Jun 19, 2012 Print this article

Dazzling Videos: The Best of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee

June 5: Over a million cheer the Queen’s carriage procession

Watch the Queen make her way by carriage through the streets of Whitehall to Buckingham Palace.

Firework display at Buckingham Palace

Flypast salute and God Save the Queen

Vapour trails of red, white and blue were left by a nine-strong Red Arrows squadron, which followed a flypast of World War II aircraft including a Dakota flanked by two King Airs, a Lancaster, four Spitfires and a Hurricane.

The Queen was joined on the balcony by Prince Charles, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry and the singing of the National Anthem.

June 3: Thames River pageant wows crowds

A thousand vessels set off in wave after wave with the Queen travelling at its heart.

Why Did the Jubilee Dazzle the World?

Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee wowed 1.3 million admirers who, despite the rain, took to the streets of London. All they wanted was a glimpse of their monarch and to acknowledge the Queen’s sixty years of service. An additional 2 billion – including many Americans – followed the dazzling event from afar.

Why so much interest? Is it a nostalgia for something greater than petty politics? Perhaps pop culture’s leveling vulgarity is reaching a terminal point. Perhaps the stifling and flawed Marxist utopia of radical equality is finally fading. Whatever the case might be, millions were dazzled by the gala, honor and distinction that shone at the Queen’s celebration. Even the Queen’s critics gasped in admiration. It was a victory for tradition.

A member of the House of Commons affirmed that whoever wishes to find himself must forget himself in the service of others, adding: “Her Majesty has done just that for many years.” This remark represents what the British as well as other peoples feel about the Queen. The headline of the French newspaper, Le Figaro, stated: “Elizabeth II, 60 years of devotion to duty.”

When the Queen was crowned in 1953, she said: “I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great imperial family to which we all belong.”That has been her program.However, the highest aspect of her reign, without a doubt, has been her capacity to personify many of the highest values of what it means to be British. That is what awakens such enthusiasm among her subjects, as well as the awe of many Americans.