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For the past four days, Her Majesty’s coffin has been lying-in-state at Westminster Hall, and members of the public lined up for hours to pay their respects. The Queen’s children and grandchildren also held a series of silent vigils, and this morning the funeral service will begin with a procession – which some of the youngest royals, including Prince George and Princess Charlotte, will be a part of.
To mark the landmark day, the Royal Family has released a previously unseen photo of Her Majesty. The portrait – captured by photographer Ranald Mackechnie – was taken in May before the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. Taken in Windsor Castle, the photo shows the late monarch beams dressed in all blue as she beams at the camera.
“Ahead of Her Majesty The Queen’s Funeral, a new photograph has been released,” the Royal Family said on its official Instagram account. “It was taken this year to mark Her Majesty’s Platinum Jubilee, as she became the first British Monarch to reach this milestone.”
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The caption continued: “Tomorrow, millions will come together to commemorate her remarkable life.”
Royal fans flocked to the comments section to share their condolences and adoration for the newly-released image. “This is a beautiful portrait”, one person wrote with a love-heart emoji, as a second fan put: “So pretty until the end”.
“The Queen of smiles”, a third follower added, as another chimed into the conversation with: “Rest in peace Your Majesty”.
Shortly after the Queen’s passing, the photographer who took the last known photo of Her Majesty opened up about what it was like to do so.
“I got a lot of smiles from her,” Jane Barlow – who captured the final public images of Queen Elizabeth II during Her Majesty’s first and only meeting with the UK’s new Prime Minister, Liz Truss – said [via Sky News], recalling their interaction.
“I was there to photograph her meeting the new Prime Minister but for me the best picture was the one of the Queen on her own. And it has obviously become more significant now,” she added.
Our thoughts are with all those mourning Her Majesty at this emotional time.