News APP

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  gplay  » News » Queen@90: 15 facts about her that might surprise you

Queen@90: 15 facts about her that might surprise you

By The Rediff News Bureau
Last updated on: April 21, 2016 09:13 IST
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-reigning British monarch, turns 90 on Thursday.

In celebration of her birthday, here are some interesting facts about her life.


IMAGE: The Queen surrounded by her two youngest grandchildren and her five great-grandchildren. The children are: James, Viscount Severn (left), 8, and Lady Louise (second left), 12, the children of The Earl and Countess of Wessex; Mia Tindall (holding The Queen's handbag), the two year-old-daughter of Zara and Mike Tindall; Savannah (third right), 5, and Isla Phillips (right), 3, daughters of The Queen's eldest grandson Peter Phillips and his wife Autumn; Prince George (second right), 2, and in The Queen's arms the youngest great-grandchild, Princess Charlotte (11 months), children of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Photograph: Annie Leibovitz/@BritishMonarchy



Queen Elizabeth II married the Duke of Edinburgh on 20 November 1947, aged 21. They have been married for nearly 68 years. She is the first reigning British monarch to celebrate a diamond wedding anniversary
During World War II, the young Elizabeth worked as a military truck driver and mechanic

Elizabeth’s love of the corgi is well known. Her father, George VI, introduced the breed to the royal family in 1933 when he bought a corgi called Dookie. Her corgis were all issued little rubber boots to protect their feet from BuckinghamPalace’s gravel in 1999

In 1981, a man named Marcus Serjeant fired six blank shots at the Queen while she was riding down The Mall to the Trooping the Colour ceremony. Though shaken, the Queen retained control over her horse. Marcus Serjeant was tried and sentenced to five years in prison under the treason act

Queen Elizabeth became the first reigning monarch to visit Australia and New Zealand. In 1970, she invented the popular tradition, the royal ‘walkabout’, to meet local people as well as dignitaries on her tours
She has a private ATM in the basement of Buckingham Palace

Her signature handbag is made by British luxury leather manufacturer Launer? and costs £1000 (Rs 1.01 lakh). Additionally, if the Queen swaps her handbag between arms, it’s an indication that she is bored with talking to someone 
A good driver, the Queen doesn’t have a driver's licence; she doesn’t need one. She also doesn't need to have a number plate on her car
She has visited 116 countries during 265 official visits since she took the throne in 1952, making her the most-travelled monarch in history

She’s obsessed with watching the popular British drama Downton Abbey. In 2014, she also visited the set of Game of Thrones in Northern Ireland.

She enjoys photography
She is the first monarch to have seen three of her children divorce
She has overseen 12 prime ministers. Margaret Thatcher was the longest-serving PM, for more than 11 years. Also her reign oversaw seven archbishops and seven popes, so far
She starts every morning with a cup of Darjeeling tea at 7.30 am
The Queen still owns all the whales, sturgeons and dolphins within a few miles of the British coast

Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images


Get Rediff News in your Inbox:
The Rediff News Bureau /