For perseverance, a sense of duty and quiet dignity, a better role model than Queen Elizabeth, who died at the age of 96, could hardly be found. During an extraordinary 70-year reign, when the monarchy’s prestige declined through a series of scandals, the Queen’s prestige somehow grew, to her considerable credit.
Her historical connection to power, wealth, and privilege did not prevent her from forging genuine connections with her own people and with millions around the world. From her coronation, she effortlessly assumed the role of the mother of her people through many dark hours in her history.
An accomplished diplomat and astute politician, she dealt with the temperaments and foibles of no fewer than 15 prime ministers.
Famed for her courtesy, she was always steadfast in her principles, and she often had trouble moving a stuffy and stuffy institution with the times.
She kept a brave front through what she called her annus horribilis after the death of Princess Diana.
Behind the ornate facade, many thought the House of Windsor might be falling apart in the face of a spate of lurid stories about the private lives of the royals. Whatever the turmoil, the Queen won admiration for keeping the show on the road and keeping her head up amid the storms. This dedication to service will remain the signature of the longest-serving monarch in British history
That same strength of spirit and self-control was shown more recently as she mourned the loss of her husband, Prince Philip.
Though her role may have been largely ceremonial, her calming presence was a comfort to the millions who looked to her as their rock.
Her visit to Ireland in 2011 marked a turning point in Anglo-Irish relations. She was the first British monarch to break the ice of 100 years of strained relations. Speeches in which she acknowledged mistakes and a “sad and regrettable history” were compassionate and honest.
Her open expression of “wishing things had been done differently or not at all” was a message of healing and hope.
For these reasons she will be held in the affection of the Irish people. The country will feel the great sadness of his family and the people of the UK.
Her son, King Charles III, will now reign. He once said: “Something as curious as the monarchy will not survive unless you take into account people’s attitudes. After all, if people don’t want it, they won’t have it.”
The unforgiving fishbowl of public life, in which every move and misstep is magnified, may have clouded the magic of monarchy.
However, its value to the British people and its prestige throughout much of the world has been remarkably constant.
And much of that can be attributed to a hijab-wearing diminutive matriarch who adored her corgis and maintained a stiff upper lip.
She may have been a very British queen, but she was also a very human one.
https://www.independent.ie/opinion/editorial/queen-elizabeth-monarch-and-matriarch-was-much-admired-in-ireland-41974690.html Queen Elizabeth: The monarch and matriarch was greatly admired in Ireland