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Video: Jubilee festivities begin in London

  1. Closed captioning of: Jubilee festivities begin in London

    >>> let's first go back to meredith in london for a preview of events in the coming days. good morning again.

    >> reporter: good morning to you, matt. i mentioned before it has been 115 years since the last diamond jubilee for queen victoria . it is the only other diamond jubilee . you pleasithink the royal wedding was a big deal ? you ain't seen nothing yet. with bunting, and bells the british people are kicking off a weekend of pomp and pageantry fit for a queen. as england and the world prepare to pay tribute to the queen's 60 years on the throne, prince charles is sharing his own thoughts about his mother's milestone in a new documentary.

    >> the diamond jubilee gives us a chance to celebrate with pride all that the queen means to us both as a nation and indeed as one of her children.

    >> reporter: never before seen home movies released by the prince show the queen and her two eldest children. and in footage from a 1957 beach vacation prince charles and princess ann are seen playing with one of the queen's beloved corgies. prince william also spoke of his grandmother the queen in an interview with british broadcaster itv.

    >> i'd like to take all of her small moments and put it in a small box and be able to refer to it.

    >> reporter: prince william will accompany the queen with his direct family the direct line of succession front and center.

    >> in the past few months and year it's all been about william and kate. everybody seems to be fascinated by them. they of course will be important in terms of supporting the queen, but it will be her weekend. it will be a moment when we celebrate elizabeth ii .

    >> reporter: the jubilee weekend festivities get under way on saturday when the queen and the royal family attend the eppson derby horse race . the highlight of the weekend will no doubt be the diamond jubilee pageant on sunday featuring a flotilla of more than 1,000 boats sailing down the river thames with the queen and prince philip on a specially decorated barge. a concert includes elton john , paul mccartney , stevie wonder , and many others. the night culminates with the lighting of 4,000 beacons across great britain and the rest of the world . on tuesday the queen attends a national service of thanksgiving at st. paul's cathedral famously the venue of prince charles and lady diana 's 1981 wedding. a carriage procession takes the queen back to buckingham palace as she and prince philip ride in the 1902 state landeau most recently used by the duke and duchess of cambridge on their wedding day. the festivities conclude with an appearance on the famous buckingham palace balcony complete with a royal air force flyover. and i haven't even mention epd the 10,000 block parties that are scheduled over the next four days because it is a banker's holiday and people are ready to celebrate. i'm joined now by a royal expert and our special correspondent . good morning to both of you.

    >> good morning.

    >> i want to start with you because you're a lucky guy . man, you are going to be part of the flotilla. how excited are you?

    >> i can't wait. i think it is going to be one of the most spectacular things to have happened in london for years. you know, we have the spectacular wedding last year. i think this is going to blow everyone away. a thousand boats all going down the thames, a narrow river, all the bridges and we expect millions and millions. very high security because the entire royal family will be there.

    >> absolutely.

    >> i'll be in a little rowing boat sweating and probably looking a little red in the face.

    >> are you rowing in front of the barge?

    >> i'm going to be just behind the gloriana, the royal row boat , and just in front of the spirit so i'll be sandwiched between the two royal boats.

    >> don't slow down.

    >> i know. i don't want to hold the queen and her family up.

    >> one of the things that is so fascinating about the home movies we just saw, never seen before in part probably because the queen is a very private person and doesn't like to share her private life .

    >> no.

    >> reporter: i wonder how she feels about all of this attention being showered on her.

    >> she doesn't actually like attention on her personally but she really loves the notion of the whole nation if not the world taking part in these celebrations. she's always worn bright colors because she said it is important to be seen with the people and that's why she goes on walk abouts and her stock in trade. she is hard working and is seen to be hard working . she doesn't want to look like one of them. she wants to be one of us. actually the whole notion of britain bringing out the bunting and celebrating in such glorious style over this weekend really appeals to her because she personally sees this as a very important landmark not just for her but for britain .

    >> reporter: i wonder what this means to the people of britain , because, you know, the other big story this week along with the jubilee was the doctors here going on strike because they are upset about their pension. it is a very tough time in this country as elsewhere. high unemployment and all of that yet people seem ready to party. as i said, 10,000 block parties .

    >> actually the community spirit is very much in tune with royal events in this country. we saw that with the royal wedding . it doesn't cost anything, does it, to get out with the neighbors, have picnic food on paper plates, and just really revel in it. that's free and costs nothing just to be with people and have great fun in the queen's honor.

