Queen Elizabeth II
Elizabeth II full name Elizabeth Alexandra Mary was born on 21 April 1926. She has been Queen of the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand since 6 February 1952. Additionally, she is Head of the Commonwealth and queen of 12 countries that have become independent since her accession: Jamaica, Barbados, the Bahamas, Grenada, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Belize, Antigua and Barbuda, and Saint Kitts and Nevis.
Elizabeth was born in London as the first child of the Duke and Duchess of York, later King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, and she was educated privately at home. Her father acceded to the throne on the abdication of his brother Edward VIII in 1936, from which time she was the heir presumptive. She began to undertake public duties during the Second World War, serving in the Auxiliary Territorial Service. In 1947, she married Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, a former prince of Greece and Denmark, with whom she has four children: Charles, Prince of Wales; Anne, Princess Royal; Prince Andrew, Duke of York; and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex.
Elizabeth’s many historic visits and meetings include a state visit to the Republic of Ireland and visits to or from five popes. She has seen major constitutional changes, such as devolution in the United Kingdom, Canadian partition, and the decolonization of Africa. She has reigned through various wars and conflicts involving many of her realms. Significant events have included her coronation in 1953, and the celebrations of her Silver, Golden, and Diamond Jubilees in 1977, 2002, and 2012 respectively. In 2017 she became the first British monarch to reach a Sapphire Jubilee. She is the longest-lived and longest-reigning British monarch as well as the world’s longest-reigning queen regnant and female head of state, the oldest and longest-reigning current monarch, and the oldest and longest-serving current head of state.