In Tribute to the Queen


Bettmann Archive

(Original Caption) Sandringham, Norfolk, England, UK: Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II smiles radiantly during a picture-taking session in the salon at Sandringham House. Her pet dog looks up at her. These photos were taken in connection with the royal Family’s planned tour of Australia and New Zealand.

Queen Elizabeth II died on Sept. 8th as the longest ruling monarch in English history. She also may be the most famous one too. She was a rock that many Britons, and even Americans, depended on as a constant that stayed the same, comfort against the rocking currents of change.

Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor was born in April 1926 to King George VI and Queen Mary, then the Duke and Duchess of York, the eldest daughter of two (her sister Margaret would follow in 1930). The two girls were educated from home.

When her grandfather, King George V died, her life changed dramatically, but not necessarily immediately. Her uncle King Edward VIII succeeded his father, but did not last long on the throne and abdicated soon after his coronation. With her father crowned the new king in 1936, she suddenly became heir to the throne.

Even with this joyous occasion, Elizabeth’s childhood was not easy. World War II started when she was only thirteen, but her age did not stop her from getting involved. She along with her sister made a broadcast to the children displaced because of the war at the age of fourteen. She was made an Honorary Colonel at sixteen, and at the end of the war she served in the military to help with the war effort. During the war, would meet her future husband.

The Queen met now-Prince Phillip when she was only in her teens, and happily married him soon after the war in 1947, at the age of 21. They had four children together, Charles, Anne, Andrew, and Edward. Prince Phillip died in 2021 during covid, so the Queen had to attend the funeral solo.

Queen Elizabeth II at Balmoral Castle in England with one of her Corgis.  (Bettmann Archive)

Queen Elizabeth’s reign spanned through a particularly difficult time in history, for the world and Britain, through events like The Coal Miners Strike, giving up many of former British territories, the deaths and drama of her family, and many others. There were also tremendous changes in society during these years, and the Queen managed to handle them all memorably with calmness and grace.  

Whenever I think of the perfect monarch, Queen Elizabeth always comes to mind. She was dedicated to her job, honored her religion, and put her subjects before her consistently.  She continued to be Queen, with all of the meetings, paperwork and responsibilities right up until her death. Only two days before she died Elizabeth swore in Liz Truss as the new Prime Minister, and appeared at her Jubilee earlier in the year, even with her sufferings.

Queen Elizabeth’s funeral on Monday marked a passage of an era for us all. She was not only the queen of England, but also the world’s queen. None of us will ever forget her.

By Elisabeth Smith ‘28, Contributing Writer