The queen became the longest-reigning monarch in the history of the state.
This was reported on the official page of the royal family on Twitter.
“This afternoon the Queen passed away peacefully at Balmoral. The King and Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral tonight and return to London tomorrow,” the statement said
UNIAN tells what was the life of the queen, who led the state for 70 years, and what was her position towards Ukraine.
The main facts from the biography of Elizabeth II
Over her long life, Elizabeth II has repeatedly become the one about whom they said: “this is a member of the British royal family who did this for the first time.”
Daughter of the Duchess of York, Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (the future Queen Mother) and Prince Albert (Duke of York), was born April 21, 1926 in London.
As the king’s granddaughter in the male line, she received the title of British princess – Her Royal Highness Princess Elizabeth of York. In the family, she was called by the affectionate name “Lilibet”.
At first, she was not seen as a future queen, since at the time of her birth she was only third in line to the throne – after her uncle Edward, Prince of Wales, and her father. But in the end, Edward VIII abdicated.
World War II broke into the life of the future queen when she was 13 years old. Despite the fact that they were developing an evacuation plan, the royal family then decided to stay in the country, and young Elizabeth herself immediately decided that she could not stay away.
With the outbreak of war, she organized a variety of entertainment with the children of the staff of the Royal House at Windsor, and already in 1940, fourteen-year-old Elizabeth first went on the air during the BBC Children’s Hour, and addressed the children in the evacuation.
In 1945, the future queen persuaded her father to allow her to make her direct contribution to the victory. So she joined the Women’s Auxiliary Territorial Service. Elizabeth trained as a driver and was known as No. 230873 Lieutenant Elizabeth Windsor. This was the first time in the history of the royal family that a woman served in a military unit.
The bloody war brought into the life of young Elizabeth and great love. It was then, at the beginning of the war, that 13-year-old Elizabeth met a cadet at the Dartmouth Naval Academy, the son of the Greek Prince Andrew, Philip Mountbatten, who served in the Royal Navy. Throughout the war they maintained a correspondence.
Interestingly, Philip was her fourth cousin, since he, like Elizabeth, was the great-great-grandson of King Christian IX of Denmark. However, this did not prevent them from getting married in 1947 and staying together for 74 years – until his death in 2021.
First, the residence of Philip and Elizabeth, the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh, was a small and modest mansion Clarence House in the historic Westminster district of London. Here, on November 14, 1948, their first child, Prince Charles, was also born.
For a long time the family lived in Malta, where Philip served as an officer in the Royal Navy. From 1949 to 1951, the couple lived there, and in 1950 their second child, Princess Anne, was born. Subsequently, already in the status of Queen of Great Britain, Elizabeth gave birth to two more children – Prince Andrew, Duke of York (1960) and Prince Edward, Earl of Essex (1964).
Tragic events in the family influenced the later life of Elizabeth. Her father’s health deteriorated during 1951, so Elizabeth had to take over some of his official duties. At the same time, Elizabeth made a number of foreign visits – Greece, Italy, Malta, Canada, USA, Australia, New Zealand … The death of her father from lung cancer on February 6, 1952 found her in Kenya. This was the first time since 1603 that a monarch had inherited the throne from outside the UK.
After almost a year and a half, the coronation of 25-year-old Elizabeth took place, which also did not pass without tragic events. At the end of March, her grandmother, Queen Mary, died of cancer.
In this event, Elizabeth also distinguished herself by her superiority – her coronation, which took place on June 2, 1953, is considered one of the most magnificent in history. In particular, it was the first coronation to be televised.
In the same year, Elizabeth II, together with Philip, began a six-month trip around the world. So they became the first British royal couple to sail around the globe. Elizabeth herself is remembered not only as the monarch who traveled most often, but also as the only reigning monarch of Australia, New Zealand and Fiji who visited there.
For years, the Queen has remained one of Britain’s most popular personalities. This year, polls showed that 8 out of 10 of her subjects viewed her positively, and three-quarters thought she worked well as a queen.
On September 9, 2015, the Queen became the longest-reigning monarch in British history. The previous record was held by Queen Victoria, who ruled the country for 63 years, 226 days, 16 hours and 23 minutes. As of September 8, 2022, the reign of Elizabeth II has already lasted 70 years and 214 days.
During her reign, the collapse of the British Empire was completed and the Commonwealth of Nations was completely formalized, uniting most of the former British possessions. Now the main role of the head of the Commonwealth, which is the queen, has become the need to maintain relations between the Commonwealth countries and with the former mother country.
And the role of the monarch became what we know it today. Formally, the queen has legislative, executive and judicial power in the states she heads, but in fact her role is rather ceremonial.
Circumstances of the death of Elizabeth II
Since the end of July 2022, there has been increasing talk of the deteriorating health of the 96-year-old queen when she went on a summer vacation in Scotland.
In early September, the Queen missed the Braemar Gathering, a popular Highland Games event.
Already on September 6, the Queen received Boris Johnson, who left the post of Prime Minister. It was a historic audience – the first time that the monarch performed her key duties not at Buckingham Palace, but in her private Scottish home of Balmoral.
Already on September 7, the Queen postponed the meeting of the Privy Council due to the recommendation of doctors. And on September 8, Buckingham Palace announced that the Queen was under medical supervision at Balmoral. The royal doctors said they were concerned about her health.
Members of the royal family, including the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Cambridge, the Princess Royal, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, traveled to Balmoral.
The position of Elizabeth II in relation to Ukraine
It is accepted that the Queen does not interfere in politics, and members of the British royal family never make political statements.
However, this does not mean that they cannot support certain events. In March, when a full-scale war in Ukraine was just unfolding, Elizabeth supported our country symbolically. In the photo from the audience with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Her Majesty had a vase with a composition of blue and yellow flowers on the table.
Moreover, Her Majesty made a generous donation that same month to the British Emergency Committee helping Ukrainian refugees.
And in May, at the opening of the London Underground line, named after the Queen, Elizabeth wore a yellow suit and hat, decorated with bright blue flowers.
On May 10, in the Queen’s address at the opening ceremony of the British Parliament, Elizabeth also mentioned Ukraine.
“In these challenging times, my government will play a leading role in protecting democracy and freedom around the world, including continuing to support the people of Ukraine,” the Queen said in a statement.(C)UNIAN 2022