In the wake of Queen Elizabeth II’s passing on Sept. 8, 2022, there are many details about the ascension to the throne that immediately change. Everything about the royal family, including titles, will shift as the world gets to know a new version of the hierarchy.
First off, Prince Charles is the king because he assumed the throne the moment his mother passed, which also means he will now be known as King Charles III, and Camilla will be the Queen Consort. Prince William and Kate Middleton will also shift from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to the titles formally held by Charles and Camilla: Duke and Duchess of Cornwall. (The Prince and Princess of Wales title will likely be bestowed upon them in the next few months.) This also shifts the royal line of succession with William next in line, followed by Prince George, 9, Princess Charlotte, 7, Prince Louis, 4, and then Prince Harry.
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While many people might assume that an official coronation ceremony would be held within days of Queen Elizabeth’s funeral, it’s a much longer process than that. “The coronation ceremony usually takes a year because it’s seen as unseemly, really, to have a coronation ceremony straight after someone’s death. It’s a long period of mourning,” Kate Williams, author of Young Elizabeth: The Making of the Queen, told People.That means it will be some time before we see Charles wear the crown, however all of the other responsibilities that come with the job have already been handed over to him.
One major event that will happen in the next 24 hours is the Accession Council, which will take place at St James’s Palace in London. They will declare the passing of the Queen, and then meet a day later with King Charles, where he will declare, “God save the King” — a phrase that hasn’t been heard since 1952.
The other controversial aspect to Charles’ new position is becoming head of the Commonwealth, “an association of 56 independent countries and 2.4 billion people,” according to BBC. As the head of state to 14 of those countries, Charles will have to quickly address the royal family’s long history with colonialism — a hot topic during William and Kate’s recent Caribbean tour. He has a monumental task ahead of him, but one he has been preparing for his entire life.
Before you go, click here to see the 100 best photos of the royal family from the past 20 years.
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