Wednesday 27 April 2011

W is for Wedding, Westminster Abbey, the Windsors and William – that is what W is for ...

Royal Arms – borne by Queen Elizabeth II
(and will be borne by her successors)

A royal wedding is always a great event in British life, one of those milestones by which we mark our lives ...  and as we’re doing the A – Z Challenge with W falling on a Wednesday  - what better way to celebrate my W than by highlighting a few British Aspects ready for the Wedding Day.

The Collegiate Church of St Peter is the formal name of Westminster Abbey ... so called because St Peter, is the Patron Saint of fishers, and fishermen are thought to have seen a vision of St Peter at this site on the banks of the River Thames.

Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey has hosted fifteen Royal Weddings over the centuries, nine of which were in the last century;  Prince William will enter the Abbey through Poet’s Corner; the Dean of Westminster will lead the bride and her father down the aisle from the main door.

Afterwards the new bride is expected to maintain the tradition of placing the bridal bouquet on the Grave of the Unknown Warrior in memory of the men and women who have died serving their country.

HRH Prince William and Catherine Middleton have chosen a traditional-language version for their marriage service, a decision taken partly to honour the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible this year.

The service is perhaps the most beautiful and resonant of the available options, rooted in the history of the Church of which Prince William will one day become Supreme Governor, but in the changes from the 1662 version, the service reflects also the realities of the modern world, permitting a wide choice of music and hymns.

Marriage of Victoria and Albert -
Painting by 
George Hayter 
The Archbishop of Canterbury, presiding, will emphasise the continuity between the royal weddings and the thousand of marriages taking place throughout Britain in ordinary parish churches up and down the land.

On 9 April 1952, Queen Elizabeth II officially declared her "Will and Pleasure that I and My children shall be styled and known as the House and Family of Windsor, and that my descendants who marry and their descendants, shall bear the name of Windsor."

Street parties, large screen presentations in city centres, house parties and the streets of London will all be celebrating this Friday, our Y day, throughout the British countryside.

This is Wedding, Westminster Abbey, the Windsors and William    these are what W is for ..

Part of the ABC - April 2011 - A - Z Challenge - Aspects of the British Countryside

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories


Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I hadn't realized that about the King James Bible...400 years! Wow. Westminster is such a beautiful church. Thanks for the reminder--I'll set my DVR for the Friday morning service so that my daughter and I can watch it before she goes to school that day.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Elizabeth .. good to see you .. your tv crews are all over the place here .. in specially constructed press boxes outside Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey .. NBC, ABC .. and many nations from around the world .. Colombian TV .. et al!!!

So hope you and your daughter enjoy the spectacle .. should be an excellent day of pageantry ..

They were out early this morning 5.00 or so .. practising silently along the route .. dress rehearsal .. well the Army, Navy and Airforce and ancillary armed forces ..

Just added these bits for the next commenters .. presume a few others will be over!! Cheers enjoy today .. Hilary

Paul C said...

A timely and informative post. Interesting to read about some of the traditions.

Joanne said...

It's amazing how much more than just a wedding this event will be. It's tradition, and such rich history, brought to light as William and Catherine take center-stage.

Bluestocking Mum said...

Super post Hilary, and very informative.

I did my 'R' for the Royal Wedding or Republican, dependent on the point of view.

Tomorrow I'm going to my mother in law's caravan by myself to have a complete day/weekend of interrupted coverage!


Anonymous said...

Another royal wedding taking the world by storm. Amazing how many people are making money off this by selling everything from coffee cups to T shirts to beach towels with William and Kate's smiling faces.

Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

Thanks for the interesting information. I did not realize it was the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible.

Placing the bouquet on the Unknown Warrior grave is a lovely gesture. Had not heard about that either.

Thanks for commenting on my blog and for the compliment.


Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Love is in the air. My mother bought a special plate after Queen Elizabeth and Philip were married. Elizabeth became Queen just after I was born and my mother always mentioned that. I think she found it a good sign. When I got married, she gave me the plate. I'll cherish it always. My paternal grandmother was born in Bath and she had a tea plate from Victoria's wedding; not sure what happened to the cup. I think these little tokens keep the joy of the moment alive.

Thanks, Hilary.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Paul .. thanks - Friday is certainly creeping closer .. and I love the additional snippets so pleased you do too.

@ Joanne .. yes this is England at its best .. royalty, pageantry, history et al ..

It should be an amazing day .. and time ..

@ Karen - I was in South Africa for their wedding .. I'm sure London is buzzing .. it looks like it is - the tv people are all over the show!

