King Charles III pays emotional tribute to 'my darling mama' as he thanks her for 'love' and 'devotion'

King Charles III addressed the nation for the first time since Queen Elizabeth's death with a touching speech earlier today

King Charles III pays tribute to 'my darling mama' in emotional speech
(Image credit: Getty)

King Charles III has paid a heartfelt tribute to his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, with a touching address to the nation.

King Charles III has addressed the nation for the first time since Queen Elizabeth II's death, delivering a heartfelt speech from Buckingham Palace at 6pm today.

Her Majesty died aged 96 at Balmoral Castle on Thursday afternoon, marking a poignant end to the reign of Britain's longest-serving monarch and the beginning of a new era for the Royal Family and its Commonwealth. 

She has been succeeded by her eldest son, Charles, formerly known as the Prince of Wales.

Queen Elizabeth II's death has led to an outpouring of grief in the nation and across the world, with many mourners heading to Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle to pay their respects to the late royal matriarch. Guidelines on how to send condolences to the Royal Family in light of the devastating news have also been released.

King Charles III honored his late mother with a touching speech this evening, which was televised shortly after he and Camilla, the Queen-Consort, arrived at Buckingham Palace. 

Prince Charles

King Charles III and Camilla, Queen-Consort greet mourners at Buckingham Palace 

(Image credit: Getty)

The former Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall spent Thursday night at Balmoral Castle following their final goodbye to the Queen, before returning to London today to greet well-wishers and mourners outside the country's royal headquarters.

Looking solemn but composed in the pre-recorded video, King Charles III began his address with an emotional divulgence of his own grief.

"I speak to you today with feelings of profound sorrow," the 74-year-old said, before hailing his "beloved mother" as an "inspiration and example to me and to all my family."

"We owe her the most heartfelt debt any family can owe to their mother; for her love, affection, guidance, understanding, and example," he continued.

"Queen Elizabeth was a life well lived; a promise with destiny kept and she is mourned most deeply in her passing. That promise of lifelong service I renew to you all today."

King Charles III went on to express his "deep gratitude" to Queen Elizabeth II, who ascended the throne at the age of 25 in 1952 after her father, King George VI, died suddenly of lung cancer. He fondly recalled her "abiding love of tradition" and "fearless embrace of progress", after noting that her "dedication and devotion as Sovereign never waivered."

"The affection, admiration, and respect she inspired became the hallmark of her reign," he continued, before adding that she combined these qualities with "warmth, humor, and an unerring ability always to see the best in people."

King Charles III then alluded to how his late mother had navigated her royal duties over the course of history's changing decades, having reigned for more than 70 years at the time of her death. 


The Queen's coronation 

(Image credit: Getty)

Inspired by Queen Elizabeth II's 'unswerving devotion' to her service, he too pledged to "uphold the Constitutional principles at the heart of our nation" for the "remaining time God grants me." The new monarch also recognized that his life will change with his ascension to the throne, but expressed his faith that his charity work will be safe in the hands of others.

After establishing his commitment to his lofty new role, King Charles III paid tribute to his closest family members. He began with his "darling wife", Camilla, Queen-Consort, praising the "loyal public service" she has carried out since their marriage in 2005.

He then spoke of his eldest son, Prince William, and how the titles of his 'heir' will change with the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attend the National Service of Thanksgiving

(Image credit: Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty)

"William now assumes the Scottish titles which have meant so much to me," King Charles III said, explaining that the 40-year-old succeeds him as Duke of Cornwall and is now responsible for the Duchy of Cornwall, the private estate he has owned for more than five decades. He then officially created William as the Prince of Wales, a title Charles had held since 1969, and Kate Middleton as the Princess of Wales, a title formerly held by Princess Diana.

“With Catherine beside him, our new Prince and Princess of Wales will, I know, continue to inspire and lead our national conversations, helping to bring the marginal to the center ground where vital help can be given," he added.

King Charles III also gave a nod to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who happened to be in England for a short charity trip when the news of the Queen's death broke.

"I want also to express my love for Harry and Meghan as they continue to build their lives overseas," he said.

The King finished off his powerful address with heartfelt words to his "darling mama", as well as a fitting quote from the Shakespearean play, Hamlet.

"As you begin your last great journey to join my dear late Papa, I want simply to say this: thank you. Thank you for your love and devotion to our family and to the family of nations you have served so diligently all these years."

“May ‘flights of Angels sing thee to thy rest’.”

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.