Today is the birthday of The Queen, and an opportunity to publicly express good wishes as well as loyalty to her. Given the exacting schedule she maintains, and however much practical help and personal care is inherent in the office and system, it is still surprising to think that for several years now The Queen has been the longest lived of our Monarchs.
Monarchy as a system seemingly fuses the office and the person, even if in theory and practice they have at times at least to be distinguished - a reason why everyone interested in history or politics, let alone constitutional matters should read Kantorowicz's The King's Two Bodies.
The Queen's blending of the personalities, her own and that of her Sovereignty, has been seamless, and a central factor in the stability she has brought to the life of this and her other realms over almost six decades.
Long may she reign!