KIOSBlue 2880x210.png
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

These photos follow the life of Queen Elizabeth II — from childhood to the throne

<strong>May 12, 1937:</strong> The Royal family is seen at Buckingham Palace in London after the coronation ceremony of Princess Elizabeth's father King George IV. From left: Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, Princess Elizabeth, Mary of England, Princess Margaret and King George VI.
AFP/Getty Images
May 12, 1937: The Royal family is seen at Buckingham Palace in London after the coronation ceremony of Princess Elizabeth's father King George IV. From left: Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, Princess Elizabeth, Mary of England, Princess Margaret and King George VI.

Following a 70-year reign, Queen Elizabeth II has died at her castle in Balmoral, Scotland, Buckingham Palace reported on Thursday. She was 96 years old.

We take a look at Queen Elizabeth II's extraordinary life.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

<strong>Left photo (October 9, 1926):</strong> Princess Elizabeth is pictured in her baby carriage for her first outing. <strong>Right photo (October 9, 1938):</strong> Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret ride in a carriage with the King and Queen to attend a morning service in Scotland.
/ AFP/Getty Images
/
AFP/Getty Images
Left photo (Oct. 9, 1926): Princess Elizabeth is pictured in her baby carriage for her first outing. Right photo (Oct. 9, 1938): Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret ride in a carriage with their parents, the king and queen, to attend a morning service in Scotland.
<strong>Circa 1930s:</strong> King George VI rides horses with his daughter Princess Elizabeth.
/ Ullstein Bild/Getty Images
/
Ullstein Bild/Getty Images
Circa 1930s: King George VI rides horses with his daughter Princess Elizabeth.
<strong>July 5, 1937:</strong> Lord Elphinstone (left) greets the British Royal Family. From left: Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother (second from left), Princess Margaret (third from left), Princess Elizabeth (third from right) and King George VI (far right) at Holyrood Palace, Edinburgh, Scotland.
/ Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
/
Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
July 5, 1937: Lord Elphinstone (left) greets the British royal Family. From left: Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother (second from left), Princess Margaret (third from left), Princess Elizabeth (third from right) and King George VI (far right) at Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh, Scotland.
<strong>Dec. 31, 1939:</strong> Photograph of King George VI, Queen Elizabeth, Queen Mother, Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret leave for their Christmas break in Sandringham.
/ Universal Images Group via Getty
/
Universal Images Group via Getty
Dec. 31, 1939: King George VI, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret leave for their Christmas break in Sandringham, England.
<strong>Circa 1940s:</strong> Princess Elizabeth changes the wheel of a military vehicle during World War II.
/ AFP/Getty Images
/
AFP/Getty Images
Circa 1940s: Princess Elizabeth changes the wheel of a military vehicle during World War II.
<strong>November 20, 1947:</strong> Members of the British royal family and guests pose around Princess Elizabeth and Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, on their wedding day in the Throne Room at Buckingham Palace, London, England.
/ AFP/Getty Images
/
AFP/Getty Images
Nov. 20, 1947: Members of the British royal family and guests pose around Princess Elizabeth and Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, on their wedding day in the Throne Room at Buckingham Palace in London.
<strong>1950</strong>: Queen Elizabeth II makes her Christmas Day broadcast from Government House, Auckland, New Zealand.
/ Mirrorpix/Getty Images
/
Mirrorpix/Getty Images
1950: Queen Elizabeth II makes her Christmas Day broadcast from Government House, Auckland, New Zealand.
<strong>Feb. 9, 1953:</strong> Prince Charles, with his mother, Queen Elizabeth II and his sister, Princess Anne, left, as they sit in an automobile following their arrival in London by train from a six-week Christmas vacation at Sandringham,England.
Eddie Worth / AP
/
AP
Feb. 9, 1953: Prince Charles, with his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, and his sister, Princess Anne, left, as they sit in an automobile following their arrival in London by train from a six-week Christmas vacation at Sandringham, England.
