Queen Elizabeth II is the longest-serving monarch in British history. She has seen her country through some of its most turbulent times, including wars, economic recessions, and social revolutions. In honor of her 90th birthday, let’s take a look back at the life and reign of this amazing woman.
Elizabeth was born on April 21, 1926, the first child of the Duke and Duchess of York. Her father, Albert, was the second son of King George V and Queen Mary. Her mother, Elizabeth, was the daughter of a wealthy Scottish landowner. The couple had three more children: Margaret, Henry, and George.
Elizabeth’s uncle, Edward VIII, abdicated the throne in 1936 to marry an American divorcee named Wallis Simpson. This made Elizabeth’s father the new king,George VI. As the eldest child, Elizabeth became heir presumptive to the throne.
Elizabeth married Prince Philip Mountbatten, a Greek prince who had renounced his royal titles after World War II, in 1947. The couple have four children: Charles, Anne, Andrew, and Edward.
In 1952, King George VI died from cancer at the age of 56. Elizabeth (who was only 26 years old at the time) became queen.
During her 64-year reign thus far, Queen Elizabeth has seen twelve Prime Ministers come and go (including Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher, Tony Blair, and Theresa May), as well as enormous changes in British society.
Queen Elizabeth II is truly an amazing woman who has led her country with grace and dignity through some very difficult times. As she celebrates her 90th birthday this year, we should all take a moment to reflect on all she has accomplished in her long and eventful life.