King Charles III pledged on Monday to follow the example of his late mother’s “self-sacrificing duty” as he spoke to lawmakers from both Houses of Parliament in London before he boarded a plane to Edinburgh to be with the late queen’s coffin as it rests in the Scottish capital. .
Earlier, Queen Elizabeth II’s grandson Prince Harry hailed her as a “guided compass” and praised her “unwavering grace and dignity”.
The government, meanwhile, announced that the whole country would observe a minute of silence on Sunday, the evening before the queen’s funeral. The “mirror moment” will take place at 8pm (1900 GMT). People are encouraged to mark silence at home or at community events.
Hundreds of legislators crammed into the 1,000-year-old Westminster Hall at the Houses of Parliament for the highly competitive service in which Parliament offered condolences to the king, and he reciprocated.
A trumpet blast greeted the king and his wife Camilla, the queen’s consort, as they entered the hall, home to hundreds of legislators.
Charles told members of the House of Commons and House of Commons that he would follow in the footsteps of his late mother Queen Elizabeth II in upholding the “precious principles of constitutional governance” that underpin the political system. of the United Kingdom.
He paid tribute to his mother, saying: “As Shakespeare said of Queen Elizabeth before, she is a model for all living princes.”
The hall, with its monumental hammer-shaped roof, is the oldest part of the parliamentary complex – a remnant 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 and which reminds us of the important parliamentary traditions that members of both Houses have embraced. dedicated herself, with such a personal commitment to the good of all of us,” Charles said.
The ceremony was held at Westminster Hall because monarchs are not allowed in the House of Commons. That rule dates back to the 17th century, when King Charles I tried to step in and arrest legislators. The 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 Meghan’s Archwell website said he cherished their time together “from my earliest childhood memories with you, to until I met you for the first time as my Commander-in-Chief, until the first moment you. met my beloved wife and hugged your beloved great-grandson.”
Amid the excitement in the House of Windsor, Harry gave up his status as a senior royal and moved to America two years ago. On Saturday, there could be a sign of reconciliation as Harry and Meghan join their brother Prince William and sister-in-law Catherine to meet mourners outside Windsor Castle.
The national mourning continued on Sunday as thousands lined the streets and sidewalks as the oak coffin was carried out from the summer retreat at the women’s beloved Balmoral Castle. the late emperor, where she died on Thursday, to Edinburgh.
Late Monday in Edinburgh, the king will walk behind his mother’s coffin as it is slowly transported from Holyroodhouse to St. Giles, where Scotland’s crown will be placed on a coffin before a ceremony of prayer and reflection on the life and 70 years of the widely beloved monarch’s reign.
The queen’s coffin will remain in the cathedral for 24 hours, allowing members of the public the opportunity to look back at the past and pay their respects. On Tuesday, it will be flown to London, where the coffin will be left in place at the Houses of Parliament from Wednesday afternoon until the morning of the funeral on 19 September.
Authorities have issued rules and guidelines for those wishing to pay their respects in London, with a long queue.
After visiting Scotland, Charles embarks on a tour of the other countries that make up the UK – he visits Northern Ireland’s capital Belfast on Tuesday and Wales on Friday.
Harry’s statement ended with a poignant note alluding to the death last year of his grandfather, Prince Philip, saying, “We too, smile to know that you are now reunited with him. and both sides in peace.”