Whether you loved or hated her, there’s no denying that Queen Elizabeth II was one of the most influential women in the world. She was the reigning monarch of the United Kingdom for almost seventy-one years, and in that time accomplished many incredible feats. While you may know general facts such as; she began her reign at the young age of 25 and was the longest reigning British monarch. You may not know that she loved corgis or never entered a public or private educational institution. So, here are ten things you might not have known about Queen Elizabeth II.
She served as a truck mechanic during World War II and drove ambulances.
Before she was crowned Queen, Queen Elizabeth served in the Auxiliary Territorial Services (ATS) during World War II. She was in active military service despite being driven to and from Windsor Castle each day, which garnered her favor in the eyes of her contemporaries and the general populace of England.
She has two birthdays.
Queen Elizabeth’s actual birthday is April 21st, but her “official” birthday is celebrated on the second Saturday in June. Most monarchs born in the year’s cooler months defer their official birthday celebration to a month when festivities can be enjoyed in warmer weather.
She had 10,000 pearls on her wedding dress.
When she married Prince Philip in 1947, her wedding dress was adorned with 10,000 seed pearls. The design of the dress was meant to reflect the starry night sky, and it took three dressmakers working around the clock for a month to complete it.
She loved corgis.
The Queen owned over 30 corgis throughout her life, and they were all descended from one of her first dogs, Susan. The Queen’s love of corgis began when she was just a young girl, and she continued to breed them throughout her life. Her last two corgis, Muick and Sandy, were present at the Queen’s funeral procession.
15 Prime Ministers served during her reign.
Queen Elizabeth II outlasted 15 different Prime Ministers during her reign. The first being Winston Churchill, who was in office when she was crowned in 1952. The most recent is Theresa May, who took office in 2016.
She’s the only monarch to have celebrated a platinum jubilee.
In 2022, Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her 70th year on the throne with an extraordinary Platinum Jubilee. The event was celebrated throughout the United Kingdom and extended to the Commonwealth realms. She is the only British monarch in history ever to reach this milestone.
She is estimated to have worn 5,000+ hats during her reign.
Throughout her life, the Queen has been known for her love of hats. It’s estimated that she’s owned over 5,000 different hats and has worn them to almost every official engagement she’s ever attended. In fact, she even has a special hatmaker on retainer who creates custom hats for her specific events.
She is the only British monarch to have seen her great-grandchildren born.
Queen Elizabeth II is the only British monarch in history to have ever seen her great-grandchildren born. The first was Savannah Phillips, who was born in 2010. The most recent is Lilibet Diana Mountbatten Windsor, born in 2021.
She was the most traveled head of state in history.
Queen Elizabeth II traveled to almost every corner of the globe. She’s visited 129 countries and is the most well-traveled head of state in history. In fact, her travels have taken her to more countries than any other monarch in history.
She paid taxes, even though the monarchy was not required to pay taxes.
In 1992, it was revealed that the monarchy was not required to pay taxes. However, Queen Elizabeth II voluntarily paid taxes on her income and the income of the Duchy of Lancaster. This act sets an excellent example for other members of the royal family, who are not required to pay taxes on their incomes.
While these are just a few lesser-known facts about Queen Elizabeth, there’s no denying that Queen Elizabeth II was one of the most interesting women in the world. She lived a rather eventful life and accomplished much in her 71 years on the throne.