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Queen Elizabeth II, Head of the Commonwealth and Queen of 12 countries, is the longest reigning head of state in the world with 66 years on the throne. Here's some fascinating facts you may not have known about Her Royal Majesty!

22. She's at your service!

She is a trained truck mechanic, having served in the auxiliary territorial service during World War II.

21. Extreme Couponer.

She collected coupons to pay for her wedding dress in 1947 because of post-war rationing.

20. En franais s'il vous plat.

She is a fluent French speaker and often uses the language in her public life.

19. Ruler of the roads.

She is the only person in the U.K who does not need to drive with a license or a license plate.

18. No need for that!

She is not required to have a passport, as passports are issued in her name.

17. Who let the dorgies out?

The Queen and her sister Princess Margaret created a new breed of dog called a dorgi after Elizabeth's corgi mated with Margaret's dachshund.

16. Clean and clear and under control.

During her birthday celebrations in 1981, a man fired six blank shots at her. The man was quickly subdued by guards and the Queen's horse was startled, yet she was able to calm the horse quickly and carry on with the parade.

15. I never thought about it.

Her full name is Elizabeth Alexandra Mary.

14. Not how most people would handle the situation.

When an intruder scaled the walls of Buckingham Palace and entered the Queen's bedroom in 1982, she awoke to him at the end of her bed bleeding from his cut hand. She engaged him in conversation for ten minutes calmly before a footman overheard, as she was not able to call for help.

13. This is a thing and also the Queen loves it.

She is a fan of pigeon racing, and a patron of the Royal Pigeon Racing Association.

12. She banks!

She has a bank account with Coutts, one of the oldest banks in the world, and there is a Coutts cash machine inside Buckingham Palace.

11. Awww.

Her grandson Prince William called her "Gary" and his son Prince George calls her "Gan-Gan."

10. What does she keep in there anyway?

The Queen only carries cash in her purse on Sunday morning, in order to give to the church collection plate.

9. Swan whisperer.

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She technically owns all the swans in open water, but "exercises" that only along a stretch of the River Thames. This tradition is observed through the annual "Swan Upping" ceremony.

8. Excuses to party.

The Queen gets to celebrate two birthdays! Her real birthday is April 21st, but public celebrations around her "official" birthday are in June.

7. "I SEE HER!! IT'S THE QUEEN!!"

There is a practical reason for all her brightly coloured, monochromatic outfits; she has to be spotted in a crowd from far away.

6. Elizabeth II: The golden age...of television.

She is a fan of Downton Abbey, and loves to "Pick out the mistakes."

5. Part of the team.

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She is not required to pay tax, yet she does!

4. Something in common with the paparazzi.

She takes pleasure in photography as a hobby.

3. Can she live that long please?

The oldest person the Queen ever wrote a letter to was a 116 year old Canadian man in 1986. He would have been born during the reign of Elizabeth's great-great-grandmother, Queen Victoria!

2. A person of many titles.

She is called "Lilibet" by close members of her family.

1. Part of your world.

During the celebrations in the streets of London on VE (Victory in Europe) Day in 1945, Elizabeth and Princess Margaret snuck into the crowds in disguise and were able to wave at their father on the Buckingham Palace balcony from below.

Editor's Note

A previous version of this story stated that Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, is the Head of the Commonwealth and queen of 12 nations. It's 16 not 12. They are as follows: Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, and the United Kingdom.


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