    >> it's been described like the perfect storm . we have the olympic torch relay which is setting the nation alight, not literally obviously but everyone on the streets, we have this fantastic celebration. we're hoping the weather stays. it is the first time we're thinking patriotic -- we're not particularly good here at flying the flag and saying how wonderful we are and it is the first time everyone finds the excuse to do it.

    >> reporter: don't forget we have national donut day . you have the diamond jubilee . there you are. thank you very much.

    >> thank you.

    >> thanks for being part of our coverage as well. matt and ann, back to you.

    >> thanks for sticking up for the home team .

    >> that's right. national donut day .

    >>> let's get a check of

By
TODAY contributor
updated 6/1/2012 10:07:59 AM ET 2012-06-01T14:07:59

Move aside, Kate Middleton and Prince Harry — it’s Queen Elizabeth II’s time to shine. The Queen’s Jubilee kicks off Saturday, and it is promising to be an event of royal proportions.

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Video: Jubilee festivities begin in London (on this page)

TODAY’s Meredith Vieira is in London for the celebration, which she called a weekend “fit for a queen.”

Elizabeth's son Prince Charles spoke about his mother in a documentary for British broadcaster ITV. “The Diamond Jubilee I think gives us a chance to celebrate with pride all the Queen means to us," he said. "Both as a nation and indeed as one of her children.”

Video: From the archives: Long has she reigned

In a sweet moment, Prince William revealed that when it comes to his relationship with Britain's monarch, he sees her as "grandmother first, queen second."

Click here to watch ITV's documentary

The nation is feeling a general sense of affection for Elizabeth, too. The Jubilee festivities will kick off Saturday with the Epsom Derby horse race, and on Sunday more than 1,000 boats will sail down the river Thames. The royal family will be on a special barge with millions of expected supporters cheering from the riverbanks.

Story: Secret donors: Foreign firms bankroll UK's Diamond Jubilee celebration

A star-studded concert is scheduled for Monday with performances by Elton John, Paul McCartney, Stevie Wonder and others, and a lighting of 4,000 beacons across Great Britain.

Story: DJ Prince Charles hits the turntable

“I think it’s going to be one of the most spectacular things that has happened in London for years," said NBC special correspondent Ben Fogle. "We had the spectacular wedding last year, and I think this is going to blow everyone away.”

Story: Royal fan, 75, knits model of queen's boat pageant

Fogle will be part of the flotilla, in a little rowboat, he told Vieira, “sweating, and probably looking a little bit red in the face.” His boat will be slotted right behind the Gloriana, the royal rowboat, and in front of the Spirit of Chartwell, the royal barge.

Video: Queen celebrates like her great-great-grandmother (on this page)

While Elizabeth doesn’t actually like attention being placed on her personally, she does relish the idea of Britain — and the world — celebrating together. The queen, said royal expert Camilla Tominey, sees herself as a Briton first, and a member of the monarchy second.

“She’s always worn bright colors because she thinks it’s important to be seen by the people and that’s why she goes on walkabout,” Tominey said. “She doesn’t want to be one of them. She wants to be one of us.”

Slideshow: Fit for a queen: 60 years of style (on this page)

Britain's willingness to break out the party supplies and celebrate the royal landmark is "not just for her," said Tominey, "but for Britain."

The community spirit is very much in tune with royal events in this country."

© 2013 NBCNews.com  Reprints

Photos: Fit for a queen: royal style

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  1. The queen's royal style

    Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain has a long history of fashion. Both regal and dignified, a timeless elegance has become her trademark after more than 60 years on the throne. From unique prints to fabulous hats, she also manages to portray a sense of fun with her wardrobe choices. Take a look through the queen's signature style over the years.


    Britain's Queen Elizabeth II arrives to unveil a plaque marking the 20th anniversary of the opening of the Channel Tunnel and the launch of international high speed rail services between the UK and mainland Europe at St Pancaras railway station in London, on June 5, 2014. (Justin Tallis / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Pretty in pink

    Queen Elizabeth, in a chic pastel pink suit, arrives at the Elysee Palace in Paris, on June 5, 2014. (Fred Dufour / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Mellow yellow

    Britain's Queen Elizabeth II holds her umbrella as she meets guests at Buckingham Palace in central London on June 3, 2014. (Yui Mok / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Glove handles

    Queen Elizabeth looks at a display during a visit to the Chelsea Flower Show on press day in London May 19, 2014. (Stefan Wermuth / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Decked out

