“This kind of nonsense should have died with Elizabeth I, not outlived Elizabeth II.” – by Elizabeth Gracie
Buckingham Palace has invited monarchists from across the Commonwealth to pledge their allegiance to the new monarch in this weekend’s coronation, sparking outrage in the process.
In an effort to reflect a more modern Commonwealth, the coronation is set to include a “Homage of the People” (replacing the Homage of Peers) which will involve not just the 2000 in attendance at Westminster Abbey, but the millions watching from the comforts of their own home.
Viewers are being encouraged to join in with the congregation and pledge their allegiance with the words: “I swear that I will pay true allegiance to Your Majesty, and to your heirs and successors according to the law. So help me God,” in what is expected to be a “great cry around the nation and around the world of support for the King.”
Whilst the Homage of Peers is a long-held tradition during the coronations of the kings and queens of Britain (and in later years what we now know as the Commonwealth), many are slamming the encouragement from the palace for those watching home to take part as “tone deaf” and “outdated”.
“In a democracy, it is the head of state who should be swearing allegiance to the people, not the other way around,” Graham Smith, a spokesperson for the anti-monarchy group Republic, told The Mirror.
“This kind of nonsense should have died with Elizabeth I, not outlived Elizabeth II.
“In swearing allegiance to Charles and his ‘heirs and successors’, people are being asked to swear allegiance to Prince Andrew too. This is clearly beyond the pale.”
Prince Charles kneels before his mother Queen Elizabeth as she crowns him Prince of Wales at the Investiture at Caernarvon Castle on July 1, 1969.
Oh my god who cares about the King, I will not be doing this LMAO,” one baffled Sydneysider tweeted.
“Yeah nah to the coronation. Time for an Australian republic,” another tweet read.
A third tweeted: “I’m sorry you have to be absolutely f**king kidding me”.
Despite the backlash, the Archbishop of Canterbury’s office Lambeth Palace said that the “Homage of the People” was “very much an invitation” rather than an “expectation.”
“It’s simply an opportunity offered by the Archbishop so that, unlike previous coronations, those who wish to join in with the words being spoken by the Abbey congregation could do so in a very simple way,” a statement released by Lambeth Palace said.
“For those who do want to take part, some will want to say all the words of the homage; some might just want to say ‘God Save The King’ at the end; others might just want it to be a moment of private reflection.
“We live in a wonderfully diverse society with many different perspectives and beliefs, and it’s quite right that people decide for themselves how they relate to this moment.”
In previous Homage of Peers, a long line of hereditary peers would kneel and make the pledge individually to the monarch being crowned, before touching the monarch’s crown and kissing his/her cheek in a process that would often take more than an hour.
Lucky for those tuning in from home, the coronation of Charles has been significantly slimmed down from the almost three-hour run time of his mother, the late Queen Elizabeth II.
The touching of the crown and kissing of the cheek have also been removed from the proceedings.