<strong>June 2, 1953:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II, surrounded by the bishop of Durham Lord Michael Ramsay (left) and the bishop of Bath and Wells Lord Harold Bradfield, walks to the altar during her coronation ceremony in Westminster Abbey, London, as her maids of honor carry her train.
/ Intercontinentale/AFP/Getty Images
/
Intercontinentale/AFP/Getty Images
June 2, 1953: Queen Elizabeth II, surrounded by the bishop of Durham Lord Michael Ramsay (left) and the bishop of Bath and Wells Lord Harold Bradfield, walks to the altar during her coronation ceremony in Westminster Abbey, London, as her maids of honor carry her train.
<strong>March 23, 1954:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II, followed by the Duke of Edinburgh, wearing formal dress as they are greeted on their arrival at Parliament House for the State Banquet in Australia.
/ Fox Photos/Getty Images
/
Fox Photos/Getty Images
March 23, 1954: Queen Elizabeth II, followed by the Duke of Edinburgh, wearing formal dress, are greeted on their arrival at Parliament House for a state banquet in Australia.
<strong>April 3, 1957:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II (center) with Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother and the Duke of Beaufort.
/ Associated Press
/
Associated Press
April 3, 1957: Queen Elizabeth II (center) with Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother and the Duke of Beaufort.
<strong>May 17, 1962</strong>: Queen Elizabeth II inspects the Grenadier Guards during a military inspection in the gardens of Buckingham Palace in London, England.
Evening Standard / Getty Images
/
Getty Images
May 17, 1962: Queen Elizabeth II inspects the Grenadier Guards during a military inspection in the gardens of Buckingham Palace in London.
<strong>October 15, 1969:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II arrives at King's Cross railway station in London, England with her four Corgi dogs after holidays in Balmoral Castle and before welcoming at Buckingham Palace the American astronauts of Apollo 11 who walked on the moon.
/ STF/AFP/Getty Images
/
STF/AFP/Getty Images
October 15, 1969: Queen Elizabeth II arrives at King's Cross railway station in London with her four corgi dogs after holidays in Balmoral Castle and before welcoming at Buckingham Palace the American astronauts of Apollo 11 who walked on the moon.
<strong>May 1970:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II visits the Town Hall in Sydney with Emmet McDermott, Lord Mayor of Sydney, during her tour of Australia. She is there in connection with the bicentenary of Captain Cook's 1770 expedition to Australia.
/ Keystone/Getty Images
/
Keystone/Getty Images
May 1970: Queen Elizabeth II visits the Town Hall in Sydney with Sydney Lord Mayor Emmet McDermott during her tour of Australia. She is there in connection with the bicentenary of Captain Cook's 1770 expedition to Australia.
<strong>July 29, 1981:</strong> Prince Charles and his bride Diana, Princess of Wales, wave from the balcony of Buckingham Palace after their marriage at St. Paul's Cathedral in London, England.
/ Associated Press
/
Associated Press
July 29, 1981: Prince Charles and his bride Diana, Princess of Wales, wave from the balcony of Buckingham Palace after their marriage at St. Paul's Cathedral in London.
<strong>July 26, 1981:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II presents her son Prince Charles with a trophy after the Prince's team, England II, beat Spain 10-5 for the Silver Jubilee Polo Cup at the Guards Polo Club in Windsor, England.
/ Associated Press
/
Associated Press
July 26, 1981: Queen Elizabeth II presents her son Prince Charles with a trophy after his team, England II, beat Spain 10-5 for the Silver Jubilee Polo Cup at the Guards Polo Club in Windsor, England.
<strong>June 9, 1982:</strong> United States President Ronald Reagan and Queen Elizabeth II attend attend a gala dinner at Windsor Castle in London, England.
/ McCarthy/Getty Images
/
McCarthy/Getty Images
June 9, 1982: U.S. President Ronald Reagan and Queen Elizabeth II attend a gala dinner at Windsor Castle in London.
