07.05.10

Queen Elizabeth II Visits the States

Harold Evans witnesses Her Majesty’s trip to New York City today, the queen’s seventh visit to America during her six-decade reign. From White House state dinners to a tour of Yosemite, VIEW OUR GALLERY of her past jaunts across the pond.

Waiting for the queen to speak, it was nice to see the English ladies in their wide, flowered bonnets, as if they were at a Royal Garden party, sitting demurely in the U.N. General Assembly where we are used to seeing the mouth-frothers. The queen herself, walked slowly down the long aisle to applause that petered out too soon before she reached the embrace of the easy chair by the rostrum. She looked vulnerable in her pale green dress under that cavernous arching roof below the chairman's raised dais ,but sat composed enough, waiting for the rather sweet introductions to end. What she said as "queen of 54 Commonwealth nations" was in good clear English—it is the queen's English, isn't it?—but the striking thing was the bell-like clarity of her enunciation, no different to my mind from the voice of the young queen at her coronation. It was not a speech of high-flown rhetoric or emotion. She was mercifully brief but to the point in asking the U.N. to live up to ideals in dealing with some of the ills she has been on her decades of travel.

Click the Image Below to VIEW OUR GALLERY of Queen Elizabeth's II Past Trips to the States.

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Harold Evans, author of two histories of America, just published his memoir, My Paper Chase. Editor at large of The Week, he was editor of The Sunday Times from 1967-81 and The Times from 1981-82, founding editor of Condé Nast Traveler, and president of Random House Trade Group from 1990-97.