When she was just 21 the then Princess Elizabeth made the people of the Commonwealth of Nations a solemn promise. ‘I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great imperial family to which we belong.
None who heard her words could have known she would go on to become the longest-reigning monarch in British history. Yet on September 9, 2015, that is her momentous achievement when she overtakes the record set by her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria, having been on the throne for 63 years, seven months and two days.
Duty and patriotism have been been themes of her life and now and nearly 90, the Queen has a huge experience of world and foreign affairs. DAILY MAIL