<strong>September 4, 1982:</strong> The Royal family share a joke with Geoff Capes as they attend the Braemar Highland Games in Scotland. From left: The Queen Mother, Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Diana, Prince Charles and Geoff Capes.
/ Mirrorpix/Getty Images
/
Mirrorpix/Getty Images
Sept. 4, 1982: The royal family share a joke with Geoff Capes as they attend the Braemar Highland Games in Scotland. From left: The Queen Mother, Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Diana, Prince Charles and Geoff Capes.
<strong>March 20, 1995:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II and South African President Nelson Mandela walk from the president's office to parliament in Cape Town, South Africa during the queen's week-long celebratory visit to the country.
/ Walter Dhladhla/AFP/Getty Images
/
Walter Dhladhla/AFP/Getty Images
March 20, 1995: Queen Elizabeth II and South African President Nelson Mandela walk from the president's office to parliament in Cape Town, South Africa, during the queen's week-long celebratory visit to the country.
<strong>June 4, 2002:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip ride in the Golden State Carriage at the head of a parade from Buckingham Palace to St. Paul's Cathedral to celebrate the Queen's Golden Jubilee along The Mall in London, England.
/ Sion Touhig/ Images
/
Sion Touhig/ Images
June 4, 2002: Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip ride in the Golden State Carriage at the head of a parade from Buckingham Palace to St. Paul's Cathedral to celebrate the Queen's Golden Jubilee in London.
<strong>November 18, 2007:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II (center) and Prince Philip (right front) are joined by Prince Charles (left front), Prince Edward (right back), Princess Anne (center back) and Prince Andrew (left back).
/ Tim Graham/AFP/Getty Images
/
Tim Graham/AFP/Getty Images
Nov. 18, 2007: Queen Elizabeth II (center) and Prince Philip (right front) are joined by Prince Charles (left front), Prince Edward (right back), Princess Anne (center back) and Prince Andrew (left back).
<strong>May 18, 2011:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, visit the Guinness Storehouse and watch the pouring of a pint in Dublin, Ireland. The Duke and Queen's visit to Ireland was the first by a monarch since 1911.
/ Pool/Getty Images
/
Pool/Getty Images
May 18, 2011: Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, visit the Guinness Storehouse and watch the pouring of a pint in Dublin, Ireland. The duke and queen's visit to Ireland was the first by a monarch since 1911.
<strong>July 27, 2012:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II speaks during the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in London, England.
/ Pool/Getty Images
/
Pool/Getty Images
July 27, 2012: Queen Elizabeth II speaks during the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in London.
<strong>June 14, 2014:</strong> Members of the British royal family watch the fly-past as they stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace following the Trooping the Colour. From left: Queen Elizabeth II; Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh; Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex; Prince Harry; Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge; and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge.
/ Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images
/
Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images
June 14, 2014: Members of the British royal family watch the fly-past as they stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace following the Trooping the Colour. From left: Queen Elizabeth II; Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh; Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex; Prince Harry; Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge; and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge.
<strong>June 12, 2016:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh wave to guests attending "The Patron's Lunch" celebrations for The Queen's 90th birthday on The Mall in London, England.
/ Arthur Edwards/WPA Pool/Getty Images
/
WPA Pool/Getty Images
June 12, 2016: Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, wave to guests attending "The Patron's Lunch" celebrations for the queen's 90th birthday in London.
<strong>May 13, 2017:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II driving her Range Rover around the Windsor Horse Show in Windsor, England.
/ Mark Cuthbert/UK Press/Getty Images
/
UK Press/Getty Images
May 13, 2017: Queen Elizabeth II drives her Range Rover around the Windsor Horse Show in Windsor, England.
