Queen Elizabeth II Funeral: what is the ‘breaking of the wand’ and when will it take place following funeral?
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Following what will be a day of procession and tradition, Queen Elizabeth II will have a final ceremonial send off at Windsor.
This event is known as the breaking of the wand, and will be one of the final parts of the funeral event.
The Queen will be taken from Westminster Abbey to Windsor following the funeral service.
It has since been confirmed that Queen Elizabeth II’s cause of death was old age.
According to the official Royal Family website, The Service will be conducted by the Dean of Windsor, with prayers said by the Rector of Sandringham, the Minister of Crathie Kirk and the Chaplain of Windsor Great Park. The Choir of St George’s Chapel will sing during the Service.
What is the wand of office?
The wand of office is a thin white piece of ceremonial equipment, which was once used by the Lord Chamberlain back in the history to keep courtiers in check.
The current Lord Chamberlain is Lord Andrew Parker, Baron Parker of Minsmere, who was appointed on 1 April 2021 and whose first official duties involved planning the funeral of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
What is the breaking of the wand of the office?
The breaking of the wand of office is a ceremonial tradition which brings to an end the sovereign of a monarch.
For Queen Elizabeth II, the wand will be broken and then placed on the late monarch’s coffin.
The website reads: “Prior to the final Hymn, the Imperial State Crown, the Orb and the Sceptre will be removed from Her Majesty The Queen’s Coffin, and placed on the Altar.
“At the end of the final Hymn, The King will place The Queen’s Company Camp Colour of the Grenadier Guards on Her Majesty’s Coffin. At the same time, The Lord Chamberlain will "break" his Wand of Office and place it on the Coffin.
The burial will only take place this evening, following the funeral.
The website adds: “As The Queen’s Coffin is lowered into the Royal Vault, the Dean of Windsor will say a Psalm and the Commendation before Garter King of Arms pronounces Her Majesty’s styles and titles.
“A Private Burial will take place in The King George VI Memorial Chapel later that evening, conducted by the Dean of Windsor.”
This is a tradition never before seen so widely, as the last time this took place was on 15 February 1952 at the funeral of King George VI, who was the father of Queen Elizabeth II.