Queen Elizabeth II: The life of Britain’s longest serving monarch

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Queen Elizabeth II has died in Scotland aged 96 after battling health problems since last October, the Royal Family announced Thursday. Queen Elizabeth II reigned for 70 years, which was longer than any British monarch in history and any current monarch in the world.

She was born on April 21, 1926, in Mayfair, London, as the first child of the Duke and Duchess of York. Her father acceded to the throne in 1936 upon the abdication of his brother, King Edward VIII, making Elizabeth the heir presumptive.

She assumed the title of Queen in 1952 after her father’s death and was only 25 years old when she ascended to the throne. Notably, the Queen was also the only female member of the royal family to have entered the armed forces and served in World War II.

She was not only the monarch of the United Kingdom (UK) but also of 14 other countries, including countries across the Asia-Pacific and the Caribbean. These are known as the Commonwealth realms. These countries were once under direct British colonial rule. In 2021, Barbados became the latest country to sever its ties with the Crown.

Remarkably, in February 2022, she marked her 70th year on the throne.

Most recently, on September 6, the monarch formally appointed Liz Truss as the United Kingdom’s Prime Minister, asking her to form a new government.

QUEEN ELIZABETH’S FAMILY

On November 20, 1947, Elizabeth wed Prince Philip, a lieutenant in the British Navy who had been born into the royal families of Greece and Denmark. After becoming a British citizen and renouncing his Greek title, Philip became His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

The couple had four children: Prince Charles (born in 1948), Princess Anne,(1950), Prince Andrew (1960) and Prince Edward (1964). The Queen’s family also includes eight grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

Prince Philip, the queen’s husband of 73 years, died peacefully aged 99 at Windsor Castle on April 9, 2021.

The Queen was known to favour simplicity in her personal life and was also known to take a serious and informed interest in government business, aside from the traditional and ceremonial duties. Her life was nothing short of glory and she was one of the most iconic public figures.

However, controversies also made up a major part of her reign. From Charles and Diana announcing their separation to Harry and Meghan announcing that they would give up their royal titles, the monarch saw a number of ups and downs in her personal life.

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