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Elizabeth Alexandra Mary (born April 21, 1926) is the current Queen of the British commonwealth and its 16 sovereign states. She became Queen in 1952 following the death of her father, King George VI (previously, Prince Albert, Duke of York). Her reign (58 years) is one of the longest in British history. She married Phillip, Duke of Edinborough, in 1947; upon her ascendancy to the throne, he became Prince Phillip. They have four children.
Elizabeth was named after her mother (Elizabeth), great-grandmother (Queen Alexandra) and grandmother (Queen Mary). Her family nickname was "Lilibet." She has one sister, Princess Margaret (born 1930). Elizabeth was originally third in line for the throne, and was not considered a likely candidate to become Queen. However, after her uncle, King Edward, abdicated, she became first in line after her father. She served in the Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service during World War II and was trained as a mechanic.
She has maintained a high degree of popularity with the British (and world) populace during her reign, with her low points coming in 1992 following a disastrous fire at Windsor Castle and the divorce and separation of two of her children; and in 1997, following the death of Princess Diana.
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