<strong>June 14, 2018: </strong>Queen Elizabeth II sitts and laughs with Meghan, Duchess of Sussex during a ceremony to open the new Mersey Gateway Bridge on in the town of Widnes in Halton, Cheshire, England. Meghan Markle married Prince Harry last month to become The Duchess of Sussex and this is her first engagement with the Queen.
/ Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images
/
Getty Images
June 14, 2018: Queen Elizabeth II laughs with Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex, during the pair's first engagement at a ceremony to open the new Mersey Gateway Bridge in the town of Widnes in Halton, Cheshire, England. Markle married Prince Harry in May 2018.
<strong>April 17, 2021:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II watches as pallbearers carry the coffin of Prince Philip, Duke Of Edinburgh, into St. George's Chapel in Windsor, England. He served as Prince Consort to Queen Elizabeth II until his death on April 9, 2021, months short of his 100th birthday. Only 30 guests were invited to his funeral due to coronavirus pandemic restrictions.
/ Yui Mok/Getty Images
/
Yui Mok/Getty Images
April 17, 2021: Queen Elizabeth II watches as pallbearers carry the coffin of Prince Philip, Duke Of Edinburgh, into St. George's Chapel in Windsor, England. He served as prince consort to Queen Elizabeth II until his death on April 9, 2021, months short of his 100th birthday. Only 30 guests were invited to his funeral due to coronavirus pandemic restrictions.
<strong>May 11, 2021:</strong> Britain's Queen Elizabeth II reads the Queen's Speech on the The Sovereign's Throne, as Britain's Prince Charles, Prince of Wales (right) listens, in the House of Lords chamber, during the State Opening of Parliament at the Houses of Parliament in London on , which is taking place with a reduced capacity due to Covid-19 restrictions.
/ Chris Jackson/Pool/AFP/Getty Images
/
POOL/AFP via Getty Images
May 11, 2021: Queen Elizabeth II reads the Queen's Speech on the Sovereign's Throne as Prince Charles (right) listens in the House of Lords chamber during the opening of Parliament at the Houses of Parliament in London.
<strong>June 13, 2021: </strong> Queen Elizabeth II (center) with President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden in the Grand Corridor during their visit to Windsor Castle in Windsor, England.
/ Steve Parson/Getty Images
/
Getty Images
June 13, 2021: Queen Elizabeth II (center) with U.S. President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden in the Grand Corridor during their visit to Windsor Castle in Windsor, England.
<strong>Feb. 5, 2022</strong>: Queen Elizabeth II cuts a cake to celebrate the start of the Platinum Jubilee during a reception in the Ballroom of Sandringham House  in King's Lynn, England.
/ Joe Giddens/WPA Pool/Getty Images
/
WPA Pool/Getty Images
Feb. 5, 2022: Queen Elizabeth II cuts a cake to celebrate the start of the Platinum Jubilee during a reception in the Ballroom of Sandringham House in King's Lynn, England.
<strong>June 2, 2022</strong>: Queen Elizabeth II watches with a smile from the balcony of Buckingham Palace after the Trooping the Color ceremony in London on the first of four days of celebrations to mark the Platinum Jubilee.
Jonathan Brady / AP
/
AP
June 2, 2022: Queen Elizabeth II watches with a smile from the balcony of Buckingham Palace after the Trooping the Color ceremony in London on the first of four days of celebrations to mark the Platinum Jubilee.
<strong>September 6, 2022:</strong> Queen Elizabeth greets newly-elected leader of the Conservative party Liz Truss as she arrives at Balmoral Castle in Aberdeen, Scotland, for an audience where she will be invited to become Prime Minister and form a new government.
/ Jane Barlow/WPA Pool/Getty Images
/
Jane Barlow/WPA Pool/Getty Images
Sept. 6, 2022: Queen Elizabeth greets newly elected leader of the Conservative party, Liz Truss, as she arrives at Balmoral Castle in Aberdeen, Scotland, for an audience where she will be invited to become prime minister and form a new government.

Zayrha Rodriguez