The Most Eyebrow-Raising Elements of King Charles’ Coronation, Explained

The Stone of Destiny. A very fancy spoon. Shards from Jesus' cross??? And of course, some light gossip...


The Stone of Destiny

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The Stone of Destiny
The Stone of Destiny in all its glory. Photo: Press Association (AP)

This is literally just an old rock. But according to Edinburgh Castle’s website, it is considered a “sacred object” (by whom, it does not say) and has been used during the coronation of monarchs since King Edward I “seized” the stone from Scotland and built it into a new throne in London in 1296. (Stealing is, after all, the classic way for British royalty to acquire priceless objects.) The fancy stone was repatriated to Scotland in 1996 and now only crosses into England for coronations of new monarchs. It will be at the base of the chair Charles sits in during the coronation. You can also call it the Stone of Scone (pronounced “scoon”), which I think is delightful.

However, I cannot emphasize enough that it is just a rock. A very old rock, to be sure, but also…rocks are famously old. King Arthur didn’t even pull a sword out of this one.

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