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King Charles III and wife Camilla greet mourners outside Buckingham Palace

Just one day after the death of Queen Elizabeth II, King Charles III returned to London and acknowledged those gathered in honor of his mother.

Britain’s new king has arrived in London, giving the public its first glimpse of his demeanor as monarch.

King Charles III and Camilla, the queen consort, arrived at Buckingham Palace Friday, just one day after the death of Charles’ mother, the beloved Queen Elizabeth II. But before crossing the gates into the royal residence, the pair stepped out of their car to greet the sea of mourners gathered outside. 

The car carrying King Charles III and Camilla, Queen Consort arrives at Buckingham Palace.
The car carrying King Charles III and Camilla, the queen consort, arrives at Buckingham Palace with the Union Flag at half mast on Sept. 9 in London.Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

The crowd warmly received Charles as he shook hands and briefly spoke to many of them.

Video from the scenes showed that, while some people took photos of the new monarch and smiled as he passed, one woman, who appeared particularly touched by his presence, kissed his hand — a gesture he appeared to accept graciously. 

King Charles III and Camilla, Queen Consort view floral tributes to the late Queen Elizabeth II outside Buckingham Palace.
King Charles III and Camilla, the queen consort, view floral tributes to the late Queen Elizabeth II outside Buckingham Palace.Samir Hussein / WireImage

From there, the king and Camilla viewed the flowers, cards and balloons that were piled against the palace gates in tribute to the queen, a reflection of the public's great regard for her.

King Charles III views floral tributes to the late Queen Elizabeth II outside Buckingham Palace.
King Charles III views floral tributes to the late Queen Elizabeth II outside Buckingham Palace.Samir Hussein / WireImage

On Thursday, Charles shared his own feelings about the enormous loss.

“We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished Sovereign and a much-loved Mother,” the 73-year-old said in a statement. “I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.”

Britain's King Charles III and Britain's Camilla, Queen Consort greet the crowd upon their arrival Buckingham Palace.
Britain's King Charles III on his arrival at Buckingham Palace in London.DANIEL LEAL / AFP via Getty Images

He added, “During this period of mourning and change, my family and I will be comforted and sustained by our knowledge of the respect and deep affection in which The Queen was so widely held."