What is the Sovereign’s Ring and how will it be used at King Charles’ Coronation?

THE Sovereign’s Ring is an important symbol of a monarch’s coronation.

Here we take a look at what it is and how it will be used at King Charles’ coronation.


Kings Charles III’s coronation takes place on May 6Credit: Getty – Pool

What is the Sovereign’s Ring or Wedding Ring of England?

The Sovereign’s Ring is part of the Crown Jewels.

It is one of the items used during the coronation ceremony along with the Orb and Sceptre and the Crowns: State Imperial and St Edward’s.

The ring contains an octagonal sapphire overlaid with square-cut rubies.

It’s placed together in a gold strip setting to form a cross, with a border of fourteen cushion-shaped diamonds and a diamond on each shoulder.

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What is the symbolism of the Sovereign’s Ring?

The ring is a symbol of kingly dignity. 

It represents the sovereign’s marriage to the nation.

What is the coronation history of the Sovereign’s Ring?

The ring was first made for the Coronation of King William IV in 1831.

It was up until the twentieth century that each monarch had a newly-made ring.

William IV left this coronation ring to his widow, Queen Adelaide, who in turn passed it to Queen Victoria, along with her consort’s ring.

Queen Victoria left both of these and her own coronation ring to the Crown in 1901.

All three items were deposited in the Tower of London, with the other Crown Jewels, by George V in March 1919.

All sovereigns from Edward VII onwards have used William IV’s ring at their coronations.

How will the Sovereign’s Ring be used in King Charles’ Coronation?

The Archbishop of Canterbury will place the ring on King Charles’ fourth finger during the coronation ceremony.

The presentation of the ring forms part of the investiture of the coronation, which is preceded by the anointing with holy oil and is followed by the crowning itself.

During the late Queen’s coronation ceremony in 1953, the Archbishop of Canterbury stepped forward and placed a ring on the fourth finger of her right hand.

As he stepped back, he said, “Receive the ring of kingly dignity and the seal of Catholic faith, and as thou art this day consecrated to be our Head and Prince, so may you continue steadfastly as the defender of Christ’s religion, that being rich in faith, and blessed in all good works, you may reign with Him who is the King of Kings, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.”

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