The tributes received a week after Queen Elizabeth II’s death underscored her status as a constant figure across two centuries of dramatic social, political and technological change.
From world leaders to ordinary people, they recognize the central role Britain’s longest-reigning monarch has played in national life and as a global figure for seven decades.
And among the many tributes, what the Queen has come to express—the old-fashioned values of docile, selfless public service—seems to be as mourned as her loss.
Queen Elizabeth’s eldest son (currently King Charles III), who died on September 8 at the age of 96, said, “Queen Elizabeth lived a life well. I am deeply saddened,” he said.
“In addition to the personal grief felt by my entire family, we share with many of you…my mother has served many nations as Queen for over 70 years. I am deeply grateful to
Princess Anne, who accompanied the Queen’s coffin from her home in Balmoral in the Scottish Highlands to Edinburgh and back to London, also acknowledged her mother’s important place in the national spirit.
“It’s both humbling and uplifting to witness the love and respect that so many have shown on these journeys,” she said.
“We may have remembered that we took her for granted and her contribution to our national identity.”
Hundreds of thousands of people, most of whom have never met Queen Elizabeth, line up in the streets to pay their final respects.
More people are expected to pass by her coffin as it is in its condition before her state funeral at Westminster Abbey in London on Monday.
– Memories and Farewell –
Queen Elizabeth enjoyed going out to meet the public and felt that she had to be seen to be believed. Helped me grow taller.
Since her death, those who have met the Queen have recounted fleeting handshakes and passing smiles due to chance encounters and long exchanges.
Soldiers in her uniform line up to give the former Supreme Commander a final salute.
On Wednesday, applause erupted before her coffin passed a statue of wartime British leader Winston Churchill, the first of 15 prime ministers.
Floral tributes and messages sprung up at royal palaces across Britain, and mourners arranged their own flowers in London’s Green Park, forming heart shapes and spelling out “thank you.”
Your grandparents and great-grandparents will have childhood memories of their post-World War II plight when Queen Elizabeth II succeeded her father in 1952.
One of the widely circulating images online is of the Queen walking hand in hand with Paddington Bear with her corgi dog.
It reads, “I have done my duty, Paddington.” “Take me to her husband.”
Prince Philip, whom she described as a “constant strength and guide,” died last April at the age of 99.
His death, and the image of the Queen sitting alone at her funeral due to Covid-19 restrictions, made Britons realize her long reign was coming to an end.
Since then, she has grown increasingly frail and ceased public involvement, but has recovered enough to participate in the Platinum Jubilee celebrations to mark her 70 years on the throne in June.
But with her last appearance on the balcony of Buckingham Palace alongside Charles, her eldest sons Prince William and Prince George, there is little doubt that she is passing the crown on to future generations. There were very few.
~ “Reassuring Presence” ~
The Queen held office until two days before she died, appointing the new British Prime Minister Liz Truss on September 6th.
Her final public statement was made on September 7th. As Queen of Canada, she sent a message of sympathy to the victims of the Saskatchewan stabbing.
Her death the next day was sudden, even though six hours before the announcement, the palace had indicated the end was near in a rare health bulletin.
Praises flooded the United Nations from the Vatican for a woman on the throne in the aftermath of World War II, which started the Cold War.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres has called her “a strength through decades of profound change” as world leaders such as Mao Zedong, Nikita Khrushchev, Nelson Mandela and Barack Obama come and go. I called her, but she stayed there.
John Major, the oldest living prime minister, said she “embodied the heart and soul of our country”, reflecting his view that she was a link between the past and the present. world.
“Sorrow is the price of love,” said US President Joe Biden, quoting poignant words he spoke just days after the September 11, 2001 attacks.