The secret meaning behind the flowers placed on Queen Elizabeth II's coffin

·2-min read
Photo credit: Peter Byrne - PA Images - Getty Images
Photo credit: Peter Byrne - PA Images - Getty Images

Queen Elizabeth II's coffin has arrived at Westminster Abbey, where her funeral will take place before she is buried at St. George's Chapel in Windsor.

The coffin—which made its way through Scotland and Edinburgh before heading to Buckingham Palace a final time—has been adorned with multiple floral tributes since her death on 8 September.

Ahead, we track the meaning of each tribute.

19 September: Westminster Abbey

For Her Majesty's funeral, the coffin of the queen was adorned with a floral wreath that was made sustainably, upon request of King Charles, and will be buried with her later today at St. George's Chapel.

The wreath had a special connection to her late husband Prince Philip, for it contained a sprig that was the same as her wedding flowers.

Other flowers and foliage have been cut from Buckingham Palace, Clarence House, and Highgrove House for their symbolism: rosemary for remembrance, English oak for the strength of love, and myrtle cut from a plant that grew from a sprig of myrtle that was in Queen Elizabeth's wedding bouquet.

Other plants used in the wreath were pelargoniums, garden roses, autumnal hydrangea, sedum, dahlias, and scabious, which appeared in different shades of gold, pink, burgundy, and white, thus reflecting the Royal Standard.

Photo credit: Gareth Cattermole - Getty Images
Photo credit: Gareth Cattermole - Getty Images
Photo credit: Chris Jackson - Getty Images
Photo credit: Chris Jackson - Getty Images

14 September: Westminster Hall

For a procession that brought the coffin from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall, the late monarch's casket was draped in the Royal Standard, or a flag that represents the sovereign, according to The Independent. Additionally, the Imperial State Crown was perched on top of a velvet cushion and placed next to a wreath of flowers.

The wreath was composed of pine from the gardens at Balmoral and lavender from Windsor, according to The Independent. It also included white roses, dahlias, rosemary, and pittosporum. Generally, white roses are regarded to symbolise innocence and reverence.

Photo credit: CHIP SOMODEVILLA - Getty Images
Photo credit: CHIP SOMODEVILLA - Getty Images
Photo credit: Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: Pool - Getty Images

12 September: Edinburgh

While her coffin traveled along the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, it was adorned with a different floral arrangement. At the time, the royal family announced that the wreath was made up of dahlias, sweet peas, phlox, white heather, and pine fir, all of which were gathered from the monarch's Balmoral estate.

Photo credit: JANE BARLOW - Getty Images
Photo credit: JANE BARLOW - Getty Images

This arrangement seemed to honour the queen's late husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, who passed away last year. It featured white lilies, roses, freesia, wax flower, jasmine, and sweet peas, the last of which represent farewells and departures.

Photo credit: DANNY LAWSON - Getty Images
Photo credit: DANNY LAWSON - Getty Images

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