Queen Elizabeth: A timeline

A chronology of major events in the life of Queen Elizabeth.

Key moments and milestones in the monarch's life

The Queen attends a service for the Order of the British Empire at St. Paul's Cathedral in London on March 7, 2012. (Geoff Pugh/Reuters)

April 21, 1926 Elizabeth Alexandra Mary of Windsor born at her grandparents' home in London to the Duke and Duchess of York.

Dec. 11, 1936 Her father takes the throne as King George VI after his brother, Edward VIII, abdicates to marry American divorcée Wallis Simpson.

Oct. 13, 1940 Princess Elizabeth makes her first official radio address during an air raid on London.

April 21, 1944 Elizabeth becomes a counsellor of state, starting to perform ceremonial duties when King George is abroad.

July 9, 1947 Elizabeth is engaged to be married to Philip Mountbatten.

Philip Mountbatten places the wedding ring on Princess Elizabeth's finger at their wedding in Westminster Abbey on Nov. 20, 1947. Her father, King George VI, stands to her left. (Associated Press)

Nov. 20, 1947 Elizabeth and Philip are married at Westminster Abbey. The day is declared a national holiday. Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King attends the wedding and Canada gives the newlyweds antique silver and a mink coat.

Nov. 14, 1948 Prince Charles is born in Buckingham Palace. The news mistakenly reaches Canada that a girl is born.

Aug. 15, 1950 Elizabeth's only daughter, Princess Anne, is born.

Oct. 2, 1951 Princess Elizabeth visits Canada for the first time with her husband, Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh. Three weeks later, an estimated 2,000,000 people line the route of their motorcade in Montreal.

Feb. 6, 1952 King George VI dies while Elizabeth is touring Africa.

June 2, 1953 The coronation of Elizabeth at Westminster Abbey becomes the first coronation broadcast on television. CBC beats U.S. competitors by commandeering RAF planes to fly the film back to Canada for broadcast.

Oct. 12, 1957 Queen Elizabeth arrives in Ottawa on a four-day visit to open Canada's first session of the 23rd Parliament on Oct. 14.

Oct. 13, 1957 For the first time, the Queen makes a live television address (telecast by CBC).

Oct. 21, 1957 The Queen addresses the United Nations in New York City.

June 18, 1959 The Queen arrives in Canada for her first major tour as the ruling monarch. She officially opens the St. Lawrence Seaway and visits all provinces and territories over six weeks.

Feb. 19, 1960 Prince Andrew is born and becomes second in line to the throne.

March 10, 1964 Prince Edward is born.

Oct. 5, 1964 Queen Elizabeth arrives for an eight-day visit to Charlottetown, Quebec and Ottawa commemorating meetings by Canada's Fathers of Confederation in 1864. On Oct. 10, protesters in Quebec City turn their back on The Queen and police later charge the crowd on "Truncheon Saturday."

Queen Elizabeth and Ontario Premier John Robarts tour the Ontario Pavilion at Expo 67 in Montreal on July 3, 1967. (Canadian Press)

June 29, 1967 The Queen visits Ottawa to attend ceremonies relating to Canada's centennial anniversary and visits Expo 67 in Montreal. Her tour lasts six days.

July 5, 1970 Accompanied by Charles, the Prince of Wales, and Princess Anne, the Queen visits Manitoba for the 100th anniversary of its entry into Confederation, and visits the Northwest Territories to mark its centennial. The visit lasts 10 days.

May 3, 1971 Princess Anne accompanies the Queen on a visit to British Columbia marking the centenary of the province entering Confederation. They stop in several towns and are in Canada for nine days.

June 25, 1973 The Queen, accompanied by Prince Philip, visits Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan and Alberta and participates in events marking the centennial of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the 100th anniversary of P.E.I. entering Confederation and the 300th anniversary of Kingston, Ont. The visit lasts 11 days.

July 31, 1973 The Queen visits Ottawa for the Commonwealth heads of government meeting while Prince Philip has his own program over four days.

July 13, 1976 Prince Charles, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward join The Queen for the XXI Olympic Games in Montreal. Queen Elizabeth also visits New Brunswick during the 13-day visit.

June 2, 1977 The Queen celebrates 25 years as monarch with her Silver Jubilee year.

Oct. 14, 1977 The Queen visits Ottawa during her Silver Jubilee.

July 26, 1978 The Queen, accompanied by Prince Edward and Prince Andrew over 12 days, makes stops in Newfoundland and Saskatchewan before going to Edmonton for the XI Commonwealth Games. The trio also make several stops around Alberta.

Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales, kiss on the balcony of Buckingham Palace after their July 29, 1981 wedding. (Associated Press)

July 29, 1981 Prince Charles marries Diana Spencer at St. Paul's Cathedral.

April 17, 1982 The Queen signs an act in Ottawa proclaiming Canada's Constitution of 1982.

June 21, 1982 Prince William Arthur Philip Louis, son of Diana and Prince Charles, is born and becomes second in line to the throne.

March 8, 1983 Over four days, the Queen makes a number of stops in British Columbia as she concludes her North American West Coast tour.

Sept. 24, 1984 Prince Philip accompanies the Queen to several towns in New Brunswick and Ontario, marking the bicentennials of the provinces. She travels on her own to Manitoba. The entire visit lasts almost two weeks.

Oct. 9, 1987 The Queen and Prince Philip make a private visit to Qualicum Beach, B.C., before going to Vancouver, Victoria and Esquimalt to participate in opening sessions for the Commonwealth heads of government meeting. They also visit Saskatchewan and Quebec over the 16-day Canadian tour.

