(CMR) As the Cayman Islands joins in a period of national mourning in honor of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, who died last week, this royal tradition has raised the question of what it means to mourn.
Traditionally, the Queen's death would have triggered a 12-day mourning period, but King Charles III has requested an extension, with the mourning period lasting until seven days after Queen Elizabeth's funeral on 19 September 2022.
‘Following the death of Her Majesty The Queen, it is His Majesty's wish that a period of Royal Mourning is observed from now until seven days after The Queen's Funeral,' a statement from Buckingham Palace said.
Women's Health Magazine explained that the Queen's death is known as D-Day, with each subsequent day being named D+1, D+2, etc until the state funeral, which will take place at Westminster Abbey on D+10, ten days after her death. However, since the announcement of Her Majesty's passing came at 6.31 pm on Thursday 8 September, Friday 9th was considered D+0.
During this period, Union Jacks will be flown half-mast across the UK, and books of condolences will be opened worldwide for members of the public to sign. Gun salutes and bell ringing are also expected across the UK.
The first official duty King Charles III performed was his first audience as monarch with Prime Minister Liz Truss. He also confirmed the arrangements planned by the government as part of Operation London Bridge – the codename given to the carefully choreographed schedule set to take place over the following days:
On D+1, the Accession Council met at St James Palace to officially crown the new King. However, Charles automatically became King upon the Queen's death, with Camilla becoming Queen Consort – this meeting was simply a formal proclamation during which MPs swore allegiance to the new monarch.
On D+2, similar proclamations are made by the Welsh, Scottish, and Northern Irish administrations. On D+3, the new King receives a motion of condolence at Westminster Hall before departing on a tour of the United Kingdom, where he will attend services in Belfast, Edinburgh, and Cardiff before returning to London.
On D+7, the Queen's coffin will arrive at the Palace of Westminster via a ceremonial route through central London, where it will lie in state for three days ahead of the funeral.
On D+10, the Queen's state funeral will take place at Westminster Abbey at 11 am, led by the current Archbishop of Canterbury, the Rev Justin Welby. The Queen's coffin will be taken to the Abbey in a military procession, with the coffin borne on a gun carriage by the King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery. During the procession, Big Ben is set to toll. Like previous state funerals, senior members of the royal family are expected to walk behind the coffin.
Some 2000 people, including foreign royalty, heads of state, prime ministers, presidents, and other key public figures, are invited to pay their respects to the late monarch. The service will also be televised for the general public, and a two-minute silence will be observed nationwide.
Several events have been canceled during the period of mourning. The BBC will suspend all regular coverage to screen the funeral on D+10, and all comedy programs scheduled during the mourning period will be suspended. Other channels are also likely to interrupt their coverage to mark the occasion. Meanwhile, in theatres, shows will continue, but lights will be dimmed to observe the minute's silence, and the national anthem will also be played before performances.
All sporting fixtures will be canceled on the day of the funeral, which is to be declared a national day of mourning. The London Stock Exchange is also set to close on the day of the funeral. Also, the upcoming strike action planned by Royal Mail and RMT rail workers has been suspended as a mark of respect.