Edinburgh, Scotland (Associated Press) – King Charles arrived in Edinburgh on Monday to accompany his late mother’s coffin in an emotionally charged procession through the historic heart of the Scottish capital to a cathedral where it will be held for 24 hours to allow the public to pay. Another respect.
Charles and his wife Camilla, the Queen consort, were taken from the airport to the official residence of the royal family in Edinburgh, Holyrood Palace, where Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin lay overnight in the throne room.
On their way, they passed large crowds of people who were crammed behind metal barriers along the Royal Mile, the road between Holyrood House and St Giles’ Cathedral. Onlookers applauded and waved as the King’s limousine passed.
Charles and Camilla got off their car at Holyroodhouse and greeted people, looking at flowers before firing a Venetian salute from Edinburgh Castle.
Earlier, in London, Charles received his condolences in Parliament and told lawmakers he would follow his late mother’s example of “selfless duty”.
Earlier, Elizabeth II’s grandson, Prince Harry, praised her as a “guiding compass” and praised her “unshakable grace and dignity”.
Meanwhile, the government has announced that the nation will observe a minute’s silence on Sunday, the evening before the Queen’s funeral. The “Reflection Moment” will take place at 8 pm (1900 GMT). People were encouraged to celebrate silence at home or at community events.
Hundreds of lawmakers crowded into the 1,000-year-old Westminster Hall in both Houses of Parliament for the service, rich in festival, in which Parliament offered its condolences to the King, reportedly.
A trumpet uproar greeted the King and Camilla as they entered the hall, which was packed with hundreds of legislators.
Charles told members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords that he would follow his late mother in upholding the “precious principles of constitutional government” that underpin the UK political system.
The hall, with its impressive hammered-beam ceiling, is the oldest part of the Parliamentary complex – the remains of the medieval Palace of Westminster that once stood on the site.
“As I stand before you today, I cannot help but feel the weight of history that surrounds us which reminds us of the vital parliamentary tradition to which members of both Houses dedicate themselves, with such a personal commitment to the good of us all,” Charles said.
The ceremony was held in Westminster Hall because royalty are not allowed into the House of Commons. This rule dates back to the 17th century, when King Charles I attempted to enter and arrest legislators. That confrontation between the Crown and Parliament led to a civil war that ended with the king’s beheading in 1649.
Earlier on Monday, a personal statement posted on Harry and his wife Archwell’s website said he cherished their time together “from my early childhood memories with you, to meeting you for the first time as Commander in Chief, to the first moment you met my beloved wife and hugged your beloved great-grandchildren”.
Amidst acrimony in the House of Windsor, Harry resigned as a royal and moved to the United States two years ago. On Saturday, there was a possible sign of reconciliation Harry and Meghan joined his brother Prince William and his sister-in-law Catherine for a meeting of mourners outside Windsor Castle.
The wave of nationwide grief continued on Sunday as thousands of people lined the streets and roadsides The oak sarcophagus from the beloved summer resort of Balmoral Castle of the late queen, where she died on Thursday, was taken to Edinburgh.
In Edinburgh, the King will walk behind his mother’s sarcophagus as it is slowly being transported from Holyrood House to St Giles’ Cathedral, where the Crown of Scotland will be placed on the sarcophagus before praying and reflecting on life and the widely cherished 70-year reign of the King.
The Queen’s sarcophagus will lie in the cathedral for 24 hours, giving members of the public a chance to step into the past and pay their respects. On Tuesday, it will be flown to London where the coffin will be held in place in the Palace of Parliament from Wednesday afternoon until the morning of the funeral on September 19.
The authorities have already issued the rules and guidelines For people wanting to pay their respects in London, with the expectation of waiting in a long queue.
After visiting Scotland, Charles embarked on a tour of the other countries that make up the United Kingdom – visiting the capital of Northern Ireland, Belfast, on Tuesday and Wales on Friday.
Harry’s statement ended with a touching note referring to the death of his grandfather, Prince Philip last year, saying: “We, too, are smiling knowing that you and your grandfather are now reunited, both together in peace.”
Mike Corder reported from London.
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