Queen Elizabeth II celebrates 91st birthday

The United Kingdom's Queen Elizabeth II, who is the oldest and longest-reining monarch, turns 91 today.

But although her actual birthday is April 21, her "official" birthday is not until June 17 this year - when the official Trooping the Colour celebration takes place. Since her father wasn't expected to assume the throne, she was raised very normally and didn't have to take special classes since she wasn't close to becoming a reigning monarch. While he has earned a reputation for gaffes and tasteless jokes, she hails him as "my strength and stay all these years".

There will be a 41-gun salute in Hyde Park, a 21-gun salute in Windsor Great Park and a 62-gun salute at the Tower of London, the BBC reports.

According to a Foreign Affairs Ministry release, President Sirleaf said in her birthday greetings, "We are thankful that God continues to endow Your Majesty with long life, good health and strength, so that you may remain an inspiration for the world, particularly the marginalized". Queen Elizabeth, who was in Kenya at the time, returned home to the overwhelming life that would mark her reign.

So, while it would be unlikely to see Her Majesty zipping around the streets of London she's often behind the wheel when out of public view.

Buckingham Palace shared a photo of the Queen as a baby to mark her 91st birthday on Friday, amid online tributes and military salutes mark the occasion. The Queen dubbed 1992 her "annus horribilis" after the marriages of three of her four children broke down and Windsor Castle was badly damaged in a fire.

In modernising her family's image and refusing to become political, the Queen has held on to the nation's affection. Queen Elizabeth came down with what the palace described as a "heavy cold" and flu, causing her to miss the annual Christmas service at Sandringham.

Other messages poured in, and they're incredibly easy to track, thanks to the Queen's official birthday hashtag.

- She has had 13 Canadian prime ministers and 13 British prime ministers serve during her reign, from Louis St. Laurent and Winston Churchill, respectively, to Justin Trudeau and Theresa May.

Read: Where Does Queen Elizabeth II Buys Her Clothes, Household Items From?

3 - number of dogs the Queen has left - one corgi, Willow, and two dorgis, Candy and Vulcan. As of late, she's been taking a step back from royal duties and allowing the younger monarchs to take on more responsibilities.

  • Leroy Wright