@ Bluestocking Mum - thanks so pleased you enjoyed it .. gosh I must go over to see your R I missed it .. brilliant to just be able to immerse yourself in it .. I'll watch from my mother's bedside - she may or may not - depending if she wakes up! Then I'm going to a street party .. so should be fun! Enjoy yourself ... quite fancy that idea!!

@ Stephen - well this is the first this year .. though another is to come! but not so glamorous .. well it's certainly bringing much needed cash into this country, as well as boosting the tourist industry - I hope!! Have you got beach towels?

@ Monti .. thanks - glad you appreciated those two extra bits of info .. I've been intending to do a post on the King James Bible .. so now's my push!!

It's a pleasure I love learning about history .. but your art is so good ... I enjoy it - cannot paint for love or money!

Cheers everyone and thanks for stopping off .. enjoy your week .. Hilary

Anonymous said...

I was tempted to get the knitted royal wedding book.
I shall be watching the royal wedding, but I don't have any souvenir memorabilia. :O)

BK said...

A royal wedding, it would be interesting to witness one but I would not want to go through it myself. :)


See you in the congregation Hilary, just got my wedding outfit,
Wonderful W word.

Thanks for commenting on my W and V, So kind of you.


Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Madeleine .. nor do I - but I shall be watching .. but a knitted royal wedding book .. that is some thought!! Yes :0) .. I'm sure that emoticon is perfect .. just haven't got a clue!!!

@ BK .. will you watch in Singapore?

@ Yvonne .. ok will do - give me a Union Jack wave .. and I'll join you .. as I shall be out and about - I will be tidy .. no more!!

Pleasure .. visiting the Vs and Ws ..I feel I miss out otherwise!

Thanks Madeleine, BK and Yvonne .. good to see you all .. cheers Hilary

Talli Roland said...

Ah yes, the big wedding! Coming soon! There's been loads of interesting documentaries on the TV lately -- I think a David Starkey one tonight?

Southpaw said...

What a perfect post. I should have seen it coming! "W"onderful.

TALON said...

A beautiful and joyous celebration. My Mom is excited (she's British) and proud :)

Karen Jones Gowen said...

I had no idea today was the day, as I've been focused on my own not very exciting life (moving day in 3 days-- yay!!) I remember Charles and Diana's wedding and the beauty and pageantry of it. Now I must go turn on the tv! Thanks for all this background, Hilary! Very interesting!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Talli .. you're right - I hope you're going to get a chance to see it? And yes David Starkey is on tv tonight ... it's our bedtime isn't it!?

@ Talon .. thanks .. ah! I'm sure she'll enjoy it ... it'll be a great occasion ..

@ KarenG .. it's Friday .. no panic - except you're moving on Saturday .. will you have time to watch???!!

Cheers thanks Talli, Talon and KarenG .. good to see you - Hilary

San said...

Thank you for another wonderfully educational post, Hilary. This is one Yank who will be glued to the television at 4am on Friday. Cheers :)

Patricia said...

My mum was a kind and loving royal watcher and was so happy that Charles and Diana's wedding was televised here.
Of course, Victoria set the pace for all the form of dress involved in weddings royal or otherwise. It is interesting to me that a young bride can spend $3,000 on a gown and never pay the officiant....!

The wedding I performed a year ago, I was paid for my efforts, and it was a good thing because the wedding hostess did not know what she was doing and with 13 bride's maids...It was a $20,000. affair.

My neighbor's sister's wedding in Atlanta, Georgia 8 years ago was $30,000.00

I think both of those sums are just way over the top unless you are truly marrying Prince Charming!
Nice job here Thank you

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Holly .. sorry missed you earlier .. and you got it right - I must say I only got my act into gear a couple of days ago .. just realised all the 'Ws' .. as you say Wonderful ..

@ San .. thanks so much .. 4.00 am .. it starts here at 6.00am .. so it is a bit overdose! But I'll be there .. popping up to my Mums, and then driving across to friends for the street party .. should be fun!

@ Patricia .. I remember some major events here and in South Africa .. and since then funerals, jubilees etc ..

Peoples' perspective of money I find is 'funny' to say the least - I'm experiencing that now .. and the amount paid out for the big day is a bit excessive .. even if you are marrying Prince Charming!

Cheers - enjoy the coming weekend .. before life settles down again .. all the best & glad you enjoyed the post .. Hilary

Theresa Milstein said...

What a timely W post. The last one took over the American airwaves. From all the Internet headlines, I can see this one will too.

By the way, I live on Windsor Street. Sadly, it's not posh.

Jannie Funster said...

My mum has albums of Royal People Stuff, she made them herself as a teen. I used to spend hour and hours up in the attic poring over the magazine and newspaper clippings.

