Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest reigning monarch died Thursday after 70 years on the throne. She was 96. The palace announced she died at Balmoral Castle, her summer residence in Scotland. Members of her family traveled to be by her side as her health deteriorated.
Buckingham palace released the following statement: “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon. The King and Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.”
At her death her son Charles immediately became king. He’ll be known as King Charles II. Charles second wife Camilla will be known as the Queen Consort.
In a statement, Charles called his mother’s death “a moment of the greatest sadness for me and all members of my family,” adding: “I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.”
U.S. President Joe Biden called her a “stateswoman of unmatched dignity and constancy who deepened the bedrock alliance between the United Kingdom and the United States.”
Back in June, the Queen made limited public appearances during a four day holiday weekend celebrating her Platinum Jubilee.
Although Charles immediately became king upon Queen Elizabeth’s death, it may be months or even longer before his formal coronation. For instance, Elizabeth’s coronation occured on June 2, 1953, 16 months after the death of her favore, King George VI.
Within 24 hours, Charles will be proclaimed formally as king at St. James Palace in London by the “Accession Council” which is made up of officials from the Privy Council. The group includes senior Cabinet ministers, judges and leaders of the Church of England.
Parliament is then recalled for lawmakers to take their oaths of allegiance to the new monarch.
Charles must declare to Parliament on the first day of its session following the accession, or at the coronation, whichever is first, that he is a faithful Protestant. The oath is mandated by the Accession Declaration Act of 1910.