Elizabeth II (born April 21, 1926) is the Queen of the United Kingdom and 14 Commonwealth nations. [b]

Elizabeth was the first child of the Duke and Duchess of York and was born in Mayfair, London (later King George VI and Queen Elizabeth). After her father’s brother, King Edward VIII, abdicated the throne in 1936, Elizabeth became the heir presumptive. She received her education at home and began working in the public sector during WWII, when she joined the Auxiliary Territorial Service. She married Philip Mountbatten, a former prince of Greece and Denmark, in November 1947, and the couple had a 73-year marriage until Philip’s death in 2021. They have four kids together: Anne, Princess Royal; Charles, Prince of Wales;

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 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.

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