    Queen Elizabeth departs Westminster Abbey as Page of Honour Hugo Bertie carries her robes after attending the Order of the Bath Service on May 9, 2014 in London, England. (Wpa Pool / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Creme de la creme

    Queen Elizabeth II arrives for an official visit to Felsted School on May 6, 2014 in Felsted, England. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Royal red

    Queen Elizabeth II attends the Dubai Duty Free Spring Trials Meeting at Newbury Racecourse in Newbury, England on April 11, 2014. (Max Mumby/indigo / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Peachy perfect

    Britain's Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip are greeted by Dean of Windsor David Conner as they arrive to attend a recital by the Royal College of Organists to commemorate their 150th anniversary at St. George's chapel at Windsor Castle in Windsor, west of London on April 9, 2014. (Ben Stansall / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Lovely in lavender

    Queen Elizabeth walks alongside Pope Francis as they enjoy their first meeting in the papal study of the Vatican on April 3, 2014. (Stefano Rellandini / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Buttoned up

    Queen Elizabeth attends the Windsor Greys Statue unveiling in Windsor, England on March 31, 2014. (Chris Jackson / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Bright blue

    Queen Elizabeth eaves the Royal Holloway at University Of London on March 14, 2014 in Egham, England on March 14. (Chris Jackson / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Mad for plaid

    Prince Phillip and Queen Elizabeth II attend church at West Newton in King's Lynn, England on Feb. 2, 2014 (Chris Jackson / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. White out

    Queen Elizabeth leaves after visiting Prince Philip as he celebrates his 92nd birthday in a London Clinic in London on June 10, 2013. (Ben A. Pruchnie / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Matchy matchy

    Queen Elizabeth attends the 2nd Investec Ashes Test match between England and Australia at Lord's Cricket Ground in London, England on July 18, 2013. (Ryan Pierse / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Full feathered

    Queen Elizabeth walks in procession with Prince Charles and Prince William as they attend the annual Order of the Garter Service at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle in Windsor, England on June 17, 2013. (Pool / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Pretty in pink

    Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip visit the Medical Research Council in Cambridge, England, on May 23, 2013. (Chris Radburn / PA via AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. Best feet forward

    Queen Elizabeth II leaves an impression of her feet in a mold as Prince Philip looks on during their visit to St Michael's Mount, off the coast of Cornwall, on May 17, 2013. (WPA Pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. Horsing around

    Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, and Queen Elizabeth II watch one of Queen Elizabeth's horses compete in the Royal Windsor Horse Show on May 10, 2013, in Windsor, England. (Max Mumby / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Arrriving in style

    Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth II arrive for the state opening of Parliament at the House of Lords on May 8, 2013 in London. (Lewis Whyld / WPA Pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Parliamentary procedure

    Britain's Queen Elizabeth II smiles as she leaves the opening of Parliament in London on May 8, 2013. (Kirsty Wigglesworth / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. Welcome at Windsor

    Queen Elizabeth II and Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, president of the United Arab Emirates, leave following a ceremonial welcome at Windsor Castle on April 30, 2013. (WPA via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. The thrill of victory

    Queen Elizabeth II watches her horse Sign Manual win The Dreweatts Handicap Stakes at Newbury Racecourse on April 19, 2013, in Newbury, England. (Max Mumby / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  23. At Thatcher's funeral

    Queen Elizabeth II attends the funeral of former British Prime Minister Baroness Thatcher on April 17, 2013, in London. (WPA via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  24. Pose with a posy

    Britain's Queen Elizabeth receives a posy at a reception at Marlborough House in central London on March 11, 2013. (Philip Toscano / Pool via Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  25. Christmas in England

    Britain's Queen Elizabeth II leaves the Royal family Christmas Day church service on Dec. 25, 2012 at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk. (Leon Neal / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  26. Flower power

    Britain's Queen Elizabeth waves to workers at the end of her tour of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to mark her Diamond Jubilee in London on Dec. 18, 2012. (Pool via Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  27. Royal wave

    Decked out in pastel purple, Queen Elizabeth II waves as she arrives for a visit at the Bank of England in London on Dec. 13, 2012. (Eddie Mulholland / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  28. Minted

    Queen Elizabeth II wears a matching mint green outfit for the unveiling of the Diamond Jubilee Stained Glass Window on Nov. 1, 2012 in London, England. (WPA Pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  29. Red carpet ready

    Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, attend a gala performance of "Our Extraordinary World" at The Royal Opera House on Oct. 30, 2012 in London, England. (Danny Martindale / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  30. For teal