June 27, 1990 The Queen makes a five-day solo visit to Canada, stopping in Red Deer, Alta., Calgary and Ottawa.

June 30, 1992 The Queen makes a three-day, unaccompanied visit to Ottawa to mark the 125th anniversary of Confederation and the 40th anniversary of her accession to the throne.

Nov. 20, 1992 Windsor Castle, a major royal residence, suffers extensive damage in a fire.

Nov. 26, 1992 The Queen and the Prince of Wales start to pay tax on their private income.

Dec. 9, 1992 Charles and Diana separate.

Aug. 13, 1994 Over 10 days, the Queen and Prince Philip visit several sites in Nova Scotia and attend the Commonwealth Games in Victoria. While the Queen takes a private retreat at Twin Island, B.C., Prince Philip visits Yellowknife, Iqaluit and Rankin Inlet, Nunavut.

July 12, 1996 Charles and Diana agree to the terms of their divorce.

March 6, 1997 The Queen unveils the royal website www.royal.gov.uk.

June 23, 1997 Queen Elizabeth goes to Newfoundland to mark the arrival of explorer John Cabot's ship, the Matthew, on a re-creation of its historic transatlantic passage in 1497. The Queen later makes a special trip to London, Ont., before going to Manitoba to survey flood damage. She returns to make several stops in Ontario, including Toronto, Brantford, Stratford, North Bay and Petawawa. The entire trip lasts 10 days.

Queen Elizabeth receives Asma Al-Assad, left, wife of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad, centre, on Dec. 17, 2002, at Buckingham Palace. (Kirsty Wigglesworth/Associated Press)

Aug. 31, 1997 Diana dies after a car crash in Paris. 

Feb. 6, 2002 Queen Elizabeth celebrates 50 years as monarch.

March 30, 2002 Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, dies in her sleep at the Royal Lodge at Windsor at the age of 101.

Oct. 4, 2002 The Queen begins her Golden Jubilee visit to Canada in Iqaluit.

Oct. 6, 2002 The Queen drops the ceremonial puck at a hockey game between the San Jose Sharks and the Vancouver Canucks. She then watches the first period of the game, the first NHL game she'd seen since 1951, when she watched the New York Rangers play the Canadiens in Montreal.

Oct. 10, 2002 Queen Elizabeth visits the Canadian Broadcasting Centre in Toronto to help mark the 50th anniversary of CBC-TV.

2003 The Queen undergoes three operations: two on her knees and one to remove lesions from her face.

July 6, 2004 Queen Elizabeth officially opens the national memorial fountain for Diana in London.

Queen Elizabeth chats with Gov. Gen. Adrienne Clarkson during a ceremony at the Saskatchewan legislature in Regina on May 18, 2005. (Paul Chiasson/Canadia Press)

Feb. 22, 2005 The Queen announces she will not attend the wedding of her son, Prince Charles, to Camilla Parker Bowles but will attend a church blessing of the union at Windsor Castle. The office insists her decision is not a snub against the couple. The wedding takes place April 9.

May 17, 2005 The Queen begins a nine-day royal visit that celebrates the centennials of Saskatchewan and Alberta.

April 12, 2006 The Queen's grandson, Prince Harry, graduates from Sandhurst. The Queen, as the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, inspects the troops and gives the commencement speech at the ceremony.

Dec. 25, 2006 The annual Christmas message is released for the first time as a podcast.

Queen Elizabeth is seen after attending the traditional Christmas Day church service at St. Mary Magdalene church on the Sandringham estate in eastern England on Dec. 25, 2006. (Matt Dunham/Associated Press)

Nov. 20, 2007 The Queen and Prince Philip celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary, the first British royal couple to do so.

Dec. 23, 2007 The Queen unveils a royal channel on YouTube, which was used two days later to post the annual Christmas message.

July 10, 2009 @BritishMonarchy joins Twitter.

June 28, 2010 In Halifax, fhe Queen, accompanied by Prince Philip, begins her 22nd royal visit to Canada.

July 6, 2010 The Queen addresses the UN for the second time.

Nov. 8, 2010 The Queen joins Facebook with the launch of a British Monarchy page.

Dec. 29, 2010 The Queen becomes a great-grandmother with the birth of Savannah, daughter of Peter and Autumn Phillips.

April 29, 2011 The Queen's grandson, Prince William, weds Catherine Middleton. 

May 17, 2011 The Queen begins a four-day state visit to Ireland, the first by a British monarch in 100 years. The visit is seen as a step toward reconciliation and normalization of Anglo-Irish relations.

Dec. 23, 2011 Prince Philip, 90, has an emergency heart procedure to relieve a blocked coronary artery. He leaves hospital four days later.

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, and Queen Elizabeth watch a fashion show in Leicester, England, on March 8, 2012, during the first stop of her Diamond Jubilee tour. (Oli Scarff/Associated Press)

Feb. 6, 2012 Buckingham Palace releases fhe Queen's official message marking the 60th anniversary of her accession to the throne. "I dedicate myself anew to your service," she writes.

June 2-5, 2012 The Diamond Jubilee central weekend takes place in London. Events will include a 1,000-boat pageant on the Thames, a concert at Buckingham Palace, a special Service of Thanksgiving at St. Paul's Cathedral and a carriage procession.

July 27, 2012 The Queen will open the Olympic games in London.

Aug. 29, 2012 The Queen will open the Paralympic Games for the first time.