The History of Coronations

The History of Coronations

Some of the details about past coronations are unclear, but we do have a good idea of when, where and by whom most of our monarchs were crowned.

In England, before the Conquest, the Kings of Wessex were installed on the King’s Stone, which is still to be found near the parish church at Kingston-upon-Thames in Surrey. 

Before the Conquest

The first coronation in our recorded history is that of Alfred the Great in about 871.

Date of Coronation

Monarch

Place of Coronation

Prelate or other Official

?871

Alfred The Great

Kingston or Winchester

?Ethelred, Archbishop of Canterbury

8 June 900

Edward The Elder

Kingston

Plegmund, Archbishop of Canterbury

5 Sept 925

Athelstan

Kingston

?Wulfhelm, Archbishop of Canterbury

16 Nov 940

Edmund I

Kingston

Oda, Archbishop of Canterbury

?Jan 956

Edwy

Kingston

Oda, Archbishop of Canterbury

11 May 973

Edgar and Elfrida

Bath Abbey

Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury and Oswald, Archbishop of York

?July 975

Edward The Martyr

Kingston

Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury

14 Apr 979

Ethelred II

Kingston

Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury

? Apr 1016

Edmund II Ironside

St Paul’s Cathedral

?

6 Jan 1017

Canute

St Paul’s Cathedral

?

? 1037

Harold I Harefoot

Oxford

?

18 June 1040

Hardicanute

Canterbury

Eadsige, Archbishop of Canterbury

3 Apr 1043

Edward The Confessor

Winchester Cathedral

Eadsige, Archbishop of Canterbury and Ethelric, Archbishop of York

? Jan 1045

Edith (wife of Edward The Confessor)

Winchester Cathedral

Eadsige, Archbishop of Canterbury

6 Jan 1066

Harold II

Westminster Abbey

Stigand, Archbishop of Canterbury

After the Conquest

Coronations that took place after the Conquest tended to be held at Westminster Abbey, but there are incidents where that did not happen:

 

Date of Coronation

Monarch

Place of Coronation

Prelate or other Official

 

25 Dec 1066

William I The Conqueror

Westminster Abbey

Ealdred, Archbishop of York

11 May 1068

Matilda of Flanders (wife of William I)

Winchester Cathedral

Ealdred, Archbishop of York

26 Sept 1087

Wiliam II Rufus

Westminster Abbey

Lanfranc, Archbishop of Canterbury

5 Aug 1100

Henry I

Westminster Abbey

Maurice, Bishop of London

11 Nov 1100

Matilda of Scotland (first wife of Henry I)

Westminster Abbey

Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury

3 Feb 1122

Adeliza of Louvain (2nd wife of Henry I)

Westminster Abbey

Ralph d’Escures, Archbishop of Canterbury

26 Dec 1136

Stephen

Westminster Abbey

William de Corbeil, Archbishop of Canterbury

22 Mar 1136

Matilda of Boulogne (Wife of Stephen)

Westminster Abbey

William de Corbeil, Archbishop of Canterbury

25 Dec 1141

Stephen said to have been recrowned

 

 

19 Dec 1154

Henry II

Westminster Abbey

Theobald, Archbishop of Canterbury

25 Dec 1158

Eleanor of Aquitaine (wife of Henry II)

Worcester Cathedral

Theobald, Archbishop of Canterbury

14 June 1170

Henry ‘The Young King’ (son and heir of Henry II)

Westminster Abbey

Roger of Pont l’Eveque, Archbishop of Canterbury

27 Aug 1172

Henry The Young King recrowned with his wife Margaret of France

Winchester Cathedral

Rotrou, Archbishop of Rouen

3 Sept 1189

Richard I

Westminster Abbey

Baldwin, Archbishop of Canterbury

12 May 1191

Beregaria of Navarre (wife of Richard I)

Chapel of St George, Lemesos, Cyprus

John FitzLuke, Bishop of Evreux

27 May 1199

John

Westminster Abbey

Hubert Walter, Archbishop of Canterbury

8 Oct 1200

Isabella of Angoulême (wife of John)