I so want to be a royal!!!!! All that wonderful food and drink. Those clothes!! Never having to scrub your own bath tub or dust your own DVD player off -- luxury.


Arlee Bird said...

A very appropriate 'W' post. The wedding has been all over the television--or so I've been told by my mother who watches a lot of TV. I'm not overly excited or interested in the event, but my wife loves it and will definitely be watching what she can of it. My wife was a big fan of Princess Diana and named her daughter Diana in honor of the Princess.
Have a fun time if you are celebrating!

Tossing It Out

MunirGhiasuddin said...

I like the way you greet with "Cheers"
So, "Cheers" and thanks for sharing. In 1972, I just saw a glimpse of the Westminister Abbey." We livee in Shrewsbury and would visit my cousin in London onlye for a couple of days. Then we moved to "Chingford" which was not far from London, so we got to see Buckinham Palace.

LTM said...

oh, man! I was up before dawn watching Charles & Di, and I've got my DVR set for Friday!!! Hooray for modern technology! :D

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Theresa .. thanks - then I guess you'll have no option but see some of it! Windsor Street .. pity it's not a castle .. sorry!!

@ Jannie .. the Canadians - the old albums are great to look through - she must have enjoyed herself .. and then you had that pleasure of looking at them too - times have changed!

Yes - lovely not to have to dust or scrub .. but being perfectly groomed would be a bit much?! Always someone around to ask for help .. now that would be nice!!

@ Lee .. thanks - good to hear your mother and wife are both going to watch .. hope they enjoy yourselves; there must be lots of Dianas, Wlliams and Harrys around .. and now Catherines will be on their way!

Thanks - it'll be a lovely day - with my Mama and then with friends.

@ Munir ..thank you .. I just like to end my comments somehow! Cheers to you .. and I hope you'll raise a glass with the British nation?

Sounds like you made the most of your time in England .. and now you have other opportunities ...

@ Leigh - it's very early for the Americans .. but thank goodness for DVRs etc .. and all these play it again devices!

Thanks everyone for visiting .. now it's X day .. cheers to all!!

Laura Eno said...

Wonderful post! My daughter and I watched the wedding of Charles and Diana together, so we're repeating the process by getting up at 4am tomorrow to watch William and Cate.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Laura .. oh well done!! I'm not getting up at 4!! But my Mama said what time am I going up .. I said I'd be up about 10.00 to see the posh celebs arrive .. and see the others here before I dash out!

It should be a very good day .. will be fun - glad you enjoyed the info .. enjoy yourselves ..cheers Hilary

Anonymous said...

I'll be watching some of the festivities tomorrow, but I don't think I'll be up at 4am.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Susanne .. I'm sure it'll be shown as repeats .. it's fine for us .. but not for you in America! Enjoy ..

Thanks for coming by .. Hilary

Soul Dipper said...

As I write this comment, I can just imagine the excitement that is building. Only 6 more hours to wait! Imagine the life change for these two young people!

Burgh Golfer said...

Interesting information! I won't be getting up at 4AM to watch it, but I'm sure the TV stations will be replaying it all day here in the States. What an experience it would be to actually be there in person!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Amy .. it is certainly building .. I've got the tv on just sort of ticking away in the background! Things to do before I leave to go up the road to watch with my Mama .. food to prepare for a party .. etc etc .. and my Y!!

@ Burgh .. good to meet you and I guess you found me via The Wedding .. I think you're right - your tv corporations have been here for the last few days!

I'd have been there myself .. except I'll spend it with my mother - something for her to enjoy .. if she wakes up

Enjoy The Royal Wedding everyone .. and thanks for being here Amy and Burgh Golfer ..

Cheers to the couple a little early - a cup of coffee raised! Hilary

Mandy Allen said...

I too spent the day with mum, watching, chatting, laughing and snacking! We armed ourselves with enough food on the coffee table so we didn't have to move until we wanted to. It was brilliant! Hope you and mum thoroughly enjoyed watching together too. I had the opportunity to go away this week but chose not to so we could watch it together.

Enjoy the journey.


Linda said...

Hilary, thanks for this insight into the Royal Wedding. I'm sure it was beautiful. Best of luck to the Royal couple.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Mandy .. so pleased you had a wonderful time .. that's what Mum and I would have done a few years ago .. Mum did wake enough to watch - how much she will remember I'm not sure .. except to say she beat Philip to being 90!!

Went to a party afterwards .. but there's a story there - next week!

Glad you spent the day with your mother and had an enjoyable occasion together .. those days are special.

@ Linda .. thanks .. it was a fun day and certainly I love the pageantry etc .. they seem very happy and that's the main thing.

Cheers to both of you - enjoy the rest of the weekend .. Hilary