    Queen Elizabeth II gets all matchy matchy at Thames Hospicecare on Nov. 28, 2012. in Windsor, Berkshire. (Wpa Pool / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  31. The blues

    Queen Elizabeth II smiles as she meets one of the taller members of the Great Britain team during a tour of the Athletes Village during the London 2012 Olympics Games on July 28, 2012. in London, England. (WPA Pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  32. Diamond day

    Queen Elizabeth II waves to the crowd outside of St. Paul's Cathedral on June 5, 2012.following a national service of thanksgiving during her Diamond Jubilee. She celebrated the day without her husband, Prince Philip, who was taken to a hospital with a bladder infection and was kept under observation for a few days in a move the palace said was "precautionary." (Alastair Grant / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  33. Boat parade

    Queen Elizabeth arrives at Chelsea Pier in London, before boarding the royal barge to participate in the Diamond Jubilee River Pageant on June 3, 2012. More than 1,000 boats sail down the River Thames in a flotilla tribute to Queen Elizabeth II's 60 years on the throne that organizers are calling the biggest pageant on the river for 350 years. (Bethany Clarke / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  34. Jolly good time

    Queen Elizabeth shares a laugh with Prince Edward and guests as she enjoys a race from her balcony at the Derby meeting at Epsom racecourse, near London on June 2, 2012. She wears a regal royal blue coat with matching hat over a white floral gown to watch the classic horse race. The race is the first engagement of the Diamond Jubilee central weekend which celebrates the 60th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II's accession to the throne. (Facundo Arrizabalaga / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  35. Pretty in purple

    Queen Elizabeth, in a lavender coat and hat, wearing her signature necklace, is cheered by crowds of admirers as she arrives at Nine Springs Park on May 2, 2012 in Yeovil, England. She made the visit with the Duke of Edinburgh as part of their Diamond Jubilee tour of the country. (Chris Jackson / WPA pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  36. Diamond queen

    Queen Elizabeth opens parliament May 2012 during her Diamond Jubilee year. For the annual event she dons her parliamentary robes, with a long train, and the imperial state crown which travels to the Houses of Parliament in its own carriage ahead of the queen's. (Oli Scarff / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  37. Standing out

    Queen Elizabeth stands out in one of her favorite colors after attending the annual Commonwealth Day Observance Service in March 2012 at Westminster Abbey. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  38. Family affair

    For the first time, the queen is joined at an official event in March 2012 by both her granddaughter-in-law Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, and daughter-in-law, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall. The women were dressed in matching shades of blue, although the queen was the only one to accessorize with a hat and gloves. (Toby Melville / WPA Pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  39. Tweed fan

    On a day filled with official duties in London in February 2012, the queen steps out in a light brown coat dress and matching feathered hat. The color choice was striking for the monarch who usually opts for bright colors so her subjects can easily pick her out in the crowd. (Eddie Mulholland / Pool via EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  40. Horsing around

    Queen Elizabeth jokes with her daughter-in-law Camilla at the Windsor Horse Show in May 2011. Known to be a fan of Hermes scarves, the queen often opts for a short scarf tied around her chin to protect her hair. (Chris Jackson / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  41. Presidential visit

    Queen Elizabeth welcomed President Barack Obama to Buckingham Palace in May 2011, and hosted a rare state banquet in honor of his visit. For the event she wore a lavishly embroidered silk crepe evening gown, and the Grand Duchess Vladimir tiara with diamonds and pearls. (Chris Jackson / WPA Pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  42. Grandmother of the groom

    The queen chose a yellow wool dress and matching hat both designed by Angela Kelly for the wedding of her grandson, Prince William to Catherine Middleton on April 29, 2011. The supplier of the cream leather handbag the queen carried to the wedding reportedly saw a 60 percent increase in sales in the weeks after the event. (Andrew Winning / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  43. Wedding festivities

    Queen Elizabeth welcomed visiting foreign dignitaries to London on on April 28, 2011, the evening before Prince William's wedding. For the event she chose full-length blue dress with a metallic pattern. Her ever-present handbag matches the swirls in the dress. (Chris Jackson / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  44. Royal red

    Prince William shows off the Sea King search and rescue helicopter he pilots to his grandmother. Known to be close with her grandsons, the queen, wearing a matching coat dress and hat, dropped in for a short visit to the Royal Air Force base in Wales less than a month before William's wedding in April 2011. (Christopher Furlong / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  45. Plume of royalty

