The Life and Legacy of Queen Elizabeth II


Ava Raiter, Staff Writer

The longest-reigning monarch to ever grace Britain’s throne, Queen Elizabeth II, passed away on September 8, 2022 at the age of 96. The world seemed to stop when news of the Queen’s death began circulating and people from around the world shared their sympathies for her family. Queen Elizabeth II’s life was a powerful example of female leadership and feminism in a modern society dominated by male leaders. Her rule inspired generations of girls, showing them that women could lead while using their voices for the greater good.

Elizabeth was born on April 21, 1926 to the Duke and Duchess of York. She had one sister, Margaret Rose, who was born in 1930. For much of her early life, Elizabeth and her sister were schooled by a governess and spent their free time playing games and running outside. Elizabeth loved dogs, especially corgis, and horses. Princess Elizabeth and Margaret lived an ordinary childhood while their grandfather George V was King, but when he died in 1936, everything changed. 

After George V’s death, Princess Elizabeth’s uncle Edward VIII became King but decided to abdicate later that year, making Elizabeth’s father, George VI, King of England and Princess Elizabeth the future Queen. When George VI became King, Elizabeth and her family moved into Buckingham Palace. Elizabeth’s private childhood had ended and she immediately became more of a public figure due to her father’s status. 

In 1940, during the height of World War II, Elizabeth and Margaret moved to Windsor Castle while their parents stayed in London to advocate for the war effort. While at Windsor, Elizabeth and Margaret were not exempt from the duties of wartime. They took part in air raids and used a food rationing system, but were still able to continue their education with their governess

In 1952, Elizabeth’s father King George VI died, making her Queen of England at just 25 years old. When Elizabeth assumed the throne, she became an extremely public figure and invested herself in being a Queen for the people. In 1953, Queen Elizabeth and her husband, Philip, went on a six month 45,000 mile tour of the British Commonwealth over which the Queen resided. Visit stops included Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Jamaica, among others, while the Queen’s children Charles and Anne remained at home. In the following years the Queen made an effort to travel and be a part of the community of her people by engaging in global culture. She also traveled to China, the United States, India, Germany, and became the first British monarch to visit South America.

Although Queen Elizabeth traveled for most of Charles and Anne’s childhood years, she certainly was a significant part of their life. When Prince Charles married Diana Spencer and the scandal of their relationship was made public, Queen Elizabeth urged the couple to divorce because of the strains it caused the royal family. Diana’s death a year later was a mournful time for the country, and Queen Elizabeth attended her funeral to show support for her anguished grandchildren.

Queen Elizabeth continued to support and be a uniting force in her family as well as a prominent figure in the United Kingdom and the rest of the world. As she aged, Queen Elizabeth kept up with her royal functions. “For nearly all her reign, the Queen would read a selection of the 200 to 300 letters that she received daily, as well as review official papers and documents sent her way from government ministers and her representatives in foreign countries” (Dougherty and Sutton 45). Despite being responsible for royal duties, Queen Elizabeth took time each day to read letters from her supporters and involve herself in the lives of her people.

Because of Queen Elizabeth’s kind-natured and hospitable personality, she was adored by the people of the United Kingdom and around the world, even when governments in other countries moved away from monarchy. Though her health began declining at the end of her life, she remained a public figure dedicated to making the world a better place. Queen Elizabeth’s life was a strong example of feminism and the power of a woman’s voice. Queen Elizabeth dedicated herself to helping others, both publicly and privately, and truly changed the world for the better. She passed away from old age on September 8, 2022.


“My whole life–whether it be long or short–shall be devoted to your service.”


-Queen Elizabeth II 



Works Cited


“The Life and Legacy of Britain’s Longest-Serving Monarch.”, NBCUniversal News Group, 


“Elizabeth II.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., Editors. “Queen Elizabeth II.”, A&E Television Networks, 23 May 2018, 


Bridge, London. “Early Life and Education.” The Royal Family, 26 Sept. 2022, 

Dougherty, Steve, and Larry Sutton. “The Age of Elizabeth.” TIME, p. 45.