The 59th inauguration of the president and vice president of the United States included sights both familiar and new.
Restrictions necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic disallowed the enormous crowds that are a traditional part of the every-four-years event. Instead, onlookers at the western front of the U.S. Capitol were masked and socially distanced.
But the music, the solemn oaths of office — taken in the presence of members of Congress, justices of the Supreme Court and former U.S. presidents — and the president’s inaugural address remained hallmarks of one of American democracy’s most important rituals.
American flags decorate the “Field of Flags” on the National Mall near the U.S. Capitol in the early morning before the inauguration of U.S. President-elect Joseph R. Biden on January 20.
Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th president of the United States as Jill Biden holds the Bible during the 59th Presidential Inauguration at the U.S. Capitol, as their children Ashley and Hunter watch.
Kamala Harris is sworn in as vice president as her husband, Douglas Emhoff, holds the Bible during the 59th Presidential Inauguration on January 20 at the U.S. Capitol in Washington.
U.S. President-elect Joe Biden and newly sworn-in Vice President Kamala Harris share a fist bump just after her oath of office January 20.
President Biden speaks during the 59th Presidential Inauguration January 20 at the U.S. Capitol in Washington.
Poet Amanda Gorman, left, recites her poem “The Hill We Climb,” and Lady Gaga sings the national anthem.
House Majority Whip James Clyburn of South Carolina and former President George Bush take a selfie before the 59th Presidential Inauguration on January 20 at the U.S. Capitol in Washington.
President Biden, first lady Jill Biden and members of the Biden family walk in front of the White House during the presidential escort to the White House January 20 in Washington.
President Biden and first lady Jill Biden at the North Portico of the White House on January 20 in Washington
Fireworks fill the sky behind the White House at the end of Inauguration Day in Washington.