Doctors had placed the queen, who was 96, under medical supervision at Balmoral Castle, her estate in the Scottish Highlands. Prince Charles traveled to Balmoral to be at his mother’s side.
LONDON — The death of Queen Elizabeth II is a watershed moment for Britain, at once incomparable and incalculable.
It marks both the loss of a revered monarch — the only one most Britons have ever known — and the end of a figure who served as a living link to the glories of World War II Britain, presided over its fitful adjustment to a post-colonial, post-imperial era and saw it through its bitter divorce from the European Union.
Buckingham Palace has just released the following statement: “The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon. The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.”
Queen Elizabeth II has died, according to Buckingham Palace, setting off an outpouring of grief in Britain for the 96-year-old monarch, who reigned for 70 years.
She died at Balmoral Castle, her beloved summer home in the Scottish Highlands. Many of her four children, eight grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren were at Balmoral or on their way there, including her son Prince Charles, the heir to the throne.
Her last public appearance was on Tuesday, when the queen, smiling and holding a walking stick, greeted Liz Truss, Britain’s new prime minister, in the drawing room at Balmoral. Ms. Truss was the 15th British prime minister to have an audience with the queen upon taking office, a testament to the longevity of Elizabeth, who served for many Britons as a beacon of stability amid political instability, economic crisis, social unrest and war.
The queen’s declining condition had been a source of concern for years, forcing her to cancel many public appearances. A bout of Covid-19 in February left her exhausted, she said, and during the Platinum Jubilee celebrations in June that marked her 70 years on the throne, she appeared on the balcony of Buckingham Palace to watch a parade but skipped most of the other festivities.