14 Commonwealth countries that exited Queen Elizabeth’s reign

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14 Commonwealth countries that exited Queen Elizabeth’s reign

During her time as queen, the footprint of her monarchy shrank dramatically, but at her death she was still head of state of the United Kingdom and 14 Commonwealth countries or realms, from Canada and Jamaica to Australia and New Zealand.

At her coronation in 1953, Queen Elizabeth II was crowned queen of seven independent countries: the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan and Ceylon, which later changed its name to Sri Lanka.

The numbers grew as decolonisation accelerated and British colonies and dependencies became new Commonwealth realms.

Some decided to keep her as head of state, others did not.


Where she remained queen, the role was largely ceremonial, and her duties were carried out by one of her governor generals — a viceroy who effectively acts as head of state.

She was the queen of each newly independent country in its own right.

At her passing, she was head of state of: Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, The Bahamas, Belize, Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Solomon Islands, Tuvalu and the UK.

These countries are distinct from the broader 54-state Commonwealth of nations that have historical ties to the United Kingdom, but did not necessarily choose to have the queen as head of state.