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“Throughout all my life and with all my heart I shall strive to be worthy of your trust” – Queen Elizabeth II

Happy 96th Birthday to our gracious & dignified Queen!!

Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary; born April 21, 1926) is Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and 14 other Commonwealth realms.

Elizabeth was born at 02:40 (GMT) on April 21, 1926 during the reign of her paternal grandfather, King George V. Her father, Prince Albert, the Duke of York (later King George VI), was the second son of the King. Her mother, the Duchess of York (later Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother), was the youngest daughter of Scottish aristocrat Claude Bowes-Lyon, 14th Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne.

Her father acceded to the throne in 1936 upon the abdication of his brother, King Edward VIII, making Elizabeth the heir presumptive. She was educated privately at home and began to undertake public duties during the Second World War, serving in the Auxiliary Territorial Service.

In November 1947, she married Philip Mountbatten, a former Prince of Greece and Denmark, and their marriage lasted 73 years until Philip’s death in 2021. They had four children: Charles, Prince of Wales; Anne, Princess Royal; Prince Andrew, Duke of York; and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex.

When her father died in February 1952, Elizabeth—then 25 years old—became queen regnant of seven independent Commonwealth countries: the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan, and Ceylon, as well as Head of the Commonwealth.

Elizabeth II has reigned as a constitutional monarch through major political changes such as the Troubles in Northern Ireland, devolution in the United Kingdom, the decolonisation of Africa, and the United Kingdom’s accession to the European Communities and withdrawal from the European Union.

The number of her realms has varied over time as territories have gained independence, and as some realms have become republics. Her many historic visits and meetings include a state visit to the Republic of Ireland in 2011 and visits to or from five popes.

Significant events have included the Queen’s coronation in 1953 and the celebrations of her Silver, Golden, Diamond and Platinum jubilees in 1977, 2002, 2012, and 2022 respectively.

Elizabeth II is the longest-lived and longest-reigning British monarch, the longest-serving female head of state in history, the oldest living and longest-reigning current monarch, and the oldest and longest-serving incumbent head of state.

Elizabeth II has occasionally faced republican sentiment and press criticism of the royal family, particularly after the breakdown of her children’s marriages, her annus horribilis in 1992, and the death in 1997 of her former daughter-in-law Diana, Princess of Wales. However, support for the monarchy in the United Kingdom has been and remains consistently high, as does her personal popularity.

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