Last update: 01 May 2023, 04:45 IST
All Britons will be called upon to pledge allegiance to King Charles III at his coronation, an oath previously reserved for British nobility, in a move that has upset anti-royalists.
The office of the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, who will conduct the coronation ceremony on May 6 at Westminster Abbey, announced on Saturday that the traditional “Tribute of Peers” – in which representatives of the nobility will kneel before the king and pledge allegiance to him – would be discarded.
Instead, the ceremony will include a “People’s Tribute”, with the Archbishop calling on all people in the UK and other places where King Charles is head of state to take an oath of allegiance.
The Archbishop will call on “all people of good will in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and other realms and territories to pay homage, in heart and voice, to their undisputed King, Defender of all “.
The Order of Service will read: “All who desire, in the Abbey, and elsewhere, say together: I swear that I will give true allegiance to Your Majesty, and to your heirs and successors according to law. So help me God.”
British parliamentarians, but also Canadians since the British sovereign is their head of state, already swear allegiance to the monarch when they take office.
On Sunday, several elected officials interviewed in the British media indicated that they would take the new oath during the coronation.
However, the plan to ask the public to pledge allegiance to the king at the coronation has been called “offensive, tone deaf and a gesture that despises the people” by an anti-monarchy group.
Graham Smith, spokesman for Republic, which campaigns for the abolition of the British monarchy, said: “In a democracy it is the head of state who should swear allegiance to the people, not the ‘reverse.
The anti-monarchist movement plans to demonstrate on Saturday.
The establishment of the new oath is one of the evolutions of the secular ceremonial, which the palace wishes to evolve, in particular to reflect the diversity of the country.
The last coronation dates back 70 years, when Charles’ mother, Queen Elizabeth II, was crowned.
She died in September at the age of 96.
At Saturday’s ceremony, female bishops will participate for the first time, along with representatives of non-Christian denominations.
Another novelty, the texts will be read in the languages of the other nations of the United Kingdom: Welsh, Scottish Gaelic and Irish Gaelic.
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(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed)