“The queen had died long before the news broke”

“The queen had died long before the news broke”

“The queen had died long before the news broke”

The future of King Charles III, the position of Prince Harry … The specialist of the British monarchy analyzes the impact of the death of Elizabeth II on the royal family.

It all happened so fast. And as always, information relating to the great events that marked the fate of the British monarchy was distilled sparingly. On 8 September at noon we learned that Elizabeth II, whose health was considered “worrying” by her doctors, was placed under medical assistance in Balmoral. Then the members of the royal family immediately went to her bedside: a clear sign that the sovereign was experiencing her last moments. The day after her death, announced at the beginning of the evening, Stéphane Bern, specialist in crowned heads, looks backstage on a decisive day for the history of the royal family and the sometimes strained ties between its members. As well as on the future of the latter.

Madame Figaro.- The royal family arrived very quickly at the queen’s bedside, after the announcement of her “worrying” state of health. Was this a sign that the inevitable was about to happen?
Stephane Bern .- Sure, but she was dead long before we heard the news. There is a rule in Great Britain: the death of a sovereign is not announced in the evening papers. So we announced it at 7:30 pm so that the information was then in Times and the Daily telegraph next morning.

On video, Elizabeth II, a popular queen

And, perhaps, leave some privacy for the royal family in the first hours of their mourning?
Yes, but only Princess Anne and King Charles were at his bedside when he died, according to British royal chroniclers.

Carlo and Elisabetta, an inseparable “duo”

In its first press release, King Charles talks about his “beloved mother”. Has the bond between them ever loosened?
No. It is true that she did not quite understand that she was divorcing him, that she was no longer fighting for her marriage. But Elisabetta and Carlo were a couple: when you are sovereign, you can get angry, but not with your heir. They had a seemingly cold relationship. It’s a matter of education: neither of them was brought up to show their feelings. Charles did not receive tenderness from his mother, but at the same time she showed him a lot of trust, respect. And they have the same sense of humor: we remember Charles’ respectful way of saying always “mummy” And “His Majesty“. I think he’s really upset. He’s a sensitive man, sure, but what impressed me most about the press release is that it evokes a period of mourning and change.

How come ?
Because he tells us right away: the paradigms are about to change. I think we will move towards a more austere, smaller, less sumptuous and less formal monarchy. The coronation will not resemble that of 1953. The royal family will be reduced to its simplest expression, Carlo’s brothers will have to go to work elsewhere. It will put the family in a bit of trouble. It is a change of era, a change of air, a change of world.

I think Charles is really upset. He is a sensitive man

Stefano Bern

However, sometimes one gets the impression that it is a “transitional” kingdom before the advent of Kate and William, who seem more capable of modernizing the monarchy …
Charles III will soon be 74 years old, his reign is necessarily a transitional reign. But it is a very useful step to establish William’s throne, freeing it from the trappings of the past, things a little too cumbersome inherent in tradition. We must not forget that a good tradition is a tradition that evolves.

The return of Prince Harry?

The location of the Prince Harryasks questions. He is the last to arrive at Balmoral, the first to leave … Should we read it in the light of the Megxit and the tensions that kept him away from the royal family? Had he remained close to the queen in spite of everything?
No, he probably went back to his wife. I believe Harry will be here within the next ten days. We can’t imagine that he and his wife Meghan Markle will be absent from the funeral, which will take place in ten days. The Queen saw Harry kicking the stretchers, but she kept her affection for him. At the same time, when it was necessary to decide and decide whether or not to keep its titles (after the “Megxit”, ed), he said “no, you have to choose”, in which he was right. She told him very kindly, but Harry had to decide his fate and take him on. It was she, no doubt, who understood most, at the time of Diana’s death, what she was going through. She understood her mistakes, her problems, she was very attached to this “child” whose weakness she saw. That didn’t mean she didn’t love her other grandchildren, but she had a special affection for him, he made her laugh. Their relationship clearly went beyond protocol. She had asked her to speak to Barack Obama of the Invictus Games(the Paralympic sports competition created by Prince Harry, Ed), For instance. And then he admired the military: his son Andrew was one, and so was Harry.

On video, the BBC announces the death of Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth had a special affection for Prince Harry

Stefano Bern

What will be the place of the grandchildren at the funeral?
They will all be there. The whole family will be present, we will see the protocol that will be implemented in the coming days. But it will be Carlo and Camilla who will lead the mourning. Kate and William will undoubtedly have a prominent place, but perhaps not their children. I don’t know how traumatic it is for a child to attend a great-grandmother’s funeral.

Meghan and Harry’s children, Archie and Lilibet, will likely remain in the United States. But will their becoming a prince and princess upon Elizabeth II’s death help bring the Sussexes closer to the royal family?
Absolutely. Whatever he does, whatever he says, Harry will always remain a grandson of Queen Elizabeth.

From public to private

After all, was Elizabeth II a mother and grandmother like the others?
She was mom, grandmother and great grandmother at the same time. The difference is that she was a public figure. But I think Elizabeth II privately was extremely friendly and understanding. Those who knew her well say that she loved talking to her grandchildren, who sent them short text messages, discussed with them. She went for a walk with them, asked them about their studies, what they wanted to do. Queen Elizabeth was very attentive to others. But as soon as there was a photographer, everyone was on the alert.

What the arrival of Charles III on the throne will change for the British monarchy

Personally, what image of this royal family will you remember?
That of people who manage to unite in great moments, of mourning as well as of joy, and who thus can unite the nation. After all, when we talk about the royal family, we also talk about the great British family, including the Commonwealth. We feel the emotion of these people who are united by something that surpasses us, that crosses the centuries and speaks to each of us. Sociologist Théodore Zeldin said that basically this family is like an image: each member represents a different color, but this whole palette is needed to make a beautiful image. I think it represents them well.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.