Queen Elizabeth II, the United Kingdom’s longest-reigned Queen, sadly passed away at the age of 96 in Balmoral, after reigning for 70 years.
She died peacefully on Thursday evening at her Scottish estate, where she had spent most of the summer.
Since her accession to the throne in 1952, the Queen has witnessed an immense socioeconomic transformation. Her son, King Charles III, described his mother’s death as a “time of tremendous grief” for him and his family and said her loss will be “deeply felt” throughout the world.
Buckingham Palace announced that the King and his wife, Camilla, now Queen Consort, will return to London on Friday. He is anticipated to deliver a speech to the country. Senior royals had assembled in Balmoral earlier in the day after the Queen’s physicians had expressed worry about her health. After physicians placed the Queen under medical monitoring, all of the Queen’s children traveled to Balmoral, near Aberdeen. Prince William, her grandson and now heir to the throne, and his brother, Prince Harry, were also there.
Credit: Chris Levine & Rob Munday; Jersey Heritage Trust
The words of Liz Truss
Prime Minister Liz Truss, who was appointed by the Queen on Tuesday, said the sovereign was the foundation of contemporary Britain, providing “the stability and strength that we needed.”
“We offer him our dedication and devotion, just as his mother dedicated so much, to so many, for so long,” she said of the new King.
“And, with the end of the second Elizabethan age, we herald in a new period in the magnificent history of our great country, precisely as Her Majesty would have desired, by proclaiming ‘God save the King.’”
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King Charles III’s first address to the nation
King Charles III displayed his sincerity by committing the remainder of his life to public service on the first full day of his reign.
Despite the fact that his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, had died the day before, the King jumped right into his new responsibilities, greeting hundreds of members of the public, holding an audience with the Prime Minister, and delivering a televised speech to the country.
Charles, Britain’s longest-serving heir apparent, was overheard telling Prime Minister Liz Truss on Friday that his mother’s death was the moment he had been “dreading.” His first speech as King, probably the most significant of his life, began with a homage to the Queen. Charles, dressed in a black suit and a black tie, said Queen Elizabeth “made sacrifices for duty, dedication, and devotion.”
“I pay tribute to my Mother’s memory, and I honor her life of service,” the King stated. “I know that her death brings great sadness to so many of you, and I share that sense of loss, beyond measure, with you all,” he added.
“As the Queen herself did with such unswerving devotion, I too now solemnly pledge myself, throughout the remaining time God grants me, to uphold the Constitutional principles at the heart of our nation. And wherever you may live in the United Kingdom, or in the Realms and territories across the world, and whatever may be your background or beliefs, I shall endeavor to serve you with loyalty, respect, and love, as I have throughout my life.”
“To my darling Mama, as you begin your last great journey to join my dear late Papa, I want simply to say this: thank you. Thank you for your love and devotion to our family and to the family of nations you have served so diligently all these years. May ‘flights of Angels sing thee to thy rest’.”