Home » How a PM disliked by Queen Victoria inspired her great-great granddaughter’s lying in state | UK News

How a PM disliked by Queen Victoria inspired her great-great granddaughter’s lying in state | UK News

by fastnewz

Queen Victoria disliked William Gladstone, the prime minister who served her 4 occasions throughout 4 separate phrases.

He “addresses me as if I had been a public assembly”, she complained.

The exasperation was mutual. “The Queen alone is sufficient to kill any man,” Gladstone wrote to a buddy.

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When he died in 1898 of most cancers, which began behind his cheekbone and unfold, the commemorations ordered by politicians at Westminster by chance impressed a royal custom – the general public mendacity in state at Westminster Corridor.

“The physique was introduced by particular prepare to the adjoining Underground station earlier than mendacity in state in Westminster Corridor,” wrote Roy Jenkins in his biography of the statesman, “with an excellent file-past of the well-known and obscure alike.”

The corridor dates from 1097 and was a location for lavish feasts and banquets, as effectively the trials of Sir Thomas Extra, Man Fawkes and Charles I.

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William Gladstone. Pic: AP

Gladstone’s funeral

Among the many 10 pallbearers at Gladstone’s funeral at Westminster Abbey had been the Prince of Wales (later Edward VII) and his son, the Duke of York (later George V).

Queen Victoria, sad at her household taking such roles, telegrammed her son to ask what precedent he had adopted and whose recommendation he had taken.

The prince responded that he knew of no precedent and had taken no recommendation.

Centuries-old custom

The custom of mendacity in state stretches again to the seventeenth century, when Stuart monarchs did so for a number of days.

Queen Victoria lay in state in Windsor after her loss of life in 1901, however she had requested that it not be public.

When Edward VII died 9 years later, Westminster Corridor was once more opened to mourners to pay their respects.

The first members of the public pay their respects as the vigil begins around the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II in Westminster Hall, London
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The Queen lies in state at Westminster Corridor

Fashionable commonplace

Edward VII set the trendy commonplace and virtually each sovereign since (except Edward VIII, who abdicated) have lain in state in the identical colossal house.

Edward VII’s mendacity in state was an train in egalitarianism, in response to the historian Jane Ridley: “Messenger boys had been forbidden to carry locations for others, and no tickets had been bought, so the rich had been obliged to attend in keeping with the poor, and the queue itself turned an emblem for social equality.”

The historian David Torrance recounts that after public entry had closed and the late monarch’s consort, Queen Alexandra, had spent a while along with her husband’s coffin, “Winston Churchill tried to enter along with his household” however was turned away.

In 1965, 55 years later, the good prime minister was himself given the honour, which has not been granted to any politicians since.

King Charles III and other members of the royal family hold a vigil at St Giles' Cathedral, Edinburgh, in honour of Queen Elizabeth II. Picture date: Monday September 12, 2022.
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The King and his siblings stand vigil on the Queen’s coffin

In 1936, there was a mendacity in state for George V, and the “Vigil of the Princes” – when members of the Royal Household stand guard by the monarch’s coffin, as King Charles and his siblings did on Monday – was revived.

In 1952, the coffin of the Queen’s father, George VI, lay in Westminster Corridor. Fifty years later in 2002 the identical ceremony was used for his spouse, the Queen Mom.

And 70 years on, his daughter is now at relaxation in the identical historic spot.

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