Queen Elizabeth has died after 96 jam-packed years of life and 70 years as a reigning monarch. American’s have a complicated emotional relationship to the royals considering our whole “revolution” and oath to “bow to no king” but still she was a big part of world history and she made a big impact on American culture.
Here are her most memorable moments as Queen, as a woman and as a cultural icon:
- When she went along with a James Bond skydiving bit at the London Olympics
The London Olympics in 2012 featured a short clip of the Queen working with James Bond on a special mission then featured the “queen” skydiving into the Olympic stadium. It was truly iconic and precious and the Queen went along with the whole joke like a true brand ambassador for her country. Watch the whole segment here.
- Her signature Corgis
The Queen’s love of corgis was an ongoing trend not a single event but it was one of the cutest and most fun facts about her majesty. Elizabeth’s love of corgis inspired a major admiration for the breed and increased their ownership. In 2011, one year before the 2012 London Olympics, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi was considered a “vulnerable” breed by the Kennel Club. After the major media attention to her love of her doggies at the Olympics and the platinum jubilee, the breed is now a top 20 breed in the UK and its popularity has increased by 200% according to the Kennel Club.
- Her support of Margaret Thatcher after her unceremonious ousting as Prime Minister
Queen Elizabeth and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher were the only true contemporaries to serve the UK during Queen Elizabeth’s 70 year reign. Elizabeth and Thatcher were only one year apart in age and both notably women in a time where not many women were to be found in government. They famously had a tense relationship but when Thatcher was betrayed by her fellow party members and removed from office, Queen Elizabeth publicly invited her to her home for a horse race in a rare political act to demonstrate her support for Thatcher. The Queen subsequently awarded Maragaret Thatcher Britain’s highest honor, The Order of Merit and a title for her husband who became Sir Denis Thatcher. She attended Margaret’s funeral against normal royal protocol which does not allow royals to attend commoner funerals.
- When she made her grandson blush and smile while he was supposed to be on military duty
When Prince Harry along with other members of the British military were being commissioned as officers, Queen Elizabeth attended in her official capacity but took time to play grandma too clearly sharing some joke or well wish which caused her grandson to brightly blush and smile while in line at attention.
- When she put the past behind her and said she wanted Camilla Parker Bowles Queen Consort to heir Prince Charles when he becomes King
When Camilla and Charles married in 2005, the Queen made clear that she would only ever want Camilla to become Princess Consort if she had her way, likely due to the controversy surrounding her relationship with Charles during his marriage to Princess Diana. In February of 2022, the Queen made a public statement that it was her “sincere wish” that Camilla be crowned as Queen Consort showing a major healing between the two women and between the Queen and her son.
Camilla’s title is ultimately not up to the Queen to decide, but her wishes will go a long way as the coronation begins for Prince Charles to take over as king.
- When she and her sister partied with the people on VE Day
According to a 2015 documentary and several other supporting works which interviewed close confidants and friends of Queen Elizabeth and the crown, Elizabeth and her sister Margaret got permission to join the festivities on VE day. They went out on the town by sneaking out the backdoor of the palace. The girls got up to all kinds of fun corroborated by several witnesses including a conga line at the usually stuffy Ritz hotel in London and a party where couples were openly ….”coupling.” The queen confirms the story and calls it “the most memorable night” of her life. A movie has been made about the events of the night called A Royal Night Out.
7. When she loaned her wedding tiara to her granddaughter, Princess Beatrice
Princess Beatrice is the daughter of Prince Andrew the scandal embroiled son of Queen Elizabeth. Demonstrating her closeness to her grandchildren once again, Princess Beatrice wore Queen Elizabeth’s wedding tiara at her own wedding and also borrowed a dress of the queen’s to serve as her wedding dress.
8. When she hosted President Donald Trump and Queen…I mean First Lady Melania despite liberal media pressure to snub them
Queen Elizabeth welcomed President Trump, Melania and the Trump family to Buckingham palace with a lavish state dinner and loads of public friendship. Many liberal media outlets and liberal fans of the royalty tried to pretend that President Trump forced himself on the royals. The Queen was quick to dispel those rumors by the hugely lavish show she put on for the President and his family.
9. When she went to a baseball game with George H. W. Bush
On a state visit, George H. W. Bush wanted to take Queen Elizabeth to a Baltimore Orioles v Oakland A’s game. She not only agreed, but she went onto the field and into the dugout to meet all the players and was an all around good sport showing appreciation for America’s favorite pastime which she admitted beforehand that she didn’t know anything about. Watch here for the coverage of her arrival and the glee on the faces of all the players as they got to shake hands with her and President Bush.
10. When she didn’t want to sit on the iron throne
Game of Thrones was a great show (until the last bit) that we all loved and there isn’t a bro alive who hasn’t sat on an iron throne replica at some tedious pop-up bar. But Queen Elizabeth once visited the set and was invited to sit on the real Game of Thrones Iron Throne prop and she “politely declined” to do so in perhaps her bossest of all moves. Why sit on a fake throne when you have a real one amiright?