Queen: Buckingham Palace releases disturbing photo of monarch

Buckingham Palace has released a new image of the Queen during her recent engagement, and her new appearance is alarming.

Say what you like about Her Majesty the Queen, but she is hardly one of those women who are able to shock the world.

She never had a long-term affair with her alleged riding instructor (Diana, Princess of Wales); vacationed in the south of France and left without a bikini top (Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge); were photographed quite amazingly (Prince Charles is also in France); fell in love with an employee while still married (Princess Anne) or went to Las Vegas on a binge and ended up playing strip pool with a group of unfamiliar blondes (who else but Prince Harry).

However, a new photo of the 96-year-old man was released on Thursday, and it’s nothing short of alarm.

On paper, the image showing the monarch’s meeting with New South Wales Governor Margaret Beasley looks very dull.

Taken in the Oak Room at Windsor Castle, where the Queen now lives, it looks something like 6,743 other photos Buckingham Palace releases: Her Majesty in pearls and a cheerful flowery number welcoming some dignitary who offers a slightly wobbly curtsey or hard bow .

No, what is really striking here is the very restless appearance of Her Majesty.

Look at a photo of the Queen taken on Thursday and then compare it to a photo taken almost exactly a year ago when then-Prime Minister Scott Morrison visited her and you will see that the difference is truly astounding.

Over the past 12 months, Her Majesty has become noticeably more stooped, much thinner and generally reduced in size.

For years the queen seemed to have achieved the impossible and did not seem to age like some Dorian Gray-style sovereign. (I wonder how many paintings she can have in the huge attic of the castle?)

Photos of her bustling about driving, riding horses on her estates and completing assignments without any help abound. In short, age did not seem to play fair when it came to the 61st English Sovereign. (And she is the 12th of the united England and Scotland.)

Most recently, in 2020, the Palace allowed a photographer to capture her clapping in a Windsor video on one of her favorite ponies at age 94.

Maybe it’s all about the organic salmon she eats, caught on her own Scottish estate, but whatever the secret, the queen seemed to have the vigor and vigor of a woman decades younger than her.

It would be easy to believe that she could surpass the Queen Mother, who lived to be 101 years old and who visited the aircraft carrier in Portsmouth in the last year of her life and continued to throw house parties.

Even the death of HM Prince Philip’s “strength and fortitude” in April last year, although devastating to the individual, does not appear to have resulted in any physical loss.

In May, the Queen opened Parliament. In June, she hosted US President Joe Biden and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, attended the Trooping the Color mini-parade and attended the G7 summit. (Let’s never forget the wonderful photo we got on that walk of her holding a sword to cut the cake.)

Later that month, she left for Scotland to meet First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, trotting confidently through the forest during the official meeting.

Then it was time for Royal Ascot, where the queen, as usual, looked much happier than we usually see her.

In July, the Windsor Horse Show returned, Her Majesty’s personal nirvana, which she attended for several days, even once arriving there with pink lipstick.

Note that on all of them, although she hardly set any land speed records, she walked unaided and confidently, her dexterity belied her very advanced years.

In August, the Queen fled to Balmoral for her usual long plaid break, revealing that she had taken her four great-granddaughters Tyndall and Phillips on a picnic.

In September, she returned to work, and the palace announced that she was in for a busy October.

She left, opening the Scottish Parliament, and then similarly opened the Welsh Parliament, called the Senedd, that same month.

When she appeared at Westminster Abbey with Princess Anne, she appeared with a cane for the first time since knee surgery in 2003. However, this month she scored 16 official meetings.

Knowing that Oldie Magazine wanted to name her Old Man of the Year, she “politely but firmly” declined the award, stating, “You are as old as you feel.”

On October 19, she hosted a meeting of billionaires and tech moguls at the reception of an investment summit at Windsor Castle, having been on her feet for more than an hour.

According to once“Before her guests arrived, the Queen and her closest aides arranged by secret sign to remove her from the reception if she felt she was fading, but a coded signal was not needed.”

The next day this energetic streak abruptly and abruptly ceased.

It was first announced that she would not be doing a two-day tour of Northern Ireland and would relax a little for two weeks on doctor’s orders before it was announced that the Queen was pulling out of the Cop26 climate conference. (She was also mysteriously hospitalized that same month at night, an event the palace clumsily tried to keep under wraps.)

Since then, almost every month, Her Majesty withdraws from previously non-negotiable events.

In November, she watched the ceremony at the Cenotaph on Remembrance Day, in December she appeared at church with her family for Christmas, in February she contracted Covid, which caused her to cancel her annual diplomatic reception, in March she withdrew from Commonwealth Day. service, and in April she persuaded Charles to take over official duties on Maundy Thursday.

May came and for the first time in nearly 60 years, Her Majesty delegated the Opening of Parliament to Charles with Prince William in aide mode before it was announced that Her Majesty would not be attending any of the Buckingham Palace garden parties.

When the celebrations of the sovereign’s jubilee began, Her Majesty did not appear at the service of thanksgiving for her reign at St. Paul’s Cathedral.

Just last week, we passed another sad milestone: The Queen never made it to Royal Ascot, breaking a 70-year attendance streak.

There have also been reports that Her Majesty has given up her late-night drinking, no longer rides a horse, and hasn’t been in the driver’s seat for most of the year.

Likewise, her very mysterious health problems seem to have worsened significantly.

In October, she made her first appearance with a cane, using it only at certain times, but by June of this year, her “episodic mobility problems” had become such that the world saw Her Majesty for a total of 27 minutes over the entire four-hour journey. days of celebration of her platinum anniversary.

(In 2021, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced that $49.5 million would be earmarked for the anniversary, costing British taxpayers $1.8 million for every minute they saw the queen on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.)

How did things get so bad, so quickly? How in a year have we seen the Queen stop riding horses, walking her dogs and driving her Range Rover and now reportedly uses a wheelchair occasionally? (Earlier this year, it was reported that Craigowan Lodge, the cottage on the Balmoral estate where she stays twice a year, now has a wheelchair-friendly elevator.)

A photo taken on Thursday shows Her Majesty seemingly disappearing before our eyes, and yet Buckingham Palace is trying to stick to its increasingly tiresome “nothing to see here” line.

To be fair, the assistants are in a difficult position. They can hardly go out and offer the press a cursory commentary on what might be troubling her, or offer any elaboration of what the sickness of the day caused her last cancellation to be.

Moreover, Her Majesty, like any human being, deserves dignity and privacy.

So how do courtiers maintain the queen’s fame, which means regularly releasing images of the empress without causing panic when she looks noticeably weaker? How do they balance the needs of Her Majesty as a person with the needs of the institution she leads?

This current paradigm is of no use to the monarchy. One of the consequences of the crises between Prince Andrew and Megxit was that the palace began to look somewhat awkward and secretive. For this reason, the Firm simply cannot afford to do the wrong thing in this situation.

This catch-22 will become an increasingly pressing issue as time goes on, and the Palace must find a way to at least try to balance all of these competing needs.

Silver lining here? The Queen appears to be in high spirits as the countdown to her annual Scottish summer break begins. Maybe someone is happy to get their hands on some more salmon.

Daniela Elzer is a royal expert and writer with over 15 years of experience working with a range of leading Australian media outlets.

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