Queen Elizabeth Passes Away at 96
Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor, officially known as Queen Elizabeth II, died at her Scottish estate, Balmoral Castle, on September 8th, 2022. The Queen was 96-year-old and was the longest-serving monarch of the United Kingdom. The cause of death was not specified.
Even in her old age, the late Queen Elizabeth still attended to her duties. She met with the United Kingdom’s new Prime Minister Liz Truss on Tuesday, September 6th, and was scheduled to attend a virtual meeting before her medical team ordered that she rest.
Shortly after her medical team made the announcement of her health deteriorating, she was declared dead, with the Royal Family releasing a statement. “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon. The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow,” the statement read.
Upon her passing, Prince Charles was crowned King Charles and released a statement about his mother’s death. “The death of my beloved Mother, Her Majesty The Queen, is a moment of the greatest sadness for me and all members of my family.
We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished sovereign and a much-loved mother. I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the realms, and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.”
He continued, “During this period of mourning and change, my family and I will be comforted and sustained by our knowledge of the respect and deep affection in which the Queen was so widely held.”
Queen Elizabeth II was born on April 21st, 1926 in London, England. She was the eldest daughter of Prince Albert and Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon. Elizabeth was never in line for the throne because her father was the younger son of King George V and therefore not heir to the throne. However her uncle, Edward VIII, abdicated the throne in 1936, giving her father, then King Edward, the throne with Elizabeth as his heir.
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In 1947 Elizabeth was betrothed and eventually married to Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten. Her first-born child, Charles was born in 1948. Elizabeth began representing her father at several events and on state occasions when his health declined. While Elizabeth and Philip were on a tour of Australia and New Zealand, her father passed away.
The couple had made a stop in Sagana, Kenya when they received word of King Edward’s death. She then took on her role as the Queen of the United Kingdom.
Queen Elizabeth ascended to the throne in 1952. She served as the monarch for 70 years. Her reign saw 15 prime ministers assuming office and serving the United Kingdom.
The United States of America had 14 Presidents in that same period. According to reports, she met all the American presidents during that period except Lyndon B. Johnson.
She took over as the queen at a time when the world was going through major changes, specifically in terms of technological advancements and social changes. She embraced these changes, especially when it came to television. Her coronation was the first to be broadcast on tv.
Queen Elizabeth was the monarch of a colonial power for a large part of her reign. She became the head of the British empire at a time when it still exerted control over countries that were its colonies.
Her death has sparked a debate on colonialism and her role in it. Social media platform Twitter saw a lot of love and admiration for the Queen but it also saw people sharing a lot of criticism.
Many people spoke out against the fact that the Queen was the head of an institution that oversaw the colonization of countries. The history of colonization, particularly in regard to the British Empire, is quite dark. It saw a lot of exploitation, oppression, and death. Colonization created immeasurable harm against entire nations and its effects are still being felt today.
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The Economic Freedom Fighters, a South African political party, released a powerful statement that clearly painted the picture of Queen Elizabeth’s role in colonialism. “We do not mourn the death of Elizabeth, because to us, her death is a reminder of a tragic period in this country and Africa’s history,” the statement says.
“Britain, under the leadership of the royal family, took over control of this territory that would become South Africa in 1795 from Batavian control, and took permanent control of the territory in 1806.”
“From that moment onwards, native people of this land have never known peace, nor have they ever enjoyed the fruits of the riches of this land, riches which were and still are utilized for the enrichment of the British royal family and those who look like them.”
The Cullinan Diamond, the largest diamond ever found, was discovered in South Africa. It resides in the royal scepter and is used during coronations. Many of the royal jewels, including those used in the royal crown, were stolen from nations the British Empire invaded.
King Charles will yield the royal scepter and orb with the stolen gems, a testament to the bloody and haunted history of the United Kingdom and its colonization days, at his coronation which has yet to be scheduled.
Queen Elizabeth was one of the most prominent personalities in recent history. Her death has sparked much-needed conversations regarding death, mourning, and the importance of recognizing the whole history of someone with 70 years of global reigning beneath them.