    Queen Elizabeth II attends the Thistle Service at St Giles' Cathedral in July 2010 in Edinburgh, Scotland. The ceremony takes place every other year and the queen wears a hat with white feather plume and long, velvet robe. (Danny Lawson / WPA pool via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  46. Sparkling in sequins

    Looking regal in a sequined dress and white gloves, Queen Elizabeth attends a reception recognizing the work of the Duke of Edinburgh during a tour of Slovenia in October 2008. (Chris Jackson / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  47. Remembering good times

    On their 60th wedding anniversary, the queen and Prince Philip visited Broadlands, where they spent their first night of marriage in 1947. The queen is the first British monarch to reach her diamond wedding anniversary. (Tim Graham Royal Photos / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  48. Making it legal

    With considerably less fanfare than at his first wedding, Prince Charles married Camilla Parker Bowles at Windsor Castle in April 2005. The queen opted for an off-white coat dress to attend the blessing at a church, although she sat out the couple's civil ceremony. (Stefan Rousseau / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  49. Island visit

    The queen chose a pastel yellow and green silk dress with a matching hat for a visit to tropical Jamaica in February 2002. She accessorized with a pair of diamond brooches. (Tim Graham / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  50. Opera buff

    Queen Elizabeth attends the opera in a silver patterned dress during her first official visit to Hungary in May 1993. (Tim Graham / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  51. Ruby red

    Queen Elizabeth poses in her Burmese ruby tiara for a portrait taken at her Sandringham estate in 1993. She commissioned the tiara in 1973 and it incorporated 96 rubies that were given to the queen as a gift from the Burmese people on the occasion of her wedding. (Terry O'Neill / Getty Images ) Back to slideshow navigation
  52. Ladies in white

    The queen, dressed in her best formal attire arrives with Princess Diana in a carriage to open Parliament in 1991. (Reg Lancaster / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  53. Horsing around

    Queen Elizabeth takes President Ronald Reagan on an hour-long ride through the grounds of Windsor Castle in June 1982. Known to be an accomplished rider, the queen is often pictured in her traditional riding gear - knee-high boots, tweed jacket and scarf. (David Levenson / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  54. Fairytale wedding

    The newly named Princess Diana was the star of the show, but Queen Elizabeth looked stunning in her own right in a light blue dress, matching hat and double strand of pearls at the wedding of her eldest son, Prince Charles in August 1982. (AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  55. Family jewels

    The queen wears a royal blue dress and matching turban during her visit to Saudi Arabia in February 1979. She accessorized with a favorite triple strand of pearls given to her by her father in 1935, and the Prince Albert sapphire brooch, which was a wedding gift from Prince Albert to Queen Victoria. (Tim Graham / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  56. Ship ahoy

    Queen Elizabeth chose a colorful patterned dress, white gloves and tiara to greet the prime minister of Bahrain, the Emir of Bahrain, and the heir apparent, together with Prince Philip on board her ship the Britannia during her state visit to Bahrain in February 1979. (Tim Graham / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  57. In the wild

    Queen Elizabeth makes a rare appearance in pants on a safari with Prince Philip during their state visit to Zambia in 1979. (Serge Lemoine / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  58. Sunny disposition

    Queen Elizabeth turned heads in a yellow dress and matching turban during a state visit to Mexico in 1975. Turbans were a popular accessory choice for the queen who is rarely seen in public without a head covering. (Serge Lemoine / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  59. Heading home

    Queen Elizabeth arrives at King's Cross railway station in London with her four corgi dogs after vacationing at her Balmoral Castle in Scotland in October 1969. (AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  60. Stand out queen

    Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip made an official visit to Malta in November 1967. The couple lived there on and off for two years after their wedding and the queen has remarked that it was one of her favorite times in their marriage. For the warm weather, she paired a straw hat with a turquoise jacket adorned with diamond brooches, and her signature triple strand of pearls. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  61. Favorite companions

    Queen Elizabeth II walks with her dog Wren at the Open Stake Retriever Trials on her Balmoral estate in October 1967. For the relaxed atmosphere, the queen tied a scarf around her head, one of her signature looks throughout her reign. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  62. Spring flowers

    Wearing a pastel blue coat dress and cap covered in colorful pastel flowers, Queen Elizabeth and King Faisal of Saudi Arabia review the Royal Horse Artillery In Hyde Park in May 1967. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  63. Pretty in pink

