Princess Elizabeth Alexandra Mary was born on April 21, 1926, in London England to the second son of George V — Albert, Duke of York and the Duchess of York, the former Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon. Her sister Princess Margaret was born 4 years later. In 1936, when she was 10, her uncle, King Edward VIII (aka Duke of Windsor), caused a stir by abdicating the throne to marry a twice-divorced American named Wallis Warfield Simpson. His brother Albert was next in line to the throne, and he became George VI in honor of his father. She therefore became the Heiress Presumptive, meaning she would become Queen only if her parents did not have a son — who would be king before her. At the age of 13, she met 18-year-old Prince Philip, her distant cousin. As her grandmother Queen Mary put it with more detail, they were third cousins through their descent from Queen Victoria (they are both great-great grandchildren of hers) second cousins once removed through their descent from King Christian IX of Denmark (her great-grandmother was Christian’s daughter, his father was a descendant of his) and fourth cousins through their descent from George III (both of them being descendants of Queen Victoria — she was his granddaughter). They fell in love and wanted to get married, but her father wanted to make sure it was real and not just because this was the first person she loved. Before they got married, he renounced his royal title as a Prince of Greece and Denmark, became a British subject, and adopted the surname of his uncle Louis Mountbatten. He was named Duke of Edinburgh shortly before they got married but was not made a Prince of the United Kingdom until 1957. They got married on November 20, 1947. One year later, they had a son, Charles Philip Arthur George. In 1950, they had Anne Elizabeth Alice; in 1960, Prince Andrew; and in 1964, Prince Edward.
When they were in Kenya in 1952, they found out that her father had died of lung cancer so they returned as Queen and Consort. It was a busy time and got even busier. They worked at public engagements and, starting in the late 1970s, became grandparents. Anne had a son name Peter in 1977 and then a daughter named Zara in 1981 with her husband Captain Mark Phillips. Charles had William in 1982 and Henry in 1984 with his wife Diana. Andrew had Beatrice in 1988 and Eugenie in 1990 with his wife Sarah Ferguson. On November 20, 1997, they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with their family and also celebrated the fact that Windsor Castle was reconstructed after a fire in 1992.
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