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10 things to know about Queen Elizabeth II

- 13/09/2022
elisabeth 2 queen england biography

Since 8 September 2022, the United Kingdom has been in mourning. Queen Elizabeth 2, known for her colourful hats and outfits, has died at the age of 96, after several weeks of uncertainty about her health. During her 70-year reign, she built up an image of a strong woman, appreciated by her subjects and admired around the world. As a public figure whose life was regularly published in the press for one reason or another, she gained a worldwide popularity rarely seen. Yet there are many details about the person of the woman who has seen 14 US presidents pass through her life that are not well known to the general public. Here are 10 facts to help you get to know Queen Elizabeth II better.



The late British sovereign was born on 21 April 1926. She celebrated her birthday twice in the course of the year: first on 21 April with her family and friends, and later in June during the Trooping the Colour military parade. During this official celebration, anonymous people could wish their Queen a happy birthday.




According to her family tree, Elizabeth 2 was not predestined to be Queen. It all started with an unwanted love affair and a defection.

Shortly after his coronation in 1936, King Edward VIII decided to marry Wallis Simpson, a doubly divorced woman. At the time, the Anglican Church was against the union of a divorced person while the other spouse was still alive.

Thus, the decision of King Edward VIII, the symbolic head of the Church of England, to marry a divorced woman caused such a scandal that he decided to abdicate in favour of his brother George VI. The latter's daughter Elizabeth became the direct heir to the British throne.


Since when is Elizabeth II Queen?

King George VI died on 6 February 1952 at Sandringham Castle in Norfolk, and his daughter Elizabeth became Queen of England.

Elizabeth II became Queen of the United Kingdom on 6 February 1952, after her father's death. However, she was actually crowned on 2 June 1953, when she was only 26 years old. In June 2022, about 3 months before her death, she celebrated her platinum jubilee to commemorate 70 years of reign.

Note: Elizabeth 2's reign was the longest in British history, and one of the longest in human history. It lasted 70 years, 7 months and 2 days.


When did Elizabeth 2 die?

Increasingly ill since mid-February 2022, Britain's Queen died on 8 September 2022 at the age of 96 at her castle in Balmoral, Scotland. The news was brought to the public's attention by a coded message: "The London Bridge has gone".

The death makes his eldest son Charles the new sovereign of the United Kingdom. The coronation will take place in a few months' time in accordance with British tradition, as this is a happy event to be celebrated in style.



During the three-hour ceremony in 1953, there was first a communion service led by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

After a moment of worship, the new Queen was presented to the crowd. Before the crowd she swore, with her right hand on the 'Holy Gospel in the Great Bible', to do all in her power to uphold the laws of God and the true profession of the Church.

During her coronation ceremony, Elizabeth II was also anointed with anointing oil in the same way as was done for Solomon in 1 Kings 1:39-40.


coronation elisabeth 2 queen of england


Elizabeth II first met her third cousin, Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, in 1934. Prince Philip Mountbatten shares part of his family tree with Elizabeth, as both had King Christian IX and Queen Victoria as common ancestors. She saw him again in 1939 and when she was only 13 years old, she declared that she was in love with him. Thus began a relationship highly disapproved of by both families.

After a secret engagement in 1946, the two lovebirds were married on 20 November 1947. For her sake, Prince Philip of Greece converted to Anglicanism and renounced his Greek and Danish titles. Their union lasted until Philip's death in 2021 (age 99), i.e. 74 years.
The Queen's wedding was a low-cost ceremony. To buy the materials needed to make her dress, the Queen used ration coupons. As for the cake, it was made with ingredients given to the bride and groom. This is because the ceremony took place in the aftermath of the Second World War, in the midst of austerity.


How many children did the late British Queen have?

