3 min read

Britain Celebrates Platinum Jubilee for Queen Elizabeth II

Britain’s longest-serving monarch, Queen Elizabeth II marks 70 years on the throne.
Britain Celebrates Platinum Jubilee for Queen Elizabeth II

With columns of Scots and Irish guards, throngs of Union Jack-clad admirers and waves of aircraft roaring overhead, Queen Elizabeth II celebrated 70 years on the throne Thursday, earning tributes from world leaders and ordinary people for one of history’s great acts of constancy, reports The New York Times.

Britain Celebrates Platinum Jubilee for Elizabeth II, but She Will Miss Events on Friday (The New York Times)

Excerpt from The New York Times: Shortly before 1 p.m., the queen stepped out onto the balcony of Buckingham Palace to greet a sea of well-wishers, stretching down the Mall toward Trafalgar Square. She stood at the helm of four generations of the royal family, a vivid tableau that captured both the monarchy’s timeless durability and a modern family’s internal stresses. Three heirs to the throne stood alongside her: her eldest son, Prince Charles; his eldest son, Prince William; and William’s eldest son, Prince George. But William’s younger brother, Prince Harry, was missing, having withdrawn from royal duties and moved to Southern California with his wife, Meghan, the result of a messy rupture with Buckingham Palace in 2020.
Embed from Getty Images

On Friday, according to The New York Times, with fanfares, pageantry and the ceremonial precision at which Britain excels, Queen Elizabeth II’s seven decades as monarch were celebrated in her absence at a religious service that saw a rare, carefully choreographed appearance for Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, alongside other members of the royal family.

St. Paul’s Service Celebrates Queen in Her Absence (The New York Times)

Excerpt from The New York Times: After three appearances on Thursday at the start of her Platinum Jubilee celebrations, Queen Elizabeth did not feel well enough to attend a service of thanksgiving at St. Paul’s Cathedral, an event that united the elite of the British establishment in paying tribute to the longest-reigning sovereign in the country’s history. Prince Harry and Meghan were cheered when they arrived. Their entrance was carefully managed to ensure that it came before that of Harry’s father, Prince Charles, and of his brother, Prince William, who were then seated some distance away and at the front of the cathedral.
Embed from Getty ImagesEmbed from Getty Images

However, as BBC News writes, this year's Jubilee will be different. For raw symbolism, it will be hard to beat the gold State Coach, the ceremonial centerpiece of the climax of the Jubilee weekend - the pageant that will travel the coronation route from Westminster Abbey to Buckingham Palace. The Queen rode in it to her coronation and in her Silver and Golden Jubilee processions. But this Jubilee it will be empty.

Platinum Jubilee: An unspoken transition has begun (BBC News)

Excerpt from BBC News: As with so much of this Jubilee year, the Queen will be unseen. In 1977, the year of her Silver Jubilee, she visited 36 different counties of the UK, as well as nine Commonwealth countries. A quarter of a century later, national and international tours marked her Golden Jubilee. A decade afterwards, in 2012, the international travel was left to other members of the Royal Family, whilst the Queen toured the UK. This year is very different. All the Palace will say is that the Queen "hopes" to attend the various ceremonies and celebrations being held in her honor.
Embed from Getty ImagesEmbed from Getty Images

Read more:

Special Report: Queen Elizabeth II
A retrospective on the 96-year-old queen and longest-reigning monarch in British history.

Jump to this week's edition of:
World News
US News
Special Report