    Ever the fan of bright colors, Queen Elizabeth stands out in hot pink on a visit to a model village in Jaipur, also known as the "pink city," during a royal tour of India and Pakistan in January 1961. (Derek Berwin / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  64. Visit to Italy

    Queen Elizabeth II And Prince Philip visit the Italian president in Castelporziano, Italy In May 1961. For the occasion, she paired an ornate hat with a simple print, belted dress. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  65. Hat and gloves

    A year after her coronation, Queen Elizabeth II visited Australia. In the 1950s and 1960s she often wore close fitting hats that matched her suit, and was rarely seen without gloves. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  66. Loyal partner

    Prince Philip stands beside his newly coronated wife, Queen Elizabeth II in Buckingham Palace. The queen wore a necklace made up of 25 diamonds and a central drop-shaped pendant of 22.48 carats, originally created for Queen Victoria. (AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  67. Coronation day

    For her coronation ceremony on June 4, 1953, more than a year after her father's death, the queen again turned to Norman Hartnell to design her gown. Hartnell, who had designed her wedding dress, spent months embroidering the emblems of Great Britain and the Commonwealth on the white satin. The dress was also encrusted with pearls and crystals. (Central Press / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  68. Becoming queen

    The official portrait of Queen Elizabeth II taken in February 1952 after the death of her father and upon her ascension to the throne. Her sleeveless dress with a full skirt is accentuated by the royal jewels that included a diamond tiara, diamond necklace and bracelet. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  69. It's a girl!

    Princess Elizabeth, in a jaunty hat, shows off her new baby daughter, Princess Anne, on the day of her christening in October 1950. The lace christening gown is a royal family heirloom, and was originally worn by Queen Victoria's eldest daughter in 1841, as well as by Elizabeth herself. (Central Press / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  70. Romantic walk

    Ever formal even while on their honeymoon, Princess Elizabeth and the newly named Duke of Edinburgh take a stroll on the day after their wedding through the grounds of Broadlands, the Duke's uncle's home. (Tim Graham Royal Photos / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  71. Here comes the bride

    Princess Elizabeth wed Philip Mountbatten in 1947 in Westminster Abbey. Designed by Norman Hartnell, the dress was made of ivory satin and embroidered with flowers and thousands of pearls imported from the U.S. The queen famously saved her ration cards in order to buy the material used in the dress. The diamond tiara originally belonged to her grandmother, Queen Mary, and was then handed down to Elizabeth's mother who lent it to her daughter for the wedding. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  72. Young and in love

    Princess Elizabeth shows off her platinum and diamond engagement ring after announcing her engagement to Navy officer and son of royalty Philip Mountbatten. The diamonds in the ring came from a tiara belonging to Philip's mother, Princess Andrew of Greece. Elizabeth and Philip, who are cousins, first met in 1934 at the wedding of the Duke of Kent, and then saw each other again in 1939. In 1946 they became secretly engaged, but held off on the announcement until July 1947. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  73. Nice day for a wedding

    A year before her own nuptials, Princess Elizabeth, left, along with her aunt Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent, and sister Princess Margaret attended the wedding of a friend at Westminster Abbey in November 1946. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  74. Royal bridesmaid

    Wearing a simple ankle-length dress and garland of flowers in her hair, Princess Elizabeth serves as bridesmaid to friends at the Savoy Hotel in London in May 1946. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  75. Practical princess

    In 1945, Princess Elizabeth joined the Army's Auxilliary Territorial Service as a mechanic. She was one of 200,000 women who joined the service at that time. The women wore khaki belted jackets, skirts, tie up shoes and caps. (Rue Des Archives) Back to slideshow navigation
  76. Guiding the nation

    With the country in the midst of war, Princess Elizabeth and her sister, Princess Margaret, pose in the uniforms of the Girl Guides, the female equivalent of the Scouts. The queen joined as a child and remained active throughout her youth, earning several badges, including a boating permit. (Lisa Sheridan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  77. Surprise coronation

    After the abdication of Elizabeth's uncle, King George VI became king on May 12, 1937. In a matter of months, Princess Elizabeth was suddenly catapulted into the role of heir to the throne. The 11-year-old princess (standing next to her younger sister Margaret) wore a long dress with a train to the event that was held at Westminster Abbey. (Getty Images ) Back to slideshow navigation
  78. Bundled up

    A 9-year-old Princess Elizabeth, christened Elizabeth Alexandra Mary, poses in an elegant winter coat. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
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