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The Invention of Tradition

The Funeral
" . . . . new ceremonials were invented . . . . . At her death in 1925, Queen Alexandra was afforded a state funeral which owed more to the precedent of her late husband than to Prince Albert. Again, there was a lying in state (this time in Westminster Abbey), followed by the procession through the streets of London and then the private internment at Windsor. And, in the case of Queen Mary in 1953, the ceremonial resembled that of the monarchs even more closely, for she actually lay in state in Westminster Hall."

" The (TV) coverage of the great state ceremonials has enhanced the picture of grandeur and fairytale splendour which . . . BBC radio did so much to promote . . . . (BBC commentator Richard Dimbleby) "described royal ritual in the most fulsome and obsequious terms".

The Context, Performance and Meaning of Ritual: The British Monarchy and the 'Invention of Tradition', c. 1820-1977" by David Cannadine.
Published in "The Invention of Tradition"

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