Queen Elizabeth II passed away at the age of 96. Her eldest son, Charles, will now be king and will be called King Charles III.
Here’s about her, and what will happen now
She was the Queen of the United Kingdom from 6 February 1952 to 8 September 2022, the date of her death.
Her reign of 70 years and 214 days was the longest of any British monarch and the second-longest recorded of any monarch of a sovereign country.
At the time of her death, Elizabeth was also Queen of 14 other Commonwealth countries, in addition to the United Kingdom.
The Queen saw 15 Prime Ministers in the UK – from Winston Churchill in 1951 to Lizz Truss who became the Prime Minister of the UK on September 6th 2022.
What’s going to change
Flags across the UK
Many flags and ensigns (kind of flags, usually for the navy, army etc) that bear her initials will probably have to be changed.
The royal cypher – a motif (design or logo)used by the monarch will change.
The current one features the queen’s “EIIR” stamp – EII refers to Elizabeth II and R is for Regina, meaning Queen.
The cypher appears on everything from red mail pillar boxes to police uniforms in Britain.
It looks like this:
It is engraved on many things across Britain, like this:
Here are some other cyphers, of previous monarchs
Where all is the Cypher used.
‘EIIR’, is printed on flags that fly on many official buildings, including police stations across the UK and Royal Navy vessels.
The British military flies the “Queen’s Colours” of blue, red, and gold, and many flags carry the ‘EIIR’ in gold.
The British National Fire Service Ensign carries the queen’s initials, and some Commonwealth countries in which the Queen was head of state, such as Australia and New Zealand, have an ‘E Flag’ that was approved by her and was used to denote her presence when she visited.
All this will now change .
The British National Anthem
The UK National Anthem has the words “God save our gracious Queen”, which will change to “God save our gracious King”, switching back to the traditional phrase “God Save the King”, which has been in use since about the early 17th century.
Despite being a straightforward change, however, it remains to be seen, how readily the British public is able to make the shift from Queen to King while singing the anthem at large public gatherings.
Currency of the UK
British currency notes have the face of the Queen on them, and some 4.5 billion pound notes are currently in circulation, adding up to a total value of £ 80 billion.
They will have to be replaced, and the process could take several years to be completed. The face of Queen Elizabeth has appeared on notes since 1960, and she also features in some other Commonwealth currencies.
Some coins also feature her face, even though changing those might take longer than changing paper currency.
Postboxes in Britain
Royal Mail post boxes have the cypher of Queen Elizabeth, ‘ER’, which, according to reports in the British media, are likely to stay.
Some post boxes with the ‘GR’ cypher of King George VI, the predecessor of Elizabeth II on the throne, are still in use today.
Stamps used by the post offices will, however, change, and will be replaced by the face of the new monarch.
Pledges in Queen’s name
All British MPs take the oath: “I…swear by almighty God that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth, her heirs and successors, according to law. So help me God.” That will now change. MPs in the Houses of Commons and Lords will swear an oath to the new King, Charles.
Also, those who become citizens of the UK now swear to “bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the second, her heirs and successors”. That too is likely to change.
A little about the Queen..
Elizabeth was not really the natural heir to the throne when she was born. Her uncle Edward was the oldest son and the direct heir to the throne.
But as it happened, Edward VIII abdicated (gave up) the throne to marry an American woman, Elizabeth’s father, George VIth became the heir and then the King.
On her father’s death, Elizabeth became the Queen.
More about the Queen
Princess Elizabeth was born at her grandfather’s house in Mayfair on 21 April 1926. Known affectionately as Lilibet, she was the first child of Prince Albert, Duke of York – later King George VI – and the Duchess of York, nee Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon. Her sister Margaret was born four years later in 1930.
As stated above, Queen Elizabeth II was the Queen of the United Kingdom for 70 years, becoming the longest-reigning British monarch.
On 6 February 2017, she became the first British monarch to celebrate a Sapphire Jubilee, commemorating 65 years on the throne.
In 2022, Elizabeth II became the first British monarch to reign for 70 years, and large-scale celebrations for her Platinum Jubilee occurred from 2–5 June.
The New Monarch – King Charles
King Charles said it was a “moment of great sadness” for him and his family, adding that the Queen’s loss would be “deeply felt” around the world. He said, “We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished sovereign and a much-loved mother”.
The new monarch will be called King Charles III
His wife, Camilla, will now be known as the Queen Consort – and not the Queen. Consort is the term used for the spouse of the monarch. So while Charles is King, his wife is a Queen Consort.
Charles will be officially proclaimed King on Saturday. This will take place at St James’s Palace in London.
The coronation (which is the act or ceremony of crowning a king or queen)
The coronation will probably not take place very soon after the King formally takes over – a lot of time is needed for preparation.
Queen Elizabeth, for instance, succeeded to the throne in February 1952 but was only crowned in June 1953.
Where will the coronation take place?
Most likely in Westminster Abbey – A royal church in the centre of London.
The Archbishop of Canterbury – who is a senior bishop and the main leader of the Church of England – will place St Edward’s Crown on Charles’s head. The crown made of gold dates back to 1661.
This Crown is only worn by the monarch at the moment of coronation.
The next heir to the throne
Prince William, King Charles’s elder son is now the heir to the throne. However, the title, of Prince of Wales, is to be formally given to him by his father.
William and Kate are now titled Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and Cambridge.
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