Last night, the Royal Family announced the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Elizabeth II. Photo by Jane Barlow - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Photo by Jane Barlow – WPA Pool/Getty Images)

The Queen, aged 96, passed away peacefully at her Scottish residence in Balmoral, surrounded by her family. The Queen came to the throne in 1952 and reigned for 70 years, becoming the longest-serving monarch in the history of the United Kingdom. She witnessed a time of extraordinary social and historical change.

The President of the Italian Republic, Sergio Mattarella, and the Italian Prime Minister, Mario Draghi, also expressed their condolences and sympathy to the Royal Family and the citizens of the United Kingdom.

President Mattarella sent a message to the new King, Charles III, extending “to Your Majesty, to the Royal Family and the people of the United Kingdom the deepest sympathy of the Italian Republic and my own personal condolences.” Queen Elizabeth II, President Mattarella added, was “a figure of extraordinary importance in history. Her authoritative wisdom and unequaled sense of responsibility will be remembered. For seven decades, she was a symbol of dedication for millions of women and men, maintaining a vision of the future and the needs of the times she lived through.”

Elizabeth II. Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images
Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Prime Minister Mario Draghi expressed his deepest sympathy on the passing of Queen Elizabeth II. “Queen Elizabeth – he added – has been a key figure in world history over the last seventy years.”

She represented the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth with poise, wisdom, and respect for the institutions and democracy. She was the most beloved symbol of her country and garnered respect, affection, and fondness worldwide. She ensured stability in times of crisis and kept the value of tradition alive in a society undergoing continuous and profound change,” Mr. Draghi concluded.

Elizabeth II with Italian President Giorgio Napolitano.
Elizabeth II with Italian President Giorgio Napolitano in 2014

During her long reign, Elizabeth II developed a solid relationship with Italy. She visited the country on four different occasions, meeting with Presidents of the Republic Giovanni Gronchi in 1961, Sandro Pertini in 1980, Carlo Azeglio Ciampi in 2000, and Giorgio Napolitano in 2014. The Queen also visited some of Italy’s most beautiful cities: Rome, Venice, Naples, Florence, Turin, Genoa, Palermo, and Milan.

Her death symbolizes the end of an era. Her passing comes at a time of profound historical change, when many, not only in the United Kingdom, look to the future with increasing uncertainty. The citizens of the United Kingdom lost a symbol of unity and stability that will be very difficult to replace.