The complex holiday calendar of 1902: responses to the coronation of Edward VII and the growth of Edwardian event fatigue

Benjamin Roberts

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    Abstract

    The coronation of Edward VII and events to mark the end of the South African War led to a series of public ceremonies and events in the United Kingdom that had a profound effect on attitudes linked to national occasions and public holidays. This article explores the circumstances surrounding the numerous local and national holidays of 1902. It considers the decision-making process linked to the declaration of a coronation double-bank holiday, which demonstrated the inadequacy of contemporary legislation. The public response to the postponement of the coronation, due to the king’s contraction of appendicitis, led to a period of ‘event fatigue’ in response to further ceremonial events. This showcased how much the British people guarded their right to holiday time and how the coronation had become more synonymous with celebration than with royal ceremony. It also showcased the degree to which the British people had been politicized and were ready to defend what they saw as their rights, in rejection of deference and traditional authority.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)-
    JournalTwentieth Century British History
    Publication statusPublished - 27 Nov 2017

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