King Charles Who? How Young People Really Feel About The Monarchy

A week ago, Queen Elizabeth II died – peacefully at home in Balmoral – and we lost a monarch of 70 years’ standing. In that moment, we also gained a King, who was heir to the throne for the same amount of time as she occupied it.

Now, as the UK officially observes a period of national mourning, King Charles III is grieving his mother – while also having the busiest seven days of his life.

Though it’s only been a week, the new King has had a hefty schedule. After the family’s private vigil at the Queen’s bedside on Thursday, Friday saw his first address to the nation and a pledge to follow his mother in “lifelong service”.

Saturday was taken up by the practicalities and politics of the Accession Council and formal proclamation, since when the King has been touring the nations: Scotland on Sunday and Monday, back to London to address both Houses of Parliament, then over to Northern Ireland on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, he accompanied his late mother’s coffin to the Palace of Westminster alongside his sons and siblings, and this Friday will finally see him travel to Wales, where he was Prince from 1958 until his ascension.

James Manning via PA Wire/PA Images

King Charles III follows the coffin of his mother Queen Elizabeth II, during the ceremonial procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall, London.

First impressions of the new monarch? On the one hand, Charles has kept things surprisingly personal amid the pomp, talking of love and loss and his “Darling Mama’ – and greeting the public in person outside Buckingham Palace.

On the other hand, here is a man 48 years older than his mother was when she became Queen at 25, a grandfather bold enough to quote Hamlet to the masses, but easily irritated by pens not working as they should.

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