Westminster Abbey

Hubert Walter, Archbishop of Canterbury

28 Oct 1216

Henry III

Gloucester Cathedral

Peter de Roches, Bishop of Winchester

17 May 1220

Henry III (recrowned)

Westminster Abbey

Stephen Langton, Archbishop of Canterbury

20 Jan 1236

Eleanor of Provence (wife of Henry III)

Westminster Abbey

Edmund Rich, Archbishop of Canterbury

19 Aug 1274

Edward I and Eleanor of Castile

Westminster Abbey

Edward Kilwardby, Archbishop of Canterbury

25 Feb 1308

Edward II and Isabelle of France

Westminster Abbey

Henry Merewell (als Woodlock), Bishop of Winchester

1 or 2 Feb 1327

Edward III

Westminster Abbey

Walter Reynolds, Archbishop of Canterbury

20 Feb 1328

Philippa of Hainault (wife of Edward III)

Westminster Abbey

Simon Meopham, Archbishop of Canterbury

16 July 1377

Richard II

Westminster Abbey

Simon Sudbury, Archbishop of Canterbury

22 Jan 1382

Anne of Bohemia (1st wife of Richard II)

Westminster Abbey

William Courtenay, Archbishop of Canterbury

8 Jan 1397

Isabelle of France (2nd wife of Richard II)

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Arundel, Archbishop of Canterbury

13 Oct 1399

Henry IV

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Arundel, Archbishop of Canterbury

26 Feb 1403

Joan of Navarre (2nd wife of Henry IV)

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Arundel, Archbishop of Canterbury

9 Apr 1413

Henry V

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Arundel, Archbishop of Canterbury

24 Feb 1421

Catherine of France (wife of Henry V)

Westminster Abbey

Henry Chichele, Archbishop of Canterbury

6 Nov 1429

Henry VI

Westminster Abbey

Henry Chichele, Archbishop of Canterbury

30 May 1445

Margaret of Anjou (wife of Henry VI)

Westminster Abbey

John Stafford, Archbishop of Canterbury

29 June 1461

Edward IV

Westminster Abbey

Cardinal Bourchier, Archbishop of Canterbury

26 May 1465

Elizabeth Woodville (wife of Edward IV)

Westminster Abbey

Cardinal Bourchier, Archbishop of Canterbury

6 July 1483

Richard III and Anne Neville

Westminster Abbey

Cardinal Bourchier, Archbishop of Canterbury

30 Oct 1485

Henry VII

Westminster Abbey

Cardinal Bourchier, Archbishop of Canterbury

24 Nov 1487

Elizabeth of York (wife of Henry VII)

Westminster Abbey

John Morton, Archbishop of Canterbury

24 June 1509

Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon

Westminster Abbey

William Warham, Archbishop of Canterbury

1 June 1533

Anne Boleyn (2nd wife of Henry VIII)

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury

20 Feb 1547

Edward VI

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury

1 Oct 1553

Mary I

Westminster Abbey

Stephen Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester

15 Jan 1559

Elizabeth I

Westminster Abbey

Owen Oglethorpe, Bishop of Carlisle

25 July 1603

James I and Anne of Denmark

Westminster Abbey

John Whitgift, Archbishop of Canterbury

2 Feb 1626

Charles I

Westminster Abbey

George Abbot, Archbishop of Canterbury

23 April 1661

Charles II

Westminster Abbey

William Juxon, Archbishop of Canterbury

23 April 1685

James II and Mary of Modena

Westminster Abbey

William Sancroft, Archbishop of Canterbury

11 April 1689

William III and Mary II (joint sovereigns)

Westminster Abbey

Henry Compton, Bishop of London

23 April 1702

Anne

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Tenison, Archbishop of Canterbury

20 Oct 1714

George I

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Tenison, Archbishop of Canterbury

11 Oct 1727

George II and Caroline of Brandenburg-Ansbach

Westminster Abbey

William Wake, Archbishop of Canterbury

22 Sept 1761

George III and Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz

Westminster Abbey

Thomas Secker, Archbishop of Canterbury

19 July 1821

George IV

Westminster Abbey

Charles Manners Sutton, Archbishop of Canterbury

8 Sept 1831

William IV and Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen

Westminster Abbey

William Howley, Archbishop of Canterbury

28 June 1838

Victoria

Westminster Abbey

William Howley, Archbishop of Canterbury

9 Aug 1902

Edward VII

Westminster Abbey

Frederick Temple, Archbishop of Canterbury

9 Aug 1902

Alexandra of Denmark (wife of Edward VII)

