An unseen portrait of the Queen smiling with joy has been released by Buckingham Palace on the eve of her funeral.
The photograph, taken in May ahead of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations, shows the monarch beaming brightly at the camera in her Windsor Castle home.
In a televised tribute to her mother-in-law on Sunday evening, the Queen Consort recalled the Queen’s “wonderful blue eyes” and said: “I will always remember her smile.”
Here is all you need to know:
What is the photo released by the Palace?
The Queen, who is dressed in a dusky dove blue dress with her hair neatly curled, is wearing her favourite three-strand pearl necklace, pearl earrings and her aquamarine and diamond clip brooches which were an 18th birthday present from her father George VI in 1944.
The two art deco-style pieces, worn one below the other, were made by Boucheron from baguette, oval and round diamonds and aquamarines.
The Queen wore the brooches when she addressed the nation on the 75th anniversary of VE Day in 2020 and for her Diamond Jubilee televised speech in 2012.
The image was taken by photographer Ranald Mackechnie, who also took the jubilee portrait of the Queen released to mark the start of national festivities of her milestone 70-year reign.
The Queen celebrated her Platinum Jubilee with the nation three months before she died.
King Charles sends message to the nation ahead of the funeral
The King has issued a message of thanks to the nation on the eve of the Queen’s state funeral.
Charles said he wanted, “as we all prepare to say our last farewell”, to offer his gratitude to “all those countless people who have been such a support and comfort to my Family and myself in this time of grief”.
He said he and the Queen Consort were “deeply touched” by the many messages they had received from around the world, and “moved beyond measure” by those who turned out to pay their respects throughout the UK to “my dear mother”.
Charles said, in the written message issued by Buckingham Palace: “Over the last ten days, my wife and I have been so deeply touched by the many messages of condolence and support we have received from this country and across the world.
“In London, Edinburgh, Hillsborough and Cardiff we were moved beyond measure by everyone who took the trouble to come and pay their respects to the lifelong service of my dear mother, The late Queen.
“As we all prepare to say our last farewell, I wanted simply to take this opportunity to say thank you to all those countless people who have been such a support and comfort to my Family and myself in this time of grief.”
Charles will lead the nation in mourning for its longest reigning monarch on Monday as Westminster Abbey stages a spectacular state funeral for Elizabeth II.
Two thousand people including foreign royals, world leaders, presidents and prime ministers will flock to the gothic church for a day of pageantry, military processions and solemnity in honour of the late Queen.