Official, but informal, Royal portrait

Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, and His Royal Highness, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, on the occasion of their birthdays: her 90th, his 95th.

Royal Couple

“He has, quite simply, been my strength & stay all these years.”

A new photo to mark The Queen’s official 90th birthday celebrations and The Duke of Edinburgh’s 95th birthday today.

This is the final portrait in the series of official photographs taken by Annie Leibovitz to mark The Queen’s 90th Birthday.

Source: The Royal Family on Facebook

A man can dream, can’t he…?

Her Majesty The Queen - Grand Union

(… and yes, if we ever did become a Commonwealth Realm, the Grand Union flag seems to me to make the most sense as the “American Ensign.” It is historic and traditional to us, as a Nation, and it speaks of the time — right up through at least the first year of the Revolution — when the vast majority of the patriots and Founders were fighting for our “rights as Englishmen,” and did not really seek dissolution of the ties which bound us to Great Britain. That came later, and reluctantly, for most…)

Prince Charles’ letters reveal a quirky, old-fashioned brand of conservatism

The ‘black spider’ letters show that Charles is a good sort of prince

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Source: Prince Charles’ letters reveal a quirky, old-fashioned brand of conservatism

Okay, I am starting to feel better about the prospect of Charles becoming King when — may the day be long delayed! — Her Majesty enters into her eternal reward.

“Prince Charles is his own kind of conservative: an ecological preservationist, an arch-traditionalist, and a tiller and keeper of the soil, rather than a devotee of capitalistic creative destruction… Prince Charles’ conservatism is characterized by “trusteeship,” rather than the more modern concept of ownership. The latter assumes that the possessor of a property is entitled to extract all its market value, even if it destroys the use of that property and its goods for all posterity. Charles, ever a royal, allies himself to posterity’s interests…”

“‘On a moral and spiritual level, Charles believes that civilization isn’t sustainable unless humanity finds a way to live in balance with nature. For him, climate change is the ultimate judgment on a civilization that has rejected limits and fetishized economic growth and material prosperity over spiritual values.’ [The American Conservative]”

Proof positive, as if any were needed, that traditional / conservative values and sensibilities are by no means incompatible with — still less opposed to — a robust concern for this good earth on which we live, and on which we are utterly dependent for our continued survival and well-being.

A few more quotes from the article cited:

“The monarchy’s sympathizers might say that it is precisely because Charles’ position is partly insulated from corporate interests and moral fads that he is able to take a longer view of issues related to England’s countryside, its architectural patrimony, its historical sites, and the environment.

“Far from revealing an overweening royal authority or a disconnected left-wing scion, Charles’ letters show a gentle, far-seeing, if unfashionable monarch. In a sense, Charles quietly exercises the highest role a monarch can play in the modern administrative state. He is an insistent voice for tradition’s value to posterity, and an advocate for the men (and fish) that the market, or the bureaucratic state, would overlook and destroy.”

God save Prince Charles!

Queen opens parliament in style – but avoids stairs & takes lift – The Crown Chronicles

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“Her Majesty The Queen officially opened a new session of Parliament this morning, but chose to take the lift instead of the stairs, another small sign her age is starting to affect her work.” I think Her Majesty and Prince-Consort Philip can be forgiven that minor concession, considering that she is 90 and he 94! Includes a video of the Queen’s Speech and much of the ceremony, and links to further information on this event.

Source: Queen opens parliament in style – but avoids stairs & takes lift – The Crown Chronicles

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One of the traditions of the State Opening – the Ceremonial Search by the Beefeaters (Yeoman Guard) for threats to The Queen’s safety and welfare, before her arrival.

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HM The Queen and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, leave Buckingham Palace by State Coach – the traditional horse-drawn carriage – en route to the Houses of Parliament.

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HM The Queen and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, proceed through the Royal Gallery of the Houses of Parliament en route to the State Opening of Parliament.

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Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II wearing the Imperial State Crown and Robe of State, attended by pages and escorted by His Royal Highness, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II reads The Queen’s Speech from the Throne during the State Opening of Parliament. It is not often that one sees Her Majesty in full Royal panoply! Still less is able to appreciate the incredible beauty and ornateness of her Throne in the House of Lords, where the Queen’s Speech is given.

The Queen at 90: A countrywoman at home with the family, horses and her ‘rock’ Philip

The Queen at 90: A countrywoman at home with the family, horses and her ‘rock’ Philip

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Nice to see, not only something about the “private” life of Her Majesty, but also about Prince Philip — sadly cut out of this picture — who I find both interesting and admirable. Nephew of the late Lord Mountbatten (last Viceroy of India), he is both fit and energetic at 95! It was he who drove the Obamas (and H.M. The Queen, of course) around, this last visit, and of him Her Majesty has said: “He is someone who doesn’t take easily to compliments but he has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years, and I, and his whole family, and this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim or we shall ever know.”

Happy 90th Birthday to Her Majesty, The Queen!

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The Queen meets well wishers during a walkabout close to Windsor Castle in Berkshire as she celebrates her 90th birthday. The British Monarchy

One of the things that I think is awesome about the British Commonwealth (approximately, though not precisely, coterminous with the former British Empire) is how epically “multicultural” it is — and in the good and true sense of a myriad of cultures and ethnicities being celebrated and allowed to flourish in their own historic spheres, not all mashed and muddled together everywhere — which to me is the precise opposite of true diversity.

And because of this, The Queen is loved in many places beyond the British Isles (even as a handful of Brits find it fashionable to trash the Monarchy at home, in the same way that some idiots here trash our American history and heritage). Here is but one example of this, from many I’ve seen among the birthday wishes for Her Majesty on the various British Monarchy-related pages:

Terry Otonye Igoni writes on Facebook, “The entire Niger Delta and Brass Kingdom of Nigeria humbly wishing HRH our mother Queen Elizabeth who was born on this day the year 1926. Long live the Monarch… Long live the Commonwealth of 53 independent countries and 2.2 billion citizens.”

Something about that just really touches me!

Four Generations of England’s Royal Family

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On the happy occasion of Her Brittanic Majesty’s 90th Birthday! The reigning Monarch, Sovereign Lady of Great Britain and the Commonwealth Realms, Queen Elizabeth II, with her heirs: Prince Charles, Prince William, and Prince George!