July 10, 1947 - King George VI and Queen Elizabeth announce Elizabeth's engagement to Prince Philip of Greece, a lieutenant in the British Navy.
November 20, 1947 - Princess Elizabeth marries Philip. After becoming a British citizen and renouncing his Greek title, Philip becomes His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Elizabeth becomes the Duchess of Edinburgh.
February 6, 1952 - King George VI dies of lung cancer, and Elizabeth ascends to the throne.
April 11, 1952 - The Queen decrees that she and her descendents will continue to use the surname Windsor, first adopted by the British royal family during World War I.
June 2, 1953 - Coronation takes place at Westminster Abbey.
October 16-22, 1957 - Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip make their first state visit to the United States and she addresses the General Assembly of the United Nations
May 14, 1965 - Queen Elizabeth II dedicates a memorial and one acre of land at Runnymede to the United States as a memorial to President John F. Kennedy.
June 13, 1981 - A teenager, Marcus Simon Sarjeant, fires six blanks at the Queen while she is riding on horseback through London. He is arrested and charged with treason.
July 9, 1982 - A man penetrates security at Buckingham Palace and encounters the Queen in her bedroom.
May 16, 1991 - The Queen addresses a joint session of the United States Congress, the first British monarch to do so.
November 24, 1992 - At a luncheon commemorating her 40th anniversary on the throne, the Queen declares 1992 as an "Annus Horribilis". That year marked the separation of the Duke and Duchess of York, the divorce of Princess Anne and Mark Phillips, the increasing estrangement of the Prince and Princess of Wales, and the fire at Windsor Castle.
November 26, 1992 - Prime Minister John Major announces that the Queen will begin paying taxes on her personal income. Her personal fortune is estimated to be $11.7 billion.
April 1993 - Taxation of the Queen and Prince Charles goes into effect with the provision that they may "opt-out" of the agreement anytime after April 1994.
August 1993 - Buckingham Palace is opened to the public for the first time. Money raised from the tours is to help pay for the restoration of Windsor Castle.
December 1995 - After heavy media coverage of the estrangement and affairs of the Prince and Princess of Wales, the Queen urges them to divorce.
1997 - The Queen addresses the nation via live television to express grief over the death of Princess Diana.
1998 - The Queen endorses a plan to end gender discrimination in the line of succession for the throne.
2002 - The Queen celebrates her Golden Jubilee, or 50th anniversary, on the throne.
December 2006 - The Queen issues her annual Christmas broadcast live for the first time since 1960.
May 3-8, 2007 - The Queen and Prince Philip visit the United States for the 400th anniversary of America's first settlement by a British company in Jamestown in 1607. They attend the Kentucky Derby on May 5 and a State Dinner at the White house on May 7.
April 2, 2009 - Meets Michelle Obama at Buckingham Palace and the ladies are photographed with their arms around one another. Touching the queen is not a typical occurrence and causes lots of media attention and speculation as whose arm was on whom first.
July 6, 2010 - Addresses the General Assembly of the United Nations for the second time.
April 21, 2011 - On the Queen's 85th birthday, the palace releases the Queen's official consent, the Instrument of Consent, to the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. By law, Royal Marriages Act of 1772, the monarch must consent to most royal marriages.
May 17, 2011 - Makes the first state visit to the Republic of Ireland by a British monarch.
February 6-June 5, 2012 -- Celebrations take place throughout the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth for the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, or 60th anniversary, on the throne. Festivities highlights include a 1,000 boat flotilla along the River Thames and a concert at Buckingham Palace.