In a previous article, we talked about how Queen Elizabeth II’s body is preserved for 10 days. And how embalming is done scientifically and the medical procedures and techniques used in it. But the question now is, was the Queen Mother embalmed?
Pre-burial refrigeration of corpses is common practice since it slows the decaying process. How however, can the Queen’s body be displayed in the public for such a long time in September’s balmy weather?
From Wednesday until her funeral on Monday, September 19, hundreds of thousands of people are expected to pay their respects to the late Queen Mother at Westminster Hall, which was the final resting place of the monarch.
Have the bodies of Britain’s kings ever been embalmed before?
Embalming has been a topic that has been met with a variety of reactions by formerly reigning monarchs. There is a lot of proof that embalming was used to keep the bodies of former monarchs alive after they died.
It is believed that after the death of Queen Elizabeth in 1603, the 69-year-old monarch’s body was preserved using embalming techniques and then guarded in Whitehall Palace for a period of three weeks before being placed to rest.
Later on, her maid of honor, Lady Elizabeth Southwell, wrote of how six women stood guard over the coffin while it was in the tomb. She said that she heard a loud “crack” as the Queen’s “body and head” erupted owing to a buildup of gases. She also said that she saw blood spray everywhere.
Almost 400 years later, Queen Victoria was insistent that she did not want to be embalmed, and it’s possible that she made this decision after reading a story as morbid as this one. According to History Extra, Queen Victoria did not wish to be embalmed, so the people in charge of her funeral in 1901 had to sprinkle charcoal on the floor of her coffin in order to remove any odor and soak up any moisture that might have been present.
Was The Queen Mother embalmed?
No one knows if Queen Mother wanted to be embalmed after her death. Because of the custom of royal burials in lead-lined coffins, it is possible that the process is unnecessary. The practice is observed because it aids in the body’s preservation after it has been buried in a crypt.
Lead is claimed to make the casket airtight and the coffin heavier, which helps keep moisture out and slows down the body’s decomposition. Lead was traditionally used in caskets and coffins.
Why aren’t royals laid to rest in the soil?
Unlike the majority of people who are buried in cemeteries, the royals and their families are not entombed in soil, so their bodies will not break down naturally over time. If a person is buried in soil, it may take between ten and fifteen years for the decomposed body to decompose into a skeleton. This is according to a report that was published in The Guardian.
Instead, the bodies of royalty are kept in lead-lined coffins. The heavy materials inside the coffins and the airtight vaults where they are kept slow down the decomposition process.
For hundreds of years, royals have been laid to rest in vaults and crypts beneath their palaces. The Queen Mother will be laid to rest at St. George’s Chapel at Windsor, which is also known as King George VI Memorial Chapel. She will be buried next to other members of her family, including her father, mother, and sister, all of whom have already been placed there.
After the funeral for the former Duchess of Edinburgh, the casket will be transferred to the memorial chapel so that it can lie next to that of her late wife. The coffin of King Philip currently rests on a marble slab in the vault, where it is surrounded by the coffins of nine other English and British kings, dating back to the internment of Edward IV in 1483. Henry VIII’s coffin is also located in the vault.