The Queen of United Kingdom had 4 children:

  • Prince Charles, born on 14 November 1948, is the heir to the throne. The Prince of Wales, currently King Charles III, Sovereign of the United Kingdom, was first married to Lady Diana Spencer, with whom he had two sons: Prince William and Prince Harry. He was divorced on 28 August 1996, and on 9 April 2005 married Camilla Parker-Bowles, his childhood sweetheart and now Queen Consort since the death of Queen Elizabeth II. Prince William is the husband of Kate Middelton, who is popular for her stylish outfits and hairstyles, and Prince William is the husband of Hollywood star Meghan Markle.

  • Princess Anne, born on 15 August 1950, is the Queen's only daughter. A keen equestrian, she won the European eventing team title. She married Captain Mark Philips on 14 November 1973, with whom she had two children, before divorcing and remarrying Commander Timothy Laurence in December 1992. Anne was made a Princess Royal in 1978.

  • Prince Andrew, born on 19 February 1960, received the United Kingdom's highest honour in 2006, becoming a Knight of the Order of the Garter. But before that, he joined the Royal Navy, a corps in which he served his country until 2001. On 23 July 1986, against his mother's wishes, he married the commoner Sarah Ferguson, whom he divorced in 1996. In 2019, he was accused of being involved in the prostitution and paedophilia ring of his friend Jeffrey Epstein and of having had relations with a minor. He then officially retired from public life.

  • Prince Edward was born on 10 March 1964. He was educated in Scotland, New Zealand and also in England, and became a production assistant at the Really Useful Theatre Company. He married Sophie Rhys-Jones, a commoner, on 19 June 1999. The couple were given the titles of Earl and Countess of Wessex by the Queen for their wedding.



Queen Elizabeth 2 was a true pop culture icon

She was one of the most publicised sovereigns in UK history. Thanks to television and social media, Britons could turn her cold, smooth demeanour into a 'cooler' image. She has been the subject of several films, series and portraits.

Queen Elizabeth has become an artist's muse, a true icon of  pop art and street art. She posed for over 175 portraits during her reign. The most famous portraits of her Majesty are those of the silkscreen artist Andy Warhol.  For example, he made a silk-screen print of the Queen on cardboard, in which he emphasised her femininity. He also highlights her gentle features, thus dissociating the woman from the cold, austere queen.

🎨 A portrait of Queen Elizabeth II
🎨 Elizabeth II: A pop art icon

Discover our selection of works inspired by Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth 2 Collection





The Queen of the United Kingdom is also the Queen of Canada, which is a former British colony, but also of Australia and all other Commonwealth states.

However, Canada has been independent since 1931. So how can the British sovereign still be Queen in Canada? It is simply because the Canadians themselves decided to retain the British monarchy.
So when Elizabeth 2 was crowned Queen of the United Kingdom in 1953, she was de facto also crowned Queen of Canada. This is why her face is found on some Canadian coins, as well as on the Canadian 20 dollar note.


The Queen of the United Kingdom had no driving licence or passport. This is mainly due to her status as a sovereign, but also to the fact that all papers were issued in her own name when she was young, before she became Queen of England. Despite this, Elizabeth II loved to drive and loved speed. She had a HGV driving licence which she had passed during the Second World War and took her own vehicles for technical checks.

The British Queen was very fond of dogs, but she was particularly fond of Welsh Corgis. She owned more than thirty of them during her lifetime. She was also a keen horse racer and as a sponsor of horses, she owned up to 180 horses.
Another anecdote about the Queen of the United Kingdom is that she had a personal cash machine in the basement of Buckingham Palace. She used it to withdraw money to take home for offerings at Sunday services.

All the sea creatures in the UK belonged to the Queen  
According to a law dating from the 14th century, Queen Elizabeth II had a right to all 'royal fish', including dolphins, whales and sturgeon found in waters within 5 km of the British coast.
This law also applied to all swans in the kingdom, even those found unmarked and free. The Queen had the swan marker keep the 88 swans in the Thames full time. The animals were then counted once a year in a traditional ceremony.

Anyone who captures one of the Queen's animals must report to the crown.

This article was brought to you by Carré d'artistes. We are an art gallery created in 2001, with the ambition to change the perception that the outside world has of art, which many people wrongly consider as a universe reserved for a certain elite.

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