Westminster Abbey

William Dalrymple Maclagan, Archbishop of York

22 June 1911

George V and Mary of Teck

Westminster Abbey

Randall Thomas Davidson, Archbishop of Canterbury

12 May 1937

George VI and Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon

Westminster Abbey

Cosmo Gordon Lang, Archbishop of Canterbury

2 June 1953

Elizabeth II

Westminster Abbey

Geoffrey Francis Fisher, Archbishop of Canterbury

6 May 2023

Charles III and  Queen Camilla

Westminster Abbey

Justin Portal Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury

Scottish Coronations

The Monarchs of Scotland, before the Union, were crowned or installed at Scone, and took their place on the Stone of Destiny. This stone was said to have been brought to Scotland from Ireland by Fergus Mor MacErc, towards the end of the fourth century, but it is more likely the stone was quarried in the area close to the Palace at Scone. The earliest detailed records of Scottish coronations are those of Malcolm III:

25 April 1058

Malcolm III

Scone

?

? Nov 1093

Donald Bane

Scone

?

? May 1094

Duncan II

Scone

?

?1097

Edgar

Scone

?

? Jan 1107

Alexander I

Scone

?

? May 1124

David I

Scone

?

Summer 1153

Malcolm IV

Scone

?

24 Dec 1165

William The Lion

Scone

Richard, Bishop of St Andrews

6 Dec 1214

Alexander II

Scone

William Malvoisine, Bishop of St Andrews

13 July 1249

Alexander III

Scone

David de Bernham, Bishop of St Andrews

30 Nov 1292

John Balliol

Scone

?

27 Mar 1306

Robert I

Scone

Isabella, Countess of Buchan

24 Nov 1331

David II and Joan of England

Scone

James Bennet, Bishop of St Andrews

24 Sept 1332

Edward Balliol

Scone

?

26 Mar 1371

Robert II

Scone

William de Laundels, Bishop of St Andrews

? 1372

Euphemia Ross (2nd wife of Robert II)

Scone

Alexander de Kyninmund II, Bishop of Aberdeen

14 Aug 1390

Robert III and Annabella Drummond

Scone

Alexander de Neville, Bishop of St Andrews

21 May 1424

James I and Joan Beaufort

Scone

Henry Wardlaw, Bishop of St Andrews

25 Mar 1437

James II

Holyrood

Michael Ochiltree, Bishop of Dunblane

3 July 1449

Marie of Gueldres (wife of James II)

Holyrood

James Kennedy, Bishop of St Andrews

10 Aug 1460

James III

Kelso Abbey

James Kennedy, Bishop of St Andrews

13 July 1469

Margaret of Denmark (wife of James III)

Holyrood

Patrick Graham, Archbishop of St Andrews

26 June 1488

James IV

Scone

William Scheves, Archbishop of St Andrews

8 Aug 1503

Margaret Tudor (wife of James IV)

Holyrood

 

21 Sept 1513

James V

Stirling

?

22 Feb 1540

Mary of Guise (2nd wife of James V)

Holyrood

Cardinal Beaton, Archbishop of St Andrews

9 Sept 1543

Mary

Stirling

Cardinal Beaton, Archbishop of St Andrews

29 July 1567

James VI

Stirling

Gavin Hamilton, Archbishop of St Andrews

17 May 1590

Anne of Denmark (wife of James VI)

Holyrood

?

18 June 1633

Charles I

Edinburgh

John Spottiswode, Archbishop of St Andrews

1 Jan 1651

Charles II

Scone

Archibald Douglas, Earl of Angus

Sept 1751

James VIII is said to have been crowned in this month and year, but no details are known

Scone

 

Image, top: The Bayeux Tapestry, depicting the coronation of Harold II of England on 6 January 1066. On his left stands Archbishop Stigand

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