‘The epitome of nobility’: Her knights and dames mourn Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth in a lilac hat and jacket while she looks ahead smiling from her Buckingham Palace balcony
Queen Elizabeth II, pictured in June 2022, is in the minds of the pop culture figures who received royal distinctions under her rule, including Elton John and Helen Mirren.
(Jonathan Brady / AP)

Mere hours after the death of Queen Elizabeth II brought the world to a standstill Thursday, the queen’s honored pop culture figures Elton John, Helen Mirren and Mick Jagger shared their grief on social media.

The queen, who was Britain’s longest-reigning monarch, died at her summer residence in Scotland on Thursday morning. She was 96.

“She was an inspiring presence to be around and led the country through some of our greatest and darkest moments with grace, decency and a genuine caring warmth,” John said in a statement posted to his Twitter. “Queen Elizabeth has been a huge part of my life from childhood to this day, and I will miss her dearly.”

John, Mirren and Jagger are just a handful of notable figures who received knighthood or damehoods under the queen’s rule, which began in 1952 when she was just 25 years old.

Queen Elizabeth II’s 70-year reign was so long that most of Britain’s 68 million people have known no other sovereign.

Sept. 8, 2022

Queen Elizabeth bestowed one of her first knighthoods to physician Walter Fergusson Leisrinck Hannay in 1952. What first started as a celebration of an individual’s contribution to British society evolved into a symbolic appreciation for artists’ works across music, film and television, theater, literature and more.


Like John — who was knighted in 1998 — Mirren remembered the queen on social media.

“I am proud to be an Elizabethan. We mourn a woman, who, with or without the crown, was the epitome of nobility,” she said on Instagram.

Queen Elizabeth’s death ended a remarkable 70-year rule — so long that most of Britain’s 68 million people have known no other sovereign.

Sept. 8, 2022

Mirren, who was appointed dame in 2003, later played the late monarch in “The Queen” in 2006. Mirren won the lead actress Oscar, while the film garnered six Academy Award nominations, including for best picture and director.

On Instagram, Jagger wrote, “For my whole life, Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II has always been there.

“In my childhood I can recall watching her wedding highlights on TV. I remember her as a beautiful young lady, to the much beloved grandmother of the nation. My deepest sympathies are with the Royal family.”

“Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was more than a monarch,” President Biden said in a statement Thursday. “She defined an era.”

Sept. 8, 2022

Former “The Great British Bake Off” judge and baking personality Dame Mary Berry remembered the queen in a picture posted to an Instagram account she shares with her assistant, Lucy Young, while celebrated ’60s-era model Dame Twiggy Lawson said, “It is hard to imagine life without her.”

“Today is a very sad day not just for our country but for the entire world. I’m deeply saddened by the passing of our beloved Monarch, Her Majesty The Queen. She will be remembered for her steadfast loyalty and service and my thoughts are with the royal family at this incredibly sad time,” fashion designer and former Spice Girls singer Victoria Beckham, who received an OBE (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) in 2017, said on Twitter.