Queen Elizabeth II is the longest-reigning monarch in British history.
Elizabeth was born April 21, 1926, in London. She is held here by her mother, also named Elizabeth. Her father would later become King George VI.
Princess Elizabeth poses for a photo at her London home in 1928.
Princess Elizabeth is seen with her uncle Edward, Prince of Wales, during a visit to Balmoral, Scotland, in September 1933. He would go on to become King Edward VIII in 1936. But when he abdicated later that year, Elizabeth’s father became King and she became heir presumptive.
From left, Princess Elizabeth, King George VI, Queen Elizabeth and Princess Margaret wave to the crowd from the balcony of Buckingham Palace on June 22, 1939.
Elizabeth rides a horse in Windsor, England, in 1940. Her love of horses has been well documented.
A 14-year-old Elizabeth, right, sits next to her sister for a radio broadcast on October 13, 1940. On the broadcast, her first, she said that England’s children were full of cheerfulness and courage.
Princess Elizabeth shakes hands with an officer of the Grenadier Guards on May 29, 1942. King George VI made Elizabeth an honorary colonel in the Royal Army regiment.
Elizabeth, right, and Princess Margaret wear summer dresses circa 1942. Margaret is Elizabeth’s only sibling.
With the Drakensberg Mountains behind her, Princess Elizabeth sits in South Africa’s Natal National Park on April 21, 1947. It was her 21st birthday.
On November 20, 1947, Elizabeth wed Prince Philip, a lieutenant in the British Navy who had been born into the royal families of Greece and Denmark. After becoming a British citizen and renouncing his Greek title, Philip became His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. His wife became the Duchess of Edinburgh.
Princess Elizabeth arrives at a state banquet in London in March 1950.
Elizabeth ascended to the throne in February 1952, when her father died of lung cancer at the age of 56. Here, she walks to the altar during her coronation ceremony on June 2, 1953.
Queen Elizabeth II is photographed on the balcony of Melbourne’s Government House during her tour of Australia in March 1954.
From left, Princess Margaret, Queen Elizabeth II and the Queen Mother visit Epsom Downs Racecourse in June 1958.
The Queen holds her son Prince Andrew while his sister, Princess Anne, watches during a family holiday at Scotland’s Balmoral Castle in September 1960. The Queen has four children, including sons Charles and Edward.
Queen Elizabeth II is seen during the state opening of Parliament in April 1966.
Queen Elizabeth II with her oldest son, Prince Charles, in 1969. Charles is next in line for the throne.
Prince Charles adjusts his coronet during his investiture ceremony as Prince of Wales in 1969.
The Queen and Prince Philip wave from a plane ramp shortly before taking off from Tokyo in May 1975.
The Queen takes a portrait at Windsor Castle for her 50th birthday on April 21, 1976.
The Queen meets the crowds during her royal tour of New Zealand in 1977.
Elizabeth walks with some of her corgis at the Windsor Horse Trials in May 1980.
The Queen stands next to Prince Charles as he kisses his new bride, Princess Diana, on July 29, 1981.
Elizabeth takes pictures of her husband during a horse show in Windsor in May 1982.
Elizabeth drives her Land Rover during the Royal Windsor Horse Show in May 1992.
While at Buckingham Palace, the Queen and Prince Philip view the floral tributes to Princess Diana after her tragic death in 1997.
The Queen addresses the nation on the night before Princess Diana’s funeral in 1997.
Prince Charles looks back at his mother after wedding Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, in April 2005.
The Queen, second from right, greets a crowd from the balcony of Buckingham Palace on April 29, 2011. Her grandson Prince William, third from left, had just married Catherine Middleton.
The Queen’s signature is seen in the visitors book at Aras An Uachtarain, the Irish President’s official residence in Dublin in May 2011.
Madame Tussauds London reveals a wax figure of the Queen in May 2012.
Prince Charles kisses his mother’s hand on stage as singer Paul McCartney, far right, looks on at the Diamond Jubilee concert in June 2012. The Diamond Jubilee celebrations marked Elizabeth’s 60th anniversary as Queen.
The Queen tours the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in London in December 2012.
A boy in Belfast, Northern Ireland, takes a selfie in front of the Queen in June 2014.
The Queen enters the Great Hall at Edinburgh Castle after attending a commemorative service for the Scottish National War Memorial in July 2014.
The Queen waits to give her speech during the state opening of Parliament in May 2015.
Elizabeth listens to her great-grandson, Prince George, outside a church where George’s sister, Charlotte, was being christened in July 2015. George and Charlotte are the children of Prince William, left, and Duchess Catherine.
The Queen takes a photo with five of her great-grandchildren and her two youngest grandchildren in April 2016.
The Queen poses with four of her dogs on the private grounds of Windsor Castle in April 2016.
The Queen and Prince Philip wave to guests in London who were attending celebrations for her 90th birthday in 2016.
Elizabeth speaks to Evie Mills, 14, at a hospital in Manchester, England, in May 2017. Evie was injured in a bombing that took place as people left an Ariana Grande concert.
The Queen sits at a desk in Buckingham Palace after recording her Christmas Day broadcast in 2017.
The Queen arrives for the wedding of her grandson Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in May 2018.
The Queen laughs with Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, during a bridge-opening ceremony in Halton, England, in June 2018. It was Meghan’s first royal outing without her husband, Prince Harry, by her side.
The Queen and Prince Philip look at a homemade anniversary card that was given to them by their great-grandchildren Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis in November 2020.