A closer look at what was on the Queen’s coffin

Flowers chosen by the King. Some of the most storied objects in the Royal Family. And a crown with nearly 3,000 diamonds. These are among the items that were atop Queen Elizabeth’s coffin as the world watched her funeral at Westminster Abbey in London Monday. 

Here’s a closer a look at each of the items atop (and underneath) the coffin today:

On Monday morning, the coffin was placed on a state gun carriage, drawn by 142 Royal Navy service personnel to the nearby abbey past crowds of mourners lining the route.

The gun carriage was also used for the funerals of Edward VII, George V, George VI and former prime minister Winston Churchill.

The flag draped on the coffin is the Royal Standard, which represents both the sovereign and the United Kingdom. It is flown outside palaces when the sovereign is home and on the sovereign’s car on official journeys. When the Union Jack was flying over Buckingham Palace, it signified that the Queen wasn’t present. 

The flag has four quarters: two with lions representing England, a lion for Scotland and a harp for Ireland. (Wales is not represented.)

The crown atop the velvet pillow is the Imperial State Crown, which is encrusted with 2,868 diamonds, 269 pearls, 17 sapphires, 11 emeralds and four rubies. It was first worn by the Queen when she left Westminster Abbey on the day of her coronation in 1953. It was originally made for the coronation of her father, King George VI, in 1937.

The sceptre and orb on the coffin are, like the crown, among the most well-known parts of the crown jewels, which includes more than 100 objects and 23,000 gemstones. Both were present at the Queen’s coronation.

The Sovereign’s Sceptre has been used at every coronation since Charles II’s in 1661. It is meant to represent the Crown’s power and includes the Cullinan I diamond, the largest colourless, cut diamond in the world. 

The Sovereign’s Orb, meanwhile, is meant to signify that the monarchy’s power comes from God.

Before the final hymn at the committal service, the Imperial State Crown, the orb and the sceptre were removed from the coffin and placed on the altar in St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle.

The wreath of flowers, in shades of gold, pink and deep burgundy, with touches of white, included blooms and foliage cut from the gardens of Buckingham Palace and Clarence House at King Charles’s request.

They include rosemary for remembrance, and myrtle cut from a plant that was grown from a sprig of myrtle in the Queen’s wedding bouquet in 1947.

The wreath also contained a handwritten note that read, “In loving and devoted memory,” and was signed Charles R — for Rex, or king.

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