monarch’s coffin from the catafalque and moved through the Great West Door. It was the highest of accolades. The King and Queen Consort, and the Prince and Princess of Wales then led the rest of the Royal Family in a procession to Wellington Arch before transferring to Windsor. There, at the conclusion of the Committal Service at St George’s Chapel later today, the Pipe Major will play once more, as the Queen’s body descends from public view. Family members and royal household staff past and present will watch on as the piper plays, walking from the doorway between the chapel and the Dean’s Cloister towards the Deanery in the Cloister. The mournful sound will swell and then fade in the chapel, as the Pipe Major makes his exit and the Queen’s 70-year reign truly comes to an end.

It will be a fittingly nostalgic tribute for the Queen whose every morning began at 9am when her piper played for 15 minutes underneath her window, at Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Holyroodhouse or Balmoral. (Read more.)

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