by Scott Mehl
© Unofficial Royalty 2023
In addition to the Coronation Chair, used for the actual crowning of the Sovereign, there are other chairs used during the Coronation Ceremony. For the majority of the service, the Sovereign and Consort are seated in Chairs of Estate, which are placed on the south side of the sanctuary. The Sovereign is crowned in the Coronation Chair and then moves to a Throne Chair (also known as a Chair of State). After the Queen Consort is crowned, she then moves to a similar Throne Chair beside the King.
Typically, both the Chairs of Estate and Throne Chairs are made new for each coronation. However, it has been announced that King Charles III and Queen Camilla will use chairs already in the Royal Collection. They will use Chairs of Estate made for the 1953 Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, and Throne Chairs made for the 1937 Coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (the King’s grandparents).
Chairs of Estate
The Chairs of Estate are placed on the south side of the sanctuary, and are used by the Sovereign and Consort for the majority of the Coronation Service. For the 2023 Coronation, King Charles and Queen Camilla are using the Chairs of Estate made for the 1953 Coronation of the King’s late mother, Queen Elizabeth II. Although only one was used at the 1953 Coronation, a second chair was made for Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh. This is the one that will be used by Queen Camilla. Following the 1953 coronation, the Chairs of Estate were moved to Buckingham Palace, where they were displayed on the dais in the Throne Room of Buckingham Palace. On either side of them were the Chairs of Estate of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, and King George V and Queen Mary. Prior to the coronation of George V in 1911, it was customary that the Chairs of Estate were sold to people who had attended the event.
Throne Chairs (Chairs of State)
The throne chairs are placed on a dais behind the Coronation Chair. Following the crowning, the Sovereign moves to the Throne Chair, where the homage is received. A second Throne Chair is located on the dais, usually one or two steps lower, for the Queen Consort.
For the 2023 Coronation, King Charles and Queen Camilla are using the Throne Chairs made for the 1937 Coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth. The chairs have been updated with new material, featuring the cyphers of the new King and Queen.
The Throne Chair of Queen Elizabeth II (pictured at the top of this article) is displayed in the Garter Throne Room at Windsor Castle. Those of King George V and Queen Mary are at The Palace of Holyroodhouse, and those of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra are in the Ballroom at Buckingham Palace.