Queen Elizabeth II, or Elizabeth II as she is spelled, holds the record for the longest reign. She surpasses the reign of Victoria. She is also one of the most traveled sovereigns in history, thanks to her visits to Commonwealth countries.
Discover here a short biography of Queen Elizabeth II, while the interest around the English royalty does not weaken, and even increases as evidenced by the success of the series The Crown broadcast by the Netflix platform.
Childhood and youth of Elizabeth
The future King George VI and his wife gave birth to a baby girl on April 21, 1926, who received the name of Elizabeth like her mother. Along with her sister, Elizabeth is educated at home, where she is particularly taught history.
When King George V. died and King Edward VIII abdicated, she became the first in line of succession to her father George VI.
In 1939, her parents moved to Canada and the United States, while Elizabeth remained in the United Kingdom. Also in 1939, Elizabeth met her future husband, Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, and declared that she was already in love when she was only 13 years old.
The Second World War began, during which the children took refuge in the Scottish countryside, then at the Royal Lodge, and finally in Windsor Castle. Elizabeth became successively Colonel-in-Chief of the Grenadier Guards, then State Advisor in the event of her father’s incapacity or when traveling abroad, and in 1945 Honorary Lieutenant Colonel with the Auxiliary Territorial Service.
She took part in the joys of victory on May 8, 1945, by infiltrating the crowd with her sister.
→ Famous biographies
Marriage and coronation of Queen Elizabeth II
Elizabeth in 1952
Two years later, in 1947, Elizabeth and Philip were married at Westminster Abbey. They had a child the following year, named Charles, and a second child in 1950: Anne.
In 1952, the king died. The coronation was a historic first, as it was broadcast on television on June 2, 1953.
Only composed of 10 members in 1956, the Commonwealth quickly gained in importance and marked the end of the British Empire.
As such, the Queen’s trips to Australia and New Zealand, and to other Commonwealth countries, drew large crowds.
Following the Suez crisis, Prime Minister Eden resigned. On this occasion, the Queen was criticized for deciding on a successor only on the word of a few men. In 1957, she represented the Commonwealth at the United Nations General Assembly in the United States. She visited many other countries, including Canada.
Two births marked the years 1960 and 1964, two sons: Andrew and Edward.
In February 1974, the British Prime Minister Edward Heath resigned because he could not form a coalition government. The Queen allowed the rival Labour Party, Harold Wilson, to form a government.
in 1977 marked 25 years of the Queen’s reign.
A year later, it was discovered that the former curator of the royal collections was a communist spy.
In 1981 the Queen was shot at with blanks. The shooter was imprisoned for three years.
In 1982, someone managed to infiltrate Buckingham Palace.
From the 1980s onwards, the tabloid press and the public took an interest in the private life of the royal family, even inventing stories and positions. Speculation about the royal family’s wealth and stories of adultery helped to change public opinion.
In 1991, the Queen addressed a joint session of the United States Congress for the first time.
The year 1992 was described by the Queen herself as a horrible year, due to two divorces, the burning of Windsor Castle and criticism of the monarchy. The monarchy was criticized and this increased the public’s dislike. 134 In December, another separation took place that of Prince Charles of Wales and Diana Spencer. In 1997, Diana died in a car accident in Paris on August 31.
The Golden Jubilee in 2002 marked the 50th anniversary of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II. Many trips still attract crowds. Health concerns affect the queen, even if they are sometimes only rumors fed by journalists.
Queen Elizabeth II
In 2007, the Daily Telegraph said that the Queen disagreed with Tony Blair, Prime Minister, except on relations with Northern Ireland.
In May 2011, the first official visit of a British monarch to Ireland since its independence almost 90 years ago took place.
A memorial garden was inaugurated by the Queen after September 11 for the British victims of the attacks in New York.
The Diamond Jubilee in 2012 marks 60 years of his reign. This time her tour focused on the United Kingdom, while her children and grandchildren toured the rest of the Commonwealth.
In 2012, the Queen participated in the opening of the Olympic Games held in London.
In 2013, Queen Elizabeth II rehabilitated the memory of mathematician Alan Turing, who had been convicted of homosexuality.
The following year, the commemorations of the Normandy landings took place.
Elizabeth II broke the record for the longest reign of a British monarch as of September 9, 2015. Her husband, Philip Mountbatten, died on April 9 2021.
The queen herself dies on September 8, 2022 at the age of 96 years in her residence in Balmoral, Scotland. The London Bridge operation was then put in place, and her eldest son became the new king, under the name of Charles III.
→ News summary