Young Queen Elizabeth II: Pictures of a princess | The Independent

Young Queen Elizabeth II: Pictures of a princess

Snapshots of the Queen’s youth as captured on film

Liam James
Sunday 11 September 2022 06:56
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<p>1931: A five-year-old Prince Elizabeth attends the wedding of Lady May Cambridge, great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria in Sussex</p>

1931: A five-year-old Prince Elizabeth attends the wedding of Lady May Cambridge, great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria in Sussex

Queen Elizabeth II died aged 96 having spent almost her entire adult life on the throne.

Her Majesty’s youth was interrupted in 1952 when the death of her father made her head of state of the UK and the Commonwealth while only 25 years old.

By the time of her coronation she was married with two children, and had seen service in the Second World War as a driver and mechanic.

She had also years before sworn to dedicate her life to duty, having known her destiny from the age of 11.

Almost all of her life to the time of her crowning had been spent in Britain. She had left her homeland only a few times, on a handful of the royal visits that would occupy so much of her time in later years.

Cameras followed the Queen throughout her youth. Though she was pictured nowhere near as often as a young royal could expect to be these days, there is no shortage of photographs to chart the early years of the monarch who so many living today knew only as an old woman.

Scroll through the images below to see the Queen in her early years before taking the throne.

The Queen Mother (then the Duchess of York) with her husband, King George VI (then the Duke of York), and their daughter Queen Elizabeth II (then Princess) at her christening in May 1926

The Christening group of Princess Elizabeth. From left, back row: The Duke of Connaught, King George V, The Duke of York and The Earl Strathmore. Front row: Lady Elphinstone, Queen Mary, The Duchess of York with Princess Elizabeth, the Countess of Strathmore and Princess Mary

A Cecil Beaton portrait of Princess Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace aged 19 in 1946

Aged two, Princess Elizabeth waves to crowds as she arrives back in Piccadilly in 1928

A teenage Princess Elizabeth plays ‘Prince Salvador’ in the Christmas production of ‘Sleeping Beauty’ at Windsor Castle in December 1942

Princess Elizabeth meets Jan Smuts, prime minister of South Africa while on a tour of the country with her parents and sister

Princess Elizabeth and a Highland Regiment drummer, during a visit to Scotland in 1929

Princess Elizabeth holding a corgi, aged 24 in 1950

Aged six, Princess Elizabeth rides a tricycle in the park

Princess Elizabeth (centre) on an Auxiliary Territorial Service course at Camberley in Surrey early in 1945

Princess Elizabeth, aged seven with two-year-old Princess Margaret

A teenage Princess Elizabeth at Sandringham with one of the horses

Princess Elizabeth in 1949, as Colonel of the Grenadier Guards, sits atop Winston, a police horse, in the forecourt of Buckingham Palace, during the Trooping fo the Colour to mark King George VI’s 53rd birthday

From left: Queen Elizabeth (later the Queen Mother), Princess Elizabeth, Princess Margaret and King George VI after his coronation, on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, London in May 1937

A wartime picture of Princess Elizabeth (right) and Princess Margaret after they broadcast on ‘Children's Hour’ from Buckingham Palace in October 1940

The bridesmaids at the wedding of Honourable Patricia Mountbatten and Lord Brabourne. From left: Honourable Patricia Mountbatten, sister of the bride, Princess Alexandra of Kent, Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret at Romsey Abbey

A special 21st birthday picture of Princess Elizabeth poses informally during a visit to the Natal National Park in South Africa

In July 1947, the engagement of Princess Elizabeth to Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten is announced and the pair are pictured together at Buckingham Palace

Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip on their wedding day, 20 November 1947, in London

Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip with Viscount and Lady Alexander at a Canadian state dinner in Ottawa

Princess Elizabeth with her two children, Princess Anne and Prince Charles in September 1950

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