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Queen Elizabeth reveals she was “bored” at her Father’s Coronation

In a diary entry on 12 May 1937, 11-year-old Princess Elizabeth of York, the future Queen recorded the experience of watching her father’s coronation at Westminster Abbey.

It’s not quite easy to imagine the Queen as a bored little girl during her father’s own coronation.

Queen Elizabeth is now the longest-reigning British monarch. She has an impressive 68 years to the crown.

At the time of the diary extract, the Queen was known as Princess Elizabeth of York. She wrote about the day her father, King George VI, became the ruling monarch on 12th May 1937.

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Details from her perspective include waking up at 5 AM and taking an early breakfast. That is before dressing in a gown of ‘silk and cream lace’, with ‘little gold bows all the way down the middle and puffed sleeves with one little bow in the centre’.

Queen Elizabeth during her father’s Coronation.

Queen Elizabeth also goes on to explain that after kissing her mother goodbye, she boarded the carriage with her little sister, Margaret. Both of them then headed to Westminster Abbey.


‘I thought it all very, very, wonderful and I expect the Abbey did, too. The arches and beams at the top were covered with a sort of haze of wonder as Papa was crowned, at least I thought so,’ she wrote in her diary.

King George VI's coronation
Princess Elizabeth during her father’s coronation outside the balcony.

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However, all that wasn’t enough to keep young Princess, Elizabeth, preoccupied and busy.  Queen Elizabeth also states that the whole thing was ‘inordinately long and tiring’. ‘At the end, the service got rather boring as it was all prayers’, she confessed.

July 9 1947; Princess Elizabeth, Philip Mountbatten, Queen Elizabeth – the future queen-mother, King George VI and Princess Margaret pose in Buckingham Palace on the day the engagement of Princess Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten was officially announced.

 The coronation eventually left the now-Queen, so exhausted that her legs ‘ached awfully’. Due to this, she was tucked up in bed by 6 PM that day.