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Queen Elizabeth Just Turned Down This Award: "Find a More Worthy Recipient"

The Oldie of the Year awards had to find a new person for their top honor.

A lot of people would offended if they were offered an award with this name, but that's not the case with one very famous nonagenarian. Queen Elizabeth turned down the Oldie of the Year award from British magazine The Oldie and had a solid reason for doing so. Declining had nothing to do with the queen being insulted yet everything to do with her outlook on life.

While no one would blame Queen Elizabeth if she turned down the award with no explanation or simply ignored the offer, she actually did respond to the magazine via a statement from her assistant private secretary. And her reasoning gives an insight into how Elizabeth views life at 95 years old. Read on to find out what she had to say.

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The queen doesn't feel old enough to accept the award.

Queen Elizabeth at Trooping the Colour in June 2019
Karl Weller /

In the message to The Oldie, which was published on the magazine's website, assistant private secretary Tom Laing-Baker writes, "Her Majesty believes you are as old as you feel, as such The Queen does not believe she meets the relevant criteria to be able to accept, and hopes you will find a more worthy recipient." The note concludes, "This message come to you with Her Majesty's warmest best wishes."

The Oldie explains in an article that the magazine wanted to honor Elizabeth this year because of her leadership during the pandemic and because next year is her Platinum Jubilee—the celebration of 70 years as monarch. The award ended up going to 90-year-old actor and dancer Leslie Caron (An American in Paris, Gigi).

One of her family members was in attendance at the presentation.

Catherine Duchess of Cambridge, Camilla Duchess of Cornwall, and Queen Elizabeth at Fortnum and Mason in London in March 2012
Featureflash Photo Agency /

At the Oldie of the Year ceremony—also known as the TOOTYs–both serious and humorous awards are given out, fitting the lighthearted tone of the magazine. While Elizabeth turned down the top honor, her 74-year-old daughter-in-law, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, presented the awards at this year's luncheon. "[W]e were honoured by the presence of HRH The Duchess of Cornwall, who, too young to be eligible for an award herself, presented them to this year's galaxy of worthy award-winners," reads The Oldie.

As for another royal connection, the queen's late husband, Prince Philip, received the Consort of the Year award in 2011.

The queen commented on aging in a viral video.

Queen Elizabeth visiting a replica of an original Sainsbury's in May 2019
Cubankite /

Her official comment to The Oldie isn't the only time Elizabeth has shown she's not too worried about aging. Recently, a video resurfaced of her sitting for a portrait in honor of her 80th birthday. In the clip, she mentions something about seeing herself age through the many paintings that have been done of her over the years. When the artist asks if that bothers her, the queen simply says, "Nah." The shockingly casual response made the video go viral online.

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She is taking it easy lately.

Queen Elizabeth at Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey in March 2020
Lorna Roberts /

On Wednesday, CNN reported that Elizabeth "reluctantly" canceled a trip to Northern Ireland after being advised to rest for the "next few days," according to a statement from Buckingham Palace. "Her Majesty is in good spirits and is disappointed that she will no longer be able to visit Northern Ireland, where she had been due to undertake a series of engagements today and tomorrow," reads the statement. "The Queen sends her warmest good wishes to the people of Northern Ireland, and looks forward to visiting in the future." CNN also reports that a source says the situation is "not COVID related."

She was also asked to give up a daily ritual.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip at Trooping the Colour in June 2017
Lorna Roberts /

It was also recently reported that the queen was advised to give up her daily cocktail, which is usually a martini, as reported by Vanity Fair. Reportedly, this is so she is as healthy as possible for her busy schedule, including next year's Platinum Jubilee celebrations. "It's not really a big deal for her," a family friend told Vanity Fair, "she is not a big drinker but it seems a trifle unfair that at this stage in her life she's having to give up one of very few pleasures."

RELATED: Queen Elizabeth's Secret Morning Routine Is Just as Regal as You'd Expect.

Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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