Early Life; At the time of her birth, no one thought Elizabeth would someday become queen of Great Britain. Her father, Prince Albert, was the second son of King George V and Queen Mary. Elizabeth got to enjoy the first decade of her life with all the privileges of being a royal with the pressures of being the heir apparent.
Elizabeth and her younger sister Margaret were educated at home by tutors. Their studies included French, mathematics, history and geography. They also took dancing, singing and art lessons.
In 1936, the course of Elizabeth's life changed with the death of her grandfather, King George V. Her uncle became King Edward VIII, but he only ruled for six months. King Edward was in love with American divorcee Wallis Simpson, and had to choose between her and the crown. In the end, Edward chose Simpson and Elizabeth's father, Prince Albert, became King George VI.
With the outbreak of World War II, Elizabeth and her sister largely stayed out of London, spending much of their time at Winsor Castle. From there, she made one of her famous broadcasts. Over the radio, Elizabeth sought to reassure children who had been evacuated from their homes and families. The 14-year-old princess, showing her calm and firm personality, told them that "in the end, all will be well for God will care for us and give us victory and peace."
Elizabeth soon started taking up other public duties. Appointed Colonel-in-Chief of the Grenadier Guards by her father, Elizabeth made her first public appearance inspecting the troops in 1942. She also began to accompany her... [continues]
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